Grand Canal Dock is Buzzing!

Grand Canal Dock _1

A new outdoor adventure activity is about to be introduced into the heart of Dublin 4.

Wakedock, a company based in the Grand Canal Dock, have recently launched Ireland’s first cable wakeboard park. Similar to water skiing, instead of being pulled behind a speed boat you are connected to a zip wire which allows you to do amazing jumps and turns on the water at top speed.

Wakeboard have built a two tower cable wakeboard system in the Grand Canal Dock which replaces the need for a motorboat, making wakeboarding more accessible and less expensive. I spoke with company director Colin Harris on a sunny March afternoon at the Dock who said, “Wakedock will provide an exciting sporting experience in a unique location that will put Ireland on the map for cable wakeboarding as the latest adventure sport. Waterways Ireland, have been very supportive from the start of this project and we are delighted that they have made it possible. We believe the cable is a great attraction for tourists and residents alike.”

The company will create up to six jobs in its first year and offer wakeboarding tuition, ride passes, private group sessions for adults and children as well as programmes for schools and youth groups. You can follow Wakedock’s activities on their website or call 01 -6643883.
On the same sunny March morning I also met up with Fiona Tiernan who set up Plurabelle Paddlers in 2010. They are a group of women who have survived breast cancer and who have found that exercise involving paddling reduces lymphatic swelling which can cause pain after breast surgery. Fiona began with only two people and no boat, they now have two boats ‘Anna’ and ‘Livia’ and over 60 members.

Fiona showed me around their very own new clubhouse/boathouse right on the Grand Canal Dock. They managed to secure the premises rent free and got a number of donations including a complete new kitchen, new tables and chairs. Fiona said, “One of our members who used to be a landscape gardener is making plans for our back garden which is our next project.” They have also been talking to Orla Kaminski, a local artist who has agreed to do a ceramic mural on the outside of their new building. A year ago they were operating out of two container lorries and now they have an amazing premises with the finishing touches near completion.

The Plurabelle Paddlers are taking part in the Mini Marathon again this year, they see it as an integral part of their fundraising, so if you want to mix with a positive inspirational group of can-do women, speak to Fiona 087-2806048.

By Joan Mitchell