Staff from O’Brien’s Spar on Market Street were out in force at the 2018 Ardee BAFTA Awards on Saturday night – and they went home happy after claiming the Champagne Award for Most Sparkling Staff, one of six awards handed out on the night at the sixth annual dinner and awards.
Held once again at the Nuremore Hotel in Carrickmacross, Emma McKenna Kennedy was another big winner on the night. She was crowed Best Boss in Ardee, leading the way on what was a successful night for the ladies overall. Emma, proprietor of Emma’s Touch on William Street, beat off strong competition in a mostly male dominated category to win through.
Ardee Hospice was named a very worthy winner of Best Community Group. Una Woods, Alice Hennessy and Teresa McDonnell (below) were on hand to collect the award on behalf of the organisation after they romped home ahead of five other local groups and sports clubs. In the online voting at least, Ardee Rugby Club were a distant second with 2016 winners Ardee Concert Band in third.
Other winners on the night included, Deidre Dickson (Proactive Solutions) who won Businesswoman of the Year ahead of Ann O’Flynn while Brian Sharkey was named Businessman of the Year. Both online and offline, he proved a popular vote this year. Bank of Ireland manager David Dowling finished second.
Ardee Pet Supplies were crowned the Most Enthusiastic Facebook user over the past 12 months, narrowly beating Ardee Pharmacy in that category.
As well as online voting which took place exclusively on ThisIsArdee.ie this year, voting also took place at several locations in town – with voting boxes located at the four nominees in the staff award – Callaghan’s Butchers, Ardee Credit Union, O’Brien’s Spar and Moorehall Lodge.
Last year was a big year for John O’Brien and his staff, having seen their store undergo a complete refit. Bigger and better than ever, seeing their staff honoured was a good way for John and Margaret to start the New Year. Daughter Fiona took to the mic to thank everyone who voted and the staff were undoubtedly thrilled with their win.
That vote was one of the closest as it turned out – with O’Brien’s just pipping Callaghan’s Butchers to the win. Peter Callaghan was in attendance, hoping to claim a third BAFTA in six years.
Just over 200 people were in attendance and after a champagne reception, they were treated to meal before everyone got down to the serious business of the awards themselves. Raffle winners were announced, as were the winners of Joe Finnegan’s ever popular shop front quiz beforehand. Every recipient of an award on the night was a first time award winner.
Hughie O’Neill acted as MC on the night while Ardee Traders & Business Association chairman John Little addressed the crowd at the Nuremore for the first time since taking the helm, thanking them for their continued support throughout the year – and urging members not to forgot their annual fees. Parking might have been mentioned.
Musical entertainment on the night was provided by Odd Time.
The Champagne Award for most Sparkling Staff – O’BRIEN’S SPAR
The Facebook Fanatic Award for Most Enthusiastic Facebook User – ARDEE PET SUPPLIES
The Dapper Dude Award for Businessman of the Year – BRIAN SHARKEY (PAUL SHARKEY DRAPERS)
The Classy Lassy Award for Businesswoman of the Year – DEIRDRE DICKSON (PROACTIVE SOLUTIONS)
The Bruce Springsteen AKA The Boss Award for Best Boss – EMMA McKENNA (EMMA’S TOUCH)
Cool & The Gang Award for Best Community Group – ARDEE HOSPICE