The Feast of San Gennaro 2023 in Little Italy, NYC

September 8, 2023 Desiree Homer

The Feast of San Gennaro is back again this year in Little Italy! What started in 1926, this yearly tradition has been coined “the feast of all feasts” by locals and enthusiasts alike. Grab your friends and family and head to Little Italy to experience this grand display of Italian culture, cuisine, and fun. You won’t want to miss the traditions of this feast, a calendar full of fun events, plus some of the best food in all of New York City. Mark your calendars for September 14th-24th!

Who is San Gennaro?

San Gennaro was Bishop of Benevento, Italy, and died a martyr in 305 AD. This was during a religious persecution started by Emperor Diocletian. San Gennaro was so strong in his faith that he risked his life when visiting the deacons while they were jailed. He was then arrested himself, still with unwavering loyalty to his faith.

According to legend, he was thrown into a furnace while imprisoned and came through unharmed. This angered his agents so much that they beheaded him. The body of San Gennaro is preserved in Naples, and the locals pray to him for protection from fires, earthquakes, plagues, droughts, and the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius. 

Origins of the Feast of San Gennaro

When Italian immigrants started to settle in NYC, the Neopolitans settled on Mulberry Street. In September of 1926, they started a one-day festival to honor Naples’ principal patron, San Gennaro. They invited everyone from the neighborhood, asking the devoted community to pin an offering to the vibrant ribbon streamers that hung from the statue's apron. These offerings were then distributed to those most in need in their community. What started as a one-day religious commemoration has now evolved into an 11-day celebration, covering 11 blocks in New York City’s Little Italy. 

What’s Happening at the 2023 Feast of San Gennaro?

Mulberry Street will be closed to traffic for this sprawling festival. Get ready for a fun-filled and packed calendar. Along with the scheduled events, there are countless vendors, parades, religious processions, and live entertainment. Plus, don’t miss the world-famous cannoli eating contest.

For a full calendar of events, click HERE.

Every year, a Grand Marshall is selected for the Feast of San Gennaro. This year, the festival is happy to have actress Kathrine Narducci doing the honors. She was born and raised in an Italian-American family in East Harlem, NY. Her family originally hails from Naples, Italy. Kathrine is famous for her roles in The Sopranos, A Bronx Tale, and The Irishman, just to name a few. 

Come and experience this NYC event that celebrates Italian culture, faith, and food! There’s a reason it’s been one of the city’s biggest attractions for almost 100 years, and you won’t want to miss it.

Keep up with all the iconic events and festivals in New York City right here! And for any special events you have coming up, let the pros at EMRG Media do all the brilliant event planning for you!

Previous Article
Watch a FREE movie at the Seaport Cinema
Watch a FREE movie at the Seaport Cinema

Looking for relaxing things to do in New York City with the whole family? Check out FREE movie night at the...

Next Article
NYC Broadway Week Is Happening September 4th – 17th, 2023
NYC Broadway Week Is Happening September 4th – 17th, 2023

There’s always a great Broadway show to see in New York City, especially these iconic performances as part ...