I have been receiving quite a few emails regarding the SSI Parade offically ending. Please see below. I am just posting what I have received, nothing is verified. Could this really be the end?
I thought I'd take a moment to give all of you a slight heads up on some major neighborhood news.
The South Side Irish St. Patrick's Day Parade is no more.
As all of you know, I've served on the parade's organizing committee for the past six years. Well, that committee met this evening to discuss the situation and, after much debate, it was decided that this fine tradition must end.
Many will say this was a long time coming. The behavior of those who come to this neighborhood on parade day just to get drunk and cause trouble has gotten worse and worse over the past decade, and it's finally become too much for the neighborhood to endure. The tipping point, in case your curious, was the fact that 11 police officers were assaulted during the 2009 parade. This total disregard for law enforcement crossed a new line, and we were afraid the next step would be someone getting seriously injured or even killed. So given that mindset, we obviously could not go forward.
Not sure how you all feel about the parade at this point - I'm sure some of you will be glad to see it go while others will be disappointed. Though I did not hesitate to vote with those committee members who wanted to end it, I think it is an incredible shame. This was an event which helped defined the community in which I've chosen to live. It was a tradition that spanned my entire life and one I'd hoped to share with my daughter. And because of irresponsible people, most of whom don't even live in this community, it has been destroyed.
The committee will work hard to make sure that the end of the parade does not mean the end of Irish celebrations in Beverly. We plan to continue with the annual Mass and hopefully create a new tradition - some kind of cultural event, perhaps at the Beverly Art Center, involving Irish music, dance, food, etc. All of that is of course very vague right now, but I hope you all will choose to support it.
News of the parade's demise will be released tomorrow...well, today, I guess. If you want to see the snazzy press release I wrote announcing the news, visit www.southsideirishparade.org.