The CYC games held from July 25th to 29th in Gaelic Park Chicago were attended by 2000 children who played in all three codes, Hurling, Camogie and Football, on eight dedicated pitches set over a magnificent 62 acre site.
CYC Games a huge success
Teams from New York, Boston, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Buffalo, Connecticut, Toronto and Chicago took part. While Camogie is in its infancy at the CYC games, it has grown considerably since its debut in 2009 and ten camogie teams took part in the 2012 event with games played with huge degrees of skill at U8, U10, U12 and U14 level.
The work of the coaches and the mentors was quite evident on the playing fields and it was fantastic to witness the national games played with such pride and passion.
The International CYC committee, chaired by John O’Flynn and the Chicago CYC committee were tremendous in organising this event with enormous attention to detail ensuring that it was a hugely positive and enjoyable experience for all involved.
One of the major highlights of the tournament was the huge family involvement. While the venue of the CYC games changes each year, families plan their annual holidays to coincide with the event, with many driving long hours and incurring large expense to reach the CYC destination. Stories from this year’s CYC range from one family from Boston undergoing a 14 hour trip with five children and two parents in the car while another such tale was of a family driving 11 hours from Philadelphia for the event.
Over the course of the CYC tournament 2,000 children from the ages of 6 to 18 years. took part playing all three codes- Camogie, Football and Hurling- with 438 games played in total.
These children have inherited their Gaelic games passion from their Irish parents and grandparents who immigrated to the States some years ago.It is not just a link for the children to their Irish roots, but also an important element for their parents to remain connected to their native culture.
A special thanks to the three camogie referees Catherine Mc Namara from Clare, Jordan Hynds from Down (who were in Chicago for the summer) and Annie Redmond (Chicago) who officiated excellently over the course of the tournament.
The CYC games were also attended by the President of the Camogie Association Aileen Lawlor; Liam O Neill President of the GAA and Pat Quill President of the Ladies Football Association. It is a recognition of the huge esteem in which the CYC Games are held, that all three codes were officially represented while it further underlines the commitment to assisting with the coaching and development of the games in the US and also acknowledges the huge work that has been done to date.