Recap: Saturday’s Little Italy Unity Rally

Posted on: March 28th, 2011 at 6:28 am by

Dozens descended upon Little Italy at high noon on Saturday to show their support for the historic neighborhood.  From the outset, organizers wanted to make it clear that the rally was an Italian American unity gathering, not an instigation against the boutique owner nemeses.

The route was essentially a church-to-church affair, meeting at the Franciscan Fathers Church of Most Precious Blood and marching northward on Mulberry Street to the St. Patrick’s Basilica at Prince.  It was a brief fifteen-minute hike, and aside from one outspoken gentleman, the overall crowd was fairly subdued.  Not much chanting, heckling, or violence.

Upon arrival at the 200-year-old cathedral, the mob was treated to some live music and oratory from the pastor and also rally organizer Johnny Fratta.  His speech was more about Italian American unity in the face of bigotry than about the whole San Gennaro saga. It was a fitting platform to announce the nascent National Italian American Action Network to fight such injustice, and how this unity rally would occur each year as a show of solidarity.

Wellington Chen from the Chinatown Partnership also spoke, lending support to the cause, and to dispel incorrect notions that Chinatown butts heads with the Italian community here in the city.  “A diminished Little Italy doesn’t make a greater Chinatown,” he said.  “The day will come when the gondola and dragon boat [will move] down Mulberry.”

Recent Stories

Photo: Lori Greenberg
Tom Pnini Exhibit Explores Stereoscopic Photography at the Lesley Heller Workspace

Not all of the recent Fashion Week events on Orchard Street took place on runways. Lower East Side galleries had their moment, too. Among the noteworthy openings, Israeli video artist and NYC resident Tom Pnini kicked off his solo show at the Lesley Heller Workspace. A multi-channel video installation, titled “Ballade to the Double,” along […]

allen-mall-cookout-2
Complaints Mounting Against the Makeshift Shelter of the Allen Street Mall

That nighttime cookout in the Allen Street Mall was part of a larger trend. A group of presumably destitute men and women has been camping out in the median since the early part of summer. At all hours of the day you can find evidence of the occupation, from dozers on the bench to piles of […]

rubys2-2
Ruby’s Cafe on Mulberry Street is Expanding Next Door

The Down Under crowd should rejoice. Over a decade after its debut in Little Italy, Ruby’s Cafe on Mulberry Street is growing. The Aussie-infused casual dining spot will be expanding into the neighboring store sometime in the near future. A message written on the windows reads simply, “From little things big things grow. Coming soon.” […]

Fake pigeons, Photo: @sassafraslowrey
When Those Feral Pigeons You See in the Park Are Actually Sculptures

As city denizens, we’re pretty much hard-wired to hate ferral pigeons. Perptually in the way, shitting on shoulders, and nesting in the AC units. A nuisance. Some might say they’re rats with wings and shouldn’t be encouraged (i.e. fed). But tell that to Brooklyn resident Tina Trachtenburg – also known as the “Mother Pigeon.” The […]

rickys-delancey
Ricky’s is Opening Another Halloween Store Inside the Old Chase Bank on Delancey

The defeated storefront of the old Chase Bank on Delancey worked well for the purposes of the Urs Fischer sculpture exhibit. Its armor of tags and paint was easily a textbook example of devolution. But the Gagosian-sponsored art display ended months ago; so, too, the sheath of thick graffiti coverage. Now the alt-retail specialists at […]

  • Nyc_Hugo

    I bet that 75% of those who attended the rally don’t even live in Little Italy or Manhattan. If they really cared about Little Italy, let them move back. Otherwise, just let it go.

    • Sd

      Ahh Go Tip a Cow you Transplanted Fruitcake. Inbred Piece of Shit.

    • Charles

      Hugo: I care about Brooklyn but don’t live there. I also care about the poor who are suffering in Africa but I don’t live there either. Where is your logic about caring for Little Italy that one must live there in order to care? You are shallow and speak without thinking. I am kicking myself for wasting 2 minutes to answer your meaningless statement. Please don’t bother responding as I won’t waste any more time answering you. Charles

    • Bill

      First of all 99 percent of people at the rally are in Little Italy. And support the neighborhood. Yes there are alot of Italians here and we will support any cause. We will stand together for any issue that may arise. This is from a life long resident of Little Italy who had 4 generations still here.

    • Anonymous

      Hugo– you’d be correct I’m sure, except the stats would be closer to 95%. This rally sounds like an Onion back-page story. “Unity”? How can you have unity by a minority of people who don’t even live in the community they’re supposedly “unifying”? Let.it.go. It’s 2011, not 1911.

      • Italian from Little Italy

        Hugo or is more like SAM or Lillian Or Micheal…Many Italians live in Little Italy And everyone knows it now…we will not allow people like you ( in the minoraty) to make up lies about little italy anymore ( WE WILL START TAKING YOU TO COURT)

      • Little Italy 1

        To Hugo and etluxetlex. It was an Italian Unity Day Rally and not a Little Italy Unity Day Rally. What better place to have it other then the place that began the Italian American Experience in America, Mulberry Street’s Little Italy. And to Hugo the majority of the people who attended the rally live in Little Italy, so think before you open your mouth.