9th Street Italian Market Festival
Enjoy a weekend of authentic Italian American culture in South Philadelphia
May 21-22, 2016
Note: The information below is from 2015. Stay tuned for more information about this year’s event as it becomes available.
South Philadelphia’s Italian Market is the nation’s oldest continuously operating outdoor market, celebrating 100 years in 2015. So what better way to celebrate than a blockbuster street festival?
And on Saturday, May 16 and Sunday, May 17, the already-bustling heart of South Philly welcomes more than 70,000 visitors to the neighborhood’s streets for its annual 9th Street Italian Market Festival.
As one of the city’s best-attended block parties, naturally the neighborhood revolves around the Italian Market Festival for the weekend, with 9th Street from Fitzwater to Federal streets shut down to vehicle traffic and the shops and stalls of the market spilling onto the sidewalks from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., rain or shine.
Food and Drink
Festivalgoers will enjoy two days filled with the flavors of local Italian-American culture and South Philly spirit.
In addition to the blocks of curb vendors and specialty butcher, cheese, gift and cookware shops that line the market, the streets are lined with food vendors, so anyone heading to the fest should definitely arrive hungry. Truly, the Italian Market has become a delicious melting pot of cultures, and the festival highlights the tasty variety of global cuisine available in the neighborhood.
In addition to selections of nearly every Italian and Italian-American delicacy imaginable (cannoli! roast pork! sausage and peppers! pizza!), the Italian Market Festival delivers tons of international flavor with Mexican, South American and Asian fare on offer, too.
A new participant this year is Blue Corn, so make sure to grab one of their signature cocktails made with homemade juices.
Many other nearby restaurants will extend their table service to the sidewalk so you can dine alfresco and enjoy the festival atmosphere.
Check out a full list of events and parking map below.
Entertainment and Games
Yes, food is the name of the game at the festival. But there’s plenty more to dig into once you’re done (or in between) eating and drinking.
Music fans can look forward to live entertainment from myriad bands and DJs on four separate stages. The John Marzano Halfball Tournament goes down at the Christopher Columbus School Yard with a lineup of top players at one of the city’s favorite street games.
And the DiBruno Bros. Family Fun Zone at 9th and Montrose streets will offer children’s programming, arts and crafts, music, story time and more.
For a full list of the free entertainment available during the festival, click the button below.
Procession of Saints
May 17, 2015
A Roman-Catholic tradition, the annual Procession of Saints is held every year on the third Sunday of May. St. Paul Parish in the Italian Market holds a procession where parishioners carry statues of saints throughout the neighborhood. Children who have recently made their first holy communion attend, too, donning their white first communion attire.
The procession starts at historic Saint Mary Magdalen Church at 7th and Montrose streets, and pauses for the Blessing of the Market at 9th and Washington. The procession ends at Saint Paul Catholic Church at Christian Street.
View Full Map
Click the image below to view the full 9th Street Italian Market Festival map.
Getting There and Staying Over
Public transportation is likely the best way to get to the Italian Market. Taking the Broad Street line and getting off at either Lombard or Ellsworth and walking to the Italian Market works as does taking any number of buses.
Should you drive, there are parking lots at Christian and 8th streets, Kimball and 8th streets, and many others.
Or, you could just make a weekend out of the festival and stay overnight in Philadelphia. Check out the Visit Philly Overnight Hotel Package for super deals on hotel stays.
For more information on the 9th Street Italian Market Festival, click the button below.
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