The Gathering Throughout 2013, Ireland opened its arms to hundreds of thousands of friends and family from all over the world, calling them home to gatherings in villages, towns and cities. There will be clan gatherings, festivals, special sporting events, music and concerts taking place all across the country, all year long. Communities throughout Ireland will showcase and share the very best of Irish culture, tradition, business, sport, fighting spirit and the uniquely Irish sense of fun. Over 70 million people worldwide claim Irish ancestry. The Gathering Ireland 2013 provides the perfect excuse to reach out to those who have moved away, their relatives, friends and descendants, and invite them home. The Gathering is the people’s party. It will kick off in spectacular style at the New Year’s Eve Festival in Dublin and will be celebrated through gatherings of the people and Ireland’s major festivals during 2013. After that it is over to you. It is in your hands. For more information see: The Gathering 2013 – www.thegatheringireland.com THE SMITH FAMILY GATHERING 2012 After doing my own research on my ancestors (Smiths), I traced living descendants of all those who had emigrated to the United States in the early 1920s from Dublin, Ireland. This research journey was so exciting, and when I finally managed to contact all my cousins, scattered through the US, it was a very emotional experience! After months of emailing, writing etc., I finally decided to make a trip to the US earlier this year, and finally meet up with as many of my new found cousins as possible. I arranged a family reunion in Fitzpatricks Manhattan Hotel, Lexington Avenue, New York in April 2012! What a Day! Absolutely wonderful! We all met for the very first time, and had such a great day! This would never have been possible only for taking on this task of “tracing my ancestors”, and it took me on such a fantastic journey, culminating in My Gathering 2012! I would definitely recommend organising a family gathering like this. Once you have the family research done, and you have made contact with your relatives, wherever they may be living, then try and arrange a family GATHERING, if at all possible, here in IRELAND. A Great Experience!