17 February 2012 No Comments by The Northern Standard

2012 marks the 30th anniversary of the modern St Patrick’s Day Parade tradition in Monaghan Town – and the public are being asked to contribute memorabilia relevant to the event’s recent history for inclusion in a special exhibition being staged in celebration of this significant landmark.
The organisers of this year’s Monaghan parade have tasked a sub-committee with the compilation and presentation of the materials – and they are appealing to Monaghan people to come forward with photographs, newspaper clippings, booklets and any other items they feel might shine some illumination on the parade’s back pages.
Among those involved in the sub-committee are well-known local businessman and former councillor Mr Willie McKenna, who was President of Monaghan Chamber of Commerce when the Monaghan parade was re-established as the pivotal local contribution to the celebrations of the national festival, and long-standing figures in the Monaghan Community Brass Band, Joe Corr and Tony Swift.
It was on the band’s trip back from its memorable Fifth Avenue performance as part of the 1981 New York Parade that the genesis of the modern Monaghan event began, and with the active support of the Chamber with Mr McKenna at its helm 1982 saw the county capital parade come into being.
The event grew in size, variety, locale and emphasis over the years, with the input of Monaghan Town Council in recent times being a key element of tits development, and there were many memorable moments along the way.
This year’s celebration of that colourful history will take the form of a photographic exhibition to be staged in a town centre location, complemented by a video presentation of some of the highlights of past Monaghan parades.
The intention is to put together a vibrant kaleidoscope of the parades of the past that will be a significant contribution in itself to the interest and spectacle of the 2012 event, which will have as guests of honour the Canadian Ambassador to Ireland Loyola Hearn and a party of visitors from the North American country with which Monaghan enjoys rich cultural and heritage twinning links.
The organisers of the anniversary exhibition emphasise that this a community project and input from the public in terms of their own personal photographic memories will be greatly welcomed.
Anyone with material that they think might make a contribution to the initiative is requested to contact Louise on 086 352 3084.

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