Zoe Carroll, 9, on the gyro ride.
Every 80th birthday party should be this much fun.
Malden residents celebrated the 80th anniversary of St. Rocco's Feast last weekend, packing Pearl Street for three days of food, live music, and carnival rides for children.
"It's great, I've been coming here for close to 30 years," said Dana Roberts, who brought his 4-year-olds, Ava and Braeden, and his 9-year-old son Griffin to the feast on Saturday night. "I like seeing old friends. I grew up in this neighborhood, and now you see those kids bringing their own kids."
While Roberts' children enjoyed slush on Saturday, festival goers also had several food options, including sausage and pepper sandwiches prepared in part by City Controller Domenic Fermano, a leader of the St. Rocco's Society and head organizer of the feast.
"You can look for people you haven't seen in a while, so it's great," Fermano said.
Festival head Domenic Fermano.
Children could also hit several rides, including the gyro ride, which had youths spinning upside down at high speeds. Malden resident Laureen Carroll watched as her 9-year-old daughter Zoe took a spin.
"She loves this stuff," Carroll said, giving this year's feast high marks. "It's excellent. There's a lot of nice things this year, and improved rides."
From left: Ava Roberts, 4, Griffin Roberts, 9, and Braeden Roberts, 4, slurping
slush at St. Rocco's Feast.
Other weekend attractions included several bands and processions of the statue of St. Rocco. The musical lineup included the New Life Band; Bobby Valli; Pat Benti and the Code 51 Band; and Rock n' Roll Hall of Famer Charlie Thomas and the Drifters.
Steve Ultrino, another feast organizer, was happy the weather held up.
"The weather's on our side," he said, adding that about 2,000 patrons attended on Friday, with nearly 5,000 expected on Saturday. "It's been perfect. People are happy."
The statue of St. Rocco.