Italian-American festival is this Friday, Saturday
WATKINS GLEN–The 2022 Italian American Festival returns to Watkins Glen this weekend, August 5-6. With festival organizers expecting thousands of visitors to come to the village, festival chairman and deputy mayor Louis Perazzini is keeping his fingers crossed for good weather.
“Good weather, that’s all we need, because the people will come,” said Perazzini.
Perazzini explained that due to a necessary schedule change to allow for this season’s national event at the track, there will be no fairground rides this year as the seller was unable to reschedule. However, inflatable rides will be available on the festival site.
The NASCAR race at the track is later this year, August 21, as opposed to August 8 last year.
Although the festival was originally scheduled to take place a week after the NASCAR race, Perazzini said he didn’t want to put such an undue burden on local police and emergency services.
“It would have been back-to-back, which would have been a lot of work, so we decided to spread it out a bit,” said Perazzini.
With the exception of the parade, Clute Park serves as the activity center for the festival.
“We have entertainment all weekend, bands during the day and night and our fireworks which are always a big hit,” he said.
In addition to generating revenue for local vendors and businesses, Perazzini said the festival is good for the community because it reminds Watkins Glen where its roots lie.
“As long as I can, I will continue,” Perazzini added.
One of the highlights of Saturday is the annual parade through the village at noon. Parade Grand Marshals are Peggy Scott and Jim Scaptura. The festival’s royalty includes Kingston Tomlinson and Marlena VanNess.
The schedule includes:
friday 5 aug
12 noon – 8 pm – Craft/Vendor Marketplace
12 – 11 pm – Festival Food Row
12.00 – 15.00 – Bobby K inflatable rides
12 noon – 11 pm – Beer Garden
2pm – 4pm – Tanglewood Nature Center
19:30 – 23:00 – The Variables
Saturday 6 Aug
10am – 2pm: Clute Park Farmer’s Market
9.00 am Registration/10.30 am Start: Corn Hole Tournament
10am – 8pm – Craft/Vendor Market Place
10am – 8pm – Bobby K Inflatable Rides
10am – midnight – Festival Food Row
11 a.m. – 3 p.m. – Italian music in the park
Starting at 12 noon: Parade for World Peace
Starts on 15th St. and Decatur; ends at 5th St. and Decatur
1:30 PM – Toast to the community and the festival
12.00 – 23.00 – Beer garden
2pm – 3pm – Leslie School of Dance
17.00 – 19.00 – Musicians Sean and Mike
8pm – midnight – Rukus
9:30 PM – Fireworks over Seneca Lake.