Go for the green: Celebrate St. Paddy’s day on both sides of the river

(Photo by Angela Della Torre)

(Photo by Angela Della Torre)

Shamrock Run & St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Kingston this Sunday

Nobody does it better than the City of Kingston – celebrates St. Paddy’s Day, that is. For the past 27 years, the Shamrock Run has preceded a grand St. Patrick’s Day Parade, tying together all the neighborhoods of Kingston – Uptown, Midtown and the Rondout – and bringing the citizens into the streets to cheer and root for their favorites in green. And the 28th annual “fun run” promises to be the best yet.

Considered the biggest race between New York City and Albany, the Shamrock Run has raised funds each year for a local charitable organization. This year, monies raised will be donated to the Semper Fi Fund, an organization that assists wounded Marines (and other branches of the US Armed Forces) and their families with immediate financial help and lifetime support (see https://semperfifund.org).
Some race details: Runners, both teams and individuals, can pick up their race packets on Saturday, March 12 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the foot of Broadway, and on Sunday, March 13 from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the Governor Clinton Apartments. Everyone is encouraged to wear green, of course; and beyond that, runners who wear kilts will be proud to know that their participation could make history, if Team Ireland of the Irish Cultural Center of the Hudson Valley (ICCHV) surpasses the current world record in the number of runners wearing kilts. Also, a part of the proceeds purchased from Kiltrunner.com will be contributed to the Semper Fi Fund. Kilted or not, participants can register to run for $30, and make their own history for the City of Kingston.
The starting gun goes off at exactly 12:50 p.m. at Academy Green on Albany Avenue. From there, runners will make their way down Broadway and into the Rondout District. The Shamrock Run doesn’t time runners on the two-mile course, but they can check a clock at the Finish Line to note their own runtime.

The Rondout Neighborhood Center will hold a traditional Post-Race Party, welcoming them with shamrock cookies, green bagels and beverages (ID required). Anyone wearing his or her race number is eligible to win prizes randomly drawn from all registered runners, including two round-trip tickets to Ireland. A trophy goes to the school with the largest number of preregistered entrants. Participants of this annual spring “fun run” – and there may be more than 4,500 of them this year – are supported by a whole crew of dedicated volunteers who work behind the scenes and in the streets to make sure that everyone has a grand time.
This year, the Shamrock Run is proud to be honoring Steve Schallenkamp, the very first winner of the inaugural race held back in 1988. Schallenkamp has been running races since elementary school, and has won competitions over five decades of racing. An avid enthusiast, he has coached other runners and volunteered at multiple race events over the years – clearly, a standout inspiration for runners young and old.
Sponsored by the Ancient Order of Hibernians, the 29th annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade will step off from the Kingston Plaza at 1 p.m. with Grand Marshal Christine Hein at the lead. Rose Ferrero Bruck will be acting Mayor of the Day, with Hallie Rose Gardner of the J. Watson Bailey Middle School as Irish Princess and six-year-old Liam Doyle the Bearer of St. Patrick. Don’t miss the decidedly green pomp and circumstance when the City of Kingston turns out for fun and good works.

2016 Shamrock Run/St. Patrick’s Day Parade, Sunday, March 13, 12:50 p.m., Uptown Kingston-Rondout District; www.shamrockrunners.org, www.icchv.org, www.ulsteraoh.com/parade.htm.


Parade of Green in Beacon with Grand Marshal Patrick Kerr this Saturday

Attention, all St. Paddy’s Day aficionados! The City of Beacon will hold its first ever St. Patrick’s Day parade this Saturday morning. Come out to join in the celebration, and don’t forget to wear your green!

The parade starts at the bottom of Main Street at Route 9D near the Visitors’ Center, and will continue all the way up Main to Tioronda Avenue, ending at the Howland Cultural Center. Event organizer Kimberlee Markarian says, “This will be a good old-fashioned family parade. We’ll have nearly 40 floats and horses, and lots of fun.”

To kick off what will surely become an annual event, the communitywide parade will be lead by a genuine Irelander: Beacon’s own Patrick Kerr. Born in 1938 in Belfast, Kerr played soccer for Manchester United during the late 1950s. He emigrated in 1970 with his wife, Patsy, and their five children, settling in Beacon, where he started the Beacon Soccer League and served on the Beacon Recreation Commission for many years. He is considered an important asset to the city, and Beacon is proud to have him be this year’s Grand Marshal for its inaugural St. Patrick’s Day Parade of Green.

St. Patrick’s Day Parade of Green, Saturday, March 12, 11 a.m., Main Street, Beacon; www.facebook.com/beaconparadeofgreen.


Paddy on the River 2016 this Saturday

Come down to the Poughkeepsie riverfront this weekend and revel in all things Irish, even if you’re not. “Paddy on the River” welcomes one and all for a St. Patrick’s Day celebration that will turn everyone just a little bit toward the shores of Eire, the sovereign island across the sea. From 12 noon to 5 p.m., traditional foods will be served up by a slew of local vendors, and plenty of Irish beer will whet all age-appropriate attendees’ whistles. Soon you’ll be humming and joining in on songs with entertainment provided by the Narrowbacks, the Mighty Ploughboys and Ireland the Band.

Just in from Long Island’s Rockaway Rugby Club, the Narrowbacks claim to be “the brainchild of a future banker and a dropout bartender,” offering “a fresh voice for songs and stories old and new. After some late-night sing-songs, a couple whiskeys and a few lost jobs, we came up with a young punk attitude that found itself running through the veins of an old-time folk band.” The Mighty Ploughboys – Pat, Jim, Sean, John, Mike and Renato (yes, an Italian slipped into the mix) – provide a blend of alternative rock songs with a Celtic flair. And Ireland the Band promises a kick-arse program guaranteed to have you leave your troubles behind. What better way to spend a Saturday afternoon?

Paddy on the River will be fun for the whole family (kids aged 10 and under get in free), so plan for a rousing time. If it rains or snows, the fun is still on, with tents and heaters to protect attendees from the weather. Beer will be available for purchase; non-alcoholic beverages and water, too, for non-imbibers. Either way, plan to park at the train station, municipal lots and on-street parking in the City of Poughkeepsie. You’re encouraged to park at any station on the MTA’s Hudson Line or take any Metro-North train to Poughkeepsie, as the festival is right next door. Mahoney’s Irish Pub & Steakhouse encourages everyone to be responsible: Hop on a train and forget about driving, or have a designated driver in your group.

Paddy on the River, Saturday, March 12, 12 noon-5 p.m., $15 general/$30 VIP, Waryas Park, 29 North Water Street, Poughkeepsie; https://townsquarehv.ticketleap.com/paddy-on-the-river-2016/details.


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