A spectacular Italian Festival kicking off July 5th in Brooklyn honoring Saint Paolino has it all: faith, food, music, neighborliness, international visitors. Neapolitan immigrants from Italy settled in Williamsburg long ago and brought a beautiful tradition to the streets of Brooklyn with the first Giglio (Italian for “lily”) festival in 1903.
During the 12-day extravaganza a five-story, spectacular, hand-created tower featuring Saint Paolino’s statue and a 12-piece brass band playing on a platform, is carried on the sturdy shoulders of a 125-man platoon through the Williamsburg streets. Music, muscles, parades, artwork, tempting treats, and Catholic Masses in several languages make up the wide array of activities and attractions during the spectacular Italian festivities - promising a memorable experience for every visitor.
A “Capo”, a very honored gentleman of the Our Lady of Mount Carmel parish, using a megaphone, calls out orders to the ‘lifters” – Forward! Up! Down! Dance! Circulate! – and the immense tower, defying laws of gravity, “dances”.
A re-enactment of St. Paulinas’ release from captivity includes an ornate, custom-made ship docking with the tower on the Brooklyn streets, providing a spectacle worthy of the Broadway stage!
Of certain appeal to many, including those who have attended the Giglio for decades, are the Italian-themed souvenirs, the Italian delicacies including seafood, zeppoles and braciola, and kiddie rides for the youngsters.
WHEN: July 5th - July 16th
Wednesday, July 5th, 7pm - Opening Night Mass
Thursday, July 6th, 6pm - Children's Giglio Lift #1
Saturday, July 8th 11am - Questua. · Distribution of Blessed Bread throughout the Parish neighborhood
Sunday, July 9th - Giglio Sunday. · 12pm - Mass · 2pm - First Lift
Wednesday, July 12th · 6pm - Children's Giglio Lift #2 · 7:30pm RETURN OF THE TURK NIGHT!
Dancing of the Boat
Saturday, July 15th, 4pm - Old Timers Giglio Lift
Sunday, July 16th - Feast Day of Our Lady of Mount Carmel · 11am - Celebration Masses · 1:30pm - Procession of the Statue of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel throughout the Parish Neighborhood
HOURS: Monday - Friday: 6 p.m. to 11 p.m.
Saturdays: 6 p.m. to Midnight
Sundays: 12 p.m. to 11 p.m.
WHAT: The Feast - 40 years older and second in size to San Gennaro - celebrating the dramatic story of St. Paulinus, will have live, nightly entertainment, vendors selling Italian specialties and international delicacies, parades, a bazaar with games, gifts, souvenirs; children’s rides and amusements and the atmosphere and excitement of Italy. The streets of Williamsburg, Brooklyn will come alive as 125 men carry the 80-foot tall, 4-TON ‘Giglio’ (Italian for Lilies) and the passion of the Old World Italian Street Festival is reborn!
WHERE: 275 North 8th Street at Havemeyer Street, Williamsburg, Brooklyn
SOURCE: Our Lady of Mount Carmel
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