Morristown, N.J. (March 6, 2017) – When Morgan Sim, '17, history, received the news that she would the queen of the 2017 Nutley Irish American Alliance annual Saint Patrick's Day parade on March 4, she "lost it."
"I literally started bawling on the phone, I was so excited," she said.
Deidra Hollywood, the Alliance's corresponding secretary and longtime family friend, called her in October a few weeks after she applied. Sim's family has been a part of the Alliance since she was a little girl, and has even volunteered in some of the events.
"It's kind of like this one big happy Irish family," Sim said.
Each applicant for the parade queen must write a biography including a list of their community service activities, why they want to be queen, and their Irish heritage. The winner is selected from a drawing pool of applicants.
Sim has volunteered for 14 years with Project Children, which brings children from Ireland to live with them during the summer. She has also volunteered with the Morris County Habitat for Humanity and for the Knights of Columbus Tank Pull to raise money for wounded servicemen and women. Morgan plays basketball, soccer and softball for CSE, and has been president of the class of 2017 since her freshman year.
During the parade, Sim wore a green dress and a crown while riding in a Corvette.
"On parade day, it's an honor for us to bring all our friends and family and draw a crowd to the parade and make it as good as possible," she said.
Sim's queenly duties include continuing to participate in the association and support it with the rest of the dignitaries. Next year, she'll need to hand off the crown to the new queen.
To raise money before this year's parade, Sim and the dignitaries hosted a dinner and pub tour to all the local bars in Belleville, Nutley, and other cities around the town with the rest of the Alliance's members.
Five people are picked to walk in the parade as dignitaries: a Grand Marshal, a deputy grand marshal, a member of the year, a queen, and a firefighter or police officer. Sim's father was the grand marshal in 2009, and following in his footsteps means a lot to her, she said.