Sober St. Patrick's Day® 10th Anniversary Year Culminates with Invitation to March in NYC St. Patrick's Day Parade

Immediately following the parade, the Sober St. Patrick's Day's annual NYC signature event will once again host World-class Irish Musicians, Singers, and Dancers for a sold-out audience. William Cope Moyers to receive the "Emerald Spirit Award."
Learn About Hazelden Betty Ford

New York City - March 9, 2022 — Frequently heralded by the Irish American press as "The Best Entertainment in New York City on St. Patrick's Day," Sober St. Patrick's Day®  Foundation, Inc. has even more to offer people searching for the perfect "family friendly, alcohol-free event" on Thursday, March 17, 2022.

Sober Celebrations in 2022: 3 Ways to Join

The Sober St. Patrick's Day community will reunite to "Reclaim the Day" :

  • At 2 p.m., in its historic first march in the New York St. Patrick's Day Parade, one of only two groups invited by the parade committee to join this year.
  • Then the celebration moves downtown to Old St. Patrick's Cathedral's Youth Center at 268 Mulberry; doors open at 4 p.m.
  • At 5 p.m. the online celebration created and produced for digital diaspora audiences will be shared as a "YouTube Premiere Global Celebration"

Mission, Movement, March

Sober St. Patrick's Day's mission is to reclaim the true spirit of St. Patrick's Day by changing the perception and experience from an occasion for binge drinking and other misuse of alcohol to a celebration of the richness of Irish culture and the legacy of St. Patrick. "I have been dreaming about this day for 10 years, and we are grateful to the NYC St. Patrick's Day Parade Committee for this remarkable invitation," says William Spencer Reilly, Founder and Chairman, Sober St. Patrick's Day. " And thanks to our board member, Fr. Tom Hoar, president of Enders Island Retreat Center, Mystic, Conn., that Sober St Patrick's Day will be led by our Sister City with the St. Edmund's Pipes and Drums Band."

Parade Chairman Sean Lane is delighted to have the group march this year for the first time, "We welcome Sober St. Patrick's Day as a new parade affiliate this year. They will help us fulfill our mission of celebrating Irish faith, heritage, and culture, with the good work they do to serve the community," said Mr. Lane.

Registration is required to march with Sober St. Patrick's Day:

Post Parade In Person & Online Celebrations

Celebrations will be co-hosted by Sober St. Patrick's Day Treasurer Jim Frawley and Samantha Kelly, @TweetingGoddess:

  • The 11th Annual In Person Party - Live entertainment from 4:30 p.m. until 7 p.m. including: John Whelan, 7-Time "All Ireland Champion" Button Accordion Brian Conway, 5-Time "All Ireland Champion" Fiddler, 2006 Mid-Atlantic CCE Hall of Fame • The Donny Golden School of Irish Dance, Award winning Irish Step Dancers • The St. Edmund's Pipes and Drums Band, from Sober St. Patrick's Day's Sister City on Enders Island in Mystic, CT. • Jerry O'Sullivan, America's leading Uilleann Piper • Brendan Dolan, 2016 Mid-Atlantic CCE Hall of Fame, keyboard player • Liz Simmons & Flynn Cohen, Guitarists, Mandolin, Vocals • Susan Graham, Irish Harpist, and additional surprise guests! The party has always sold out in advance; purchase your tickets online.
  • Online Celebration - Sober St. Patrick's Day's second annual YouTube Premiere Global Celebration will be a one-hour virtual celebration from 5-6 p.m. (9-10 p.m. in Ireland), will include all of the live artists listed above, and Donie Carroll, Singer, Guitarist, "Cork Man of the Year, 2010 and 2016 Dylan Foley, 4-Time "All Ireland Champion" Fiddle Champion • Mary Courtney, Singer, Recording Artist • Liz McNicholl, Singer, Recording Artist •  Una Walsh, Irish Harpist •  Other Leading Irish and Irish American Influencers. Registration is required for this free event. The YouTube Premiere will be followed by a live online chat.

2022 Emerald Spirit Award Honoree: William Cope Moyers

The Sober St. Patrick's Day Emerald Spirit Award is presented annually to a career professional to honor extraordinary dedication and devotion to improving the lives of family members of alcoholics and addicts — the frequently overlooked demographic affected by this disease. Sober St. Patrick's Day Board of Directors is proud to announce William Cope Moyers, Vice President of Public Affairs and Community Relations for Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation, as its 2022 "Emerald Spirit Award" Honoree. Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is recognized as the world's leading non-profit organization singularly focused on providing healing and hope to individuals, families and communities affected by addiction to alcohol and other drugs. As the organization's public advocate since 1996, Mr. Moyers carries the messages about addiction, treatment and recovery to audiences across the nation.

Mr. Moyers is excited for the day, sharing, "A parade has never been a part of my long journey in recovery, until now. More than just the renowned St. Patrick's Day parade, the opportunity I get to "walk the walk" as the honoree of Sober Saint Patrick's Day makes this a milepost that I will forever cherish along my way." 

Mr Moyers added: "from the adversity of my addiction to the opportunity to march as a man in recovery in the greatest parade in New York City affirms for me that every step of the way has been worth it. My journey from addiction to recovery began right here in Manhattan almost 33-years ago. Never did I imagine that my road to recovery would include Fifth Avenue and the St. Patrick's Day Parade. Without a doubt walking this walk affirms that recovery is possible and is worth sharing in the midst of millions of people watching along the way."

Sober St. Patrick's Day Board members Sis Gallagher Wenger, Dr. Patricia O'Gorman, and John Coppola are all former recipients of the "Emerald Spirit Award." Dr. O'Gorman and Mr. Coppola will be in attendance again to welcome Mr. Moyers.

It's A Great Day for the Irish

Judy Garland sings "It's a Great Day for the Irish" in 1940's "Little Nellie Kelly" and the Sober St. Patrick's Day team in New York and Ireland couldn't agree more. Executive Director Tami Ellen McLaughlin explains "It has been very exciting to work with NYC St. Patrick's Day Parade's Bridget O'Brien, a parade veteran and expert, on all of the  Sober St. Patrick's Day parade gear and parade protocol," explained Ms. McLaughlin. "Led by St. Edmunds Pipes and Drums, Sober St. Patrick's Day will proudly make its way up the avenue with a beautiful parade banner, new Irish and American flags, our festive 'Reclaim The Day' sashes, and very proud to honor our Grand Marshal, Bill Reilly, and his Aides."

About Sober St. Patrick's Day® Movement

Sober St. Patrick's Day's mission is to reclaim the true spirit of St. Patrick's Day by changing the perception and experience from an occasion for binge drinking and other misuse of alcohol to a celebration of the richness of Irish culture and the legacy of St. Patrick. Sober St. Patrick's Day was created by award-winning theater and television producer, William Spencer Reilly, who almost lost a member of his family to addiction. He first proposed the idea to leaders in the recovery and Irish American communities, a pitch that led, a year later, to the 2012 inaugural party. It is a 501(c)(3) organization. Please visit for more information.

About the Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation

The Hazelden Betty Ford Foundation is a force of healing and hope for individuals, families and communities affected by addiction to alcohol and other drugs. As the nation's leading nonprofit provider of comprehensive inpatient and outpatient addiction and mental health care for adults and youth, the Foundation has treatment centers and telehealth services nationwide as well as a network of collaborators throughout health care. Through charitable support and a commitment to innovation, the Foundation is able to continually enhance care, research, programs and services, and help more people. With a legacy that began in 1949 and includes the 1982 founding of the Betty Ford Center, the Foundation today is committed to diversity, equity and inclusion in its services and throughout the organization, which also encompasses a graduate school of addiction studies, a publishing division, an addiction research center, recovery advocacy and thought leadership, professional and medical education programs, school-based prevention resources and a specialized program for children who grow up in families with addiction.