A little bit of normal with St. Patrick’s Day Parade returning

If we told you, two years ago today, we’d be close to the two-year anniversary of a global pandemic, chances are you would have said, “You’re out of your mind.” And yet, here we are, in the first week of March 2022, two years after our worlds were turned into chaos.

Two years ago, lockdowns were beginning. 

Two years ago, hand sanitizer was dropping off shelves of supermarkets and pharmacies.

Two years ago, we were told to practice something called “social distancing,” whatever that was.

Two years ago, the lives of schoolchildren changed, in ways once thought impossible, when the dining room table or the couch suddenly became the classroom.

So much happened so quickly, it’s almost impossible to recall it all. But it did, indeed, all happen. And for many, life will never be the same.

In the coming weeks, nonetheless, there will be something that will serve as a bridge to what life was like before we ever heard of COVID-19 — and maybe it will seem strange to some, but the United Irish Association’s West Hudson St. Patrick’s Day Parade (and the one in Nutley, too) will be one of the largest events in the area since 2019.

In West Hudson, the parade was canceled, last minute, in 2020, rightfully, as the pandemic spiked. Last year, there was just too much uncertainty for it to go off. And yet here we are, two years later, on the precipice of seeing the parade return for the first time since 2019.

And it doesn’t get much better than that.

There was a time where it seemed something like a parade would be impossible. We think of those days when Kearny Avenue was a virtual ghost town, with so few people out and about unless they were off for a jog or a walk.

But the parade will be back and that same street, once abandoned, will again be filled with life, excitement, joy.

Given the last few years, it couldn’t be arriving at a better time. And so with that in mind, we hope to see you somewhere along the route come Sunday, March 13 in West Hudson.

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Kevin A. Canessa Jr. is the editor of and broadcaster at The Observer, a place where he has served on and off since 2006. He is responsible for the editorial content of the newspaper and website, the production of the e-Newspaper, writing several stories per week (including the weekly editorial), conducting live broadcasts on Facebook Live, including a weekly recap of the news — and much more behind the scenes. Between 2006 and 2008, he introduced the newspaper to its first-ever blog — which included podcasts, audio and video. Originally from Jersey City, Kevin lived in Kearny until 2004, lived in Port St. Lucie. Florida, for four years until February 2016 and in March of that year, he moved back to West Hudson to return to The Observer full time. Click Here to send Kevin an email.