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Locals party to raise funds for annual Bay Ridge St. Patrick’s Day Parade • Brooklyn Paper

Locals party to raise funds for annual Bay Ridge St. Patrick’s Day Parade

Marshals assemble: Grand marshal Martin J. Cottingham gathered with the deputy grand marshals at the Bay Ridge St Patricks Day Parade fund-raiser and 25th anniversary gala of the annual march.
Photo by Steve Solomonson

They collected a pot of gold!

Brooklynites danced the night away for a good cause on Feb. 3, when they gathered at El Caribe Country Club in Mill Basin to fund-raise for the upcoming 25th-annual Bay Ridge St. Patrick’s Day Parade. The gala brought together some of the borough’s most civically engaged Irish-Americans and was a success thanks to its organizers, according to this year’s grand marshal.

“It was a great event, very well done,” said Marty Cottingham, who lives in Windsor Terrace. “The committee did a wonderful job.”

The 445 attendees raised more than $5,000 for the March 25 parade, according to the president of the organizing committee, who said that guests enjoyed a performance by dancers from the Donny Golden School of Irish Dance and busted their own moves when the local Canny Brothers Band took the stage to belt out covers and Celtic rock.

“They were fantastic, we had the dance floor packed all night,” said Linda Gallagher-Lomanto.

The hosts also handed out awards to local luminaries, including Cottingham, who Gallagher-Lomanto said made his mark as the borough’s Irish-culture booster with his ten-year commitment to reviving and organizing the annual Great Irish Fair.

“Marty Cottingham is a supporter of Irish-American history and culture — and overall, he’s a great individual,” she said. “Everybody that we picked shows the character of Irish America and its tradition.”

Deputy marshals Stephen Gorton, Mary Koren, Brother Campion Lally, Deirdre Cronin-Butler, Angela Connolly-Coyle, Mary Manning, Greg McGuinness, Brendan Moloney, Connor O’Mara, and Liza Schneider-Lloyd were toasted for their service to the borough, and state Sen. Marty Golden (R–Bay Ridge) picked up an honor for his decades-long commitment to the parade, which he co-founded in 1994.

Next month’s event will feature floats, twenty pipe-and-drum bands, and marching bands from local high schools, including Fort Hamilton and Franklin Delano Roosevelt, according to Gallagher-Lomanto.

Cottingham said he appreciated the parade committee’s recognition of his commitment to his culture and that he’s looking forward to the event.

“It’s a tremendous honor, and I’m looking forward to the big day of the parade,” he said.

Reach reporter Julianne McShane at (718) 260–2523 or by e-mail at jmcshane@cnglocal.com. Follow her on Twitter @juliannemcshane.

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