Each year since Ryder was a baby, we have gone to the Feast Of San Gennaro. I remember late summer days and evenings at the feast when I went with my parents as a child, and later in my collage days, so it’s become important for us to take the kids, and not to mention, it’s tons of fun.
Originally started as a one day celebration to commemorate Saint Januarius, the Patron Saint of Naples, this year marked the festival’s 90th anniversary. Nowadays the feast lasts 11 days on the charming streets of Little Italy. This neighborhood served as the first home to many thousand of Italian immigrants, for their first days and years in America.
Taking place on Mulberry Street, between Canal and Houston Streets, street vendors set up selling anything and everything, including food, games and souvenirs. During the feast’s run, the local restaurants basically extend their seating into the streets, allowing patrons to eat and drink as they sit right in the middle of all the fun.
Packed with tourists and New Yorkers from all around, the streets are crowded and crazy at times, so we try to make our way there on a weekday, early in the evening to avoid the rush. Ryder, Siella, and Gemma look forward to the games, the rides, and of course the food.
Any festival wouldn’t be complete without some zeppoles. They may be deep fried and covered with powder sugar, but these little dough balls are delicious, especially if they are right out of the frier. Jason and I always split a hot sausage and pepper hero. For some reason it always tastes better at this feast, than anywhere else. And it’s actually the only time I eat them.
While playing some of the many games this year, we won two goldfish! Not sure, but I might have been a bit more excited then the kids were about it. For me, taking a cute little fish home is way more fun than a bunch of stuffed animals, but after 10 or 15 games, we were overloaded with plenty of stuffed goodies to go along with our fishy.
And just like that, we are at the end of September. The energy in the city is always a bit more apparent around this time of year, as there’s just so much to do yet, so little time. The past month has been crazy, getting acclimated to new school schedules. Regardless of how busy we get, there is always time to some fun at the San Gennaro Feast. Already counting the days to my next zeppole fix, next September.