La Festa Italiana

344 Sixth Street
Jersey City, NJ 07302

201-795-0120

La Festa Italiana at Holy Rosary Church is century old tradition that celebrates Italian Heritage, Food and Faith.

In the early 1900’s as Italian immigration to the United States was at its height, Holy Rosary Church was the epicenter for tens of thousands of Italian immigrant families.

Founded in 1885, Holy Rosary Church is the first Italian Church founded in the State of New Jersey. At one time boasted a parishioner base of over 20,000 members. Many of these Italian families sought a new beginning in America but longed for the traditions and comforts of their homeland. As such, many established religious “societies” with in the parish to celebrate the patron saint of their hometown.

With dozens of church societies in Holy Rosary the most prominent became the Maria SS. Dell’Assunta Society, founded in 1902. Many members of this society herald from Morrone Del Sannio in the Campobasso Section of Italy. It was in that year that they began “The Feast” of Our Lady of Assumption. The Feast, as it was commonly called, centered around several religious events and street festival with food and music and culminated with the “Feast Day Mass” on August 15th followed by a street procession with the statue of Our Lady through the streets.

Today, over 100 years later this “Feast” still goes on. Much of the tradition still remains. In honor of both Our Lady of the Assumption & St. Rocco, La Festa Italiana has morphed into one of New Jersey’s premier Italian Street Festivals. People travel from all over the country back to their spiritual home at Holy Rosary for a reunion with childhood friends and family. It is a one-of-a-kind celebration.

For five days in mid-August this old-world Italian Street Festival brings together local restaurants and food vendors, live entertainment, games and rides for the kids and thousands of patrons to honor and celebrate Italian American Culture. Traditionally, the last day of the event a Mass is celebrated with the statues of Our Lady of the Assumption and St. Rocco are processed through the streets with marching band. The event concludes with the drawing of a Super 50/50 Cash Raffle which on average has a prize of over $10,000.

It is an event that must be experienced.

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