The Dancing of the Giglio: Williamsburg celebrates 136-year-old Italian tradition

Volunteers raised a boat and the statue of the Giglio along 8th Street and Havemeyer Street.

News 12 Staff

Jul 9, 2023, 10:30 PM

Updated 283 days ago

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The Williamsburg community came out Sunday to celebrate a 136-year-old Italian tradition.
The Dancing of the Giglio and Boat Lift dates back to 1887. There was not much dancing but more lifting as volunteers raised a boat and the statue of the Giglio along 8th Street and Havemeyer Street.
Italian immigrants began the tradition in Williamsburg and is one of the largest Italian celebrations all over the world. Those who participate in the tradition said it is an honor.
"I think it's something special because not many communities are like this anymore. In fact, people are turning away from each other, we need to bring people together. I think it's great for the Williamsburg community," said Carlo D'Angelo, who participated as a lifter.
"This is the parish that has the greatest feast in our city and probably in our nation," said Msgr. Jamie Gigantiello, of Our Lady of Mount Caramel Church.
News 12 was told there were roughly 300 people who lifted both the statue and the boat.


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