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Honoring 'The Wicked Chicken'

  • VICTOR IZZO/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS These dart shooters qualified to compete in the 1st Annual Willie Clarke Invitational Dart Tournament, which was held at Molly Maguires Pub & Steakhouse on Hazard Square in downtown Jim Thorpe.
    VICTOR IZZO/SPECIAL TO THE TIMES NEWS These dart shooters qualified to compete in the 1st Annual Willie Clarke Invitational Dart Tournament, which was held at Molly Maguires Pub & Steakhouse on Hazard Square in downtown Jim Thorpe.
Published February 21. 2012 05:01PM

A large turnout for a dart tournament was present at Molly Maguires Pub & Steakhouse on Hazard Square in downtown Jim Thorpe recently, not only for the competition but also to honor the memory of one of their own.

They were all present for the 1st Annual Willie Clarke Invitational Dart Tournament with 16 shooters competing and with many more spectators present.

Clarke had earned the nickname "The Wicked Chicken," which had its origin in Ireland many years ago over a chicken that he won playing darts.

According to Clarke's sister Bernadette Behan, "He took it home to our mother and said 'I'm sorry, I won it, but it's a wicked chicken'," because it was so scrawny.

She added that "even in Ireland today if you would ask for Willie Clarke, they wouldn't know who he was, but if you said The Wicked Chicken, then they would know who he was."

"He absolutely loved the game of darts," she added, "and taught many of the guys here how to play and the skill to it."

The 1st Annual Willie Clarke Invitational Dart Tournament, which was organized by Chris Gehres, was won by Mark Behan, one of Clarke's nephews.

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