The 95th Feast of San Gennaro was in full swing this week in New York City’s Little Italy, complete with rows of food vendors selling sausage and peppers, zeppole, cannoli among many other Italian specialties for the thousands of visitors. There was a festive spirit this year after the feast was canceled in 2020 due to COVID-19.
San Gennaro of Naples was the Bishop of Benevento, Italy before being martyred in 305 A.D during the persecution spearheaded by Emperor Diocletian. The feast tradition was started in 1926 by Neapolitan immigrants that settled in Manhattan’s Little Italy neighborhood. Despite all the gentrification and changes in the area, the feast has continued to grow into an 11-day annual celebration with live music, eating contests and a Sunday finale procession.