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Third Avenue got a glimpse of Irish heritage

A week later? Who cares!

That’s how Bay Ridge does it, as a week after St. Patrick’s Day, the community was still celebrating the holiday big-time by bringing everyone out to the neighborhood’s gala parade on Third Avenue.

The location was a first. For the parade’s 20th anniversary, the St. Patrick’s Parade Committee decided to relocate it from Fifth Avenue, a decision which turned out to be so successful that Frankie Marra, president of the committee, said he was still “on a high” a day later.

“It wasn’t just about moving the parade,” Marra said, adding that there was a new energy so it almost felt “kind of like a renewal of the parade.”

Bay Ridge came out to celebrate Irish heritage and the Catholic faith on Sunday, March 24, Marra explained, making it the “biggest and largest” that he ever remembers it to be which to him felt “almost like a summer stroll.”

A mass at St. Patrick’s kicked off the fun, followed by the traditional brunch at Hunter’s Steak and Ale House and topped off by the 1 p.m. parade, which brought out local characters like Seamus the Labradoodle, from Paws Truly, who was the parade’s mascot.

Sister Virginia Lake, this year’s grand marshal, led the spectacle, attended by 10s of thousands of parade-goers. The deputy marshals were Marianna Murray O’Connor, Tom MacLellan, Eileen Long-Chelales, Karen Hennigan, Christine Doherty, Chris Coughlin, Enda Lally and James Quigley.

“I did expect it to be successful,” Marra noted; there were “a lot of signs” pointing to it, he said.

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