La Festa Weekend in Downtown Scranton

SCRANTON, Pa. -- For one weekend a year, downtown Scranton transforms into the land of endless pizza, pasta, and pastries.

It's La Festa Italiana, where the sausage is always served piping hot, the cannoli are never in low supply, and ice cream mustaches are always in style.

"Everything is delicious. You can't go wrong. No matter what you get, you can't go wrong," said Mark Trojnar of Binghamton.

"Sausages! I like to taste it and see who makes the best. Then you can come back and fill up a bag and take it home, and I have it for dinner tomorrow. I don't have to cook," said Petra Rodriguez of Tobyhanna.

The festival is not just about food. It's also about having a sense of pride in your community, and that includes giving back.

Every year, the Scranton Fire Department teams up with Hilton Scranton to raise money for the Muscular Dystrophy Association.

"When we're not fighting fires or training or preparing for what comes next, we find ways to serve the communities that we're involved in," explained James Sable, president of Scranton IAFF Local 60.

A 5K race Saturday morning helps raise money for the Boys and Girls Club of Northeastern Pennsylvania in honor of Capt. James Minicozzi, a member of the Pennsylvania Army National Guard and a captain in the U.S. Army who passed away in 2012.

"This event has grown large for the children in our community, not just in memory of my brother but for the kids who benefit from the proceeds we raise," said Leslie Minicozzi Galacci, his sister.

As an added bonus, the event instills a solid work ethic in kids like 9-year-old Joey Colarusso, who's in training for the family business: Colarusso's Pizza.

He wants to take after his grandfather and own a business.

"My favorite part about this is at the end of the day when you get the money."

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