BUFFALO, NY (WIVB) — From cannoli to concerts, the Galvani Italian Heritage Festival has a lot to offer. Everything happens this weekend in North Buffalo.
“Come out hungry and have a good time,” says Tom Muscarella, owner of Muscarella’s Cannoli. “My family ran a bakery in Buffalo 100 years ago, so we love this bread. I love sharing it with everyone and seeing their happy faces.”
The Italian Festival takes place Friday through Sunday, July 14th through 16th, on Hartel Avenue between Virgil and Delaware.
Hours of operation are 11am to 9pm Friday and Saturday and 11am to 7pm Sunday.
The festival showcases music, tradition and, of course, Italian cuisine. Many eateries insist that festival-goers should be hungry and walk down Hartel Avenue to eat.
“It really feels like family. ‘La Familia,'” Lisa Riniolo, owner of The Garage Bar & Restaurant in North Buffalo, told News4. “During the first Italian festival, I lived here in Hertel and the whole community seemed to come to support me.”
For many of the restaurants featured, recipes have been passed down from generation to generation, making it a family affair. Many people remember going to the Italian Heritage Festival as a child and now share it with their children and even their grandchildren.
Joe Mantione, owner of Angelo’s Italian Pastries, said, “I have children, so it’s great to see them grow up and try to learn all sorts of things, including this business and recipes. I’m happy,” he added.
The festival is filled with modern twists on classic favorites, such as Garage’s Italian sausage egg rolls and pink cannoli with cherry almond filling.
“I remember when I was a kid, cannoli always had cherries, fruit and nuts in them, but no one makes them that way anymore. I said this was unique,” explained Maria Olsen, owner of Maria’s Bene Cibo Food Truck.
The festival also includes plenty of entertainment. During his next two days, performers will appear on this stage. Demonstrations throughout the weekend also teach you how to cook and pair wines. The three-day event drew festival-goers from near and far. Daniella Vallenaut and her family traveled from Eagle River, Alaska to enjoy her hometown cuisine.
“This is who we are. You can’t get food like this anywhere else,” said Vallenaut.
If you go to a festival, be sure to follow the advice and come hungry. Appetizing manga, Buffalo!
Tara Lynch is from Buffalo and joined the News4 team in 2022 as a reporter. She previously worked for News4’s sister station, WETM in Elmira, New York. You can follow Tara on Facebook. twitter See more of her work here.