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More than 100 men, known as paranzas (lifters)
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More than 100 men, known as paranzas (lifters) lift the 70-foot structure called the Giglio (with a band on it) during the Feast of San Paolino held at St. Catherine of Sienna Church in Franklin Square. (June 30, 2012)(Credit: Newsday/Audrey C. Tiernan)

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Giglio Feast of San Paolino

The Giglio Feast of San Paolino is being celebrated for its second year in Franklin Square at St. Catherine of Sienna from June 16 through July 1, 2012. The celebration is marked by five parts: the building the Giglio tower (June 16) ; the dressing of the Giglio (June 23); the festival of St. Catherine of Sienna (June 27-July 1); the children's lift (June 29); mass (June 30) after which is the first big lift in which about 120 men lift, shoulder and carry the 80-foot tall tower, which weighs more than 5 tons through the town's streets. This tradition is much the same as is celebrated in Italy, East Harlem, Brooklyn and Astoria. In Italy, people throw flowers at the feet of the saint. In Franklin Square, people will dance and feast as the Giglio (Italian for lily) is carried, and an Italian street band will march alongside, playing Italian folk music.

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