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In South Philadelphia’s Italian Market, Shoppers Readying For ‘Feast of 7 Fishes’

(Stone crab claws were one of about 300 seafood offerings at Anastasi Seafood in South Philadelphia.  File photo provided)

(Stone crab claws were one of about 300 seafood offerings at Anastasi Seafood in South Philadelphia. File photo provided)

Mike Dougherty Mike Dougherty
Mike is a general assignment reporter and editor for KYW Newsradio...
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By Mike Dougherty

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — For Italians, Christmas Eve means the Feast of the Seven Fishes.

At Anastasi Seafood, 9th and Washington Streets, in the heart of the “Italian Market” section of South Philadelphia, things were starting to get busy this morning as shoppers came in to pick up their orders.

After all, Anastasi has just about anything a seafood lover desires.

“For Christmas, we have little fish, octopus, squid, bacala (salt cod), cuddlefish, sardines,” says Janet Anastasi, listing just a few of the 300 options found in her store.

“It’s a lot of work.  We’ve worked the last two weeks, every day, getting ready for today,” she tells KYW Newsradio.  “We think we bring a lot of joy to a lot of people.”

One of those looking for to Christmas Eve was Rob, who says that dinner is served buffet-style at his home in Queen Village.

“No one big thing,” he says, “so you get a little of this, little of that, little bit of this.  The crabcakes I like, and actually I go for the mussels, too.”

He says the best part of it all is spending the day with loved ones.