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A great end of summer tradition is almost here! The 26th annual Grande Festa Italiana, the largest and oldest feast on Long Island, will be held from Sept. 7 to 11 at Hempstead Harbor Park in Port Washington. With lots of great food and fun for everyone, this is an event you won't want to miss!

As always, the famous food tent offers homemade pasta dishes, heroes and American barbecue food. The food court will have a wide variety of delicious ethnic cuisine, along with a seafood tent and delectable Italian pastries. There will also be run rides for kids from 1-99, games with great prizes, live entertainment Thursday to Sunday night and a spectacular fireworks display on Sunday.

The Festa is open Wednesday and Thursday from 6 to 11 p.m., Friday from 6 p.m. to 12 a.m., Saturday from 2 p.m. to 12 a.m. and Sunday from 2 to 11 p.m. On Wednesday and Thursday, ride all night for $20 and on Sunday, ride free from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.

To get to the Grande Festa Italiana, take the Northern State Parkway (exit 29N) or LIE (east to exit 37 or west to exit 39, stay on service road). Take Roslyn Road north to end, bear left onto West Shore Road. Continue for 2.4 miles. Festa and parking entrance on right.

As with all their other events, the Son's of Italy in America's John M. Marino Lodge in Port Washington, sponsor of the Grande Festa Italiana, donates all proceeds to local and statewide charities. So come and enjoy the festivities and help support charities at the same time. Call 767-3123 for more information. Buon appetito!


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