Tyrone Irish Heritage Celebration begins this weekend

The flags are flying, the events are scheduled and the anticipation is building. Now, all that is needed is you – your involvement, your participation, and your response.
The coming weeks’ festivities kick off tomorrow night as everyone is invited to come out and enjoy an evening of festivities and Irish goodies sponsored by Tyrone Colonial Courtyard.
Dance and “karaoke” the night away with Dancing DJ and KJ Services, sponsored by The JJAN Financial Group.
All ages welcome, children under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult.
Tickets will be on sale at the door or prior to the dance at Tyrone Colonial Courtyard and the Tyrone Chamber of Commerce for a donation of $5 per ticket.
All donations will benefit the Heritage Foundation.
Next up on the schedule is the first ever “Luck of the Irish” parade, sponsored by the Rotary Club of Tyrone. The parade will begin at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, March 13. Everyone is welcome to attend and participate. Show some hometown Irish pride, create a float, dress in costume, march as a group or family or just come out to watch and enjoy.
Prizes will be awarded. Parade participants will line up at 6 p.m. at the corner of Lincoln Ave. and 16th Street.
Anyone with questions can contact the Tyrone Chamber office at 684-0736 or Jennifer Bryan (Parade Chairperson) at 684-4306 or 949-7621.
The first St. Patrick’s parade took place, not in Ireland, but in the United States. Irish soldiers in the English military marched through New York City on March 17, 1762. Their music and their presence gave support to participants and spectators who wanted to reconnect with their Irish roots. In the years to come, the parade grew to include the representation of families and clans. Now, all are welcome.
Tuesday’s parade is the beginning of many scheduled events. A complete itinerary is available at the Tyrone Chamber, Alice’s Garden Florist, Cowfer’s Custom Design and Wendy’s Joybeans.
As the Irish family spotlight continues, individuals reflect on the musical and lyrical talents of the people of Ireland. It’s easy to see these traits continue through the generations of this week’s family. Steve Stoner and Cindy (Stoner) Bennett trace their lineage back to their great-grandparents, Patrick Henry and Mariah Higgins, who came to this country from Dublin, Ireland during the great potato famine.
Although the family considers themselves “Shanty Irish” – due to their humble beginnings – like so many others at that time, they instilled in future generations a love for life, song, and the written word.
Steve Stoner is a teacher at the Tyrone Middle School and an active member of the Tyrone Community Players, where he has performed and directed many plays.
Cindy (Stoner) Bennett is a local artist and a published author, also active in TCP’s latest production, “Crimes of the Heart” (Beth Henley’s Pulitzer Prize winning tragic comedy). The play is about how three slightly eccentric sisters escape their past to seek the future, and the telling is so true, compelling and consistently hilarious that it will linger in the mind, long after the play is over. For ticket information, call 684-ART2.