Soupy Fest

This event is a general admission event in the Black Box auditorium set up like a roaming, standing festival in the space with limited first come first served seats in the balcony. There will be food samples and stations and various stage presentations (short film, music, and live contest) throughout the night. Every ticket comes with a drink voucher for one signature cocktail, beer or wine. All tickets are non-refundable, non-transferable.



Join us at the UNITED Table for the inaugural SOUPY FEST on Saturday, March 23rd at 6pm. This new event is hosted by the UNITED Theatre to celebrate Westerly’s place as the world capital of soupy by honoring and highlighting the history of this famous culinary delight with tastings, a premiere documentary short-film screening, a soupy-trail map of Westerly, and a celebrity judged contest rating the best family-made soupy in town.


This event will be hosted by none other than actor, host, and NYT best-selling author Steve Schirripa!


Public judging and tasting of those entries is not allowed, though we will have soupy and soupy-related food available at the event from licensed food vendors and partners. 


Stay tuned as more information is announced, including our celebrity MC and judges, sponsors and community partners, details on tastings and drink specials for the event, and more! Every ticket comes with a drink voucher for a signature soupy-themed cocktail in partnership with The Cafe’ – the DIPPER’S SIPPER, with soupy-washed bourbon, demerara, and bitters (signature beer or wine can be substituted). 




What is Soupy you ask? A source of familial pride and tradition, Soupy is a peppery, dry-cured sausage first produced by people who moved to Westerly from Calabria, Italy, around 1900 to work in the quarries and the factories. Soupy — occasionally spelled zuppi, suppi or soupie — is made of ground pork butts, salt, black pepper, cayenne pepper and paprika. The name is derived from soppressata, an Italian all-pork dry salami, but the makers of soupy are very quick to point out that their sausage is a distinctive specialty all to itself.






The UNITED Table is a new culinary entertainment series presented by The United Theatre in Westerly, RI to celebrate the food we eat and the creative, hardworking people who take the care and thought in preparing and presenting that food, preserving its history, and filling our lives with the tastes, smells, and experiences that bring people together. Through conversations, tastings, book talks, food fests, and screenings from the culinary cineverse, The United Table invites you to pull up a chair. Bon appétit!






The actor, host, and NYT best-selling author currently stars on the long running CBS series “Blue Bloods,” in the role of detective ‘Anthony Abetemarco.’ Schirripa became well known for playing fan-favorite character ‘Bobby Baccalieri’ on the acclaimed HBO drama “The Sopranos.” Steve with castmate and friend Michael Imperioli, hosted the Webby award winner for Fan Favorite TV/Film podcast, “Talking Sopranos” a re-watch of the entire series. The two co-authored a companion book, WOKE UP THIS MORNING (HarperCollins) which is a New York Times Best Seller.






The contest portion of Soupy Fest at the UNITED celebrates the heritage and history of Italian families in South County, RI and New London County, CT who have been making Soupy for generations. The final judging of submitted entries is reserved for a chosen panel of judges. Public judging and tasting of those entries is not allowed, though we will have soupy and soupy-related food available at the event from licensed food vendors and partners. Because we anticipate a high rate of participation from those interested in entering their soupy but only have limited space for entries at the event, we are separating the contest into two phases. 




The first phase of judging will be conducted prior to the event by an anonymous panel of judges to select 10 finalists whose soupy will be entered into the second phase (all families who enter their soupy will be acknowledged in a thank-you screen at the event). The second phase of judging will be conducted by a celebrity panel of judges who will taste the soupy during the live event and provide scores that will lead to three awards: The third place red ribbon soupy; second place green ribbon soupy; and the coveted Best Soupy award – a gold trophy and endless bragging rights (until next year).




If you are interested in entering your soupy please reach out to Tony Nunes via email at – subject line: “Soupy Entry.” All commitments to enter must be received by, and soupy must be received by no later than Friday, March 8th (please do not mail soupy, Tony will coordinate with you).




Rules for entry…


    • All entrants must be from South County, RI or New London County, CT


    • Anyone who wishes to attend Soupy Fest must purchase a ticket


    • Soupy must be in cured form only – entrants must provide one stick of soupy for initial entry and another if selected as a finalist (due on morning of Friday, March 22nd)


    • Soupy must be freshly made for Winter/Spring 2024


    • A list of friends and family members must be provided along with a “family” name for the Soupy