Sunday, August 25, 2013

St. Anthony's Feast in the North End

Don't ask why it's taken me two years to make it down to the North End for St. Anthony's Feast. This is easily one of the most exuberant, intimate, fun festivals I've ever been to. It's not like July 4th, where you will be negotiating millions of people to get a good spot by the Charles. St. Anthony's feels like a small-town feast, like you and a few hundred other people are happily shoulder-to-shoulder in the narrow streets of the North End, clapping for the Italian Street bands, eating zepoli and pizza, waiting for St. Anthony to be paraded through the street.

Here comes St. Anthony!

And then a minute later, kaboom, here comes the confetti!

Whatever your religion may be, it's moving to see people in this modern day, old and young, waiting with baited breath for a saint to come parading through the North End. Families bring their kids to pin a dollar on St. Anthony or touch his head for good luck. And if that doesn't tempt you, the streets are filled with marching bands and food stands.

Torrone, Italian ices, deep-fried rice balls, zepoli, Regina's pizza, sausage and peppers, arepas...really, there is something for everyone here. And just around the corner are the Italian bakeries on Hanover Street, just waiting to fill a box for you with tiramisu and ricotta cake. And if you have the time to come back at midnight, there are candle-light processions for St. Anthony and St. Lucy.

Here's their website, if you want more information for this 4-day festival that happens every August: