91st annual Newark Holy Ghost Festa begins Thursday

NEWARK — A cherished yearly festival featuring Portuguese food, folklore and traditional ceremonies returns this week to Newark Pavilion.

The 91st annual Newark Holy Ghost Festa begins at 6 p.m. Thursday with the traditional “Blessing of the Meat and Offerings.”

The four-day event is made possible by the Portuguese Fraternal Society of America, Newark Holy Ghost — a cultural organization that plans the festival’s calendar and holds fundraisers to pay for it. The nearly century-old event teems with tradition, featuring ceremonies aligned with the Catholic Church. Each day’s festivities will take place on the pavilion grounds at 6430 Thornton Ave.

“For me, this festival means going back to my heritage and reliving the steps that my parents and grandparents would take to celebrate the Holy Ghost Festa,” said Lilia Couto, a Newark resident and one of the organizers.

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Chris DeBenedetti

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