St. Anthony of Padua Catholic Church
At the beginning of the twentieth century, the growing population of Italian Catholics in North Adams built the original St. Anthony’s at 100 Holden Street. The first service was held in 1906 and the founding pastor was Rev. Peter Pillarella. The published history of the parish describes it as "a quaintly beautiful structure situated well back from the noise of the street." The community grew under the leadership of Rev. William Lattanzi from 1910-1922.
In the prosperous years after World War II, a parish building committee led by Joseph R. Bianco and Henry J. Pierpan Sr. sought to raise funds for a bigger church. Land was secured at 70 Marshall Street, and in 1958 the new and bigger structure was dedicated on June 13 (the feast of St. Anthony) by Bishop Christopher Weldon.
For many years, LaFesta was a popular Italian-American festival that was hosted by St. Anthony’s, and it was a significant cultural experience for parishioners and also many visitors. LaFesta was meant to showcase Italian culture, and how grateful people were to be able to call themselves Italians.
In 1950, the basketball team representing St. Anthony’s won a championship, led by the beloved priest, Father Armando Russo, and this championship garnered them a visit from the College of the Holy Cross basketball squad which included basketball legend Bob Cousy.
The decline in the number of Catholics in North Adams in recent decades led to the consolidation of parishes in 2009. St. Anthony's is now the sole Catholic church in North Adams and the parish is known as St. Elizabeth of Hungary.