Spinelli’s has been the popular home for East Boston youth sports banquets, Chamber of Commerce, Kiwanis, and Rotary events and all kinds of social gatherings through the years.
It’s also been “the” place for weddings and birthday parties for East Bostonians and neighboring residents through the years.
Spinelli’s will showcase its birthday and wedding planning expertise at the Third Annual Quinceanera and Boda Exposition on March 9 at 7 p.m. at the facility located at 284 Bennington St. Vendors in all aspects of party planning – from gowns and tuxedos to flowers, music and photography – will have booths at the expo that is free of charge.
For the past two years, Quinceanera – the celebration of the 15th birthday of a young woman in the Latino community – has been the focus of the expo. Last year more than 200 attended the fun-filled informational event where delicious food is but one of the highlights for guests.
“But a twist this year is boda – which is weddings,” said Ana Lanzilli, function coordinator at Spinelli’s who is fluent in Spanish. “We found that Quinceaneras and bodas are very similar in that they are very lavish and people want to celebrate them in a comparable manner, so we felt this was an opportunity for people to sample our food and for our vendors to expand their marketing.”
Function coordinator Javier Ceciliano, who is of Costa Rican descent, has joined Lanzilli in planning the expo and organizing celebrations at Spinelli’s. Both party professionals agree that Quinceaneras are a major milestone in a girl’s life, surpassing traditional Sweet 16 parties in terms of social significance.
“It’s a great Spanish tradition that has been around for a long time,” said Ceciliano. “It’s very cultured. It’s a celebration that can be even bigger than a wedding. And because of the large Spanish community in East Boston and neighboring cities such as Chelsea, we plan a lot of Quinceaneras. Since we’re doing the expo for Quinceaneras, we felt why not add Spanish weddings as well?”
People attending the expo will enjoy the pleasure of not only sampling Spinelli’s Spanish delicacies but its American and Italian dishes as well.
“We don’t limit our Quinceaneras to an all-Spanish menu – you can pick from our Italian-American menu and do a mix,” said Lanzilli.
Visitors to the expo will have the opportunity to talk with florists, disk jockeys, photographers, videographers, decorators, evening gown designers, and party accessories providers.
“We’ll also be launching our new cakes for Quinceaneras and weddings,” said Lanzilli.
The advice from Lanzilli and Ceciliano for future Quinceaneras celebrants is: pick a date and book early.
“Our Saturday dates, especially in the summer, book up quickly,” said Lanzilli. “If you have a date in mind, please call us as soon as you have it.”