The Crescent Student Night: A Success to be Repeated

It was on a sunny, cool Thursday night that the students of Limerick’s university and colleges congregated at the Crescent Shopping Centre. Here, they had been told was to be an event, an event that would solve all wardrobe issues. From the morning struggle to find a top you hadn’t worn all week, to a pair of shoes that’s soles weren’t worn to your skin. This, rumour had it, was to be the pivotal night of shopping. This was The Mega Student Night.

Word of the event spread quickly approximately three weeks ago at the start of the semester when the Crescent Shopping Centre announced their elusive event. In the following days and weeks, the event’s page on Facebook began to fill with images and information on the discounts. These ranged from the highly anticipated 50% off Ristorante Del Arte on the night, to the 20% off the popular shoe shop, Schuh, on the night. Among other popular stores that offered 20% off to the hungry and penniless students were River Island, H&M, Quiz and Zumo.

The evening of September 29th in Limerick was riddled with traffic. It took up to an hour for students travelling in cars and city buses to make the trek to their destination with the rush hour traffic combined with the mass of people attending. On arrival, the car parks proved to be packed, with several people resolving to leave their cars on the side the driveway in and out of the centre. Inside, there were similar scenes. On first entering the centre from the Omniplex entrance, one would notice the lengthy queue at Ristorante Del Arte. Their 50% off offer overwhelmed their neighbours’ Rockin’ Joes, whose deal consisted of two meals for €15. As students continue14572064_1866782076883297_1211282523_od their way through shopping centre, it was obvious many students suffer from worn soles. Schuh was mobbed. The entire store was decked out in staff trying to deal with the hordes of students that so desperately needed a good pair of Sketchers.


Other stores featured similar scenes. For Penneys, all checkouts were in operation, while the Spin South West stand was under siege by dozens of students. The radio station broadcasted live on the night, giving away prizes both on the show to listeners and to attending students.

As the night was supposedly drawing to a close at 9 pm yet there were still masses of students around. Stores and restaurants struggled to shoo out lingering shoppers who picked up the final few clothes, shoes, and products for the night. On the night, students described the atmosphere as “Christmas Eve”-like.

Overall, the night was a success. The only real issue towards the end was a matter of fitting all these students into a city bus so that they could get home safely. The Crescent Student Night will be repeated in the future years. It was a welcome sale for those who are tight on cash at the beginning of the semester.14513786_1866782273549944_1145093716_o


Whelan’s Bar: The Pub That is Bringing Life Back into Town


Since the cancellation of Westfest this year, the town of Newcastle West has experienced a definitive lull throughout the month of September. The event, which started out as a local festival, had grown to a national festival, drawing in people from all over the country and beyond. Headliners such as the Coronas, Walking on Cars, Hudson-Taylor and The High Kings brought in great tourism for the town and community. The announcement of its conclusion caused a great deal of surprise and disappointment as the reason was deemed to be funding issues. However, in spite of this loss, the town has a new and exciting bar which has welcomed a new lease of life to the nightlife of the town.


Whelans Interior

The Whelan family has held a high role in the pub scene of Newcastle West for the best part of four decades. Pat Whelan, the patriarch of the Whelan family, ran a highly successful bar known locally as Small Pat’s for dozens of years. Since earlier this year, Pat’s son, Gearoid, has been managing a new bar, Whelan’s Bar and D’Terrace Gardens.

The family behind the name never had an issue in garnering a crowd, their reputation withstands time. The unique aspects of Gearoid’s new bar are that it attracts both the younger and the more mature generation. There is a cool atmosphere in Whelan’s. It bears both a stylish vibe with live music every weekend as well as a traditional one with sports matches during Saturdays and Sundays.

Sports is clearly very important to the Whelan family. Adorned on the beer garden walls are paintings of rugby, golf, football, hurling and soccer stars. The bar never misses its chance to show any match live, as it draws it a large crowd. During the daytime hours, the bar also serves soup and sandwiches to their customers.14513545_2103254979900182_1215081705_o

Music, like sport, is an integral aspect of the bar’s essence. Three nights of the weekend a dedicated to showcasing live performances from acts both local and from further afield. The live music gives the talented musicians and singers of the community a stage to perform and develop as performers. this is the only pub in the town that offers live music every night of the weekend, and it’s good music too.

Whelan’s Bar and D’Terrace Gardens, like its predecessor, Small Pat’s, is sure to remain and in the community for decades to come. Overall, the early success of the pub this year is sure to transpire to the next. The new bar is welcome to the town as it has reinvigorated the nightlife of Newcastle West. Call in for a pint or a bowl of soup and enjoy the atmosphere.