| The Shamrock Club of the Chicopee Fire Dept. is proud to announce its honorary Shamrock's and Best Crowds winners. our first Honorary Shamrock is TV 22s Sy Becker. Becker has been chosen because of this participation and enthusiasm for the parade since 1979; his interaction with the crowd has been notable and a highlight of the parade. Sy was nominated after last year's parade and chosen, putting him over the top was the TV 22 Marine Corps Christmas toy drive. Sy and other backers especially in the area of bringing in bicycles, with total gifts in the thousands added to him being chosen as Honorary Shamrock. Sy's Bud Banner will be hoisted on the parade route at Bartleys Corner and he will receive an engraved Shillelagh. Presenting will be Club President Jack Ryan and Chairman Dan McQuade.|
This year's Best Crowds are presented for last year due to the dispersal for the parties after the parade. This is the 21st year of awards and the four winners are all very close in scoring and we encourage new entrants to decorate and most importantly cheer extra loud when firefighters of Holyoke and Chicopee pass by your location.
Fourth place goes to Cousins run by the McCarthy clan and a past first place party. Third is McCarthy's neighbor on Beech St. And a great place to watch the parade, a t Sham Rock Hill, is the last of the loud parties and is run by the Demers, LeBlancs, McPhees, Grudgens and the Stevensons. Beech St. hill needs some good organizers for more cheering.
Second place is in the hands of the Bartley family. Nancy Bartley's sister graces this year's banner, Sy Becker's Bud Banner will grace this residence until Becker wrestles it from the Bartleys. This stretch of Northampton Street at South Street is one of the best areas for family parade viewing, and commentary from Nancy.
The Best Crowd award goes to the Murrys at 2103 Northampton St. Matt and Mrs. McNee run a first-class party. Starting out small as a bachelor pad in the early nineties, Matt and friends moved all the furniture out on parade day and now the board up the place. Refreshments are outside and of course, the sing of a professional, Sani Cans are on the side yard. Marchers are greeted by this loud party soon after leaving K Mart Plaza, and so at 10:30 a.m. before this year's parade, McNee and company will receive the founders award, the Jack Ryan Shillelagh.
Being honored as firefighter Honorary Shamrock this year are graphic designer Rich Mahan for his years of banner work, and the Retiree Shamrock, "Limpy" Max Skawinski, for his years of participation and volunteering at the old Holyoke House. The branches for Honorees Becker and McNee were supplied by firefighter Jon Fisher, who has spent far too much time in the wood. Hope to see you all in Holyoke on March 21.
Holyoke St Patrick's Day Parade Chairman
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