Members the Westhampton Beach St. Patrick’s Day Parade Committee and the Ancient Order of the Hibernians Michael Collins Division II in Hampton Bays have announced the grand marshals for their respective holiday parades.
East Quogue’s Seth Allan will lead marchers during the 42nd annual Westhampton Beach St. Patrick’s Day Parade, scheduled to step off at noon on Saturday, March 14, at the Westhampton Beach Elementary School on Mill Road. Meanwhile, former Southampton Town supervisor Patrick “Skip” Heaney of East Quogue, a fellow Hibernian, will lead marchers during the fifth annual Hampton Bays St. Patrick’s Day Parade scheduled for Saturday, March 21, beginning at 11 a.m. at the Hampton Bays Elementary School on Ponquogue Avenue.
“Besides what he has given to our organization, it’s what he has given to the community,” AOH President Nigel Williamson said of the organization’s decision to name Mr. Heaney this year’s grand marshal.
Tim Laube, the president of Westhampton Beach St. Patrick’s Day Parade Committee, noted that Mr. Allan was a natural choice to serve as this year’s grand marshal in his group’s parade. Mr. Allan owns Chesterfield Associates, a Westhampton Beach-based construction company.
“He was picked because he’s a longtime St. Patrick’s Day Parade Committee member, and he donates flat-bed trucks to different organizations [including the parade],” Mr. Laube said. “He’s always quick to donate things.”
Entry in both the Westhampton Beach and Hampton Bays parades is open to all local businesses, school groups, clubs and families. There is no charge to participate in either event. In fact, in Westhampton Beach, youth groups that participate in the festivities each receive $100 from the committee to help decorate their floats.
In Westhampton Beach, the floats sponsored by local businesses are judged in a commercial division, floats created by children are judged in another, and floats put together by adults fall in a third category. The top three winners of the adult and children categories win cash prizes—first-prize winners earn $500, second-prize winners take home $250, and third-prize winners earn $125. The top three finishers in the commercial category receive trophies.
In Hampton Bays, trophies will be awarded for floats in the following categories: best float, best marching unit and best pipe and drum band.
“[Floats] have to be family orientated and in good humor,” Mr. Williamson said.
Mr. Laube offered this advice to parade participants: “Be creative!”
The Hampton Bays parade route begins at the elementary school and runs north on Ponquogue Avenue before turning west on Montauk Highway. All floats will be reviewed by judges in front of Buckley’s Inn Between, located at 139 West Montauk Highway.
The Westhampton Beach parade route begins at the elementary school, where the judging will be completed. Marchers will then head southeast down Mill Road before turning west onto Main Street. The parade concludes at the intersection of Main Street and Sunset Avenue.
Those wishing to obtain an application form to enter the Hampton Bays parade can visit the Ancient Order of the Hibernians website at aohdivision11.org. Entries must be received by Tuesday, March 3. Downloadable applications for the Westhampton Beach parade are available on the committee’s website, whbstpats.com. Those applications are due by Sunday, March 1.