The smells of cacoila, linguica, malasadas and more are wafting through the North End of New Bedford as the 99th annual Feast of the Blessed Sacrament is underway.

The Portuguese Feast opened with traditional ceremonies Thursday night, with area politicians, feast committee members and more providing remarks.

Mayor Jon Mitchell says the feast is part of what makes New Bedford stand out from the rest of the country.

The feast attracts hundreds of thousands of visitors from throughout the world, and has grown to be the largest Portuguese celebration.

Live entertainment and plenty of food and drink is available throughout the entire weekend, with a 5K road race Saturday and a parade on Sunday.