NUTLEY, NJ – Mother nature had the luck of the Irish on her side as beautiful blue skies provided the perfect backdrop for the 42nd Annual St. Patrick's Day Parade on Saturday, March 7 in Nutley.
With temperatures at 43 degrees in the early afternoon at parade kickoff, the sunny skies provided the warmth needed to bring out one of the largest crowds to witness the yearly march down Franklin Avenue and Harrison Street.
Brenda Sherman of Nutley Irish American Association, flanked by Nutley Irish President Thomas McEnery, served as emcee introducing marchers from a reviewing stand stationed in front of John H. Walker Middle School.
“This is our 42nd parade and we have a lot of bands here today from all over, and we are also here to honor our dignitaries,” said Sherman. “Our Grand Marshal is Karen Smith, our Deputy Grand Marshal is Brian Blum, our Police Officer of the Year is Robert McDermott, Member of the Year is Dan Kane, and Parade Queen is Erin Baker.”
The Honorable Karen Smith recently retired after 28 years as Belleville’s Chief Judge, and Nutley’s backup judge. Karen previously served as Prosecutor and Assistant Town attorney, and maintained a private law practice serving the Nutley and Belleville communities.
Franklin Avenue and Harrison Street were ceremoniously renamed ‘Smith Court’ and ‘Blum Street’ for the day to honor the Grand Marshal and Deputy Grand Marshal.
VFW Post 493 set the pace leading the pack at the front to the parade, a tradition dating back to the events’ inception.
The award-winning Nutley High School Marching Band provided a rousing performance.
Elementary school cub scouts and girl scouts, Little Leagues, Clara Maass Medical Center, Nutley Relay For Life and a host of civic organizations were well represented with an abundance of marchers walking the green line down the avenue.
Nutley Mayor Joseph Scarpelli, and Commissioner’s Alphonse Petracco, Mauro Tucci, and Thomas Evans were front and center waving to onlookers lining the sidewalks.
Police and fire departments, and first-responders from Nutley, Belleville and Bloomfield participated in the mile-long trek, honking horns from their emergency vehicles and big rigs.
Other notable marchers included Essex County Freeholder President Brendan Gill, Freeholder Carlos Pomares, Assemblymen Ralph Caputo, and Belleville Mayor Michael Melham.
An Investiture Mass at St. Mary's Church to celebrate of St. Patrick preceded the parade.
Nutley Irish is one of the township's premier civic associations and have organized the St. Patrick's Day Parade in Nutley since 1979.
Stay with TAPinto Nutley for continuing coverage of the 42nd Annual Nutley Irish American Association St. Patrick's Day Parade.
Once again, TAPinto Nutley served as a proud sponsor of the parade. The St. Patrick's Day Parade will be back March 6, 2021.
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