Monaghan is now twinned with PEI, The Miramichi and Peterborough in Canada and since
these connections were made there has been a steady stream of visitors to the county
from those areas. Many of these come to trace roots, some indeed to finally stand
at the homestead of their forefathers or mothers, some just to see the close resemblance
between the two regions. If they visit a cemetery here it is like being at home as
the headstones carry the same names. They have heard the stories, the history, the
music, the songs and the dance brought to Canadian shores by people who had to emigrate
to seek a living, forefathers of families who still live around here - yours and
mine perhaps, if full research was carried out. One man who has been responsible
in bringing tours to Monaghan from those regions has been Mervyn McCarthy and not
only is it interesting to chat to these people but it brings great benefits to the
economy of the area. Monaghan is now being used by many of these as a base from which
to visit other areas of interest - Belfast, Armagh, Fermanagh, Giants Causeway, Glens
of Antrim, Folk parks in Omagh, Derry, Donegal, Sligo, Newgrange, and the list goes
on and on and we also include Monaghan itself. Emyvale Development Association produced
a full tour of the Emyvale area which includes Carleton, McKenna and the PEI connections
and many have taken this tour and enjoyed it.
This week another bus load led by Mervyn arrived in Monaghan for a five night stay
and daily tours organised. We caught up with them in Sliabh Beagh Hotel on Thursday
night, Sept 12th where they enjoyed Irish hospitality from the local people there.
We do hope that they have a wonderful time and take great memories back with them
to their homes.