Athea is a proud Gaelic football stronghold in West Limerick. The club has been playing Gaelic games since the early days of the 20th Century. Our first success on the playing field was in 1919 where we captured the West Junior Championship. We reached the county final that year but it was never played due to the outbreak of the troubles.
We won West Titles 1937, 1948 & 1949 but it was not until 1950 that we won our first County Junior Title. We defeated Treaty-Sarsfield 1-2 to 0-3. We won the county title again in 1963 defeating Pallasgreen 2-11 to 1-2.
One of our great achievements to date was winning our first and only County Senior Title in 1968 defeating Treaty-Sarsfield 2-5 to 0-4. We won three West Junior Titles in 1982, 1987 & 1989.
In 1987 the Club set up Bord na Nog to cater for all age groups from U16 down. This has been a great success and is the catalyst for our achievements in recent years. Since Bord na Nog has been set up we have won titles in all age groups from U12 to senior level.
We regained the County Junior Title in 1997 where we defeated Drom-Broadford after three epic replays. The final was played twice in Tournafulla where it finished in deadlock after extra time in both games. The third and final game was played in Abbeyfeale. Large crowds from both clubs and from neighbouring parishes came to watch another heart stopping encounter. We eventually edged out winners in the end after a goal in injury time. Score: 3-12 to 1-16
We won our first Intermediate County Title in 2002 in defeating Galbally in Kilmallock on a score line 2-12 to 1-08. This was a tremendous success. In not only winning we were also promoted to senior status for the first time since the mid seventies. We reached the county senior final in 2003 but lost out to Drom-Broadford in the Gaelic Grounds.
1997 saw the Official opening of our local Playing Facilities ‘Parc na nGael’ by County Board Chairman Brendan Danaher. This was followed by a Senior Hurling match between Limerick and Kerry which Limerick won well.
Local man Patrick Ahern became the first Athea man to play senior hurling for Limerick when he was introduced as a second half substitute. A crowd of about 500 people attanded the game. Both teams were complimentary of our excellent facilities and were treated to a meal afterwards in the Con Colbert Memorial Hall.