JENKINS TWP. — The Pittston City St. Patrick’s Parade Association held its annual Shamrocktoberfest at Susquehanna Brewing Company on Thursday evening.
More than 100 people turned out for the event, which helps raise money for the annual St. Patrick’s Parade, set for Saturday, March 5, 2016. This is the third straight year the committee has sponsored the event at the brewing company.
In 2014, the committee raised approximately $5,000 for the parade. This year should top that mark, Pittston City Special Events Coordinator Sarah Donahue said.
“We had a really great crowd tonight,” she said. “You pretty much couldn’t move in there so it’s a wonderful turnout.”
Over 30 baskets were given in in a Chinese auction. All of the baskets were donated by local businesses. Patrons were treated to a buffet-style meal and, of course, samplings of Susquehanna Brewing Company’s beer.
The Sperazza Band, local musicians from Pittston, provided the entertainment throughout the evening.
This is the only fundraiser the committee has for the parade. Donahue says it costs about $15,000 to put on the parade. The committee is doing everything it can to not take it out of taxpayer pockets.
“This has always been our only fundraiser,” Donahue said. “We’re considering other fundraisers and regardless of what else we do this funds the parade. It’s a lot of money and we don’t like to put it on the taxpayers.”
Following the fundraiser, the committee will get back to work and continue to seek donations for the event.
“It’s a monumental day for the parade,” Donahue said. “The more we raise the better event we can put on.”
Break out the shillelagh
The Pittston City St. Patrick’s Parade committee made a very big announcement Thursday night.
The very first “Leprechaun Loop,” a one-mile run/walk through the streets of downtown Pittston, will take place at 11 a.m. on the day of the parade.
The event will start at the Greater Pittston YMCA, go down to the concrete bridge, back up Kennedy Boulevard then down Main Street. It will finish in the Joyce Insurance parking lot.
“We’re beyond excited for this,” Donahue said. “Obviously it’s more work. We’re ready to go forward with everything and we’re excited for the runners and walkers.”
During the race, there will be a costume contest with prizes awarded to the top three costumes. Awards for the race will be in the following categories: 10 and under, 11-19, 20-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59 and 60 and older. The top finisher will receive a medal.
Entry for the event is $20 with a T-shirt and $10 without a shirt.
Checks can be made to the Pittston St. Patrick’s Day Parade Association at 212 Huckleberry Lane, Duryea, PA 18642. For more information contact Tiffany Ferentino at 570-237-7345.
A portion of the proceeds will go to the Care and Concern Free Health Clinic.
Reach Nick Wagner at 570-991-6406 or on Twitter @Dispatch_Nick