KATE O’Sullivan and her dancing partner local footballer Colm Sheehy were crowned winners of the hugely popular Strictly Clon Dancing at the weekend.
Without doubt, the event was one of the most popular and well-supported fundraisers in Clonakilty’s sporting history, and drew huge crowds over its three weeks.
The joint rugby and GAA clubs fundraiser had the entire population of the town and surrounding area gripped to see who would emerge outright winners.
Judges on the final night included broadcasters Paschal Sheehy of RTE and George Hook of Newstalk.
The event was first mooted in March when Ger McCarthy of Clonakilty GAA Club came up with the idea and approached Kieran O’Regan of the Rugby club .
From August, practice began every Sunday morning in the GAA complex under the guidance pf dance teacher Margaret Fowler and her husband Jim of Viva Dance Studios Cork.
The standard of dancing from the first night, and the professional set-up in the host venue Dunmore House Hotel were the talk of the town.
By the time the 12 couples were chosen to compete in the final in Inchydoney Lodge & Spa last weekend, the dancers were confident and keen to get going.
Comperes Kevin O’Donovan and Pauline Looney got the night off to a flying start and the show opened with all the finalists performing a group dance – a la X Factor Live Show-style!
At the end of the night, the judges’ and the public votes were split 50/50. So while the votes were been counted, Paschal ‘interviewed’ George on stage.
Runners-up Carol Fleming and Mark Byrne got a huge round of applause, as did all the competitors.
But it proved to be Kate and Colm’s night, as they proved to be very worthy and popular winners who really put on a spectacular show of skilled and passionate dancing.
Thanks were relayed to the hard-working committee, to the sponsors, to Dunmore House Hotel, and Inchydoney Lodge and Spa.
Rumour has it that plans for next year are already underway, such was the popularity of this year’s contest.