Saturday, March 17, 2007

HAPPY ST. PATRICK'S DAY, MARCH 17, 2007

 

The Saint Patrick's Day Parade starts at 44th Street & 5th Avenue. It travels north on 5th Avenue to 86th Street, then travels east on 86th Street to 3rd Avenue. 

Getting There Take any subway to the Midtown area between 42nd and 86th Street | Walk to 5th Avenue | Do not drive 

The first St Patrick's Day parade in New York City was held in 1766 organized by Irish soldiers serving in His Majesty's service. City folk marched for any and all reasons back then, usually organized along fraternal, trade or military organizational lines. The early St Patrick's Day marchers would form up at their parish churches or their organizations' headquarters and march to the Old St Patrick's Cathedral (now at Mott and Prince Streets). The Archbishop greeted the groups, dignitaries and politicians addressed the crowd and the marchers dispersed in search of a bit of St Patty's Day pleasure.

As the City moved uptown so did the parade, marching to the far reaches of the City and the site of the new St Patrick's Cathedral on Fifth Avenue and 50th Street. Today's parade starts at 42nd Street and marchers travel north to 86th Street. It is customary for the New York Archbishop to review the parade in front of St Patrick's. 

The St Patrick's Day Parade is one of the few remaining where no cars, floats, buses, trucks or other vehicles are allowed. People march, march, march up Fifth Avenue, led by members of the 165th Infantry (originally the Irish 69th Regiment of Fighting Irish fame). Sponsored by the Ancient Order of Hibernians, the more than 150,000 marchers are members of various Irish societies from New York and around the country; many Eire-based societies make the Atlantic crossing to trek the two miles uptown. Large contingents include the Emerald Societies of the New York City Police and Fire Departments, and any politician running for office within a 50-mile radius. 

Viewing the parade is a snap. It starts 11:00A at 42nd Street and makes it way up Fifth Avenue to 86th Street. There is no best place to see the parade, though the Archbishop usually greets the marchers at St Patrick's Cathedral. Take any subway to Midtown and walk over to Fifth Avenue. Don't try to drive; you won't get very far. Similarly, traffic is affected on all streets surrounding the parade route; a bus will get you nowhere fast. 

Last year's parade is a tribute to those New York City fire fighters and police officers who gave their lives in the World Trade Center attack. Cardinal Edward M Egan, Archbishop of New York and the grand marshal of the parade, will walk up the parade route, then return to the Archbishop's usual spot, greeting parade marchers in front of St Patrick's Cathedral. At about 11:30P, Cardinal Egan will call for a moment of silence, in remembrance of the 9-11-01 victims.



This year Raymond L. Flynn will be the 2007 New York City Saint Patrick's Day Parade Grand Marshal.



The Parade will be reviewed from the steps of Saint Patrick's Cathedral by His Eminence Cardinal Edward Eagan, Archbishop of New York. It will also be reviewed from the Official Reviewing Stand at 64th Street and 5th Avenue.



The parade marches up 5th Avenue, clan by clan, from 44th to 86th streets starting at 11am on St. Patrick's Day (Saturday, March 17th).

Former Grand Marshal include: 2005 Grand Marshal Denis P. Kelleher, 2004 Grand Marshal Thomas W. Gleason and 2003 James G. O'Connor was the Grand Marshal the year before, and Mayor Bloomberg marched along with nearly 150,000 others proudly wearing the green, as millions gawk along the parade route and watch on TV.

Four year ago marked the 241st New York St. Patrick's Day Parade, the world's largest. Edward Cardinal Egan was the Grand Marshall, and Mayor Bloomberg will marched along with nearly 150,000 others proudly wearing the green, as millions gawk along the parade route and watch on TV.

Several years ago parade was dedicated to the 'Heroes of 9/11, ' including police, fire and all rescue workers. At around midday, the parade will pause for one minute as Cardinal Egan leads participants in a prayer from the reviewing stand at 64th Street and 5th Avenue. It's a reminder that St. Paddy's Day is a religious holiday back in the motherland, even though for New Yorkers it's a chance to party hardy like any good Irishman. There probably isn't a bigger day when green face paint, green food coloring, green nail polish, and green clothes are on display. And there's pure Irish pageantry, of course, led by the 165th Infantry (originally the 69th Regiment of the 1850's). You'll see the Ancient Order of Hibernians, 30 Irish county societies and various Emerald, Irish-language and Irish nationalist societies.

The parade marches up 5th Avenue, clan by clan, from 44th to 86th streets starting at 11am on St. Patrick's Day (Saturday, March 17th). It will probably be televised on NBC.

The first official parade in the City was held in 1766 by Irishmen in a military unit recruited to serve in the American colonies. For the first few years of its existence, the parade was organized by military units until after the war of 1811. At that point in time, Irish fraternal and beneficial societies took over the duties of hosting and sponsoring the event.

Originally, Irish societies joined together at their respective meeting places and moved in a procession toward St. Patrick's Old Cathedral, St. James Church, or one of the many other Roman Catholic churches in the City. However, as the years passed, the size of the parade increased and around the year 1851, as individual societies merged under a single grand marshal, the size of the parade grew sharply.

Each year a unit of soldiers marches at the head of the parade; the Irish 165th Infantry (originally the 69th Regiment of the 1850's) has become the parade's primary escort, and they are followed by the various Irish societies of the city. Some of the other major sponsors and participants in the parade are the Ancient Order of Hibernians, the thirty Irish county societies, and various Emerald, Irish-language, and Irish nationalist societies.

The annual parade down Fifth Avenue to honor the patron saint of Ireland is a New York tradition that dates as far back as 1766. The festivities kick off at 44th Street and Fifth Avenue at 11:00 am on Saturday, March 17th, with bagpipers, high school bands, and the ever-present politicians making their way up Fifth Avenue to 86th Street, where the parade will probably finish around 4:30 or 5:00 pm.

The best viewing spots are toward the north end of the parade route, away from the shopping and work-a-day crowds that throng the sidewalks below 59th Street. Try sitting on the upper steps of the Metropolitan Museum of Art for a great view or catching a close-up view of the marchers where the parade turns east on 86th Street.

The New York Convention & Visitors Bureau says that the St. Patrick's Day Parade is the largest and most famous of the many parades held in the city each year.

Colonial New York City hosted the first official St. Patrick's Day parade in 1762, when Irish immigrants in the British colonial army marched down city streets. In subsequent years Irish fraternal organizations also held processions to St. Patrick's Cathedral. The various groups merged sometime around 1850 to form a single, grand parade.

The parade marches up 5th Avenue, from 44th to 86th streets starting at 11am on St. Patrick's Day (Saturday, March 17th). It will probably be televised on NBC.

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