TRT - Testosterone Replacement Therapy in Little Italy, NY

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 HRT For Men Little Italy, NY

What is Testosterone?

Testosterone is a crucial hormone for men and plays an important role throughout the male lifespan. Most of a male's testosterone is produced through the testicles. Also called the male sex hormone, testosterone starts playing its part during puberty.

When a male goes through puberty, testosterone helps males develop:

  • Facial Hair
  • Body Hair
  • Deeper Voice
  • Muscle Strength
  • Increased Libido
  • Muscle Density

As boys turn to men and men grow older, testosterone levels deplete naturally. Sometimes, events like injuries and chronic health conditions like diabetes can lower testosterone levels. Unfortunately, when a man loses too much T, it results in hypogonadism. When this happens, the testosterone must be replaced, or the male will suffer from symptoms like muscle loss, low libido, and even depression.

 Human Growth Hormone Little Italy, NY

How Does TRT Work?

TRT is exactly what it sounds like: a treatment option for men that replaces testosterone so that your body regulates hormones properly and restores balance to your life. Also called androgen replacement therapy, TRT alleviates the symptoms that men experience with low T.

Originally lab-synthesized in 1935, testosterone has grown in popularity since it was produced. Today, TRT and other testosterone treatments are among the most popular prescriptions in the U.S.

Without getting too deep into the science, TRT works by giving your body the essential testosterone it needs to function correctly. As the primary androgen for both males and females, testosterone impacts many of the body's natural processes – especially those needed for overall health. For example, men with low T are more prone to serious problems like cardiovascular disease and even type-2 diabetes.

When your body quits making enough testosterone, it causes your health to suffer until a solution is presented. That's where TRT and anti-aging medicine for men can help. TRT helps balance your hormones and replenish your depleted testosterone. With time, your body will begin to heal, and many symptoms like low libido and irritability begin to diminish.

 Ipamorelin Little Italy, NY

What Causes Low T?

For men, aging is the biggest contributor to lower testosterone levels, though there are other causes like obesity, drug abuse, testicular injuries, and certain prescribed medications. Sometimes, long-term health conditions like AIDS, cirrhosis of the liver, and kidney disease can lower testosterone levels.

When a man's testosterone levels drop significantly, it alters his body's ratio of estrogen and testosterone. Lower testosterone levels cause more abdominal fat, which in turn results in increased aromatase, which converts even more testosterone into estrogen.

If you're concerned that you might have low T, you're not alone. Millions of men in the U.S. feel the same way. The best way to find out if your testosterone is low is to get your levels tested.

For sustainable testosterone replacement therapy benefits, you must consult with hormone doctors and experts like those you can find at Global Life Rejuvenation. That way, you can find the root cause of your hormone problems, and our team can craft a personalized HRT plan tailored to your needs.

 Sermorelin Little Italy, NY

Low Sex Drive

One of the most common reasons that men choose TRT is because they have lost that "spark" with their partner. It's not easy for a man to hear that they're not performing like they used to. Intimacy is a powerful part of any relationship. When a once-healthy sex life dwindles, it can cause serious relationship issues.

The good news is that low libido doesn't have to be a permanent problem. TRT and anti-aging medicines help revert hormone levels back into their normal range. When this happens, many men have a more enjoyable life full of intimacy and sex drive.

 TRT Little Italy, NY

Inability to Achieve and Maintain an Erection

Weak erections – it's an uncomfortable subject for many men in the U.S. to talk about. It's even worse to experience first-hand. You're in the midst of an intimate moment, and you can't do your part. Despite being perfectly normal, many men put blame and shame upon themselves when they can't achieve an erection. And while the inability to perform sexually can be caused by poor diet, obesity, and chronic health conditions, low testosterone is often a contributing factor.

Fortunately, weak erections are a treatable condition. The best way to regain your confidence and ability in bed is to speak with your doctor. Once any underlying conditions are discovered, options like TRT may be the best course of treatment.

Hair Loss

 Hormone Replacement  Little Italy, NY

Loss of Strength and Muscle Mass

Do you find it harder and harder to work out and lift weights in the gym? Are you having problems lifting heavy items that you once had no problem lifting?

Recent studies show that when men are inactive, they lose .5% of muscle strength every year, from ages 25 to 60. After 60, muscle loss doubles every decade. While some muscle loss is common as men age, a significant portion can be tied to low testosterone levels. When a man's T levels drop, so does his muscle mass.

Testosterone is a much-needed component used in gaining and retaining muscle mass. That's why many doctors prescribe TRT Little Italy, NY, for men having problems with strength. One recent study found that men who increased their testosterone levels using TRT gained as much as 2.5 pounds of muscle mass.

Whether your gym performance is lacking, or you can't lift heavy items like you used to, don't blame it all on age. You could be suffering from hypogonadism.

Testosterone Replacement Therapy Little Italy, NY

Hair Loss

If you're like millions of other men in their late 20s and 30s, dealing with hair loss is a reality you don't want to face. Closely related to testosterone decline and hormone imbalances, hair loss is distressing for many men. This common symptom is often related to a derivative of testosterone called DHT. Excess amounts of DHT cause hair follicles to halt their production, causing follicles to die.

Because hair located at the front and crown is more sensitive to DHT, it grows slower than other follicles and eventually stops growing permanently. Thankfully, TRT and anti-aging treatments for men in Little Italy, NY, is now available to address hair loss for good.

While it's true that you can't change your genes, you can change the effects of low testosterone on your body. Whether you're suffering from thinning hair or hair loss across your entire head, TRT and other hormone therapies can stop hair loss and even reverse the process.

 TRT For Men Little Italy, NY


Also called "man boobs," gynecomastia is essentially the enlargement of male breast tissue. This increase in fatty tissue is often caused by hormonal imbalances and an increase in estrogen. For men, estrogen levels are elevated during andropause. Also called male menopause, andropause usually happens because of a lack of testosterone.

If you're a man between the ages of 40 and 55, and you're embarrassed by having large breasts, don't lose hope. TRT is a safe, effective way to eliminate the underlying cause of gynecomastia without invasive surgery. With a custom HRT and fitness program, you can bring your testosterone and estrogen levels back to normal before you know it.

 HRT For Men Little Italy, NY

Decreased Energy

Decreased energy was once considered a normal part of aging. Today, many doctors know better. Advances in technology and our understanding of testosterone show that low T and lack of energy often go hand-in-hand.

If you're struggling to enjoy activities like playing with your kids or hiking in a park due to lack of energy, it could be a sign of low T. Of course, getting tired is perfectly normal for any man. But if you're suffering from continual fatigue, a lack of enjoyment, or a decrease in energy, it might be time to speak with a doctor.

Whether you're having a tough time getting through your day or can't finish activities you used to love, TRT could help.

 Human Growth Hormone Little Italy, NY

Lack of Sleep

A study from 2011 showed that men who lose a week's worth of sleep can experience lowered testosterone levels – as much as 15%, according to experts. Additional research into the topic found almost 15% of workers only get five hours of sleep (or less) per night. These findings suggest that sleep loss negatively impacts T levels and wellbeing.

The bottom line is that men who have trouble sleeping often suffer from lower testosterone levels as a result. If you find yourself exhausted at the end of the day but toss and turn all night long, you might have low T.

TRT and anti-aging medicines can restore your T levels back to normal, which can help you sleep better with proper diet and exercise.

 Ipamorelin Little Italy, NY


You're feeling down about everything, and there's no solid explanation for why you're in such a crummy mood. Your daily life is great and full of success, but you can't help but feel unexcited and unmotivated. If you're experiencing symptoms like these, you may be depressed – and it may stem from low testosterone.

A research study from Munich found that men with depression also commonly had low testosterone levels. This same study also found that depressed men had cortisol levels that were 67% higher than other men. Because higher cortisol levels lead to lower levels of testosterone, the chances of severe depression increase.

Depression is a very real disorder and should always be diagnosed and treated by your doctor. One treatment option gaining in popularity is TRT for depression. Studies show that when TRT is used to restore hormone levels, men enjoy a lighter, more improved mood. That's great news for men who are depressed and have not had success with other treatments like anti-depression medicines, which alter the brain's chemistry.

 Sermorelin Little Italy, NY

Inability to Concentrate

Ask anyone over the age of 50 how their memory is, and they'll tell you it wasn't what it used to be. Memory loss and lack of concentration occur naturally as we age – these aren't always signs of dementia or Alzheimer's.

However, what many men consider a symptom of age may be caused by low testosterone. A 2006 study found that males with low T levels performed poorly on cognitive skill tests. These results suggest that low testosterone may play a part in reducing cognitive ability. If you're having trouble staying on task or remembering what your schedule is for the day, it might not be due to your age. It might be because your testosterone levels are too low. If you're having trouble concentrating or remembering daily tasks, it could be time to talk to your doctor.

Why? The aforementioned study found that participating men experienced improved cognitive skills when using TRT.

 TRT Little Italy, NY

Weight Gain

Even though today's society is more inclusive of large people, few adults enjoy gaining weight as they age. Despite their best efforts, many men just can't shed the extra pounds around their midsections, increasing their risk of heart disease and cancer.

Often, male weight gain is caused by hormone imbalances that slow the metabolism and cause weight to pile on. This phase of life is called andropause and happens when there is a lack of testosterone in the body. Couple that with high cortisol levels, and you've got a recipe for flabby guts and double chins.

Fortunately, TRT treatments and physician-led weight loss programs can correct hormone imbalances and lead to healthy weight loss for men.

 TRT For Men Little Italy, NY

What is Sermorelin?

Sermorelin is a synthetic hormone peptide, like GHRH, which triggers the release of growth hormones. When used under the care of a qualified physician, Sermorelin can help you lose weight, increase your energy levels, and help you feel much younger.

 HRT For Men Little Italy, NY

Benefits of Sermorelin

Human growth hormone (HGH) therapy has been used for years to treat hormone deficiencies. Unlike HGH, which directly replaces declining human growth hormone levels, Sermorelin addresses the underlying cause of decreased HGH, stimulating the pituitary gland naturally. This approach keeps the mechanisms of growth hormone production active.

Benefits of Sermorelin include:

  • Better Immune Function
  • Improved Physical Performance
  • More Growth Hormone Production
  • Less Body Fat
  • Build More Lean Muscle
  • Better Sleep
 Human Growth Hormone Little Italy, NY

What is Ipamorelin?

Ipamorelin helps to release growth hormones in a person's body by mimicking a peptide called ghrelin. Ghrelin is one of three hormones which work together to regulate the growth hormone levels released by the pituitary gland. Because Ipamorelin stimulates the body to produce growth hormone, your body won't stop its natural growth hormone production, which occurs with synthetic HGH.

Ipamorelin causes growth hormone secretion that resembles natural release patterns rather than being constantly elevated from HGH. Because ipamorelin stimulates the natural production of growth hormone, our patients can use this treatment long-term with fewer health risks.

 Ipamorelin Little Italy, NY

Benefits of Ipamorelin

One of the biggest benefits of Ipamorelin is that it is suitable for both men and women. It provides significant short and long-term benefits in age management therapies, boosting patients' overall health, wellbeing, and outlook on life. When growth hormone is produced by the pituitary gland using Ipamorelin, clients report amazing benefits.

Some of those benefits include:

  • Powerful Anti-Aging Properties
  • More Muscle Mass
  • Less Unsightly Body Fat
  • Deep, Restful Sleep
  • Increased Athletic Performance
  • More Energy
  • Less Recovery Time for Training Sessions and Injuries
  • Enhanced Overall Wellness and Health
  • No Significant Increase in Cortisol

Your New, Youthful Lease on Life Starts Here

Whether you are considering our TRT services, HRT for women, or our growth hormone peptide services, we are here to help. The first step to turning back the hand of time starts by contacting Global Life Rejuvenation.

Our friendly, knowledgeable TRT and HRT experts can help answer your questions and walk you through our procedures. From there, we'll figure out which treatments are right for you. Before you know it, you'll be well on your way to looking and feeling better than you have in years!


Request a Consultation

Latest News in Little Italy, NY

‘We’re investing in Little Italy’: Local pol announces nabe’s first-ever street sweeping initiative

Photo by Gabriele HoltermannWith COVID-19 in the rearview mirror and summer just around the corner, visitors from around the globe are expected to flock to Little Italy. While tourism is the lifeblood of the Lower Manhattan neighborhood, more people also equals more trash.With that in mind, New York City Council Member Christopher Marte, whose district includes Little Italy, announced the first-ever street-sweeping initiative in Little Italy in collaboration with the Association of Community Employment Programs...

Photo by Gabriele Holtermann

With COVID-19 in the rearview mirror and summer just around the corner, visitors from around the globe are expected to flock to Little Italy. While tourism is the lifeblood of the Lower Manhattan neighborhood, more people also equals more trash.

With that in mind, New York City Council Member Christopher Marte, whose district includes Little Italy, announced the first-ever street-sweeping initiative in Little Italy in collaboration with the Association of Community Employment Programs (ACE) and the Little Italy Merchants Association (LIMA).

ACE, which is celebrating its 30th anniversary in June, provides career development and work experience for homeless and formerly incarcerated New Yorkers.

The non-profit organization employs a team of street sweepers who clean sidewalks and gutters and bag the trash for collection. The team has kept SoHo streets clean for the past ten years and Delancey Street since last year.

Now, thanks to additional funding from Marte, ACE street sweepers are expanding their services to Little Italy, ensuring the route on Mulberry Street between Canal to Houston streets will be clean and free of overflowing trash bins — a move residents hope will also combat the area’s rat infestation.

At an April 18 press conference held on the corner of Mulberry and Grand Street, Marte described the collaboration between the government and private organizations as a “win, win, win” solution for the Italian enclave.

“We’re investing in Little Italy,” Marte declared. “Many people think that there’s no more Italians in this community. But that’s dead wrong. So I’m happy to do this initial investment, one of many to clean Little Italy.”

Marte, whose office contributed around $175,000 to ACE last year, lauded the workers’ dedication to keeping the streets of Lower Manhattan clean.

“One thing I love about caseworkers is that they really do become your neighbors,” Marte said. “You see them regularly. You say hi to them, they always have a smile, and they’re always doing the work.”

Marte called the collaboration an investment in the neighborhood.

“This shows that we don’t have to rely on a citywide initiative to do this,” Marte said. “We don’t have to wait until the rat czar puts out a plan to deal with this. We can invest in our own neighborhoods if we just come together and do the work.”

Vivian Catenaccio, vice president of Little Italy’s longstanding merchants group, also applauded the ACE workers.

“This weekend, I witnessed a young lady from ACE. Her name was Virginia,” Catenaccio said. “And she was so pleasant and accommodating, sweeping the streets, and I thought that was fantastic.”

Catenaccio also criticized the corridor’s dilapidated outdoor dining sheds, many stuck in limbo waiting to be cleared from city streets.

“We need the city to take down some of these sheds that are not being used, that are just being filled with garbage,” she said. “That’s a priority as well.”

With the help of the ACE crew, longtime Little Italy residents hope their historical neighborhood will become much cleaner for residents and tourists alike. Some said the trash and rat situation has worsened since the pandemic.

“There is less people but more trash,” Little Italy resident Edward Cuccia said. “And there’s a lot of illegal dumping. The mountain of trash we’ve got to deal with is overwhelming. This the first step, and we need it because they need the tourists to come back, and they won’t come back if it’s a trash heap.”

Cuccia also said that the rats were having “dance parties.”

“You can’t walk into the streets,” Cuccia said. “I actually kicked rats walking. It’s horrifying.”

Eighty-six-year-old Lorraine (last name withheld) owns property in Little Italy and was thrilled that ACE was expanding to her neighborhood. Until now, she has taken matters into her own hands, cleaning the sidewalk of her property every day.

“I love it,” Lorraine, who also complained about illegal dumping, said about ACE. “I own property, and I clean it up. My tenants are paying good rent.”

ACE crew members Ryan Gullo, Maria Berdecia, Virginia Davis, and Chris Aponte agreed that the program had given them a chance “to rejoin society.”

“ACE gave me the opportunity to get back in society, go back to work, and change my whole life,” said Berdecia, adding that she’s been with ACE for over four years.

Davis said working with ACE has given her freedom.

“I came through treatment, and I got a job at ACE, and I’ve been clean for 29 months,” Davis said.

Little Italy cheese shop Alleva Dairy closes its doors after 130 years; announces New Jersey store

LITTLE ITALY, Manhattan (WABC) -- Another iconic New York City business is shuttering following financial woes but has announced plans for a new location.Alleva Dairy in Little Italy is closing after 130 years of business at 6 p.m. Wednesday.(Video in player from previous story)The little cheese shop with its iconic red, white, and green sign sat in the heart of Little Ital...

LITTLE ITALY, Manhattan (WABC) -- Another iconic New York City business is shuttering following financial woes but has announced plans for a new location.

Alleva Dairy in Little Italy is closing after 130 years of business at 6 p.m. Wednesday.

(Video in player from previous story)

The little cheese shop with its iconic red, white, and green sign sat in the heart of Little Italy on the corner of Grand and Mulberry streets.

Karen King, the shop's owner, announced the establishment will close its doors after a long battle with the landlord. However, she says there is hope for a bright future for the business.

"After serious consideration, Alleva Dairy at 188 Grand Street will close on Wednesday, March 1 at 6 p.m.

I am so thankful for the support I have received from my devoted customers, neighbors, the news media and strangers from across the country.

Today marks a new chapter in the history of my beloved cheese store. Thanks to the vision, generosity and commitment of businessman and developer, Jack Morris, President and CEO, of Edgewood Properties, Alleva Dairy will be opening a 3700-square-foot store at 9 Polito Avenue in Lyndhurst, N.J.

There are not enough words to express my gratitude to Mr. Morris and his organization.

One thing is certain, Alleva Dairy will continue and will be bigger and better than before."

King fell behind on rent during the pandemic and set up a GoFundMe to pay some of it back, but the fundraiser never reached its goal of $35,000.

There is no word yet on when the new cheese shop will open in New Jersey.

ALSO READ | Sneak peek: MTA unveils 'subway car of the future'

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The MTA hosted a special preview event, giving reporters a ride aboard its brand new R211 subway cars. N.J. Burkett has the story.


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Century-old Little Italy cheese shop closing after falling behind on rent

Alleva Dairy served up hunks of fresh mozzarella at the corner of Grand and Mulberry streets through the Great Depression, the city’s bleakest years of the late 1970s and the aftermath of 9/11. But it could not survive Covid.The shop at 188 Grand Street in Little Italy, which claims to be America’s oldest cheese purveyor, is closing for good at the beginning of March after falling behind on its $23,800-a-month rent, the ...

Alleva Dairy served up hunks of fresh mozzarella at the corner of Grand and Mulberry streets through the Great Depression, the city’s bleakest years of the late 1970s and the aftermath of 9/11. But it could not survive Covid.

The shop at 188 Grand Street in Little Italy, which claims to be America’s oldest cheese purveyor, is closing for good at the beginning of March after falling behind on its $23,800-a-month rent, the New York Post reported.

“My store is the oldest cheese shop in America and the heartbeat of Little Italy. We’re a New York institution,” owner Karen King told the paper.

Alleva — whose regulars have included actors Michael Imperioli, Chaz Palminteri and Leah Remini — filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in September in a bid to restructure its debt, which had ballooned to over $620,000.

“The pandemic devastated my business,” King said.

The shop’s landlord, the Stabile family, sued to evict it in April of last year, and eventually struck a deal to forgive the debt if the shop vacated its location by March 5, the Post reported.

Alleva is one of several long-standing bars and restaurants in Lower Manhattan to succumb to the pandemic, including Fedora and Chumley’s in the West Village and China Chalet in the Financial District

Lockdowns early in the pandemic caused the city’s food service sector to lose nearly two thirds of its workforce between the first and second quarters of 2020, according to a report by the state comptroller’s office.

The Restaurant Revitalization Fund, a $28.6 billion federal relief program, ran out of money in July 2021 after paying out less than a third of applicants.

King told the Post she sought, but failed to receive, help from a number of government entities and elected officials, including the governor.

Despite the setbacks, King has not ruled out the possibility of relocating.

“We are committed to remaining here in Little Italy, hopefully for another 130 years,” she told the Post.

Ted Glanzer

This Is Where The Heart Of Little Italy Lies & What You Can Do There

Every traveler's must-see list includes Little Italy because of its genuine pasta meals, which are offered by the top Italian restaurants, and its romantic, old-New York ambiance. In the 1880...

Every traveler's must-see list includes Little Italy because of its genuine pasta meals, which are offered by the top Italian restaurants, and its romantic, old-New York ambiance. In the 1880s, immigrants from Naples and Sicily flooded the region, creating the once-Italian neighborhood that now stretches from Canal to Houston Streets, between Lafayette Street and the Bowery. The majority of it is now concentrated in the blocks surrounding Mulberry Street, which also happens to be home to some of New York City's hottest boutiques and bars, but what is left is still going strong. Mulberry Street is regarded as Little Italy's beating heart. It is the perfect spot to unwind, eat delicious food, and people-watch because it is lined with eateries and cafés that provide outdoor seating. Here is what you can do there.

Related: NoLita, New York City: What This Italian Hub Is Known For

Wander Through Mulberry Street

Mulberry Street, Little Italy's primary thoroughfare since the early 20th century, is also maybe its most pleasant, laid-back area, drawing tourists from all over the city. The street, which is lined with cafés, street stalls, social clubs, and numerous Italian fast-food and snack vendors, comes alive at night when the lights are turned on, and restaurant owners display their menu specials to onlookers.

Visit Movie Sets At Mulberry Street Bar

The Mulberry Street Bar, which is located on the fringe of the main strip of cafés and restaurants, is not the typical watering spot. The tavern, which has been open since 1908, has hosted several actors, mob bosses, and actors portraying mob bosses. The setting for various movies, including Contract on Cherry Street, Donnie Brasco, and Godfather III, as well as sequences from The Sopranos and Law & Order, is a favorite in Hollywood. The bar's interior has not altered much since it first opened, and the pressed tin ceiling and dark wood walls give it a mafia vibe. The Four Tops, Elvis, and Sinatra may all be found on the jukebox. It is still a bar, so tourists can grab a Peroni and unwind.

Sip A Coffee And Indulge In Exceptional Desserts

Caffé Roma, which has been operating at the same location since 1891, is well worth visiting for its charming old-fashioned decor alone; their coffees and authentic Italian pastries, like tiramisu, cannoli, and ricotta cheesecake, are also delicious and worth the calories. When tourists finish their desserts, the café does not seem to want to send their guests away either. It is recommended to grab a table beside the window is still available.

Moreover, tourists shall not miss Ferrara Bakery & Café if they want to satisfy their sweet tooth and learn a little about Little Italy's history at the same time. Everyone can find something to enjoy there with their coffee or to take home and enjoy later. Its opening schedule is similar to Caffé Roma.

Related: Think Italian Food Can't Get Any Better? Try Italian Street Food

See One Of The Most Iconic Graffiti On Mulberry Street

Every neighborhood has a distinct atmosphere and culture. The best street art may be found in New York City, and Little Italy is renowned for its excellent concealed graffiti. At 176 Mulberry St., one of the most well-known buildings in the city, an Audrey Hepburn mural may be seen. There are a ton more wonderful places to appreciate and take pictures of.

Shop At Mulberry Street

Several fantastic vintage shops offer distinctive clothing and accessories. Mulberry Street is an excellent place to go shopping. Creatures of Comfort is a Los Angeles-based retailer that has a branch at Mulberry Street that carries both pricey and reasonably priced contemporary clothing. Christian Siriano is another trademark in the area. This American designer built his boutique in the exclusive neighborhood after winning the fourth season of Project Runway. The line includes fashionable evening clothing as well as more affordable, creative streetwear and fashionable accessories. Tourists can discover and shop elegant necklaces, silk tops, and attractive patterned scarves here, all surrounded by marble stones and other accessories.

Celebrate Festa Di San Gennaro On Mulberry Street

The Feast of San Gennaro is a religious festival honoring the patron saint of Naples, Italy, but it is also noted for its joyous atmosphere, mouthwatering fare, and eye-catching processions. Little Italy is transformed into a patriotic celebration for 11 days, complete with special guests, live music, and a cannoli-eating competition. Since 1926, the smell of fried dough and smokey sausage and pepper Sandos has filled Mulberry Street's air in celebration of the patron saint of Naples. Over a million people visit to promenade the strip of vendors and taste the crispy cannoli and zeppole that are typical of Italy. The feast's revelers are skilled at throwing a party while holding food, thanks to nearly a century of practice. There is no event complete without a parade, and the Grand Procession is a fantastic one. The parade includes marching bands, floats, spectators, and, most significantly, the San Gennaro statue.

Feast of San Gennaro returns to NYC's Little Italy for its 96th year

NewsWe rely on your support to make local news available to allMake your contribution now and help Gothamist thrive in 2023. Donate today Hundreds of onlookers crowded near Mulberry Street in Little Italy on Saturday to watch a parade of red, white, and green floats; Cadillacs flying Italian f...


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Make your contribution now and help Gothamist thrive in 2023. Donate today

Hundreds of onlookers crowded near Mulberry Street in Little Italy on Saturday to watch a parade of red, white, and green floats; Cadillacs flying Italian flags; and marching bands playing Italian music for the 96th annual Feast of San Gennaro.

Since its founding in 1926, the festival – named for the patron saint of Naples, Italy – has grown and transformed far beyond what was just a small neighborhood block party a few decades ago, according to several longtime vendors. Favorite games like roulette and the grease pole climb have disappeared due to gambling laws and insurance. Food stalls sell tacos, boba tea, and cornbread alongside Italian-American staples like sausage spirals and cannolis. And Little Italy has significantly shrunk as gentrification takes hold.

While critics worry the festival has lost its “authentic” or “traditional” Italian roots, several vendors say they welcome the change.

“If we don’t change, we don’t survive,” said Danny Fratta, a vendor selling zeppole, fried dough balls covered in powdered sugar. “So we need to update things and attract newer people because we want to make sure the feast keeps going.”

Beyond adapting to a changing neighborhood and city, the festival also faces other challenges – including driving its massive floats down a narrow street packed with food stalls. This year, some vendor stalls jutted out too far into the street.

That posed a particular problem for the last float to drive down Mulberry Street, which was topped with women calling for donations for the parade’s organizers: the Figli di San Gennaro, or “Sons of San Gennaro.” Meanwhile, a man in a flat cap pinned the bills to a metallic statue of the patron saint.

The Figli di San Gennaro float shattered a glass wind chime hanging on one stall. And it got stuck – twice – so marshals, police, and onlookers had to help the float maneuver around the extra vehicles. This year was the first time a float had gotten stuck during the parade, according to John Fratta, the 69-year-old vice president of the Figli di San Gennaro, and a great-grandson of one of the festival’s founders. Another first, John Fratta said, was the shutdown of two stands selling cannabis.

When the parade’s snare drums and brass bands were gone, some street hawkers blasted the sounds of Latino musician Bad Bunny from their speakers. Several of the vendors were people of color – like Black, Mexican, Salvadoran, Yemeni, or Asian, selling everything from barbacoa to street art. International food vendors started entering the festival about 30 years ago, according to John Fratta – long after 1973, when Ernest Pipoli said his uncle started selling water and soda from two barrels at the festival. But Pipoli says he embraces the new vendors.

“Listen, we’re in New York: you’re not going to put up two gates and say Italians only,” said Pipoli while standing near a taco stand next to his sausage stall, Pip’s Pit. He added: “Everybody deserves to make a couple of bucks.”

And now, the festival has entered the social media age. TikTokers post festival food crawls. The festival even has a P.R. agent and an Instagram page now, too, according to John Fratta. Danny Fratta said he asked a TikTok comedian duo to co-host his upcoming zeppole eating contest.

“I really believe that the way we became stronger again was through social media,” he said. He added: “So as long as we keep that going, we’re here, we’re strong.”

Fortunato Mugnano, of Nashville, Tennessee, said he had wanted to come to the New York City festival because he had heard of it when he was growing up in Naples, which hosts a smaller version of the Feast of San Gennaro. He sees the New York City festival as very Italian-American, which he called “affectionate towards traditions.” For people living in Naples, he said, “You don’t even care about it so much.”

The 11-day festival will take place until Sept. 25.


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