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March Madness in sync | Griffith Academy Irish Dancers prep for Hartford St. Patrick’s Day Parade

The seven-decade old dance school is a parade staple.

WETHERSFIELD, Conn. — Dancing in the streets is what they do, and they have done it for the past 51 years.

The 2023 edition of the Hartford St. Patrick’s Day Parade will see the Irish dancers from Griffith Academy back among the crowds marching up Main Street.

“We’re so excited," said Mary Beth Griffith, the owner and director of Griffith Academy of Dance. "It’s just a great day to celebrate our Irish heritage, our culture but also, it’s a day of inclusivity. We are all celebrating Hartford and all its diversity, and everyone can join us.”

This year Griffith estimated that between dancers, parents, and grandparents, the dance academy group will have close to 200 marching in the parade.

“You see all the people lined up and it’s just the most amazing emotion,” Griffith added.

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Kaitlin Rocheleau, a Griffith Academy dance teacher, added that the Hartford Saint Patrick’s Day Parade is “a celebration of culture, music, and dance – generation after generation.”

Sacred Heart University sophomore Delaney Rafferty has been dancing with Griffith Academy for 16 years, she said she always looks forward to performing in the Hartford Parade.

“It is so heartwarming how you see everyone has come together to celebrate tradition and to share our passion and gift with the community,” Rafferty said.

“Everyone is Irish that day and we all do the jig in the streets of Hartford,” Griffith said.

Jimmy Altman is a reporter at FOX61 News. He can be reached at jaltman@fox61.com. Follow him on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


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