Lots of Italian food and fun at St. Rocco’s in Hulberton

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 3 September 2023 at 5:37 pm

Photos by Tom Rivers

HULBERTON – Today was the 49th annual St. Rocco’s Italian Festival in Hulberton. The top photo shows Amy Engert, Cory Maxon and Marcia Crosier in the kitchen, getting spaghetti dinners.

The kitchen had about 250 spaghetti dinners and 260 eggplant parmesan meals ready for the crowd.

The annual festival is a benefit for the Catholic parish that includes St. Mary’s Roman Catholic Church in Holley and St. Mark’s Church in Kendall.

Richard Herzog worked the grill with Italian sausage. He hands some of those off to Ellen Bissanti.

The festival is held near the former St. Rocco’s Catholic Church. Hulberton was a very popular community for Italian immigrants more than a century ago. They were drawn to the area for work in the Medina sandstone quarries.

Zach Nau serves meatball subs. He volunteered with his parents and two brothers.

Popular Italian foods such as eggplant parmesan, meatball sandwiches, pasta fagioli, pizza and shells were served.

There were 109 gift baskets up for the raffle to benefit the parish.

Many craft vendors also were at the festival selling their creations.

Bernie Ruggeri tosses the bocce ball in today’s tournament. He plays on a team with his Holley friends who graduated in the mid-‘70s – Kevin Lynch, Paul Gifaldi and Charlie Smith.

Aaron Bower eyes the bocce balls on one of the courts. He plays with his brothers, Jon and Patrick, and their grandfather Gary Passarell, a long-time Murray town councilman. Passarell has been playing in the tournament for nearly 50 years.

The team closest to the smaller white ball earns points.

Aaron Bower lets a shot go during today’s tournament.

The annual bocce tournament was down to eight teams today. Many of the regulars instead opted to play at another tournament at Hickory Ridge Country Club. St. Rocco’s festival organizers didn’t want any alcohol consumed except in a designated area.