2007-02-02 / Community

St. Pat's Parade Route:

The Long and Short of It
By Brian Magoolaghan

Calendar listings in a major Irish newspaper and on a prominent website have some people worried that the Queens County St. Patrick's Day Parade, which is held in Rockaway on the first Saturday of March each year, is going to be a dud in 2007.

The listings, which appear on the website of The Irish Emigrant newspaper and the website St.Patricks DayParade.com, say the 32nd annual parade will start at Beach 118 Street and Rockaway Beach Boulevard and end at Beach 105 Street.

A 12-block parade would be much shorter than the usual route, which is about 40 blocks long. Traditionally, the parade steps off on Beach 129 Street and Rockaway Beach Boulevard at 1 p.m., following a Mass at St. Francis de Sales Church, and continues to the Doughboy Monument near the 100 Precinct Stationhouse on Beach 94 Street.

But The Wave contacted parade committee president Mike Benn this week and was assured that this year's parade is on track to be one of the best yet.

"We've got 22 bands already," Benn told The Wave. "I don't know where they're getting their info," he then said of the erroneous calendar section editors. "We got a bunch of calls on this… I'm going to look into it."

Benn said the parade will follow the "same route" as usual, with the review stand located at the Doughboy Monument, as it has been in recent years. The Wave spoke with a police source who is familiar with the parade route and the permit that parade organizers need from the NYPD. The source, who has been in contact with Benn, said all indications are that the parade will be "exactly the same as last year." This year's permit request hasn't been received by police yet, but Benn still has about a week to file, the source said.

More information will appear in The Wave's March 2 issue. To find out how to participate or to make a donation, contact Benn by email at KroppyBoy@aol.com.

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