Bringing Italy to the streets of Lancaster

Evie and Cora enjoying their Brolly Bonus at Leonardini's in Lancaster after completing the Bring on the Brollies trail.
Evie and Cora enjoying their Brolly Bonus at Leonardini's in Lancaster after completing the Bring on the Brollies trail.

Ciao! Lancaster Festa Italia is coming to Lancaster next week and bringing with it a whole host of Italian themed fun.

So what can you expect to see on the day? Lancaster Festa Italia on Sunday September 9, from noon until 8pm, is set to showcase all things Italian, with street food, music, dancing, children’s workshops and even an Italian vehicle or two.

There will be a range of stalls selling Italian foo and bar sponsors Peroni are bringing their pop-up bar, serving their famous lager.

Lancaster Festa Italia will also showcase a range of entertainment. You’ll be able to watch Voce, The Luca Brasi Four and Atomic Brass on the Melodrome Stage in Market Square.

This entertainment will be complemented by Italian dancing from Turning Point Theatre Arts of Lancaster, and Hetty and The Jazzato Band will be performing on the Plinth.

Roaming street entertainment will include the opera gondola, two fantastico singing waiters and drumming band Samba Espirito.

You can even take part in Casa Rastelli’ cafe’s Cake Quiz where you will need to match 10 Italian cake names to the English translation to win a chocolate cannoli prize.

For motor enthusiasts, the festa will also be welcoming both the Ducati and Ferrari owners’ clubs. You’ll be able to see a range of Ferraris on display on New Street from noon to 4pm and Ducati bikes on Church Street from 2pm.

For children, there’ll be puppet shows and circus skills workshops, as well as an Italian Trail around Lancaster Museum and a ‘make your own gondola’ at The Maritime Museum.

There will also be face-painting and temporary tattoos available, and Pebble Art will also be in attendance. Join the Lancaster Pebble People to design your own Italian-inspired pebble, and then hide it in the city centre.

And there’s a last chance to take part in the Bring On The Brollies trail. This trail, first launched by Lancaster BID at the beginning of the summer holidays, guides participants around Lancaster counting the number of brollies they can find. Each time you find a Brolly Bonus sticker, you can go in the business and claim your treat.

The trail was developed as part of the promotion for Lancaster Festa Italia, and links with the umbrella canopy positioned above New Street, which will remain until November 3, when it will be incorporated as part of Light Up Lancaster.

Lancaster BID manager, Rachael Wilkinson, said: “We are so excited for Lancaster Festa Italia. This will be one of the biggest events that we have undertaken, and we are thrilled with the response from businesses and residents so far. The idea of Lancaster Festa Italia initially came from two local businesses and has been widely supported by further businesses since.

“The increased footfall that events like Lancaster Festa Italia bring to the city centre really help businesses to capitalise on the influx of new and returning customers, as well as establishing Lancaster as the place for innovative and cultural events.”

“Lancaster BID would like to thank the sponsors and contributors of Lancaster Festa Italia for making this event possible.”