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A Taste of Italy at UST

HOUSTON ― The Italian Cultural & Community Center (ICCC) will host the 39th Houston Italian Festival from Thursday, October 12 to Sunday, October 15, 2017 on the grounds of the University of St. Thomas. Festa Italiana is an annual festival founded with the mission of celebrating Italian culture and heritage in the city of Houston. Recognized as a significant cultural event in the city, Festa Italiana has numerous activities to offer its guests.

This year’s festival features live performances from DJ Italia, the Fab 5 (Beatle’s Tribute Band), the Houston International Folk Dancing group, the Tarantellas Italian Folk dance group, and the nation’s top Italian tenor Aaron Caruso. The festival will also showcase film screenings, activities and cooking classes for children, wine and beer tastings, Italian language classes, Carranza puppet shows, interactive sidewalk art produced live by featured artist Carol Wells, and a classic car show on Sunday. Festival goers also have the opportunities to compete in pasta eating contests, grape stomps, and a Bocce ball tournament as well as viewing submissions and winners of the amateur photography contest and I Madonnari Sidewalk Art Contest.

Friday night at the festival will take a western turn with Spaghetti Western night, featuring film screenings of The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly and Once Upon a Time in the West with live music from Last Chance, Houston’s favorite country dance band. Visitors can wear a cowboy hat on Friday and receive a $2 discount for on-site gate admission.

Proceeds from the Houston Italian Festival benefit several local non-profits including the Italian Cultural & Community Center (which provides numerous educational programs, scholarship and events throughout the year for all Houstonians to enjoy). This year a portion of the proceeds will also benefit the Houston Food Bank in order to help replenish their supplies in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey.

The Houston Italian Festival is funded in part by the City of Houston through the Houston Arts Alliance. For more information or to purchase tickets online, visit