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North End Feasts

Check Out the 2011 Schedule for the Italian Festivals in Boston

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Summer is officially here and Boston’s Italian neighborhood, the North End, is the place to be for outdoor food and fun. Visitors and locals come from near and far to join together almost every weekend each summer for festivals or “feasts.” These feasts are celebrations for Italian immigrants and the many local religious societies in the area.

The feasts pay tribute to their honored saints from Italy and hold different meanings for each group. It is a time for fund raising, but for attendees, also a great time to shop, eat, drink, play games, and enjoy live music. It is basically one big block party or carnival, right in the streets of the North End.

At the feasts, you will find an abundance of Italian cuisine, served casually at booths lining the streets. Whether you want fresh seafood like clams, shrimp, oysters, or calamari, or want to satisfy your sweet tooth with homemade gelato or pastries, there is something for everyone. There are also plenty of grilled meats, such as teriyaki beef or hot sausage and peppers. Plus, Italian classics like arancini, baked ziti, calzones, and Sicilian pizza. You may have the opportunity to receive samples for cheeses, yogurts, juices, and other products as well and receive coupons from local or national businesses. Some of the restaurants surrounding the areas hosting the feasts set up outdoor seating and provide guests with food and drink specials as well.

You can eat lunch, dinner, or a snack, while browsing many different vendors, with plenty of Boston and Italian themed gifts and merchandise. There are clothes, jewelry, CD’s, sunglasses, and gourmet food for sale, and so much more. Make sure to also stop and enjoy the carnival type games to win prizes and dance and sing along to the live entertainment and DJ’s.

Beyond just the feasts, there are processions throughout the area. People gather, marching bands play, and money is collected for the various religious groups. You will enjoy the upbeat atmosphere in the North End, as the bands wind through the neighborhoods streets. Members of the societies carry the statues around to honor their saints and collect money, so make sure to bring cash if you want to contribute. Please see below for the festival schedule for this summer.

2011 North End Summer Feasts

June 26, 2011 - Padre Pio
2 p.m. Procession only - North Square

July 10, 2011 - Madonna del Grazie
2 p.m. Procession only - North Square

July 17, 2011 - St. Rocco
1 p.m. - Procession only - Hanover St.

July 24, 2011 - St. Domenic
2 p.m. - Procession only - Hanover St.

July 29 - 31, 2011 - St. Joseph’s Feast
Battery & Hanover Streets
1 p.m. Sunday Procession
www.stjosephsboston.org

Aug. 5 - 7, 2011 - St. Agrippina di Mineo Feast
Battery & Hanover Streets
1 p.m. Sunday Procession
www.aintagrippinaboston.com

Aug. 12-14, 2011 - Madonna Della Cava Feast
Battery & Hanover Streets
1 p.m. Sunday Procession
www.madonnadellacava.com

Aug. 18 - 21, 2011 - Fisherman’s Feast of the Madonna Del Soccorso di Sciacca
Fleet, Lewis & North Streets
1 p.m. Sunday Procession
www.FishermansFeast.com

Aug. 26 - 28, 2011 - Saint Anthony’s Feast
Thacher, Endicott & N. Margin Streets
12 p.m. Sunday Procession
www.StAnthonysFeast.com

Aug. 29, 2011 - St. Lucy’s Feast
Thacher & Endicott Streets
5 p.m. Monday Procession
www.StAnthonysFeast.com

Sept.  5, 2011 - Santa Rosalia Di Palermo
1 p.m. - Procession only - North Square

*The schedule above is provided by the North End Waterfront website

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