Congressman Richard E. Neal and Mayor Domenic J. Sarno invited the public to attend the commemoration ceremony for the 1916 Garden of Remembrance on Sunday, May 15. The city accepted a global invitation from the Irish Government earlier this year and constructed the 1916 Garden of Remembrance at the lower Rose Garden. This past weekend concluded eight weeks of programs that were held throughout the Pioneer Valley commemorating the 1916 Easter Rising.
Mayor Domenic Sarno stated,” We are proud to be the first in the United States to construct the 1916 Gardens of Remembrance. This garden represents the fabric of our community and the Pioneer Valley as the support for this garden has been tremendous. We encourage all of our citizens to join in the planned programs this weekend. We are honored to showcase our local talent, “Billy Egan and the Rising” and “Dee Reilly” who will provide a memorable evening. I look forward to honoring the local Irish organizations Saturday night; it is for their stewardship that has ensured their faith and family traditions have been passed through the generations. The Sunday commemoration ceremony will be a time to pay our respect to those who sacrificed to meet the aims of the Irish proclamation.”
Congressman Richard Neal said, "The Easter Rising was a seminal moment in Irish history and it helped transform cities like Springfield and Boston. The Garden of Remembrance is a direct call to Ireland's exiled children in America, and the Proclamation is one of the few declarations of independence in the world that references both men and women equally. The Rising of 1916 led to the creation of the modern Irish state and it was heavily influenced many families who settled here in the City of Springfield and the surrounding communities. I strongly encourage everyone to take part in this weekend's exciting commemoration ceremonies. This is the first Garden of Remembrance to be completed in America, and its dedication will help strengthen the bonds between the western Massachusetts and Ireland."