Abington: Thousands gather for 35th annual St. Patrick’s Day parade

Thousands of people lined both sides of the streets of Abington Sunday afternoon to watch the 35th annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade.

Abington Board of Selectmen Chair Michael Franey said he actually participated in the very first parade in town.

“It was a driving parade…it was on a five dollar bet from my brother-in-law…we kind of just threw this thing together and it just took off from there,” Franey said.

Plymouth County Commissioner Gregory Hanley  marched in the parade in support of his brother’s business, J.P. Ryan’s Tavern.

“We march with them annually, and this is our chance to give back to the community and it’s a great way to share the spirit of St. Patrick,” Hanley said, “For me, it’s not just one day; it’s a month-long celebration for the Hanley family…a lot of corned beef and cabbage this month.”

Hanley said he’s been marching in this parade for the past seven years.

Over 90 different groups participated in the parade, starting at St. Patrick’s Square and ending in North Abington Center right by The Cellar Tavern.

“It’s a great event for people,” Franey said,”The organizers of this parade do a fabulous job putting it together… and it’s something for the people…there’s literally thousands of people here today.”

Heather Seppala, a Dunkin Donuts employee and Abington resident, said this was their fifth year marching in the parade.

“This parade means awesome,” Seppala said, “This parade’s everything to us and we’re glad to be able to participate in it every year.”

Chris Schultz, marching with Abington’s Boy Scout Troop 41, said this was their fifth year marching as well.

“It’s an opportunity to come out and celebrate St. Patrick’s Day, celebrate the town of Abington, and have some fun,” Schultz said.

Other participating groups included: Abington Bank, Silver Lake Marching Band, Mass Attack Roller Derby, and The Cellar Tavern, where celebrations continued.

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About Samantha Tracey

Samantha Tracey graduated from Salem State University in 2013 with a degree in Journalism. She has been reporting on local issues in a variety of towns: Bridgewater, Abington, Carver, Weymouth, East Bridgewater, Hanson, Halifax, etc. She says growing up on the South Shore has made it interesting now to be covering news in such familiar places.