The naval ship LÉ Aisling is in the bay, the Irish army will be on manoeuvres, and the strains of ‘Lonely Banna Strand’ are ringing out across Tralee Bay in one of the biggest State commemorations outside of Dublin of events associated with 1916.
After delivering a well received speech President Michael D Higgins has laid a wreath at the recovered anchor of the Aud, the German arms ship which Roger Casement was to liaise with.
A great grandniece of Casement, Lesley McNaughton, has flown in from New Zealand to take part in the wreath laying.
Later this afternoon the President will open an official exhibition to Casement at the county museum in Ashe St, Tralee and deliver a speech which will be streamed live by Kerry County Council.
Some background to today's events
Kerry played a vital role in the Easter Rising. On Good Friday, 1916, it experienced the first casualties of the Rising when three men on their way to seize radio equipment from Caherciveen to communicate with the Aud drowned after taking a wrong turning at Killorglin.
An official ceremony, attended by President Higgins to commemorate these men, takes place at the location at Ballykissane Pier at 8am.
“Kerry was central to the preparations for the Rising with Tralee man Austin Stack charged with organising the landing of arms at Fenit at Easter 1916. Key figures in the Rising were The O’Rahilly of Ballylongford, Fionán Lynch of Waterville, An Seabhac from Dingle, Thomas Ashe from Lispole, and Piaras Béaslaí,” said Kate Kennelly, arts officer with Kerry County Council and the 2016 co-ordinator.
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