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Kid-Friendly Activities at the Feast of San Gennaro

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by Cristina Dimen (subscribe)
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Expose the kids to a bit of Italian culture in the Big Apple
For the 86th year, the Feast of San Gennaro is currently taking place in Manhattan's Little Italy neighborhood. Until Sunday, September 23, 2012, you can take your entire family and explore the Feast. You'll notice that this family-friendly event offers a host of things for your young ones to enjoy while visiting this festive cultural celebration honoring the patron saint of Naples.

Win the kiddies a prize, or have them try to win them.

Eat the fried food items & Italian fare.

From hand-dipped Zeppoles, to funnel cakes, to calzones, and even Oreos, there are a great many goodies that are fried at San Gennaro for you to try out—much to the delight of your kids. After all, it's not every day they have such carnival-type fare, so perhaps, just an order of Zeppoles and a half-dozen fried Oreos will keep everyone happy.

You've got to try these Fried Oreos from street vendors.

Of course, there's no shortage in purveyors of delicious Italian fare, ranging from the array of street vendors, to neighborhood restaurants, many of which have expanded their seating areas onto the streets. So go ahead, pick from among the numerous restaurants and satisfy that craving for pizza, pasta and meatball parmigiana. Watch the activities while you sip a glass of wine, and enjoy your meal.

Da Gennaro outdoor seating

Enjoy the array of desserts.

The sweet tooth in your group will have a fantastic time at the Feast of San Gennaro because there are loads of treats to try here.

There's the all-time Italian frozen favorite—gelato. Many vendors are selling this decadent treat.

There are lots of options for gelato, such as Cha Cha's on Mulberry Street.

You'll also notice the rows of pastries, tarts, cookies, cakes and other baked goodies that are in glass cases.

So many choices, such as pastries, almond croissants, etc.

While you're at the Feast, you should really try a couple of cannoli.

Cannoli from Stuffed on Mulberry Street.

Of course, there are the usual carnival sweets, such as cotton candy, candy apples, popcorn and more.

Lots of yummy options.

Enjoy the carnival rides.

At the corner of Grand and Baxter streets, you'll find the big ferris wheel and the teacup ride.

Take a spin on the ferris wheel.

For your little ones, walk over along Baxter Street to Hester, and you'll come upon more rides, which are more appropriate for them.

There's a spinning apple.

There's a bounce house.

And, of course, you can't miss the rock wall—perfect for the adults and older kids in the group.

For the adventurous in your group.

Play the carnival games.

There are plenty of prizes to be won at the booths lining all the streets. Try your luck. Who knows, you may be lugging home a big stuffed animal to delight your kids.

Shoot some hoops.

Spend a couple of hours or the entire day exploring the Feast. You and your children are sure to have a great time together.
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Why? Enjoy some Italian culture in a beautiful area.
When: From Thursday, September 16 to Sunday, September 23
Where: Little Italy, New York; mostly on Mulberry Street (between Canal & Houston streets), Hester and Grand streets.
Cost: Free admission. Prices for food, rides and games, etc. vary.
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