9th Street Italian Market Festival
Enjoy a weekend of authentic Italian American culture in South Philadelphia
May 21-22, 2016
South Philadelphia’s Italian Market is the nation’s oldest continuously operating outdoor market. What better way to celebrate its more than 100 years in existence than with a blockbuster street festival?
On Saturday, May 21 and Sunday, May 22, the already-bustling heart of South Philly will welcome over 70,000 visitors to the area for its annual 9th Street Italian Market Festival.
As one of the city’s most popular block parties, the entire neighborhood directs their attention towards the festival for the weekend. Tons of vendors and local businesses set up booths along 9th Street, which will be closed to traffic from Fitzwater to Wharton streets.
Food and Drink
The Italian Market Festival is all about the food. Those who attend can enjoy two days filled with the flavors of local Italian-American culture and South Philly spirit, browsing and sampling their way through the numerous specialty butcher, cheese, gift and cookware shops that line the market and from the food vendors setting up shop on 9th Street.
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.
For a sit-down experience, many nearby restaurants extend their table service to the sidewalk so you can dine al fresco and enjoy the festival atmosphere.
Check out a full list of events below.
Entertainment and Games
Yes, food is the name of the game at the festival. But there’s plenty more to dig into in between eating and drinking.
Music fans can look forward to live entertainment from an array of bands and DJs, including a dueling of DJs at Pat’s King of Steaks Give Back Headquarters on Federal Street.
Italian folk dancing will get the crowd moving with traditional Sicilian and ribbon dances, and a family fun zone equipped with crafting activities, a bounce house and more will be set up at the 9th and Montrose Piazza.
Procession of Saints
May 22, 2016
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.
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.
For more information on the 9th Street Italian Market Festival, click the button below.
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