Staten Island's West Brighton is hosting a family-friendly parade today in honor of Staten Island's vast Irish Catholic polulation on St. Patrick's Day this year. "The luck of the Irish will be smiling on Staten Island this year, when for the first time in a decade, the borough's St. Patrick's Parade will actually be held on St. Patrick's Day," states The Staten Island Advance.
"It's a great thing to have it on that day," said James Haynes III, chairman of the Richmond County St. Patrick's Day Parade Committee to The Advance. "It is rare for the Island parade to be held on St. Patrick's Day itself. The last time was in 2002. Before that, it was 1996," added Teh Advance.
The Island parade is usually held on the Sunday before St. Patrick's Day, which is March 17, added The Advance. "But this year's big St. Patrick's Day Parade in Manhattan is not being held on March 17."
"That's because the day falls on a Sunday, and organizers will not hold the parade, which passes iconic St. Patrick's Cathedral on Fifth Avenue, on a holy day of obligation for the Catholic Church," adds The Advance.
"When that happens, we move the parade to the Saturday," said John Dunleavy, president of the Manhattan parade committee. "That's a tradition that been handed down for more than 200 years," added Dunleavy to The Advance.
The parade set off at noon at Hart Boulevard and Forest Avenue, West Brighton, and the route runs to Jewett Avenue. The reviewing stand was set up at Blessed Sacrament R.C. Church, added The Advance.
The 2013 Grand Marshal was Agnes Quinlan, who is active with the Columbiettes, the Deborah League, St. Ann's R.C. Church and the Ancient Order of Hibernians. Ashley Mullarkey is Miss Hibernia for 2013, and her court is Emily Randall and Megan Newman.
All told, the welcoming sunshine and a day off from school helped increase the Irish festivities at Staten Island's own St. Patrick's Day parade.