St. Patrick’s Day parade is on, finally!

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For the first time since 2019, the Greater Patchogue Chamber of Commerce will be hosting their annual St. Patrick’s Day parade on Main Street on March 20 at noon.

As part of the Irish celebration, the chamber will also be hosting a “May the Road Rise to Meet Ye Road Race,” to benefit the chamber’s foundation committee.

As the longest-running grand marshal in Patchogue history, the chamber will finally be celebrating Village Business Improvement District executive director Dennis Smith. In 2020, the chamber announced its 2020 St. Patrick’s Day parade grand marshal; however, due to several COVID cancellations, the parade had been rescheduled a number of times, including past plans to host a halfway parade in September.

ABOUT THE GRAND MARSHAL

After a visit to the motherland years ago prompted a DNA test, Smith recently found out he was more Irish than he originally believed to be: 97 percent to be exact, with the other 3 percent English and Northern European. He also learned that Smith means “truth” and “strength,” among other adjectives.

His mother was once a DeMontt — more of a French name taken from a small European country once occupied by the French, he said, but the women before her were McManns and McMurphys.

Smith has been with the BID over 15 years; he was a grocery store manager before that. However, since his move to the Patchogue area from Brooklyn in 1955 (just after his fifth birthday), he has stayed within three miles of the village.

Currently, he resides in East Patchogue with his wife, Patty Smith (formerly Hanlon). Together they have three children — Jeanine, Dennis and Daniel — and four grandchildren. All live nearby — a blessing, Smith said, all in itself.

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