Festa Italiana will fill your senses with la dolce vita Italy and meatballs. The 10th annual Festa Italiana stretches along Taylor Street between Ashland Avenue and Racine Street.
Longtime family-owned restaurants and neighborhood newcomers will serve up some of the best food in the city. Italian and Italian-American singers will perform American and Italian classics. An Italian dance ensemble will perform and teach the tarantella, a well-loved Italian folk dance performed at Italian weddings. Fest-goers will have the opportunity to play Italian card games, compete in contests to see who can consume the most meatballs and cannoli (of course, not at the same time!), and buy Italian-themed art, Christmas ornaments and other merchandises.
The Fest will also offer trolley tours of Little Italy, Chicago’s oldest Italian neighborhood, which was a gateway for thousands of immigrants at the beginning of the 20th century.
On Sunday, August 16, a tradition the immigrants brought with them from Italy will be re-enacted with a procession from the storied Shrine of Our Lady of Pompeii to the Festa Italiana event site. A traditional Italian marching band will lead flag-bearers and worshipers from the 11 a.m. mass through the streets of the neighborhood, up Taylor Street to the Rosebud Stage for a short enactment of centuries-old Italian songs.
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