School: Baile an Doire (roll number 16410)

Ballinderry, Co. Galway
Tomás Ó Maolmhichíl

Filter stories

/ 0281 Forward
Resolution: Low | High
Roadside Dance

Archival Reference

The Schools’ Collection, Volume 0021, Page 0280

Image and data © National Folklore Collection, UCD. See copyright details »

On this page

Road-side dances were very common in Ireland forty or fifty years ago. That custom is not dad yet in this locality. It is held every Summer beside the Ballinderry wood. The two famous places long ago for the road side dance were Cahergal bridge and Ballinastack bridge. The man that played music for them was Pat Kelly. He was not a good musician but he pleased the people of the dance. These dances were called "hurlings" but why we do not know.
At these dances great ceremony was carried out. Some boy and girl were "caught" and the hurling was "put on" them for the next Sunday night. During that week the boy would send a message to the girl to ask her would she stand to her word. She always did. A party was always held at the boy's and girl's houses before the Sunday night, and a big pole was decorated for it. Previous to that day the girl would choose twelve others to "stand" by her and the boy did the same and the two marched until they met at the hurling. The two sides danced and

(continues on next page)
Charles Mc Cabe
Brackloon, Co. Galway