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Parade Organizations

** Denotes Charter Member of Parade Committee

Joseph Nugent, Sr. Association **

Celebrating our 86th Year of Service

The Joseph Nugent, Sr. Association is the oldest independent Irish-American Association in the state of NJ. It was founded in 1933 by Joseph and Nora Nugent and a group of friends. The Association is noted for its charitable endeavors such as an annual Irish picnic for the benefit of the Make-A-Wish Foundation. It has also made contributions to the Center for Hope Hospice and the Deborah Hospital.

They work continuously to "Keep the Tradition Alive".

For more information, please contact them at (732) 535-2212.

Union County Irish American Association **

The Union County Irish American Association was founded in 1982 to promote Irish Culture, foster interest in Irish history & heritage in the Union County area and to support charitable programs especially those that benefit Irish-American efforts. Past contributions have benefited Project Children, Center for Hope Hospice, P.O.W./M.I.A., Fr. McTagus Shelter, and Pat Driscol Memorial Scholarship.

For more information, please contact:
Barbara Mahon, President, at (908)259-1951 or
Kitty Ford at (908) 245-1101.

Daniel O'Connell
Division 2
Ancient Order of Hibernians **

Thornsticks **

Founded in 1982, Thornsticks' primary purpose is that of propagating pride in one's Irish ancestry, pledging always to contribute to strengthening the bonds of friendship as well as respect and understanding between America & Ireland. A proud lot, the Thornsticks are passionately proud of their Irish culture and customs; this done without publicity, fanfare or personal reward.

For more information, please contact
Joe Dugett at (908) 351-1550.

Union County Emerald Society **

A small group of active and retired Irish American Law enforcement Officers and Firefighters organized the Union County Emerald Society in 1981. It was the second such organization chartered in the state of New Jersey. The organization's membership has grown to several hundred. The mission of the Emeralds is to preserve and promote our Irish heritage through the good works of our members. The Emeralds have participated in every Union County St. Patrick's Day Parade, and have eagerly provided personnel and support to the parade organization.

Since the first Parade the Emerald Society has sponsored Officials from Shannon, Ireland as well as the Shannon Airport Police and Firemen to participate in the Union County Parade.

For more information, please contact
Bill Singer at (908) 276-8766.

Friendly Sons of St. Patrick - Union County

The Friendly Sons of St. Patrick began in Philadelphia in 1771 in the midst of the foundations of our country. Earliest members include many influential patriots who were devoted to the cause of liberty. Among the honorary members of the first meeting were John Dickenson, Robert Morris, who later signed the Declaration of Independence, and General George Washington. The first president was General Stephen Moylan, who was a private secretary to General George Washington. Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin frequented meetings of The Friendly Sons of St. Patrick.

The Friendly Sons of St. Patrick of Union County was first organized in 1962, with Joseph Higgins as the first president. The organization was later incorporated in the fall of 2005. More than 45 years later, the Friendly Sons of St. Patrick continues to provide scholarships to young men of Irish ancestry and support to worthy charitable organizations.

For additional information, please contact
Derek Guinane at (908) 868-6764,
or go to

The Parish Community of St. Helen - Westfield

Founded in 1968 by Msgr. Thomas Meaney, the Roman Catholic Parish Community of St. Helen has expanded in the past decades to become a family oriented Parish of over 3,500 registered families. Msgr. Meaney was succeeded by Msgr. James Burke and Msgr. William Harms and the Parish  is presently led by Father Michael Saporito.

United in prayer and nourished and sustained by the Eucharist, we realize that it is our calling to use our God-given gifts of time, talent and treasure to benefit all our family, as well as anyone with need, both local community and elsewhere.

Our loving and  selfless Pastoral Associate, Marilyn Ryan, was thrilled to be selected Grand Marshal of the 2002 Union County St. Patrick's Day Parade. Her Chief of Staff, Dennis Cogan, aided her through the year. The whole community supported her completely and has continued their support by becoming an Organizing Member of the Parade Committee with several members of the Parish on the Board of Directors.

You may visit our web site at,
or contact Gerard Barton at (908) 233-7525.

Irish American Society of Union **

The Irish American Society of Union was founded in 1991 by a group of Union Township residents with a desire to foster and promote Irish heritage and traditions within the community. In 1992 we began to put a larger focus on the area youth by honoring a few graduating student athletes at an annual breakfast, we have since opened that to all graduating students, and award them with a scholarship. We have also made numerous charitable donations over the life of the organization, including Project Children; Make a Wish Foundation, Center for Hope Hospice and Union Township’s Police Departments annual Toys for Tots program. We are one of the founding organizations of the Union County St. Patrick’s Day Parade, and are proud to still be the host community since the parades inception.

For more information, or to become a member, please contact
Marylou Lenahan, President, at (908) 377-2156.

Union County Police & Fire Pipes and Drums

The Union County Police & Fire Pipes and Drums band is comprised mainly of Police Officers and Firefighters from Union County, New Jersey. We officially became a band in October 2001, but there were many hours of practice that began in April of that same year.

Our founder Ed Donnelly became the bands first Pipe Major. Our Drum Major is Bob Munnings. Our Pipe Sergeant is Don Kozlowski; Drum Sergeant is Brian Burke. The Band Manager is Dennis Conners and the Treasurer is Jimmy Hannon. At present the band has over 30 members, including 3 sets of fathers and sons. The band is comprised of beginning, intermediate and experienced pipers and drummers.

Our bagpipe instructor is John Martin Bradley, a very talented Piper with over 20 years experience. John appeared in the movie "Dead Poets Society", heads the NYC Bagpipe Academy and plays with the Irish rock group Gael Force.

Our drum instructor is Andy White, author of the instructional book "Roll Control". Andy was a studio drummer for the Beatles, Tom Jones and Burt Bacharach.

The Band's kilt is the MacNaughton dress plaid and contains the colors representing our members; Red for the Firefighters, Blue for the Police Officers and Green for Ireland.

Our uniform is military in style signified by the beret with the badge of the member's department, white spats, longhaired sporran, and uniform shirts, almost identical to those worn on duty by Police Officers and Firefighters.

For more information, please contact
Dennis Conners, Band Manager, at (908) 230-7084,

Ladies Ancient Order of Hibernians (LAOH)**

The LAOH was originally founded as the Daughters of Erin in 1894. The organization has divisions in 30 states and Washington DC. Our motto is Friendship, Unity and Christian Charity. Our patron Saint is Saint Brigid.

Division #4, Elizabeth, of the LAOH was formed in 1907. Members of the Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton Division proudly celebrated their Centennial in September, 2007. Current division members include National and State officers and the Elizabeth division is very active on the state and national Hibernian scene. There have been many State and National Board officers from the Elizabeth division over their 100 year history.

We welcome all women who are practicing Roman Catholics, and who are Irish by birth or descent, or who are the wife of a member of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, or the mother of a member of a Junior Division.

If you wish to become a member, please visit

John F. Cryan Association **

The Cryan Association was founded in 1960 with the goal of assisting the Irish American community and those in need. It's mission goes on today supported by the Cryan family and friends. The organization is a founding member of the Union County Saint Patrick's Day Parade Committee, it's standard bearer, Joseph Cryan, served as the first Parade Chairman.

Saint Columcille United Gaelic
Celebrating 70 Years in 2019

Saint Columcille United Gaelic, Inc. a New Jersey-based cultural and educational organization that provides musical instruction on bagpipes and drums. In addition to supporting a wide variety of Gaelic and Celtic activities and events, the organization primarily sponsors three award-winning pipe bands, the Saint Columcille United Gaelic Pipe Band, the Sean McGonigal Memorial Pipe Band and the Columcille School of Pipes and Drums. Saint Columcille has participated in every Union County Saint Patrick's Day Parade since its inception.

Columbian Club of Union
Knights of Columbus

Knights of Columbus
Council 253
Elizabeth, NJ

Union County Daughters of Ireland

Union County Daughters of Ireland was founded in April 2017. We offer an opportunity for women who live or work in Union County, NJ to network and socialize with other women. We create friendships and host various community events throughout the year that allow us to give back to young Irish women through college scholarships. We meet the 2nd Thursday of the month at Molly Maguire's in Clark at 7:30PM.

Contact us today if you are interested in more information

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