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Published: Mon, March 17, 2014 @ 12:00 a.m.

Chills and thrills in Boardman for St. Patrick’s Day parade


Alli Hromyak, 4, of Boardman and the family dog, Britta, await the start of the parade. Both got decked out in green, and Britta’s owners even dyed her coat for the occasion.

By Sean Barron



If you attended Sunday’s traditional parade, you would not have been treated to the popular punk-rock band Green Day, but you certainly would have been greeted by a bitterly cold wind — and perhaps by a green dog.

“We’re usually in the parade, but this year we’re watching from the sidelines,” Lori Hromyak said, referring to her role in Sunday’s 36th annual Mahoning Valley St. Patrick’s Day parade.

The Boardman woman also brought her daughter, Alli, 4, who was keeping an eye on and entertaining Britta, the family’s 4-year-old pit-bull terrier.

Britta’s fur was dyed light green, and complementary features included a green shamrock around her neck and even a small partially green ruffled dress by her tail. The animal also wasn’t shy about receiving lots of affection from passers-by, Hromyak said about Britta, whom she adopted from For the Dogs Animal Rescue Inc. of Hubbard.

Mother and daughter were among the thousands who lined both sides of Market Street and braved 25-degree temperatures and a stiff wind to view the one-mile parade, themed “Celtic Pride.” It proceeded from McClurg Road to the Southwoods Medical Complex just south of Southern Park Mall.

Main sponsors were 21 WFMJ-TV and The Vindicator.

Despite the weather, an estimated 2,000 people marched, noted Joyce Kale-Pesta, parade-committee president.

Casey Malone, a longtime local radio and TV personality, was the parade’s master of ceremonies.

The unfavorable conditions also failed to give Hromyak pause regarding watching the traditional, colorful parade.

“We’re all about St. Patrick’s Day,” said Hromyak, a CT scan technician at St. Elizabeth Health Center’s Boardman Campus.

The parade featured the usual fare such as vendors selling a wide assortment of green beads, horns, shamrocks and necklaces. Another common sight was people in green hats and shirts with Irish sayings; a few others kept warm by wrapping themselves in blankets — green, of course.

A new parade feature was the return of the Boardman High School marching band, which made its first appearance in 22 years, organizers said.

Ten-year-old Dalton Spehar of Austintown went a little further on the green theme: In addition to the light-green hat, he sported the same-colored beard.

The Austintown Intermediate School fourth-grader, who came with his mother, Linda, also brought Rusty, the family’s Yorkshire terrier who wore a small green shamrock around his neck.

Youngstown Mayor John A. McNally served as grand marshal; Jack Grdic, WFMJ’s general manager, was Lord Mayor of Kilkenny; Michael G. Timlin, owner of Youngstown-based Timlin Plumbing & Heating Inc., received the Ockerman Award.

The fun and festivities continued after the parade during a party at the International Union of Operating Engineers Local 66 building on McClurg Road. Revelers were treated to plenty of food and drink, Irish step dancers, bagpipe players and the Shaffer Bros., a five-piece Irish band. Also, trophies were awarded.


1ambriella(6 comments)posted 2 years, 4 months ago

How is the St. Patricks Day Parade a place to celebrate who you sleep with. Its the St Patricks day parade....not LGBT day. They can't just march in the parade and be just another human being. No, they have to march under a banner that promotes division. Is anyone marching under a heterosexual banner? The parade is about celebrating St Patrick's Day not about look at me I'm a homosexual celebrating St Patrick's Day. It's sad that these sponsors allowed themselves to be used.

Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/g...

Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/g...

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2rocky14(839 comments)posted 2 years, 4 months ago

I'm straight and i'm proud!

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3Floydmcc(3 comments)posted 2 years, 4 months ago

Truly it is 2014 and the archaic notion you're preaching that being in the LGBT community is about who you sleep with is completely absurd. There where gay people and straight allies marching to show support for an overlooked and oppressed group of human beings. I hope some day you will see the light and adjust your primitive thinking to include love for humanity and not dwell on what people do in the privacy of there own homes.

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4ambriella(6 comments)posted 2 years, 4 months ago

You'd have more public support if you would choose not to use benign public celebration's to turn it into a platform to tell us all your gay. We dont care. Do the irish people force themselves on the gay pride parade?

NO ONE ELSE IS ADVERTISING THEIR OWN AGENDAS???? Find another venue to do this at and not the St. Patrick's Day parade which welcomes everyone to march together to honor St. Patrick and not for any other ulterior motive.

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5Floydmcc(3 comments)posted 2 years, 4 months ago

Honestly your sense of reality is warped. There is no "gay agenda" Not sure if you watched the parade or not but fireman were in fire trucks, school bands were carrying school names, businesses had their logos displayed. The LGBT community is no different. You really need to get over yourself. The LGBT community won't be suppressed by bigots such as you. Go picket with westboro people like YOU thankfully are becoming the manority now.

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6ambriella(6 comments)posted 2 years, 4 months ago

I used to not care what gay people did as long as they did it in the privacy of their homes and or kept their sex lives private like most people do. Now that they are forcing their way into everything every day everywhere it's getting pretty tiresome. It's hard to respect anyone that shown no respect for anyone else. St. Patrick's Day is a celebration of Irish heritage, not sexual preference. But then liberals will always use issues and events that are unrelated to push their social agenda. Pathetic.

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7Floydmcc(3 comments)posted 2 years, 4 months ago

First off, I am Irish my grandparents are from Ireland. Are yours? In addition gay people have the right to be thought of as people. If you would like to go out in public and hold your husbands or wife's hand I would not care about that if I want to go out in public and I want to hold my partners and you would care about that that's where you're missing the distinction between myself and you. I accept people you exclude people based on how they identify. I can see there's no getting through to you so be lonely in your opinion. Bitterness only makes people die unhappy

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8ambriella(6 comments)posted 2 years, 4 months ago

Most gays just want to lead quiet lives and stay out of the limelight. There is a group though that are quite vocal and are pushing their agenda…the agenda of making everyone accept their lifestyle! I call them the screaming queens!

Even the other gays don’t like them and think they are being ridiculous in their ways of being accepted.

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9notdownandout(7 comments)posted 2 years, 4 months ago

they passed out candy, waved and smiled at people. What did they do that was so bad. Nothing. There were No sex acts Ambriella you need to stop your deception. Stop you sexual obsession. In fact they did the same thing as everyone else in the parade did. They gave us candy. Just like the politicians (who weren't Irish), the black firefighters, the tow companies.
The parade is a commercial, a chance to advertise yourself and your interests.
No Ambriella, like most people, most gays are lazy loafs who have a handful of people do the work, even when it comes to seeking their rights.
Well said McFloyd

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