Padraic Walsh at Niagara Falls

Niagara falls to turn green and red for mayo day

An ambitious project to turn Niagara Falls green and red to mark the world’s first global Mayo Day on May 2 is being masterminded by New York State Assemblyman Michael Kearns and the secretary of the Buffalo Fenians GAA, Padraic Walsh.

The idea had come from a tweet from the director of Mayo Manchester, Tony Hennigan, who runs the #MayoDay2015 twitter site

He sent a tweet out asking for the Mayo Diaspora around the world to get involved in the global Mayo Day celebrations.

Tony explained: “We have been encouraging people all over the world to get behind the Mayo Day project. We started with the Manchester press launch at Old Trafford in front of 75,000 fans.

“Over the Christmas period we saw that New York had managed to turn the Empire State Building green and red and sent out a tweet asking if anyone could manage to do the same thing at Niagara Falls.

“Padraic contacted me straight away and then contacted New York Statesman Michael Kearns to get involved. It has just snowballed from there.”

Michael Kearns, whose Irish roots stem from Westport, is lending his office’s weight to all things Mayo and developing business and tourism links between America and Ireland. He has teamed up with fellow Mayo man Padraic Walsh, the secretary of the Buffalo Fenians GAA Club, to support the worldwide global Mayo Day on May 2.

They are planning to turn the iconic Niagara Falls green and red to mark the world’s first ‘Mayo Day’. The two ambassadors for Mayo are also working on plans to get direct flights from Mayo to Buffalo International Airport.

Said Padraic: “It would be great to see the Falls lit up in our county colours as they straddle both Canada and America, where most of the 9.3 million people with Mayo roots now live.

“We have already made contact with Niagara Falls and are not anticipating any problems with staging the event, as long as the Falls are unfrozen by then. The Mayo diaspora over here are already planning a massive party at the Falls.

“The Niagara Frontier Transport Authority (NFTA) have just had their first meeting with us regarding the possibility of a direct flight from Buffalo to Ireland West Airport Knock. The next stage is to start to develop the concept with Ireland West Airport Knock and Mayo County Council.”