The PLUS Company’s Annual Wild Irish Breakfast, believed to be one of New England’s largest St. Patrick’s Day events, is attended by approximately 500 members of the southern New Hampshire business community. Vice Presidents, US Senators from around the nation, presidential “wannabees” of all stripes, every NH Governor and U.S. Senator as well as every Nashua Mayor since 1991, along with state and national political big wigs, and a host of other “Irish Wits” or pretend wits have graced the head tables of The PLUS Company’s “Wild Irish Breakfasts” since its inception in 1991.
Good humor, yes! Poor humor, of course. Controversy, occasionally.
It all began over 25 years ago when PLUS Company board members Mike Monks and Bernie Streeter talked about ways to raise funds to continue programs at The PLUS Company. A number of ideas were discussed. They came up with the idea of a “roast” similar to the one held in South Boston.
“I felt that Nashua should celebrate St. Patrick’s Day as they did in Boston and other large cities …but with the event assisting a worthy charity. What better way to celebrate this Irish holiday than to bring Nashuans together on St. Patrick’s Day to not only have a good time listening to good and bad humor but to help the clients of PLUS have a better life,” he said. Streeter has chaired the event and has served as the breakfast’s “Blarney Master” since its inception.
So far the breakfasts have helped raise close to two million dollars to assist The PLUS Company (People-Learning-Useful-Skills) in helping people with disabilities become more independent. The proceeds are used to support The Adult Education Program that assists individuals to develop skills, increase self-reliance, and become vital, productive members of their community. Nearly 98% of all PLUS Company clients participate in these programs, which enhance their lives through educational, vocational, and social opportunities.
Today, The PLUS Company’s “Wild Irish Breakfast” continues to be one of the largest attended St. Patrick’s Day events in New England thanks to its sponsors, the hard-working breakfast committee members, PLUS Company staff and our audience – who annually turn out and hopefully laugh at the right moments.