Ann Quinlan believes this iron bridge spanning the Camor River on the grounds of the Birr Castle is part of the “Hidden Ireland” that tourists seldom see.

Irish roots or not, people seem drawn to the “Emerald Isle,” this lush, green island about the size of Indiana. Having survived countless invasions, hunger and loss of land, the Irish people’s way of life is sustained by a unique cultural heritage anchored by a fierce devotion to the land.

Ann V. Quinlan, an Irish native who has lived in America for decades and who since 1988 has conducted small-group tours of Ireland, will discuss “Hidden Ireland” in a lecture set for 2:30 p.m. Wednesday (March 29) in the ASA Great Room.

She will discuss the island’s pre-historic past, its recent financial challenges, and its prominent role within the European Community.

In Quinlan’s presentation, the armchair traveler is introduced to some lesser known aspects of ancient and modern Ireland from megalithic sites to solar energy. She describes an Ireland rarely experienced on a large group tour or by the casual traveler.

Ann Quinlan

Having lived both in Ireland and in the U.S., Quinlan offers a unique sensibility to the beauty of both cultures. Like all Irish folk, she is passionate about literature, poetry and folklore. She delights her audiences with tales of hidden gems, faeries and elves…and then there’s the music! Her passion for music flows once she is seated at a piano.

“Ireland’s hospitality is not a myth,” she says. “The Irish love to engage the stranger in a discussion, on any subject, and will do this while putting on the tea kettle, at a moment’s notice.”

Written by Mike Maharry, Academy Village Volunteer

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March 29: A Look at Ireland’s ‘Hidden’ Charms
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