Festa Italiana kicks off this weekend in Downtown Bryan

KBTX News 3 at Ten(Recurring)
Published: Jun. 7, 2023 at 5:27 PM CDT
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BRYAN, Texas (KBTX) -A festival celebrating Italian culture, heritage and food is happening this weekend.

The inaugural Festa Italiana festival takes place this Saturday from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM in Downtown Bryan.

Zeitman’s Grocery and Destination Bryan is hosting the event. Cherry Ruffino Team and Readfield’s Meats and Deli are also sponsors of the festival.

Event organizers say the goal of Festa Italiana is to promote and celebrate Italian heritage and culture by offering visitors an opportunity to taste authentic Italian and Sicilian cuisine from some of the most popular Bryan restaurants, as well as various selections of wines from Messina Hof Winery.

Zeitman’s Grocery owner Blake Zeitman says the event will be fun for the entire family. Festivities include live music, dancing and a DJ playing hopping music from the Rat Pack Era and old Sicilian Classics.

There will also be activities for children of all ages including pasta jewelry and art, story time and more with Whimsy & Wild Children’s Emporium.

Zietman says there will even be a multi-court bocce ball tournament with a $500 cash grand prize for 1st Place which is sponsored by Messina Hof, Scamardo Produce and The Farm Patch, however, signups are filling up fast.

There will also be historical and heritage displays from The Carnegie Heritage Center and Poggioreale in America. Specialty food & beverages for sale by Zeitman’s Grocery, Messina Hof, Caffe Capri, Mr. G’s, the Chocolate Gallery & more. Including, Pizza, Pasta, Sausage & Peppers, Imported Meats & Cheeses, Italian Wine, Beers, Cocktails & More.

Last but not least there will also be a pasta eating contest with a $250 cash winner take all sponsored by Caffe Capri and Catalena Hatters.

“We are excited to bring a piece of Italy to Bryan, Texas,” said Zeitman. “Our team has worked hard to create an experience that is enjoyable for everyone, while also supporting the local economy and culture.”

Proceeds from Festa Italiana will go to Poggioreale in America’s College Scholarship program for incoming & current college students. Poggioreale in America is a 503(c)(3) co-founded by Ross Todaro and Tina Todaro Anderson, whose families both came from Poggioreale, Sicily.

To stay up to date with all the event developments, you are encouraged to follow the event page on Facebook, where the host will be sharing more about the vendors, menu options, and entertainment lineup.

There will be street closures in place on Main Street from 23rd Street to William J. Bryan and 24th Street from Bryan Avenue to Tabor Avenue Saturday from 6:00 AM - 6:00 PM.

Free street parking is available in marked spaces outside street closure areas. There will also be paid parking in the Roy Kelly Parking Garage located at 200 East 27th Street

Photo: Destination Bryan
FESTA ITALIANA MAP Photo: Destination Bryan(KBTX)