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    Matchmaker carries on Irish tradition in Chicago

    By Noreen Bowden | July 15, 2008

    A Chicago newspaper has reported on an age-old Irish tradition that’s crossed the water: matchmaking. Maureen O’Looney, an 86-year-old owner of an Irish import shop who emigrated in 1953, has two marriages to her credit. She practices the fine art of matchmaking every year at Chicago’s Hooley Happy Hour at the Irish-American Heritage Center. The report says the Hooley is modeled after the Lisdoonvarna festival, and attract people from their early twenties to their late 40s and older.

    The report features Kevin McBride and Bridget McGowan, who attended the Valentine’s Day hooley in 2006. O’Looney matched them up, and they were married on June 14. “We basically both decided to come on by and try our luck?, said the new husband. “You have nothing to lose. Why not? You never know?.

    While O’Looney says the matchmaking is ‘just fun to start with, all fun’, she adds, “Who knows? You might meet your match.”

    Read the report from the Chicago Sun-Times.

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