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Jan 12, 2018 3:37 PMPublication: The East Hampton Press

Kathy Keller Chosen As Grand Marshal For Montauk Friends Of Erin St. Patrick's Day Parade

Kathy Keller
Jan 16, 2018 10:55 AM

Montauk resident Kathy Keller will lead the green parade down Edgemere Road in honor of St. Patrick’s Day for the Montauk Friends of Erin.

The organization announced on Friday that Ms. Keller has been chosen as the grand marshal for its 56th annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Known as the second largest St. Patrick’s Day Parade in New York, and attracting thousands of spectators each year, this event will feature colorful floats representing community groups as well as fire and police vehicles cruising down Edgemere Road to Main Street at noon on Sunday, March 25.

“It’s quite an honor and I’m quite thankful for it,” Ms. Keller said on Friday. “I’ve been working with the Friends of Erin for over 20 years and have been very involved.”

The Keller family is practically synonymous with the Friends of Erin, being one of the founding families of the organization. Ms. Keller is the fourth member of her family to be chosen as grand marshal, following in the footsteps of her brother, Pat Keller, her father, Gil Keller, and her grandfather, Joe Pugh. Ms. Keller herself, also a member of the Friends of Erin Ladies Auxiliary, has marched in the parade or appeared on floats in it for many years.

Joe Bloecker of the Friends of Erin said on Tuesday that Ms. Keller’s nomination to the grand marshal position was approved “unanimously.”

“She’s one of those people who never says no to helping people,” Mr. Bloecker said. “She’s helped a lot of elderly citizens do little things in the day and has been the coordinator of the parade for about 15 years.”

Ms. Keller said she was proud to be part of the Friends of Erin’s charitable efforts for the community, which include offering scholarships to high school students and donating gifts for families at Christmas.

She will be honored at the annual grand marshal’s luncheon on Friday, March 23, from noon to 3 p.m. at the Montauk Yacht Club, where she’ll be presented with a sash, top hat and shillelagh for the parade. Joan Lycke, the 2011 grand marshal, will host the event. Tickets, which must be purchased ahead of time, are available for $60 at the Montauk Laundromat or by calling 631-668-3381 or writing to friendslunch2015@gmail.com.

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