Feast of San Gennaro Comes to Boston’s North End, Sept. 21-23 [Update]

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The first annual Feast of San Gennaro will be in Boston’s North End on September 21 through 23, 2018. The venue will be at the corner of Hanover and Battery Streets featuring outdoor dining and high-end entertainment including The Midtown Men, Sal “The Voice” Valentinetti, and the New York Bee Gees.

San Gennaro Sculpture by Ettore Marinelli

The Saint Gennaro Foundation Boston, a 501(c)3 non-profit, was established by Frank DePasquale, Nick Varano and Pasquale Trotta. An original reproduction of the statue of Saint Gennaro has been created by the sculptor Ettore Marinelli and blessed by Pope Francis in person at the Vatican. Proceeds of this non-profit organization will be used for autistic and non-autistic children, assisting parents and needy families from all over the world with temporary housing, meals and transport assistance to hospital services in Boston.

San Gennaro Feast Organizers (L-R) Frank DePasquale, Pasquale Trotta and Nick Varano. The exposition of the San Gennaro statue was presented at a Mass and reception on the Feast Day, September 19, 2018.
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A traditional procession through the streets of the North End will be held starting at noon on Sunday, Sept. 23rd. Masses at St. Leonard Church will also be held on Wednesday, Sept. 19th at 5pm and Sunday at 3pm.

San Gennaro is the patron saint of Naples and his feast day is September 19th. The Boston festival is not associated with the NYC feast started on Mulbery Street in 1926, according to the organizers. This year, 2018, is the first year for the annual feast in Boston. Below is the full schedule for the Feast of San Gennaro in Boston.

  Saint Gennaro Foundation of Boston
A Festival To Benefit Autism

          Saint Gennaro Comes To The North End @ the corner of Hannover Street and Battery Street

Program & Entertainment

WEDNESDAY, September 19, 2018

  • Mass at Saint Leonard Church, Hanover & Prince Streets, Starts at 5.00 pm

FRIDAY, September 21, 2018

  • DJ Joe Carvello, 4:00-5:15 PM / 9:30-11:00 PM
  • Giovanni Formisano / Wesley Ray Thomas-Classic Neapolitan Music and Opera, 5:30-6:45 PM
    • Tenor Giovanni Formisano, a native of Torre del Greco, Naples Italy. He was recently featured on a concert in honor of the world-renowned Dimitri Hvorostovsky, a prominent figure at the Metropolitan Opera in New York. Mr.Formisano has participated in numerous concerts and Operas around the US and was winner of the “Talents of the World” international voice competition. Mr. Formisano continues to gain recognition in the classical music world and was praised for his interpretation of the Classical Neapolitan repertoire.
  • Vanessa Salvucci, 7:00-7:30 PM
  • Sal “The Voice” Valentinetti, 8:00 PM-9:30 PM
    • Sal Valentinetti is an Italian-American crooner best known for his flawless vocals, larger than life personality, and his heart of gold. At the young age of fifteen, Sal realized the hidden talent he possessed and began performing his flawless tribute to the great Frank Sinatra. Before long the world would come to know him as “Sal the Voice”.

SATURDAY September 22, 2018

  • DJ Felix Cutillo, 3:00-5:00 PM/ 10:00-11:00 PM
  • Tenor Giovanni Formisano / Wesley Ray Thomas-Classic Neapolitan Music and Opera, 5:15- 6:30 PM
  • Marc Turo, 7:00-8:00 PM
  • The Midtown Men – 4 Stars from The Original Broadway Cast of Jersey Boys, 8:30-10:00 PM
    • The Midtown Men reunites stars from the smash Broadway hit musical, JERSEY BOYS: The Story of Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons. Formed in 2010, the popular vocal group has been widely praised for their signature renditions of the greatest rock and roll songs of the 1960s. Together, they have played over 700 concerts in North America, Europe and China, and have headlined alongside over 30 symphonies including The Boston Pops and The National Symphony. Featuring stories and songs, their acclaimed concert features classic tunes originated by The Four Seasons, The Beatles, The Beach Boys, The Temptations, and more!

SUNDAY September 23, 2018

Procession, 12 noon Sunday

  • 12:00 Noon Procession of the Statue of San Gennaro through the streets of Boston’s North End, followed by Mass at Saint Leonard Church at 3pm.

Entertainment on Sunday

  • DJ Maurizio, 1:30-3:00 PM
  • Tenor Giovanni Formisano / Wesley Ray Thomas-Classic Neapolitan Music and Opera, 3:00-4:15 PM
  • Vinyl Groove, 4:30-6PM
  • The New York Bee Gees, 6:30-8PM
    • The New York Bee Gees Tribute Show is comprised of some of Long Island New York’s most versatile and exceptionally talented players. The band includes present or former members of well known, world renown acts including The Alan Parsons Project, Happy Together Tour, Meatloaf, Queen, Blue Oyster Cult, The Rippingtons and more. The band offers all of the classic 70’s disco hits from Stayin’ Alive to Night Fever while embracing their early works such as ToLove Somebody, I’ve Got to Get a Message to You and Massachusetts. The New York Bee Gees delivers songs from every decade of the Bee Gees catalog with a stunning production, powerful vocals and the professional stage presence to fill any club or casino.

View more information on the Feasts in Boston’s North End.


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49 COMMENTS

  1. Anyone know if this is going to be a new society, or where any of the donations made to the saint will be going??? Will this be an annual event or a one time only deal?

  2. This event has caused a lot of stir in the North End. Talk is flying all over the place. Some society’s are upset and state they will not open its doors, while others are being more open minded. Who is not going to talk to this one or that one. It’s seems that St Gennaro is the Donald trump of the feast. This is not the Christian values and anyone or any group has negative talk, then your not a true Christian organization.

    Don’t blame the Saint , your thumbing your nose at the Saint it self ? There are legit questions, is there a relegious society of St Gennaro in Boston ? What is the reason and goal of the feast ? Is it to honor St Gennaro or make money, which should not be the prim mission of any feast. All the society’s, every one of them have deep and solid roots in the North End, family’s are embedded in those organizations and all of them get along and have bonded over the years. Some of them have been here well over a hundred years. You’ll never replace the St Gennaro feast in N.Y. It’s a great event and nothing like in in NY. Feast are part of the N. E. The Saints are loved here, but we must find out facts, not rumor. Is there a relegious reason or did someone just buy a Saint ? There are a lot of Saints sitting in the churches here. But again, some of the talk has been hatred, is that the Christian way ? My last statement, remember, there are a lot of folks who don’t want any feast in the North End anymore. That would be sad in it self.

  3. The feast takes place in many parts of US. The New York one is the largest of all, and celebrated close to the birth of St. Gennaro on Sept 19. Why the fuss? Is a society necessary to celebrate? We have two people sponsoring it….I do not understand the problem. In other states, the money is donated to the poor.

    • maybe because the majority residents don’t want to deal with the people, noise, crime, parking, trash, and general overall disruption of their lives in late September because of couple of local entrepreneurs want to make a buck at the expense of the residents (aka the people who actually live in the neighborhood)? based on heather’s logic, residents should be willing to deal with something every single weekend.

      • How about when St Joseph did there one day procession in October 2014 ? I didn’t hear no complants about that, I say let them try it out. This is not going to be a 10 day feast here it’s three days I think they can handle it.
        Truth

      • I understand the disruption, but if you choose to live in the N.E., you kind of agree to put up with some level of crowds, noise, and the occasional event. If you want peace & quiet…….well that’s why God invented the suburbs.

        My understanding of the event is that proceeds are being donated to an organization dedicated to kids with autism and their parents. Is this not the case?

    • Heather,
      I think that given the long standing tradition in the North End of having societies sponsor the feasts, it’s not unreasonable to wonder if this is going to be a one time onlyevent, or if there is a plan to establish a San Gennaro society in the North End and make this an annual event. I also don’t think it is unreasonable to wonder where any donations given during the festival will be going.

  4. This promotion got off to a poor start.Rumors fueled the proposal and the two sponsors owe it to the residents to put the facts out and answer the legitimate questions from people.I support all the Feasts past and present and have for many years but before I jump in on this one mech more needs to be known.

  5. If Truth and other residents don’t like the religious feasts because of noise, trash, large crowds and disruptions, they can move!

    This is first and foremost an Italian neighborhood with Italian saints celebrating, surrounded by Italian Foods.

    The hipsters can move to Seaport—no festas there.

    • Nope. We can support the historic feasts and be entirely against another one being added to the neighborhood with no community input and for the benefit of local money makers. I’m so sick of this. YOU should move because you don’t know how to get along with neighbors.

    • What makes it an Italian neighborhood? The restaurants? Most of the owners live in the suburbs. The feasts? Most of the organizers live in the suburbs. The residents? It’s pretty clear where that’s been going…

      • Jcm ,I have to agree with you. I grew up in “Little Italy”aka as the NE. That neighborhood does not exist anymore. 70 per cent of the residents are non Italians today .

        • It’s the North End of Boston! “Little Italy” is what New York City calls or use to call their (now mostly Chinese) Italian American neighborhood.

          • Predominantly Italian neighborhoods all over the US are called “little Italy”I even visited one in Toronto Canada. BTY the city of Boston promotes the NE as “little Italy”

  6. Kudos Kathy D. What I want to know is where is all the money going from all these feasts? All our Local
    Churches could use some of that money for repairs, heat, a/c, etc. A great way to make money without any
    explanations as to where this money from All Feasts goes.

  7. The proceeds are going to charitable funds as stated, what better way to honor a Saint. Should be no question here. Any feast for causes like this I welcome.

  8. the feast are part of the northend history. this is something people know when they move into the north end. if the feast bothers you do not move to the north end.

  9. David, I have no problem with the money goiing to any charitable organizations. I am sure Frank & Nick do not
    need this Feast Money, but what about the rest of the Feasts? I haven’t heard of any checks given out to churches,
    or any other organizations. I am sure we might even see the check that Frank & Nick will give to this organization,
    but I can’t tell you where the money is going from the other feasts. If you should find out where the other feasts
    donate the money, please let us know. Thanks.

    • I am not a member of a society, and I am sure that someone who is can better speak as to where the money goes, but I do recall that the St. Joseph Society donated $1 Million to St. Leonard’s last year to help defray the cost of the renovation. I also know that the Madonna Della Cava sponsors the annual Halloween parade for the kids, and Saint Agrippina’s has a Christmas party for the kids as well.

  10. Just to address once again, the question as tho “where the money goes” – I can, on behalf of the Saint Anthony & Saint Lucy Feast say that we donates thousands of dollars each year to local and regional charities, Our annual contributions include local senior citizen groups, North End Against Drugs and North End Pride Week, the N.E.A.A including sponsorship of our little league team (for over 50 years) and their Christmas Parade; NEMPAC, the Elliot School, Saint John School (and a scholarship for a graduating student attending high school); the Columbus Day Parade, The Anthony Morella Street Hockey Tournament; the New England Shelter for Homeless Veterans; the Perkins School for the Blind; the Italian Home for Children; we also support the Breast Cancer Walk, Autism Speaks and are proud to support our local churches including a gift of $25,000 to the recent Saint Leonard Church Restoration Fund. I know the other feast societies are all very generous including Madonna Della Cava, who have sponsored a children’s Halloween Party & Parade for decades and Saint Agrippina who sponsor a Neighborhood kid’s Christmas Party each year. I look froward to the new foundation in the neighborhood to join us in supporting our local charities.

    • Jason is 100% accurate in some of the ways that the Feast societies support the North End and other local charities. I think it’s also important to point out that there are significant expenses associated with running the Feast including permits, street cleanings, police, fire, and EMT details, electricians, health inspections. These expenses are payable rain or shine.

  11. Well said Jason. If I remember correctly you answered that same question last year on the same forum. As outgoing President of the St. Anthony Society I wish St. Gennaro”s feast much success and look forward to working with them in the future.

  12. As a life long north ender and member of one of the societies I am deeply saddened by the comments in this thread. In particular those by “truth” and “Joan of arc”. I have been running the feast my whole life and never made a dollar of it, in fact I lose money doing it! The members of these societies sacrifice their time and money to maintain traditions of family and culture because its important to them and shame on anyone who thinks otherwise. People think the feasts are making money hand over fists and I’d like them to see their bills. I will tell you from experience there are years where the feasts lose money and there are years when they make a little money. That money does towards the next feast. You ever hear about maddonna Della cava or st Agrippina say they’re cancel the Halloween or Xmas party because it rained and they lost money? No you don’t. These people sacrifice their time because they believe in something, weather it be a family thing, neighborhood thing, or a religious thing. They don’t deserve to be slandered. I support the saint gennaro feast if they are in it for the right reasons. If they’re not then they are taking advantage of the other societies who have worked hard for 100 years to maintain tradition. Wake up and smell the coffee people because the feasts are a part of what makes our neighborhood great.

  13. Well said Jason Aluia and Gerald Moretti for all you guys do for the North End and Saint Anthony’s and Saint Lucy’s feast.I’m proud to be a member of Saint Lucy’s. I’m sure Nick and Frankie are proud to have Saint Gennero be the first in the North End all donations are going to Autism for the children and the parents that need help financially. I think these two gentlemen are doing something good lets give them credit. All our societies have helped the North End in many ways. The feast are about the North End over 100 years. Instead of comments give a donation towards Autism for ALL these children that need our help.

  14. Can someone tell me why there are fliers posted on every trash can, light post, building, etc. for this Feast? I don’t see this type of promotion for other feasts and it seems like a waste of time, money and resources. Who will be responsible for cleaning this up once the Feast is over.

  15. Tonight was good, a different style Neapolitan Style, Sal was great, the food was delicious. Tomorrow and Sunday should be more funner. I think this will happen again next year give it time. And at least this is benefiting autism which is good. I personally liked tonight and wouldnt mind seeing this feast again next year.

  16. This brings people into the neighborhood to spend their money. I guess they could hold it on the Fan Pier, but that would bring people to the Fan Pier to spend their money over there. It’s held in the North End to increase foot traffic and capture business. To imply anything else is like sticking your head in the sand to ignore the obvious.

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