By PETE FONTAINE Excellent eats, extraordinary entertainment. That best sums up the Tri-City Elks annual St. Patrick's Party which again featured what people rated "e;the best corned beef we've ever eaten"e; and a prolific 45-minute precision performance by
Excellent eats, extraordinary entertainment.
That best sums up the Tri-City Elks annual St. Patrick’s Party which again featured what people rated “the best corned beef we’ve ever eaten” and a prolific 45-minute precision performance by the Damhsa Irish Step Dancers of Grainne Colleen Lanigan Beirne.
“Those kids have endless energy,” Lori Eaton, Tri-City’s events coordinator, observed while watching the Irish Step Dancers. “What most people here don’t realize that this was their fourth performance today!”
“We started the day at the Pawtucket St. Patrick’s Parade,” Beirne, whose mother Marianne Beirne serves as Lodge 14’s treasurer, offered. “Our group then danced at the Shield’s American Legion Post on Warwick Avenue then at St. Raymond’s Church before coming here to the Elks.”
Never once, a nearly sold-out audience observed, did one of the dancer’s miss a step, especially when they changed routines – and lanes – while demonstrating some difficult high kicks in unison as well as the always-impressive tap dances.
Like the Elks’ annual Sharin’ of the Green bash, the Damhsa dancers – whose organization is celebrating its 16th year in operation – it was the sixth time in as many years the 12 or so the dancers delighted the Tri-City Elks St. Patrick’s Party audience.
So much so, in fact, that Robert Hartington, a past Exalted Ruler at Lodge 14 who spent the day assisting Chef Steve Lagesse in the kitchen, continued a Tri-City tradition of taking a collection to thank the Damsha dancers for their special show.
“Thank you for being so generous,” Hartington told the audience. “We just collected $306 and that will be used for the Damsha Dance studio’s Foundation.”
Saturday’s supper was nothing less than super.
“I know I’ve said this in past years,” Manny Mihailides, a one-time restaurateur and former sales executive for the famous SS Pierce Foods, told Mark Eaton, RI Elks Vice President East who thanked the one-time organized for again bringing nine of his friends to the dinner for the fifth time in as many years. “The food here is always exceptional.”
To which Mihaiilides’ niece, Georgia Pappas, said, “This is the fifth year our group has come to the Elks Lodge and the corned beef, cabbage, onions, potatoes and carrots, as well as fresh Irish soda bread, continues to be the best we’ve ever eaten. Of course, we didn’t need the vanilla and chocolate ice cream they offered for dessert!”
Pappas, who has chaired many similar events for the Ladies Philoptochos Society at Church of the Annunciation, went on: “If you have never been to the Tri-City Elks St. Patrick’s celebration you are missing out on a fabulous time. We’ll be back again next year, for sure.”
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