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Baltimore And Little Italy Ready For Annual Feast Of St. Gabriel

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Ron Matz is an Emmy award-winning reporter who joined the Eyewitness...
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BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Food, fun and friendship. It’s all happening this weekend in the streets of Little Italy.

Ron Matz reports Baltimore is getting ready for the annual feast of St. Gabriel.

The bocce ball court is ready; so are the cannolis. The streets of Little Italy will be packed this weekend. It’s time for the annual feast of St. Gabriel.

“We’re going to have plenty of food. We’ve got the bocce tournament and bingo. You name it, and we’ve got it. We also have things for children to do. It’s going to be a beautiful weekend,” said Dominic Pompa, St. Gabriel’s Festival.

It’s a fundraiser for St. Leo’s Church. Father Sal Furnari says it’s all about community.

“It’s much more than just the church community, it’s the entire Little Italy community. We look forward to that because it brings people together. We establish bridges, we make connections and people love it,” said Fr. Furnari.

You’ll love the great food and wine–and yes–the Roma sausage eating contest on Sunday at 3 p.m.

“We’re planning to raise a lot of funds for St. Leo’s church. This is all about working for the church and having fun,” said Gia Blatterman, Little Italy Bocce League.

Vaccaro’s Bakery donates the cannolis.

“It’s a very big weekend for us. Since 1922, the St. Gabriel Society has sponsored a festival in honor of this saint. We’re particularly blessed this year because Archbishop Lori will be the main celebrant at our 9:30 Sunday mass at St. Leo’s,” said Fr. Furnari.

It’s two days of good times, thanks to 200 volunteers. There’s bocce, bingo and a taste of Baltimore.

“Volunteers make it happen. These people come out for us and we want to thank them: the Order of the Sons of Italy, the St. Gabriel Fraternity and the parishioners of St. Leo’s Church,” said Pompa.

“Please come down. This is the only community that has children from one-year-old to 100-years-old. We all get together a couple of times a year and we share it in our streets,” said Blatterman.

Hours for the St. Gabriel’s Festival are noon until 8 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. until 7 p.m. on Sunday.

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