Hundreds attend annual Irish Gala fundraiser in Springfield

Hampden County

CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – The Sisters of St. Joseph in Springfield hosted hundreds of people Sunday afternoon for their annual Irish Gala fundraiser.

The Irish dancing was but just one element enjoyed by the more than 500 who came to the Castle of Knights in Chicopee to help the Sisters of St. Joseph celebrate this occasion.

“We greet so many people, and it’s a wonderful reunion,” said Sister Eleanor Harrington. “We meet year after year, it’s growing and growing and growing every year, but it’s just great to be with people.”

Corned beef sandwiches highlighted the traditional Irish food for the hundreds who attended. The sisters themselves had baked the Soda bread people could purchase.

Patrick Sullivan Springfield’s Director of Parks told 22News this was a way to honor one’s Irish heritage.

“I think it’s a great way to pay tribute to our ancestors who came over back one hundred years ago. So we celebrate the dancing and the food and just the good memories. What’s good about the event it brings together the young and the old,” he said.

Nancy Keyes the daughter of the late judge Daniel Keyes told 22News, Sunday’s event would have delighted her father, who embraced his Irish heritage.

“St. Patrick’s Day was like the holy day at our house,” Keyes recalled. “It was a holy day like Christmas, and we couldn’t wait. It’s just a great place to be here today, I know he’s here with me.”

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