Sunday, September 09, 2012

San Rocco Procession, Boston

While wandering around Boston's North End back in July, I happened to stumble across the annual San Rocco procession. This is a Sicilian Catholic event in which a statue of San Rocco (or St. Roch, if you prefer) is carried through the streets, accompanied by two brass bands, and dancers in traditional Portuguese dress. The procession stops every so often, the bands alternate playing a few tunes, and spectators step forward to pin dollars on the statue. Eventually the parade arrives at a local fraternal hall and everyone goes inside, including San Rocco. I'm not sure what happens then, but I assume food and wine are involved somehow.

As a nonbeliever (and non-Sicilian), I was initially unclear on what the event was all about, but I ran across a couple of posts at that helped clear this up. This post explains what the festival is and includes a bunch of photos, while the second post includes an entertaining short video with some of the music and dancing.

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