PHOTOS FROM PAST SAINT JOSEPH DAY FEASTS AND PREPARATIONS

So very much missing Saint Joseph Day friends. I think it’s especially difficult for senior friends who look forward each year to ten days with loved ones. I sure missed seeing my “granny” that I’ve come to love while celebrating and honoring St. Joesph at the Groppo home.

Here’s a happy St. Joe story for you – When my husband and I were looking for a home to purchase in Gloucester we were in a terrible bind. We had to be out of a rental home suddenly and unexpectedly. I found what seemed like our dream home but then learned It had sold only days earlier. We heard the woman had perhaps purchased the house without the intention to live in it. We approached her and she said yes she would consider selling it to us, but then over the course of the next month, she raised the price three times. The house was wreck, a true fixer-upper, but still it had great bones and I was in love with it.

My friend Claudia gave me a Saint Joseph necklace with the instructions to pray to Saint Joseph and to bury the necklace in the ground of our dream house. Patron Saint of homes and carpenters and all workers, she said it would bring us luck.

All that time ago, and this beautiful old house has provided us with 24 years of joyous memories, and a place to call home. Happy Saint Joseph Day friends

The photos are in random order and also include a few snapshots from Ann Margaret Ferrante and Maria Cannova’s beautiful Saint Joseph altars. Click on the first photo to view slide show.

 

SHORT FILM: KID’S PASTA MAKING DAY AND HAPPY SAINT JOSEPH DAY FROM THE GROPPO’S FEAST!

VIVA SAN GIUSEPPE from the welcoming home of Nina and Franco Groppo ❤

This round one set of photos was taken at today’s lunchtime feast. Families with school-age children and another several hundred are expected for dinner tonight. All are welcome to the table at the Groppo Saint Joseph Day Feast.

 

See More Photos of the kids pasta-making day here –

BEST PASTA MAKING DAY EVER!

With love and gratitude to Nina and Frank Groppo who each year open their hearts and home to the community, sharing in the true spirit of Saint Joseph ❤

This special, extra day of pasta-making, especially for kids, as well as grownups who could not attend last Tuesday, would not be possible without the love and help of Groppo family friends, grandparents, moms, dads, aunts, and uncles who take the time and care to show the “next generation” time held traditions and celebrations. Viva San Giuseppe!

ST. JOSEPH PASTA MAKING WITH THE GROPPOS!

If you weren’t able to make pasta today at Nina and Frank Groppos, a second special St. Joseph pasta-making day is taking place this Saturday at 10:00am. This additional day is especially for kids and everyone is invited to join the fun!

Charlotte was so super shy at first, but Kathy Pratl took her under her wing and showed her how. As soon as she understood everyone was making her favorite, noo-noos, Charlotte joined right in. Thank you Nina, Franco, Kathy, Roseanne and Friends for a great morning!

PHOTOS FROM THE BEST PASTA-MAKING DAY WITH THE GROPPO FAMILY AND FRIENDS

Sophia and Luca

St. Joseph pasta-making day began with Franco and the gentlemen heading over to Gloucester Fraternity to make huge batches of pasta dough with the Fraternity’s new mixer machine. Thanks were given to the club’s Mario for making it possible. Back at the Groppo’s kitchen, Nina and Fina were making steamy hot vats of homemade ricotta on the stovetop to serve for breakfast to all the helpers. Friends and family arrived in waves throughout the day and all were there to lend a hand making pasta.

After all the St. Joseph Day pasta that was needed was made, an extra batch of pasta was made for we pasta-makers. Nina heated up her divinely delicious tomato sauce that she had canned over the summer, with tomatoes from her garden. We had a wonderful lunch feast and as I looked around the table at the many generations gathered, I thought of the memories being made that will be cherished by all, created from this very special community tradition of honoring Saint Joseph each year at the welcoming home of the Groppo Family.

Geri, Jaclyn, Nico, and Giada

Rolling Pins!

Rosaria and NinaAl working hardKathy, Marissa, and Enza

Last batch, fini!

BEST PASTA-MAKING DAY!

When you get to spend the day with these wonderful friends. Lots of photos to post later 

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Enza and Layla

CELEBRATING SAINT JOSEPH NOVENA WITH THE GROPPO FAMILY

Nina and Frank Groppo Saint Joseph Feast ©Kim Smith 2014 -2This year the Groppo’s are celebrating the 20th anniversary of Saint Joseph honoring Nina’ s mother, Di Gaetano Vincenza. Tomorrow night, Thursday, the nine day novena begins and all are most sincerely welcome at the home of Nina and Frank Groppo.

Groppo Family Feast of Saint Joseph -7 © Kim Smith 2014JPG

Saturday is Saint Joseph pasta-making day at the Groppo’s and it is the most fun, with everyone lending a hand, from the oldest granny to the youngest child.

Gloucester's Feast of Saint Joseph pasta making -2 kim smith designs.com 2016

Gloucester's Feast of Saint Joseph pasta making kim smith designs.com 2016saint-joseph-bread-caffe-sicilia-c2a9-kim-smith-2014- (1)Caffe Sicilia’s Maria Cracchiolo is returning from vacation on Saturday and special orders for her beautiful bread can be placed then. You can see a demonstration of how she expertly shapes the Saint Joseph altar bread here.Flowers feast of saint Joseph altar kim smith designs.com

Jane Harper Beddus Feast of Saint Joseph kim smith designs.com 2016Jane Harper Beddus, the ‘flower lady’ arranging this year’s altar flowers

SNAPSHOTS FROM THE GLOUCESTER HOUSE INAUGURAL PARTY!

Hats off to Lenny Linquata and his Gloucester House team for a smashing inaugural party!

MAYOR SEFATIA ROMEO THEKAN 2016 INAUGURATION -3 ©Kim Smith 2016.A rose (thorn) between two thorns (roses)

MAYOR SEFATIA ROMEO THEKAN 2016 INAUGURATION ©Kim Smith 2016.

Mayor Sefatia and grandchildren AJ, Bianca, Emma, and niece Lia

MAYOR SEFATIA ROMEO THEKAN 2016 INAUGURATION Rona, Nina, Frank, Peter, Susan ©Kim Smith 2016..JPGRona Tyndall, Nina Groppo, Frank Groppo, Peter Anastas, and Susan Pollack

MAYOR SEFATIA ROMEO THEKAN 2016 INAUGURATION Sam, Jane, Frank ©Kim Smith 2016..JPGJane Fonzo, Frank DiMercurio, Christopher Sicuranza, and Sam Orlando

MAYOR SEFATIA ROMEO THEKAN 2016 INAUGURATION Nina and frank Groppo Senator Bruce Tarr ©Kim Smith 2016..JPG

Nina, Frank, and Senator Tarr

MAYOR SEFATIA ROMEO THEKAN 2016 INAUGURATION Geraghty family ©Kim Smith 2016..JPG

Geraghty Family

MAYOR SEFATIA ROMEO THEKAN 2016 INAUGURATION Abbie and Tony Gross Natalie ©Kim Smith 2016Abbie, Tony, and Natalie

MAYOR SEFATIA ROMEO THEKAN 2016 INAUGURATION Bianca ©Kim Smith 2016

SEE MORE PHOTOS HERE Continue reading “SNAPSHOTS FROM THE GLOUCESTER HOUSE INAUGURAL PARTY!”

Making Limoncello with Friends and Nina Groppo’s Cucuzza

Groppo limoncello Feast of saint Joseph -2 ©Kim Smith 2014 copy

Left to right, front: Nina Groppo and Kathy Pratl; back: Jane Beddus and Catherine Gunn

Groppo limoncello Feast of saint Joseph ©Kim Smith 2014

Kathy Pratl limoncello Feast of saint Joseph ©Kim Smith 2014 copyThis past weekend filming continued on the Feast of Saint Joseph Community Film Project. Nina and Frank Groppo serve the most wonderful homemade limoncello during the Feast and we decided back in March to include limoncello-making in the story of how Saint Joseph’s special day is celebrated in Gloucester. Nina, Kathy, Catherine, and Jane not only graciously agreed to allow filming, but also included me in the preparations and you’ll see what fun we had in the forthcoming film!

Kathy Pratl cucuzza limoncello Feast of saint Joseph ©Kim Smith 2014 copy

While at the Groppo’s garden you can’t help but notice their amazing crop of cucuzza (pronounced ku-koz-za, also goo-gootz), hanging from their handmade arbor. Cucuzza is an Italian squash that from what I understand, in English, means something like “super long squash.” A single squash can grow ten inches in one day!

For our first of several limoncello-making days, Nina created a beautiful lunch. She served cucuzza soup, made from both the fruit and the leaves. It was fabulous and delicious and like no other soup I had sampled before. She also baked wonderfully fresh hake filets and prepared a lovely tomato salad, with heirloom tomatoes from her garden.

Nina described how she hand pollinates the fruit ~ Each plant produces male and female flowers. She explains that it is easy to identify the female flowers as they have a small swollen fruit (ovary) on the stem, just behind the flowers. She plucks the male flowers off the vine and gently brushes together the male’s anther and female’s stigma, the flower’s reproduction parts, which insures good pollination. By removing the male flowers from the vine, you are not eliminating any potential fruit because the male flowers don’t bear fruit.

Cucuzza Groppo ©kim Smith 2014

I have been planning an arbor for my garden patio for sometime and after seeing and tasting the Groppo’s fabulous cucuzza, I am not waiting any longer to build one!

Thank you dear Nina, Kathy, Catherine, and Jane for your continuing help with the Saint Joseph Film Project!

 

 

It’s a Wrap ~ Viva San Giuseppe!

Saint Joseph Feast ©Kim Smith 2014 -2Nina and Frank Groppo

Yesterday, March 19th, The Feast of San Giuseppe was celebrated in Siciliain-American homes throughout Gloucester. Filming concluded last night for Gloucester’s Feast of Saint Joseph Community Film Project at the home of Nina and Frank Groppo.

Saint Joseph Feast ©kim Smith 2014

I arrived shortly after 9:00 am to the Groppo home, already packed full of friends and family prepping and cooking and organizing the house to accomadate the multitudes expected. For fear of missing any wonderful moments, I was sorry to leave even briefly, but I needed to pick up the exquisite Sicilian cassata cake created by Maria, Nina, and Domenic at Caffe Sicilia.

Sicilian cassata cake ©Kim Smith 2014.Sicilian Cassata Cake