Italian Festival of Arizona Moves to Downtown Phoenix Oct. 17-18

by Taylor Bishop
Community Family Music & Events Taylor Bishop March 11, 2020

(Photo: Courtesy of Italian Festival of Arizona)

Statement from Italian Festival of Arizona: “With the unfortunate turn of events related to COVID-19 (coronavirus), the 7th Annual Italian Festival of Arizona slated for this weekend, March 14 and 15, will be postponed to October 17 and 18, 2020.  Similar to actions taken by Major League Baseball Spring Training and major public events across the country such as South by Southwest in Austin and Ultra Music Festival in Miami, and others, the board of directors of the Italian Association of Arizona along with event producers R Entertainment are announcing this immediately.  The event team has been and remains dedicated to creating an optimum experience for guests and as news has evolved, this will not be possible this weekend.  However, with the abundant array of talented chefs, restaurants and other culturally minded purveyors assembled for this event, we are more confident than ever that in October a singular opportunity will return to learn and celebrate the lively Italian culture and its vividness in Arizona as well.  In this spirit, we thank the City of Phoenix and Downtown Phoenix Partnership for its enthusiastic support.  We now look with anticipation to the new dates of October 17 and 18, 2020.  We’d like to thank our sponsors for their continued support: Galbani, Peroni Italia, Talking Stick Arena, Classico Fine Wines & Spirits, Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits, Alfa Romeo, Extra Virgin Properties, Great Value Vacations, Cyclologic and VAPamore.”

The Italian Festival of Arizona is moving to Downtown Phoenix this year for a weekend of endless pastabilities.

Taking place on Jackson Street between First and Fourth streets, the move from Scottsdale to Downtown Phoenix comes after the overwhelming demand at the event last year.

“In 2020, we’re embracing that classic street festival setting, reminiscent of traditional Italian Festivals in other parts of the country,” said Frank Guzzo, Executive Director of the nonprofit Italian Association of Arizona, a producer of the Italian Festival of Arizona. “With an expanded event, we’re able to add more fantastic Italian food vendors and mix in more cultural elements – both modern and traditional – including entertainment from Italy.”

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The Italian Festival of Arizona attracted more than 10,000 people in 2019, sparking the vision to venture to the larger location in the Phoenix Warehouse District.

“Downtown Phoenix welcomes the Italian Festival of Arizona to our Warehouse District,” Devney Preuss, President and CEO of Downtown Phoenix Inc., said. “Downtown has the most culturally diverse and family-friendly events portfolio in the Valley and the Italian Festival of Arizona only strengthens our position as a special event and festival epicenter.”

Food & Entertainment

The Italian Festival of Arizona will feature all things Italian with two stages of entertainment, chef demonstrations, pizza-making and pasta-eating contests, and more.

A variety of authentic Italian food vendors will feature pizza, pasta, sausage sandwiches, desserts, and other Italian favorites, along with beverage bars to accompany the great food. Local favorites include Pane Bianco’s pizza al taglio, sorbet from Lulu’s Sorbetto and all shapes and sizes of pasta your heart could desire.

Other festive elements include traditional Italian flag wavers, a “museum” of Italian artwork, an “Italian Auto d’Eleganza” showcasing a collection of fine Italian automobiles, a Kids PlayZone, and more.