with Michael Lum

Little Italy FESTA! Sunday, October 9, 2011 from 10am – 6pm

Sunday, October 9, 2011 from 10am – 6pm

In 1994, a dream came to fruition. In the month of October, 17 years ago, the Little Italy community opened its streets to San Diego residents, and welcomed visitors from all over. The Little Italy Association (LIA) and a small group of community members organized a festival that celebrated Italian culture not only in the entertainment provided, on the one stage, but the types of vendors that were allowed to display their wares along India Street.

Now, the Little Italy Festa is one of the largest Italian American festivals on the West Coast. Hip and Historic Little Italy welcomes over 120,000 attendees with the tantalizing sights, sounds and aromas of Italian culture. A full palette of Italian cuisine is complemented by traditional and modern Italian music, arts and crafts as well as a tribute to San Diego’s rich Italian American heritage.

Festa highlights include:

– Italian food served al fresco throughout the neighborhood reflecting a wide variety of specialties

– Music on 3 stages featuring the familiar and the new


Little Italy Mercato “Italian Table” Stage

– Cooking demonstrations/contests

Special thanks to Indigo Grill, Becotto Italian Kitchen, La Villa, Petrini’s and Davanti Enoteca for participating in the local celebrity chef cooking demos. Click on the below links to download the recipes that they will be preparing on the Little Italy Mercato “Italian Table” Stage.

– Historical installation highlighting Italian-American culture in San Diego’s Little Italy

– Gesso Italiano chalk art painting before your eyes


Sistine Chapel Ceiling in Chalk

Don’t look up for the Sistine Chapel ceiling – Look down on Date Street!

In celebration of Italy’s 150th year of unification as a republic, Little Italy, San Diego will feature a re-creation of the Sistine Chapel ceiling – in chalk – during Festa, its annual celebration.

Chalk art or street painting is a European tradition since the 16th century performed by itinerant artists. The Italians revived this art form in 1972 by establishing a festival specifically for street painting.



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