Photo: Vice Consul General Barry O’Brien at right with Ireland’s President Mary McAleese, and her husband Dr. Martin McAleese. Irish Network Colorado (IN-Colorado) is a business network that connects Irish expatriates, Irish-Americans and friends of Ireland. Its mission is to provide a forum for social, business and professional networking for their members and to strengthen economic, social and cultural ties between Irish and American businesses in Colorado and more broadly between the U.S. and Ireland. By harnessing the energy and synergies of its diverse membership, IN-Colorado hopes to achieve similar networking successes as achieved by other Irish Network efforts throughout the U.S Over the last several weeks, inaugural meetings have been held at two local Irish Pubs, Scruffy Murphy”s and the Celtic Tavern. Under the driven leadership of Tom Burke and Ciaran Dwyer (who were hand picked by the Irish Consul General Gerry Staunton), the network has been given significant direction while beginning to establish itself among local Irish and Irish-American business leaders. In fact, the local British Consul General, Kevin Lynch, (who was born in Ireland) has offered his congratulations and support in establishing such a potentially influential organization. San Francisco-based Vice Consul General Barry O’Brien will formally launch the Irish Network Colorado at a special event to take place at 6:30pm on July 8th at the Celtic Tavern Riverside Downs, 2620 W. Belleview Ave., Littleton, Colo. The Network will become part of the Irish Network USA, which was formally launched by An Taoiseach, Brian Cowen, on March 14th 2010. The goal of these Networks is to further strengthen the already considerable economic, social and cultural ties between the two countries, as well among Irish-American businesses themselves. Entertainment at the launch party will be provided by Belfast-based McPeake, courtesy of the Colorado Irish Festival. McPeake will bring its unique contemporary take on traditional Irish Music. The event will also serve as a fundraiser for the McPeake School of Music, which has been serving the Belfast community for 33 years, developing multiple All-Ireland champions and professional musicians. To attend this event, please RSVP in advance at Irish Network Colorado . IN-Colorado would like to offer special thanks to its event sponsors: the Celtic Tavern Riverside Downs, The Celtic Connection, Coors, Jameson and the Colorado Irish Festival. The Colorado Irish Festival will be officially opened by Vice Consul Barry O’Brien on Friday evening, July 9th and continues through Sunday, July 11th at Clement Park, Littleton, Colo. Go to www.coloradoirishfestival.org for more details.