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Photos by Stephen Thorburn


San Gennaro Feast Features Food and Fun for Fans and Families

The rains didn’t stop locals and tourists from enjoying the opening of this year’s San Gennaro Feast in its new location in the Rio parking lot.  Although the first night crowd on Tuesday evening was sparse due to the weather, it’s expected to pick up as the week goes on.

As it does every year, the 32nd annual Feast includes food and fun as well as some of Las Vegas’s top entertainers.  The feast, which includes more than 70 restaurants food booths, amusement rides, and complimentary entertainment and arts and crafts, continues through Sunday.

Dick Feeney’s Rat Pack is Back cast members are serving as this year’s Grand Marshalls and will be entertaining at 8:15 pm during the week and 10:15 pm on the weekend.  This annual feast, which is “A Love Affair with Little Italy” honors the patron saint of Naples, Italy  Visit the Rio’s northeast parking lot located off Twain between Dean Martin Drive and S. Valley View, Sept. 13-18, 2011 for the fun.  The Feast entertainment director and performer Tony Sacca has put together a schedule which includes some of Las Vegas’s finest entertainers and there’s no extra charge to come and enjoy them.  Tuesday night’s show included the cast of Nunsense as well as Greg London, both from the LV Hilton.  The Motown Divas also entertained.  Complimentary entertainment begins at 4 p.m. daily on the main stage and features  Philly Cuzz followed by traditional Italian folk music until 8 p.m. Headliners follow with Sacca hosting backed by the Michael T Orchestra.

Other scheduled entertainment this week includes “The Rat Pack is Back”, Lena Prima, Dick Contino, Mark Giovi, Chris Lista, Domenic Allen, Kevin Burke, Rick Faugno (Jersey Boys), Kim Styles, Tony Pace, Matt Lewis as Elvis, Dennis Bono, Nellie Norris as Cher, Amanda Kaiser as Pat Banatar, Gina Diane, Dian Diaz, Martin Andrew as Rod Stewart, Zowie Bowie, Dangerous Curves, Kelly Sheehan / Deanne Sheehan, LJ Harness, Jeneane Marie, and Shades of Sinatra.

Check out the nightly traditional Italian folk music 5 to 8 p.m. with Ciro Giorgio, Tony De Bruno,  Enzo Selvaggi, Emilio Baglioni and Tony De Bruno. Also performing will be Déjà Vu Band, The Bronx Wonderers, Guilty Pleasures, State of The Art and the Patty Janura Band rocking out with dance music until closing. On Saturday evening, Terry Forsythe’s tribute to the Temptations and Supremes will do the closing honors.

On Wednesday, the traditional annual procession of the saint will be accompanied by Mayor Carolyn Goodman, Anthony Palmisano - president of the San Gennaro Feast, the Army National Honor Guard, the Knights of Columbus and the Order of Sons of Italy from Arizona.  ITALO – the oldest Italian American Club in the country will carry the statue of the saint.  The Italian National Anthem will be sung by Ciro Giorgio. A blessing, to commemorate the spirit of San Gennaro, will be done by Father Dave Cassaleggio of St. Anne’s Church.

“Continuing our commitment to attract locals, Rio All-Suite Hotel & Casino is proud to host the 32nd annual Las Vegas San Gennaro Feast,” said Jeff Solomon, vice president and assistant general manager of Rio. “This will be a must-see attraction for Las Vegas residents who have long looked forward to the San Gennaro Feast as a bookend to the summer.”

The event goes from 4 – 11p.m. Tuesday -Thursday; 4 p.m. – midnight on Friday;  11 a.m. – midnight on Saturday; and 11 a.m. – 11 p.m. on Sunday. There is free parking in the Masquerade Garage and self-parking. Tickets are $8 for adults and $7 for seniors at the gate with $6 coupons on the Website  Children 54 inches and under are free.

The San Gennaro Feast in pictures:

The grand entrance

Host Tony Sacca

Tony Sacca Belts out a Neil Diamond song

The Grand Marshalls (The Rat Pack Is Back)

The cast of Nunscense

Greg London as Ozzy Osbourne

The Amusement area

The Giant Ferris Wheel

The Crowds

High Flying Amusement rides

Walking on Water

Amusement rides for the younger set.

The Patron Saint San Gennaro

Healing Magnet Jewelry from Benevolent Beadworks

Specialty Foods from The Jerky Hut

Rio Rita

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