Festa Ludlow -2013

I spent most of the day home, until my brother called saying that he was going to Ludlow, Mass. I decided to join him, although I was there yesterday.  It was time for us to have dinner,  our annual dinner,  at Primavera Restaurant!

As I approach the recinto and was searching for him, among the thousands of visitors, the group of the Concertinas  players was finishing their concert and making their way to the chapel for the mass, bringing with them hundred of people. I was distracted examining the crowd looking but not finding. The players were following me to the chapel. Half way I found Domingos and Augusta seating with friends.

“Olhai so para isto, quando o meu cunhado chega traz com ele a fanfarra toda’

“I bring a present of music for you” – I stated.

Yesterday’ rain made the air humid and the dark sky was full of moisture. The Air Conditioning at Primavera was a welcome relief and very enjoyable. The food is always good even in days like today when the place is full and the service a bit slow. After dinner Domingos and Augusta returned to participate in the procissao, and I park myself where I could see the procissao and take some pictures.

The festa in Ludlow is about friends, music, food and faith. YES, faith. Thousand of people participated in the Mass and the procissao that follows – it is their goal when they come to the Festa.  People follow the canticos and with lighten candles walk along the route of the decorated stature being carried on their shoulders of eight people, with another eight ready to assist. It is quite a moving moment no matter how many times you see or you participate. In Ludlow the Festa em Honra de Nossa de Senhora de Fatima  has been a tradition for over 65 years.

Our Lady of Fatima evening procession attracts thousands of people.

Once the religion portion of the program is over and the beautifu decorated andor is returned to her place in the chapel, the priests leave and Knights of Columbus promise to be back next year, some of the devotees return to their residences and the others move closer to the main stage for the evening show. Every year the Entertaining Committee presents a star to give a concert. This year selection is Nelia, an energetic recording singer who will be entertaining the thousand of people waiting for the music to start.

Nelia, a vivacious woman with lots of energy, with an excellent band is ready to make the people dance. She is wearing the fashionable short shorts. The people want to dance even if the air is warm, muggy, humid and making it uncomfortable to move.


But … who cares about the weather? This is the Festa! Many of the people have taken all of the spaces around the dancing spot, they simply want to listen and converse about the day activities. Others are claiming their spots inside the yellow taped line and ready to move, shake and dance for the next two hours. Wait a minute! There is no more space, it seems, and people are still going in, looking for their piece of real estate. Look for your partner and enjoy the music. Yes dance, your life away. I did!

My partner was able and willing to support the lack of space and the humidity in the air just to enjoy the dance “so pelo prazer de dancar” as Roberto Carlos sings in his famous “Baile da Fazenda“. And once we found our space and  our rhythm we refuse to leave the dancing space, probably afraid  that we would not be able to get it back again or on the other hand enjoying it too much ” So pelo prazer da danca“. She was able and knowledge to tag to my moves, not all of them right, and we made the evening a very pleasant one.

The music stopped and we parted ways. I felt my shirt soaked and the sweat and humidity made my soft skin cold.  On a muggy Sunday night at the beginning of September the Festa is winding down, the music has stopped, people are preparing to leave. I made my way to the parked car and the heated seats are truly welcome and enjoyable as the clothes dry on my body.

There will be another Festa next year and the year after and most of the same people (maybe even more) will gather at the grounds of Our Lady of Fatima Church in Ludlow Mass to enjoy the event.

Jim Malaquias of Radio Club WTCC FM

Yes the Faith will bring them, the music will make them stay! I will return to assist Jim Malaquias with the live broadcast of the event and to dance ” so pelo prazer da danca”

Ludlow, Mass September 2013

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