Harps celebrate 40 years in senior soccer

On the 20th July 2009, the world celebrated the 40th anniversary of the moon landings. Apollo 11 with Michael Collins, Neil Armstrong and Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin on board made the historic breakthrough.

Whilst Armstrong and Aldrin were walking on the moon, a group of men, back on earth, keeping their feet firmly on the ground were preparing for an equally historic occasion. The officials and players of Finn Harps Football Club were preparing to take their first steps in senior football. Their focus was on the 17th August 1969 and a Dublin City Cup game at Finn Park against Shamrock Rovers.

To mark the occasion of that historic first match, the Finn Harps Supporters Club Branches from Ballybofey/Stranorlar and Dublin are to host a buffet to pay tribute to the Finn Harps team and officials from the 1969/70 season. The event is to be hosted in Kees Hotel in Stranorlar on Saturday 15th August 2009. Harps play Shelbourne in Finn Park that evening and the buffet will take place directly after the game.

Everyone is welcome to attend an enjoyable evening, which, will include a visual trip down memory lane. Old video footage from the 1969/70 season has been located. This includes match action from the away game V Athlone Town that saw Brendan Bradley notch his and the club’s first hat-trick in senior football. It also features the final home game of the season against Waterford. A display of photographs from the season will also be shown.

A limited number of tickets will be available for people who wish to attend priced at €10 each. These can be purchased from the club office on weekdays and from the club shop on match nights.

Players who have confirmed to date that they intend to attend include Ritchie Kelly, Jim Nicholl, Jim Leathem, Stephen Harvey, Stevie Wilkinson, Brendan Bradley, Sean Coyle, Peter Hutton, Charlie Ferry, Jim McGarrigle, Declan Forbes, Jimmy Barclay, Brian Wright, Paddy Doherty, Colm Norris, Seamus Doherty, Gerry Murray.

The Finn Harps Supporters Club would like to thank Gerard McHugh Photography, Ballybofey for their kind sponsorship of the evening.

All profits from the night are to be donated to the Finn Harps Youth Development Fund.