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About the Island
To Preserve "Whate'er is left to us of ancient heritage." T.E. Brown
New Scholarship for young Convention attendees
The NAMA Board and General Meeting passed a resolution at the 2012 Convention to offer assistance to younger people who wish to come to a Convention but find it financially challenging. NAMA will offer four scholarships of $250 to four members under 30 years of age to count towards Convention attendance. As it happens this year the Registration Fee is exactly $250. Applicants for the scholarship should send an email to Brad Prendergast at outlining the reasons why they should be considered for the award. The Board will review the applications and all applicants will be advised of the outcome. The deadline for applications is January 31st 2014.
NAMA Convention 2014 - Yndyssagh! We’re going back.
We are so excited to be returning to the island for the first time since Millennium Year 2000! Please share this information with any Manx Society members who are not yet NAMA members as we would like to encourage as many as possible to attend.
Timing: The Convention runs from July 3rd to July 7th 2014. Registration starts at 9.00am in the Cowell Room at the Sefton Hotel, Harris Promenade, Douglas.
Registration Fee - Adult - $250 ~ Child $200
Please download and complete the Registration Form and return it along with your check to Kelly McCarthy, 1751 Olde Towne Road, Alexandria, VA 22307, USA.
Schedule of events
**Sunday -- Optional activity. The Tynwald Garden Party at the International Business School in the grounds of the old Nunnery building. The Manx government has offered us 60 free places. First come, first served, to this standing-only event hosted by the Lieutenant-Governor of the Isle of Man. A return taxi from Douglas will cost approximately $30.
Friends and Family: If you wish to invite family or friends to any of our events a separate price has been calculated. The Banquet has a capacity limit so it will be first come, first served for tickets. The Independence Day Reception is $30, Banquet $60, Tynwald Day dinner $25. The Social, Singalong and Dessert will be completely free as we have a cash bar and lots of room. We can’t take people on the coaches because they are already full.
Raffle tickets: These will be sold on the island for cash. Because of lottery laws we cannot sell tickets in advance, or for people who won’t be in attendance. We do have a quilt raffle as the quilting group, www.manninquilters.org is kindly donating a patchwork quilt. Other Manx items will also be featured.
Souvenir Program: Please send your ads, greetings, and memorial copy to Kelly@mustgoto.com by May 1st 2014. If you can’t email, send it to Kelly McCarthy, 1751 Olde Towne Road, Alexandria, VA 22307. We need time to print these items in the Isle of Man so we will be strict about the deadline. If you don’t attend the Convention we will get a copy to you.
Getting there & other tips
Flying: There is no direct flight to the Isle of Man from America. You will fly to a major airport and then take another plane to the island. There is no airline (with the possible exception of Aer Lingus) that can promise to check your luggage all the way through. And be aware that the local plane from England or Ireland will have a very strict weight limit for your luggage and carry-on.
Major hub airports are Gatwick, Manchester and Dublin. They all require changing terminals unless you fly Aer Lingus from Dublin to the IOM. Flying through London Heathrow will require you to travel to another airport (London City, London Gatwick, London Luton) by tube, train, bus (usually very easy) or (very expensive) taxi. Allow several hours to make those transfers. Remember that the Isle of Man is often shrouded in fog. If you have the luxury of staying over in England or Ireland you may want to break your trip at either end.
Ronaldsway airport (Airport code IOM) is about 8 miles from the Sefton Hotel. There’s a bus service and a taxi rank at the hotel.
Airlines: American from Chicago to Gatwick. Aer Lingus to Dublin, United to Manchester. (Not an exhaustive list, but start there!) British Airways flies to Terminal 5 at Heathrow and has its own bus station where transfer buses leave for Gatwick and Luton where, currently, flights depart for the Isle of Man. Watch the website and/or Facebook page NAMA 2014 for developments on air travel as companies come and go. And check your luggage weight limit to the island, it’s probably only 40lbs -- and they mean it.
Boat: www.steampacket.com is your one stop shop for sailing to the island and getting around the baggage limitations on weight. Ports include Belfast, Birkenhead, Dublin, Heysham and Liverpool. Liverpool is accessible from bus and train. If you fly to Manchester, please note you can catch a train from inside the airport which will take you to Liverpool Lime Street and it’s just a short taxi or bus ride to the Steam Packet ‘s Landing Stage Terminal. The Sefton Hotel is half a mile from Douglas Harbor.
Disabled Access: The Sefton Hotel is fully accessible to handicapped visitors. However, the trip to the island is long and complicated. Please check the route you intend to take from your landing airport to the island. There is no direct transfer at Heathrow. Dublin, Gatwick and Manchester offer international and internal connecting flights although the domestic flights
We will do our best to help disabled visitors participate in all activities. The visit to the Tynwald Ceremony at St. John’s Field is the most obvious event that could present difficulties but we will endeavor to be as inclusive as possible. We do have access to some bleacher seats. Just be prepared for any type of weather! Please be realistic in your expectations.
Car rental: You can use your US license to drive in the Isle of Man. Ocean Ford: www.oceanfordrental.com Isle of Man Rent-a-car: www.iomrac.com Athol Garage: www.athol.co.im Mylchreests Car Hire: www.mylchreests.com/carhire are all located near the airport and can arrange to meet you there or bus you to your vehicle.
Accommodation: Convention Hotel: The Sefton Hotel, Harris Promenade, Douglas, IM1 2RW. There are atrium and seaview rooms available. Please quote NOR040714 when you make a reservation. Special room rates for NAMA members attending the Convention start at £115.00 and £120 per room per night, including breakfast, will be honored for room nights before or after the Convention. The Sefton can be reached on 011-441 - 624-645-500 (This includes the international code) or you can email them at firstname.lastname@example.org (If calling, remember IOM time is ET + 5 hours.)
Alternative accommodation: The Isle of Man Tourism Authority has sent NAMA members the 2014 brochure. We gave them a one-time only use of our mailing list to ensure you have access to accommodation of every kind. If you missed it, go here: http://www.visitisleofman.com There is a wide selection of Bed and Breakfast hotels, often called boarding houses, which are basic, friendly establishments. They are less swanky than their American counterparts but represent good value and offer a less formal environment. Self-catering apartments are also available, a great alternative for families. Douglas has a number of value supermarkets, one of which is quite close to the Convention hotel.
Meals and snacks: While many meals are included in your Registration Fee, breakfasts and a few lunches are not. Douglas has many pubs, cafes, coffee houses, drugstores and supermarkets offering a wide range of delicious meals and snacks. As the dollar is currently weak against the pound you may get sticker shock but there are bargains and good value options for people on a budget and our friendly, knowledgeable Manx helpers will be happy to provide guidance on the best deals.
Money: The Isle of Man will take British currency but Britain will not accept Manx notes or coins. Both nations use the pound sterling or GBP. Ireland is a part of the Euro and does not take pounds. Getting cash from an ATM is fine with your US bankcards (although you should check your bank’s fees for these transactions.)
Credit and Debit Cards: The European and British system features an embedded microchip in the card. It is called ‘chip and pin’ and requires you to use a PIN code to confirm a purchase instead of a signature. You can probably get one from your bank before you leave as most American banks now offer this service. However, most shops and service establishments can still process our magnetic strip cards. Ask before you rely on your card for payment. Or use cash. Make sure you call your card issuer and warn them you are leaving the country. You do not want them to decline card transactions because they suspect it’s been stolen.
Tipping: Most service establishments have built in a tip. If you really liked your service just a small tip will suffice. If no tip has been added it is customary to leave 10%.
Smoking: The Isle of Man, UK and Ireland all have strict rules about smoking in public places like bars and restaurants. Signs will be posted.
Currency exchange rate. www.xe.com is a great resource to calculate international exchange rates. We have been using £1 = $1.65 so £115 is 115 x 1.65 = $189.75. Conversely, $1 = £0.61 or 61 pence.
Staying in touch while on the Island
Phone: Using an American cellphone can be problematic. Older, non-smartphone versions operate on a different system from Europe. New smartphones contain a SIM card. These can be used overseas. Check with your provider (AT&T, Verizon, etc.) before you leave so that they can advise you how to use your phone overseas and advise you of tariffs.
SIM cards may be “locked” by your cellphone service provider and they will need to “unlock” them before you leave. Once they are unlocked you can buy a local SIM card and use your phone at local rates. Be warned, this means you will get a new phone number and may not be able to access your data until you replace your original SIM Card.
Manx Telecom has a showroom just yards from the Sefton Hotel where you can buy a cheap phone for use over there. Check out their website before you go for more details. Manxtelecom.com>Mobile Roaming>Roaming on our network.
If you decide to take your own phone or tablet, turn off data roaming! It will add up fast.
Internet: The island has broadband pretty much everywhere. The Sefton does not charge so you can use your devices there.
Landlines: All American numbers will begin 001, then key in the regular 10-digit number. If your family is calling you on a British number they need to key 011 44 and drop the 0 of the British number. So the Sefton would be: 011 44 1624 645500. Locally you would dial 01624 645 500.
Special travel passes represent good value for people traveling around the island without a car. Check this site for where you can purchase tickets. You can get them at Ronaldsway Airport and the Welcome Centre at the Sea Terminal. We’ll help when we get there but if you arrive before us, other locations are listed on this site. www.gov.im/publictransport/Tickets/advance_tickets.xml
Here are two options you might find useful.
Island Explorer Tickets
Heritage Explorer Tickets
Never been there? The Isle of Man is situated in the middle of the Irish Sea at the center of the British Isles. It is 33 miles (53km) long and 13 miles (22km) wide at its broadest point, with a resident population of 84,500. The Island has a distinct cultural and political identity. It is not, and never has been, a part of the United Kingdom. Nor is it part of the European Union, with which it has a special and limited relationship allowing for free trade in agricultural and manufactured products.
The Isle of Man is a self-governing British Crown Dependency with its own government and laws, made in Tynwald, which was founded more than 1,000 years ago and is the world’s oldest continuous parliament. More information about the Isle of Man Government can be found at http://www.gov.im/
Other information received
Catherine Mary Kennaugh Dax of Nevada City, California. April 3, 1926 - April 26, 2013. Kay was born in North Lake, Wisconsin to Cecilia and Charles Kennaugh. Charles was born and raised in Castletown, Isle of Man. Kay was very proud of her Manx heritage and fulfilled her dream of visiting the land of her father's birth twice. She met cousins on the Isle of Man and kept in touch with them for the rest of her life. Kay was married to Henry "Hank" Dax for 66 year and had five children all of whom are also proud of their Manx ancestry. Kay worked as a bookkeeper for many years, she enjoyed working on her family tree and spending time with family and friends. She was a wonderful, loving mother and we will miss her forever.
Daniel R. Teare passed away April 25, 2013, in Chelsea, Michigan. Born in 1927 in Oak Park, Illinois, to Daniel J. and Ada B. Teare, Daniel grew up in Freeport, Illinois. After attending school and serving in the military, he married his high school sweetheart, Joyce Kaufman on September 6, 1947. Dan was a life member of the North American Manx Association. Dan always enjoyed his family, music, helping others, and in retirement years he worked on genealogy using the internet and his membership of the Isle of Man Family Historical Society. Dan was pre- deceased by Joyce, his beloved wife of 64 years, his parents and sister, Marguerite E. Teare. Surviving are daughter Holly A. Teare of Chelsea, MI, grandsons Nathan and Jeremy Richardson; son Daniel B. (Patricia) Teare of Campbell Hall, NY, granddaughters Stefanie (Mike) DelPrete and Danielle (Dan) Morin, step-grandsons Nicholas and Jonathan Iorio; daughter Amy E. (John) Teare DeWitt of Houston, TX, as well as five great- grandchildren.
About the North American Manx Association
The North American Manx Association (NAMA) is a non- profit, ethnic and cultural heritage institution founded in 1928, as a successor organization to Mona's Relief Society of Cleveland, Ohio. NAMA is a group of Americans and Canadians dedicated to the preservation and appreciation of the Manx culture. Most of NAMA's 850 active members are second and third-generation North American. In the U.S., there are chapters in Chicago, Illinois; Cleveland, Ohio; Rocky Mountain; Galva, Illinois; the Greater Washington, D.C. area; Minnesota; Nebraska; Northern California; San Diego, California; and Wisconsin.
In Canada, you will find Manx groups in Ontario; and in Vancouver, British Columbia. NAMA is interested in helping Manx in all areas get in touch with local chapters or assisting those who want to start new chapters.
NAMA publishes the quarterly NAMA Bulletin, sent to each of its enrolled members.
For Manx genealogy, there is the Isle of Man Family History Society (IOMFHS). Since they are not a part of NAMA, you should join both organizations.