The biggest festival in Cleveland’s Little Italy kicks off this month on Aug. 15! The Feast of the Assumption, better known as simply “The Feast” to locals, is a 4-day event spanning across five blocks of the city’s Italian hot spot.
Vendors line Mayfield Rd. and Murry Hill slinging Italian sausages, scooping cavatelli and meatballs, wrapping calzones, and much, much more. If you’re looking for a chance to carb-load, this is it. Some of these restaurants are still owned by the same Italian families who emigrated here generations ago. The true authenticity of the cuisine is not lost an anyone. Be sure to save room for a trip to Corbo’s or Presti’s for gelato, cannoli and more.
After getting your fill, work off those extra pounds dancing the night away in any of the patio “clubs” opened especially for the event. Sneak down the alleys behind Gusto, Nido Italia or Tavern of Little Italy for some late night dancing to some of the best DJs Cleveland has to offer.
Of course, the backbone behind The Feast is Holy Rosary Church. For the past 120 years, the church, parish and neighborhood have commemorated the Catholic Holy Day of Assumption and the week that precedes it like no other. A solemn mass at 10 a.m. on Thursday, Aug. 15 kicks off the event followed by a procession through Little Italy honoring the Virgin Mary.
Live music, carnival rides, decadent cuisine, church activities, and more keep the party going until the gorgeous, Sunday night candlelit procession to end the festivities.
In a Cleveland summer full of great festivals, this one is the Godfather.