The first Independence Day took place on July 4, 1776 in the U.S. and celebrates the American declaration of independence from the British. Next Friday, July 4 at T.J and Mary O’Riordan’s pub on Main St. at 8.30pm Mick Galway from Currow – the rugby player with the All Ireland Gaelic medal – is going to declare Abbeyfeale’s Independence from the marauding Vikings who are threatening to overrun the town during the first Gather by the Feale Festival on July 16-20. The first description of how Independence Day would be celebrated was in a letter from John Adams to his wife Abigail on July 3, 1776. He described "pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations". Abbeyfeale will not be lacking with its celebrations either but we might leave the guns, bonfires and illuminations for another time! We’ll have the shows in the Glorach and on the gig rig in the Square, Feale’s Fittest Family, sports and games in the Grove and Riverside Park, a card game in Fr. Casey’s, tug of war and sheaf tossing in the Square, Viking Plunder Run on the Wednesday and the Trader’s War on Friday and that’s only the half of it. Come to Riordan’s on Friday night, celebrate Independence Day, say hello to the famous man from down the road and over the Kerry border and get a rundown on what’s planned for the first of, hopefully, many Gather by the Feale’s.