Limo Lifestyle: Feast of San Gennaro
Come September, every New Yorker starts craving pizza, pasta and a taste of Italian culture. The 86th annual Feast of San Gennaro will take place September 13-23 in Little Italy, drawing millions of Italian-Americans and fans of the culture and food to the lower Manhattan neighborhood. The 10 days of the festival are packed with family-friendly events and outstanding dining, and we've compiled a few of the best for your itinerary:
One of the most beloved annual festival events is the Grand Parade, which is scheduled this year for 2pm on Saturday, September 15th on the streets of Little Italy. Be sure and arrive early in order to receive a great seat. Grand Marshalls this year include singer Connie Marshall and TV personality Toni Senecal. Your family will love the parades, floats, marching bands and musical entertainment that make the parade a favorite attraction year after year.
One of the first events scheduled for the Feast of San Gennaro is the 13th annual cannoli-eating competition, held at the performance stage at the corner of Motts and Grand Streets. The competition will be from 2pm-3pm and judges from the International Federation of Competitive Eaters will be on hand to ensure a fair fight. Last year's winner ate a record 20 cannolis at approximately 500 calories each, and it remains to be seen whether that record will be beaten or not.
San Gennaro Blood Drive
Do good for your community by donating some blood at the multiple locations throughout Little Italy. From 11:30AM-6:30PM Sunday, September 23rd, the Red Cross will be fielding volunteers at multiple locations throughout the area. Head to Figli di San Gennaro or the Basicila of Saint Patrick's Cathedral to donate to some of the nation's neediest. Appointments are recommended, which can be made through the Red Cross or on the official website of the festival. Donors are rewarded with a free cannoli from Cafe Paloma and free entrance to the Italian American museum.
The official website of the Feast of San Gennaro offers recommendations for 40 restaurants in the area, many of which will be offering food and drink specials in honor of the region-wide celebration. The full list can be viewed here, and we've chosen to name a few favorites:
Luna Ristorante Italiano
This local favorite offers a unique menu and options for delivery which are beloved by both locals and tourists. Between the authentic menu and friendly staff, you'll feel like you are experiencing family-owned dining in Naples at Luna Ristorante. Menu items are crafted with love from ingredients sourced both throughout New York state and straight from Italy, and include classic pastas, veal entrees and antipasto. Dining is typically offered between the hours of 11am and 11pm.115 Mulberry Street. New York, NY. 10013. 212.433.0132
It's hard to make a trip to Little Italy without indulging in some classic Italian pizza, and Pomodoro Ristorante is among the area's most authentic pies. The menu includes a wide variety of classic Italian entrées, including seafood and eggplant rollatini and less-authentic options, including french fries, lunch wrap sandwiches and salads. However, the vodka sauce pizza is beloved by locals. Best of all, Pomodoro is a prime destination for late-night dining, staying open until 2am on Friday and Saturday nights.51 Spring Street. New York, NY. 10012. 212.966.9229.
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