A Sea of Green Marks Irish Heritage

Gold confetti, the smell of cigar smoke, and the sounds of bagpipes and sirens filled the air at Huntington’s 90th annual St. Patrick’s Day parade. 

For the members of this vibrant community, the parade is an opportunity for a fun tradition that has something to offer for the entire family. 

For 4-year-old Huntington Quinn Sturm, the parade was a chance to spot friends Tara and Ryann, her swim instructor Miss Kailey, and her family, the Brodericks. Her dad, Casey Strum, said that Quinn loves to spot her family members as they’re walking by.  

Virginia and Brian Stair, who own Stair’s Incurable Collector located along the parade route, also had family members participating: their teenage children, Elizabeth and John Stair, marched with the Huntington Fire Department. For Mrs. Stair, who is also a South Huntington teacher, the parade is a beloved tradition. “It’s just fun!” she said.

Louise and Brian Flynn are frequent parade goers, having attended Bethpage’s St Patrick’s Day parade last weekend and planning to attend both Wantaugh’s and Rockville Center’s next weekend. “We do this every year. We go to every parade we possibly can. I love parades. But this one is the best,” Louise Flynn said. 

The parade is also an opportunity for local charitable organizations to raise awareness of their mission. Jodi Ekberg, the founder of Empire State Snow Dog Club, is thrilled to be back with her group.

“We’re so excited to be here. Since 2017, we’ve raised $20,000 for the Leukemia/Lymphoma Society through dog walks. My dream is for us to one day be in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade,” Ekberg said. 

As the parade made its way down Main Street, crowds were in high spirits. For Erin Kiernan and her four boys, the parade is a chance to get dressed up in green and celebrate the Huntington community. “And we’re Irish!” interjects her 9- year-old, Colin.

The Kiernan boys Jake, Colin, Ryan, and Kyle love celebrating their Irish heritage at the Saint Patrick’s Day Parade. 

The happy crowds began to flock inside as a rainstorm put a damper on the fun, but that didn’t stop groups like the Long Island Roller Rebels from completing the route.

The Huntington St Patrick’s Day Parade is organized by the Huntington Ancient Order of Hibernians, which is America’s oldest Irish Catholic Fraternal Organization. 

photo captions

The Long Island Roller Rebels finish the parade route in spite of the rainy weather.
4 year old Quinn Strum calls to friends and family walking in the parade.
Louise and Brian Flynn watch the parade from their beach chairs.
Virginia and Brian Stair watching the parade from outside their antique store.

John and Elizabeth Stair, marching with the Huntington Fire Department (Photo Courtesy of Virginia Stair)

Jodi Ekberg and the Empire State Snow Dog’s Club join the parade for the second time.


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