The Highlands Business Partnership is proud to present the 14th Annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade on Saturday, March 19, 2016 at 2:00 PM. Nearly 100 marching units including bagpipers, marching bands, Irish dancers, and beautifully decorated floats, will line up to march in the fourteenth Annual St. Patrick’s Day Celebration. The 2016 Grand Marshals are Joan Wicklund and Rosemary Ryan.
Joan Wicklund, a former business owner and member of the Highlands Business Partnership has lived in Highlands for fifty two (52) years. Mrs. Wicklund raised four children and has eight wonderful grandchildren. She was a local school teacher at Our Lady of Perpetual Help prior to retiring and opening the Sand Dollar Gift Shop on Bay Avenue. Joan has served on many boards and organizations in Highlands. She was the former President to the Highlands Chamber of Commerce and served as a catalyst to the creation of the Highlands Business Improvement District. Joan served on the Henry Hudson Regional School Board of Education for twenty eight (28) years and the Highlands Elementary School Board for two (2)years. Joan was the only person elected to serve two school boards simultaneously. She also served as the Highlands Zoning Board Vice Chair. Joan received the Woman of the Year award from the Highlands Lions Club in 2004. Joan has dedicated many years of her life to the people of Highlands and deserves to be honored as the Grand Marshal. Joan is pleased to have one of her former students, Rosemary Ryan march by her side.
Rosemary Ryan is deep rooted in her Irish heritage. Both of her grandfathers were born in Galway, Ireland. Rosemary is a life-long Highlands resident and is the youngest of her six (6) siblings. Rosemary is the mother of two (2) children; Brendan and Cara. She currently serves on the Highlands Planning Board, Environmental Commission and is the Resident Board Member to the Highlands Business Partnership. She formerly served as the President to the Henry Hudson Regional Board of Education and is a current board member. Rosemary has served the people of Highlands on many organizations that include; Youth Group Leader at Our Lady of Perpetual Help (OLPH), Soccer Coach for Highands/Atlantic Highlands Recreation league, Booster Club President for Henry Hudson and OLPH, and the the PTO President at OLPH. Rosemary volunteers at every HBP event and always brings her bright smile.
Rosemary was a member of the OEM team in the aftermath of Super Storm Sandy. Since she was an uptown resident, she immediately rolled up her sleeves and served as the volunteer and supply coordinator. Rosemary was in cancer remission at the time and kept herself very busy by volunteering to help residents recover. She organized and collected supplies, merchandise, goods and services valued at nearly two million dollars. She also chaired the Hope For Highlands Committee that distributed nearly $150,000 in material grants to the residents and businesses of Highlands. The Highlands Business Partnership is proud to have these two great women lead the 2016 St. Patrick's Day Parade.
The parade will begin at Huddy Park with hundreds scheduled to march along a one-mile stretch of Bay Avenue. The Highlands Business Partnership will host the annual “Competition of Floats.” All Businesses and/or Organizations in Highlands will be competing in three (3) categories: Best of Show, Prettiest, and the Most Original. In addition, a trophy will be presented for the Best of Apparatus. All fire companies will honor a silent march in tribute to all of our fallen fire fighters.
The parade will feature entertainers along with many marchers representing the military, including the Color Guard. Political, civic, church, environmental, and community organizations represented will include, Congressman Pallone, members of Assembly, County Freeholders, members of local American Legion, VFW posts, fire companies, and first aid rescue units. The local Boy & Girl Scout troops, both celebrating over 100 years of service, will also be participating.
The Henry Hudson Regional Marching Band and Cheerleaders will be performing with over 100 members of the band. The Parade entertainment will include the Monmouth County Police & Fire Pipe & Drums, Ocean County Emerald Society Pipe & Drums, Staten Island Pipes & Drums, Middlesex County Police & Fire Pipes and Drums, Union County Police & Fire Pipes & Drums, Friendly Sons of the Shillelagh Pipes & Drums of Old Bridge, Essex County Emerald Society Police & Fire Pipes & Drums, Richmond County Pipe & Drums, Patrick Torphy Pipe & Drums and the Pipes and Drums of the Atlantic Watch.
Green balloons and bows will decorate participating businesses along the parade route. A VIP grandstand for dignitaries will be at Veterans Park located on Bay & Shrewsbury Avenues. There, the marchers and bands will make a brief stop at the Grand Viewing Stand to be recognized. Don’t miss the lucky winner of the Highlands Business Partnership’s “Lucky Pot of Gold” 50/50 Raffle. The drawing will be held at 140 Bay Avenue on Sunday, March 22nd at 3:00PM, and the winner need not be present. Please support the non-profit Highlands Business Partnership and purchase a 50/50 ticket. All proceeds “pay the pipers.” Parade-goers can be sure to receive free giveaways thrown from the many floats competing in the parade. If you have not had enough pipes and drums, be sure to visit one of Highlands’s many restaurants where a band will be performing.
This parade is made possible by the Highlands Business Partnership and its generous sponsors: TriBar Services, Shore Point Distributing Company, Frank Rahm Landscaping, Hufnagel Tree Experts, T&M Associates, Montecalvo, Comcast and 95.9 WRAT Rat Radio. For additional information, call 732.291.4713.
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