Bay Ridge

Irish eyes will be smiling at Bay Ridge St. Patrick Parade

March 16, 2016 By Paula Katinas Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Students from the Buckley School of Irish Dance march in a previous parade. Eagle file photo by Paula Katinas
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Talk about being green with envy! Emerald green, that is.

Bay Ridge is set to honor the traditions of Ireland, the Emerald Isle, at a festive St. Patrick’s Day Parade that has become a beloved tradition in the community.

The 23rd Annual Bay Ridge St. Patrick’s Parade will take place on Sunday, March 20, starting at 1 p.m. The parade route runs along Third Avenue, a thoroughfare that is sure to be festooned with plenty of shamrock-shaped pictures and Irish flags.

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Expect lots of bagpipe bands, Irish step dancers, lively floats and other fun features.

The parade, which will also feature hundreds of school children marching behind their school banners, begins at the intersection of Third and Marine avenues and proceeds along Third Avenue to Bay Ridge Avenue.

The reviewing stand will be located on Third Avenue and 77th Street where spectators can enjoy the witty commentary of Peter Clavin, the parade’s master of ceremonies.

The theme of this year’s parade is a tribute to the Easter Rising of 1916, an uprising by Irish activists seeking the country’s independence from Great Britain. On Saturday, March 19, the day before the parade, a special ceremony will take place in the courtyard of St. Patrick Catholic Church, 9511 Fourth Ave., to dedicate a stone in tribute to the leaders of the Easter Rising.

There will also be a tribute to the late Larry Morrish, a Bay Ridge civic activist who served as the parade’s president for many years. Morrish died in February.

Parade Day is shaping up to be a great event, according to organizers.

Leading the marchers up Third Avenue will be Grand Marshal James B. McHugh.

McHugh, senior vice president of Signature Bank, is a former chairman of the board of directors at St. Anselm Catholic Academy in Bay Ridge.

He was officially introduced as the grand marshal at a meet-and-greet event hosted by Parade President Frankie Marra and Vice President Linda Gallagher at the Greenhouse Café on Third Avenue in January.

At that same event, the parade committee also introduced the deputy grand marshals: Brian Kelly, Patrick Harkin, Peter Whelan, Rita Galvin, Rhea McCone, Maura Coughlin, Kathy Burke and members of the Canny Brothers Band.

“We have a great group of honorees this year,” Marra said.

The day’s festivities will begin with a Mass at St. Patrick Catholic Church at 9:30 a.m., followed by a VIP brunch for the grand marshal, his deputies and local elected officials.

The parade’s participants will start lining up at noon in anticipation of the 1 p.m. start time.

Among those taking part in the big march will be members of the Sullivan-O’Connor Family, named Irish Family of the Year by the parade committee.

For more information, visit the parade committee’s website,


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