The Sons of Italy - Columbus Lodge #2143 hosted its Sixth Annual Italian Feast and Festival last weekend in North Massapequa. The festival, which featured a variety of enjoyable activities for the community all with an Italian atmosphere, was presented by the Lodge in conjunction with the Town of Oyster Bay.
Youngsters enjoyed a variety of games and rides, including the "Fire House."
The festival, which was held on North Broadway from North Beach Avenue to North King Avenue, boasted rides for children, vendors with special sale items such as jewelry, clothing, photographs, handmade arts and crafts and more; diversified musical entertainment; a karate demonstration and plenty of food. Italian cuisine included fried calamari, tortellini, cannoli, zeppole and Italian sausages, as well as others. Lodge members also provided refreshing beverages at affordable prices.
The 11-block feast and festival ran from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. last Sunday, Sept. 29 and an extra block was added this year to accommodate the many merchants and vendors that participated as well as the thousands of residents.
With the health and safety of all visitors a top priority, the North Massapequa Fire Department provided volunteer EMS workers throughout the day. In addition, a Lodge member and EMS volunteer who has patrolled the event in the past, was on tour together with teammates from the Lodge's softball team, who helped perform various tasks.
Columbus Lodge member Frank Gatto, who had been chairman of the event since its inception, passed the baton to this year's co-chairmen Paul Calissi and Al D'Ulisse. Columbus Lodge Officer Tony Ventiera, who has served as Gatto's co-chairman in the past, joined over 60 fellow members as they volunteered their services throughout the day.
In addition to vendors, food and rides, those in attendance also enjoyed a petting zoo, a ride on a mini-fire truck and pony rides. Residents also tested their skills at numerous games that were set up at the festival.
This year's event certainly attracted residents throughout local communities and was a huge success. As noted by Oyster Bay Town Supervisor John Venditto, "This is the sixth annual Columbus Lodge Feast and Festival to be held on North Broadway and each year seems to be better than the last."