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‘Finnegan’s Wake’ attracts many ‘mourners’

Islanders celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with two-day event

April 10, 2019
By ED FRANKS ( , Pine Island Eagle

On Saturday, March 16, St. James City resident Heather Schwartz kicked off St. Patrick's Day with a "Finnegan's Wake" celebration.

"Finnegan's Wake" is a work of fiction by Irish writer James Joyce.

The two-day event kicked off at 6 p.m., March 16, when Schwarz led the cast of characters in a 40 golf cart parade from her home on Stringfellow Road to Low Key Tiki, where Finnegan laid in his coffin while musician Tommy Barr played Irish tunes.

Article Photos

From left are, Julie Hayford, the Queen of Everything; Pamela McCarty, the Nun; and Cindi Sibson, the Irish Princess.


On Sunday morning, March 17, the procession, and Mr. Finnegan, lined up again and headed to Ragged Ass Saloon where the crowd was so large traffic came to a dead stop (no pun intended).

Honorary Mayor Don Hayford gave Finnegan's eulogy and the party got started with Bobby Mann deejaying into the afternoon when Torched took the stage.

Finally, shortly before 5 p.m., respects were paid as Finnegan was placed back in the hearse for his final procession over to Froggy's.

"All three bars had a variety of food and drinks available, RAS had souvenir T-shirts and hats, beads and lots of fun items for purchase," Schwarz said. "The crowd at RAS was so large that they sold out of shepherd's pie, bangers and mash and 250 pounds of corned beef and cabbage, breaking last year's record."

Organizers offered a large thank you to everyone involved and especially those who participated: The Pope - Tom DeSantis, Naughty Nun - Helen Edwards Banther, Nun - Pamela McCarty, Weeping Widow - Heather Schwarz, Mother McGilicuddy - Rebeca Read, Interfaith Priest - Mark Berid, Irish Princess - Cindi Sibson, Mayor - Don Hayford, St. Patrick Himself- Hugh Bremmer, Prince of Darkness - Dean Schwarz, Queen of Everything - Julie Hayford, Grand Leprechaun - Maureen McGregor-Rocheleau and Mourner - Annie Nicholson.

Hearse drivers were Ray Cook and Cathy Cornwell, along with tons of leprechauns, mourners and pallbearers.



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