Watch out for the Leprechaun!

Green-clad crowd celebrates St. Patrick’s Day at the Johnston Senior Center


A green-clad crowd enjoyed the festivities at this year’s Johnston Senior Center (JSC) Saint Patrick’s Day party.

For starters, the multi-purpose room was filled to capacity and decorated in a sea of green including unique floral centerpieces.

The party even received a visit by the JSC’s resident Leprechaun, volunteer bus driver-special server Jackie Pion.

Each tabletop was covered with white placemats surrounded by green plastic plates, silverware wrapped in a green napkins and a beautiful green and white carnation centerpiece.

The room was also accented by perfectly placed green and white balloon bouquets.

The room was filled by men and women who were decked out in some sort of green garb and received complimentary green carnations courtesy of John Dick, a long-time JKSC friend who owns and operates Atwood Florist in Johnston.

The day’s luncheon, served by many valuable volunteers, was completely sold out because the feature was traditional corned beef and cabbage.

Meanwhile, a teenage girl from Johnston High School captured the hearts of everyone in the room.

“What a beautiful voice,” people offered time and again as they listened to Katie Rodriguez sing a beautiful rendition of Patsy Cline’s ageless and legendary hit “Crazy.”

Moreover, everyone in the capacity crowd rose to their feet — not once, but twice — and gave the pretty, peppy and always smiling Johnston High School student a standing ovation for the three songs she sang.

It was a proud moment for Rodriguez and her JHS teacher Julie Forte, who was thrilled with the rave reviews people offered after Rodriguez’s prolific performance.

But that wasn’t the only duty Rodriguez and her JHS classmates Kayla Beaudry, Avery Ream and Hayden Judd (who were also accompanied by Louise Stanielon) performed during the luncheon.

The JHS students joined forces with JSC volunteers and served the day’s main menu, dessert and some even poured coffee and filled water glasses.

If that wasn’t enough, luncheon-goers enjoyed a musical presentation from Gregory Ayriyan, a classic violinist and composer who played a number of Irish tunes before the classic celebration concluded with a number of raffles.

“Richard is really bringing the Center back to life,” said Steve Macchione, a former Johnston Town Councilman, retired beverage salesman whose son Cory is Director of Basketball Operations for the URI women’s basketball team. “He’s made this (JSC) the place to be.”

DelFino thanked his longtime friend (Macchione) for the compliment. Then the director thanked his staff and offered: “Stay tuned; we’ll be having more of these events in the coming weeks.”


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