Don’t believe the blogs! The 18th Avenue festival is on!

The Brooklyn Paper
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Bensonhurst’s beloved 18th Avenue Festival is on — and, yes, it will be 10 days long.

Silencing rumors that the Festa di Santa Rosalia, the decades-old festival in honor of the patron saint of Palermo, would be scaled back to one day or eliminated altogether, the city confirmed this week to that the traditional street fair will indeed begin on schedule and last its normal run.

“The city plans to issue a permit for the [festival] from Aug. 25 to Sept. 4,” said Evelyn Erskine, a spokeswoman for the mayor. She added that the festival’s organizers, the Society Santa Rosalia Club, were given the go-ahead weeks ago.

Eyebrows were raised this week after two area blogs posted that the music-and-fried-food–fueled festival would be slashed to one day to cut costs. The report cited a city website that posted a calendar listing showing the feast would start and end on Aug. 25, and the fact that festivals in other neighborhoods had been cut altogether.

Naturally, business owners on 18th Avenue rejoiced after hearing that the reports of the festival’s demise were untrue.

“It’s good for the neighborho­od,” said Joe Maffei, the owner of Gino’s Focacceria, which sells pizza and fried dough at the festival. “It brings business to the area.”

And residents happy to hear it was still on said they love the festival because it brings people together year after year.

“It’s a tradition that I remember going to since I was a kid,” said longtime resident Gina Gallo.

Still, others said today’s street fair is a far cry from years past, when the festival served as a more low-key religious celebration for the neighborhood’s dwindling base of Italian-Americans.

“I really like it but there’s a lot of noise,” said Suzanne Colareta, who lives on 72nd Street, off of 18th Avenue, adding that the music from the fair can be heard all the way down her block.

“Maybe they should shorten it,” Colareta said.

Marnee Elias-Pavia, Community Board 11’s district manager, chalked the mix-up to an online typo.

She said the board approved the 10-day festival last December.

“We wouldn’t make any recommendations to shorten it,” Elias-Pavia said.

Festa di Santa Rosalia (18th Avenue between 67th and 75th streets in Bensonhurst), Aug. 25-Sept. 4. Starts at 5 pm (weekdays) and 11 am (weekends).

Updated 5:25 pm, July 9, 2018
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Reasonable discourse

Cat from Bensonhurst says:
Live up the block from this mess. it is horrible,for 10 days people urinate on the tree in front of my house, leave their empty beer bottles,fight and curse, forget about the flith and smell.This is a residential neighborhood and we have to endure this for 10 days? I would go on vacation but Iam afraid of being robbed, which has happened in the past. They should move this "party" Staten Island or Jersey thats where all the organizers have relocated. I hate to say it but the only thing that is going to stop this is when someone gets stabbed or shot to death and if you saw the element that frequents this feast, believe me it is only a matter of time. I have lived here all my life so I can honestly say that you should be sticking a fork in the 18th Ave. feast..its done.
Aug. 18, 2011, 10:53 am
Ace from New Utrecht says:
I certainly don't ride the rides, nor do I play any of the games, but I enjoy a walk through the feast after dinner and am happy to see people enjoying themselves.
Aug. 18, 2011, 10:54 am
A Non Asian from Bensonhurst says:
The feast is a joke. I don't want it to come back. It's 10 days of torture, no parking spots, drunk mexicans peeing on your house. Last year my 80 year old grandmother caught 2 people having SEX in my backyard during the feast. This thing is a joke. The ones crying that it isn't happening are probably the people that don't live on 18th avenue anymore or don't even live near here. To majority of people on the avenue they HATE the feast. It's dirty, it brings in trash from other neighborhoods. I'm happy it's gone GOOD RIDDANCE. Hey 18th avenue WHY IS IT THAT 13TH AVENUE LOOKS AMAZING AND 18TH AVENUE LOOKS LIKE NEWARK?!?!?!
Aug. 18, 2011, 7:28 pm
Bobby C from Sheepshead Bay says:
Times and have and changed ans do has the neighborhood. Sadly, this feast does not resemble at all what it used to be. The spirit of the festival is long gone and now it is loud and sleazy.
Aug. 18, 2011, 7:57 pm
Blahg says:
Daniel, pull your head out of the “Bush” and get real:
Aug. 19, 2011, 12:48 pm
anywho says:
That is a really sanitary tray of food....not.

Aug. 19, 2011, 6:02 pm
nancy from coney says:
i go every year and i try 2 go early because after 8pm the teenagers comeout get drunk get stupid how do they get achol and cause trouble while the 66th precient stands around ignoring everything if the police would do their job which haha they never do the feast wouldnt be the way it is they should throw out anyone that even starts something and everyone thats with them and have better control and rearrange the way they do things and maybe do things alot different things would be better and parents control your kids and teenager why should a tradition die because of the police and peoples stupidity change the ways u do things and things will get better
Aug. 21, 2011, 8:36 pm
Mike from Bensonhurst says:
The blogs were the only ones who were correct and told us the truth that the fair was cancelled.
Aug. 22, 2011, 2:15 am
J says:
So is it cancelled or not? lol
Sept. 1, 2011, 1:27 pm
W from Bensonhurst says:
Bring it on!
Aug. 22, 2012, 5:25 pm
Anthony Palladio from bayrigde says:
Who cares every one ischinese in Brooklyn moved on si
Aug. 20, 2013, 4:29 pm

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