Spring may be some days away, but the Ancient Order of Hibernians is fast-forwarding to what many in the city consider the unofficial start to spring.
The 32nd annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade is set for March 10 at 1 p.m. The parade, co-sponsored by the Ancient Order of Hibernians Fr. Con Colbert Woulfe Division 1 and the Ladies Ancient Order of Hibernians Division 5 of Ulster County, will be preceded by the two-mile Shamrock Run starting at Kingston’s Academy Green at 12:50 p.m.
This year’s Grand Marshal is Albany native David Doyle, the chef at the Blackboard Bistro, operated by The Arc of Ulster-Greene. Doyle, who grew up marching with his family in the North Albany Little Limerick Parade, moved to Kingston in 2006 and has been an active member of the Ulster County Ancient Order of Hibernians since 2007. For the past 12 years, he has been cooking for the volunteers, entertainers and dignitaries at the annual Hooley on the Hudson and has used his culinary talent to feed the members of the AOH at their annual Christmas dinner.
Doyle got his training at SUNY Schenectady’s Culinary Arts Program. His career as a chef has spanned the Capital Region to the Hudson Valley, where he has worked in fine-dining establishments, catering and nonprofits.
In his current role at the Blackboard Bistro, he calls the shots and provides training for people with disabilities who want to pursue restaurant work.
Doyle lives in Kingston with his wife, Katie, son, Liam, and daughter, Tamzin.
The Mayor of the Day will be Jean Steuding, a Kingston native and 19-year member of the Ladies Ancient Order of Hibernians, where she served as secretary for several terms.
Steuding, a lifelong parishioner of St. Mary’s Church, is a graduate of Kingston High School and Ulster County Community College’s first class. She worked as secretary to the superintendent of Kingston city schools from 1982 to 1996 and was an officer and board member of the Coach House Players for many years.
Steuding volunteers at the Catholic Charities food pantry and serves as a Eucharistic minister, lector and treasurer at the Altar Rosary Society at St. Mary’s as well as an adorer at the Ulster County Adoration Chapel in Kingston.
Nina McCann, a Linden Avenue Middle School student, has been named this year’s Irish Princess. The daughter of Brendan and Yumi McCann and granddaughter of Gwen McCann, Nina is a high honors student and member of the National Junior Honor Society.
Hunter Castle, 7, will be the 2019 Bearer of St. Patrick. The second-grader at Kingston Catholic School is the son of Andrew and Robin Castle and grandson of Jim and Fran Carey.
The parade, chaired by AOH members
John Kelly, Larry Dunne and Kathleen Houghtaling, is considered one of the region’s biggest. It steps off from the Kingston Plaza and proceeds down Broadway to the Rondout. This year’s Shamrock Run will be held in honor of Robert Cook, the principal at Rondout Valley High School, who died in late January after a battle with cancer. Cook was a longtime volunteer with the Shamrock Run.
The 2019 run will benefit The ARC of Ulster-Greene’s children’s arts program.