Feast of saints Cosmas and Damian takes over East Somerville Sept. 8
The 81st annual Italian Feast of Sts. Cosmas and Damian will be held Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 8 and 9, on Warren Street in East Cambridge. This year’s feast will be another grand and spectacular celebration, complete with a performance by the 1970’s doo-wop sensation, “Joey Dee and the Starlighters.”
This tradition has become one of the premier cultural events in New England and has gained widespread acclaim for its celebration of community and culture. The Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., has called this feast, “A Living Tradition.” It is one of the longest-running annual events in the region.
The outdoor feast begins Saturday, Sept. 8, at 2 p.m. with music and children’s activities by American Entertainment, followed by the opening of amusement rides and street vendors. A candlelight procession will start at 6:30 p.m. at 17 Porter St. A special healing service will take place at 7 p.m., with the relics of St. Cosmas and Damian and Holy Oils from the Crying Madonna in Chicago, Ill.
Festivities continue with the sounds of Jimmy Geany and his band singing Italian and American hits. At 9 p.m., Hollywood arrives in East Cambridge when the doo-wop singing sensation, Joey Dee and the Starlighters, take the stage with Tommy Mara from the Crests. They will perform their platinum hits such as “Peppermint Twist” and “16 Candles.” Arrive early and bring your chairs.
On Sunday, Sept. 9, there will be an 8:30 a.m. procession to St. Francis of Assisi Church for a 9:30 a.m. Mass in honor of Sts. Cosmas and Damian. The grand parade through the streets of East Cambridge and East Somerville will begin at 1 p.m. There will be floats and trolleys, as well as dignitaries and marching bands winding through the neighborhood streets.
There are three focal points that are “must-see” parade stops; they are in the area of the Somerville Boys and Girls Club on Washington Street at 3:30 p.m.; in the area of St. Anthony’s Church on Cambridge Street in Cambridge at 5 p.m.; and at the society’s chapel on Porter Street at 6 p.m.
At these stops, confetti and balloons will flow out of windows, and ribbons, capes, and blankets of money will be lowered from rooftops onto the saints. Sunday’s entertainment will include Jimmy Geany singing at 2 p.m. and Enzo Amara with “Volare” performing on the stage at 6 p.m. Corporate partners for this celebration are: Privitera Enterprises, David Clem and Lyme Properties, Novartis, Jones Lang LaSalle-North Point Project, State Rep. Tim Toomey, Cambridge Center Marriott, Comast, East Cambridge Savings Bank, Archstone Smith and the McKinnon Company. Admission is free. For more information or to set up a stand, call Sal DiDomenico at 617-661-1164, visit www.cosmas-and-damian.com, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.