Niall O’Dowd, of Irishcentral.com, above, believes The Gathering has been such a success, it should be an annual event.
“The Irish Americans I spoke to and heard from lapped it up. It seemed authentic to them too, and the welcome they received at those events, where they tapped into the family tree, went down very well.”
“In a world grown more global and more corporate every passing year, to have these touchstones of family and community that millions of Americans yearn for is vitally important.”
“That is why The Gathering has been a success, like the Notre Dame game in Dublin last year which allowed tens of thousands of Irish Americans an occasion to travel back for and feel an intimate part of.”
“…So what should be the follow up to The Gathering? It seems simple — a long-term project in every village and town to preserve local history, to reach out to exiled sons and daughters and to create occasions every two years or so where the twain shall meet.
“Call it The Homecoming and extend it deliberately to every parish.”
“On the governmental level the intent should be to publicize and spread the word about such homecoming events and continue to try and drive more visitors through extended access such as flights from American Airlines and United Airlines achieved this summer, and new routes from Aer Lingus will next year.”
Brilliant global marketing strategy.
Or clover-soaked Fifth Avenue blarney?
Why The Gathering may be Ireland’s greatest tourist success (Irish Central)