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Wantagh chamber cancels 2020 St. Patrick’s Day parade

July date not viable in face of continuing infections

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The Wantagh Chamber of Commerce reluctantly canceled its Second Annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade, because of concern about the Covid-19 virus.

“It was a difficult decision, but we felt we couldn’t really honor [Nassau County Police Commissioner] Patrick Ryder the way we wanted to or hold the kind parade we wanted to under these conditions,” chamber President Cathy McGrory Powell said.

Ryder was to have been the parade’s grand marshal. The parade, originally scheduled for March 22, was postponed to July 19.

Since that decision for a summer postponement, the landscape has changed. “There are just too many unknowns at this point to even try to reschedule it,” McGrory Powell said.

The new parade date is March 21, 2021.

“We spoke with Commissioner Ryder before we met, and he suggested that it would be safer for all if we went ahead and planned it for next year instead,” McGrory Powell said.

Last year’s inaugural event drew an estimated 51,000 spectators to the hamlet of 38,000 souls. “It was a huge success,” McGrory Powell said at the time; “beyond our wildest dreams.”

Drawing on the expertise of social media consultant and chamber Second Vice President MariLynne Rich, the newly elected slate of officers pulled the event together in less than two months. This year, with more than a year to plan, they hoped to exceed last year’s spectacular success.

But “we didn’t want to do it halfway,” McGrry Powell said. “Hopefully, by next year, everything will be back to some semblance of normal.