BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Italian Festival organizers made a last minute call, delaying the start of the event as the rain started coming down. It was an unexpected turn of events in between putting together the agenda, working on the layout, and preparing for move to a new spot.
“The Italian festival is the kitchen table of Western New York,” said Marco Sciortino, the spokesman for the festival. “We want to bring everyone to the table – eat, drink, be merry and have a good time.”
That’s still the goal even though the kitchen table, as Sciortino refers to it, is a little bigger and has moved to a different location from Hertel to the Outer Harbor.
“We were landlocked. We couldn’t expand any longer. Bringing it here – we can have a beautiful open pallet.”
That means bringing in authentic decor, changing the layout and welcoming more vendors like first timer, Carmine Bianco.
“Every year I used to come walk through it but I never thought I would have a stand here,” said Bianco.
Organizers feel the increased variety will draw in even more people to the the festival which already boasts a crowd around 500,0000 strong during the four day long event.
And that’s why the organizers feel it’s time to be follow the path of many other large events and bring in private security.
“They are taking such great precautions to make sure everybody is safe,” said Sciortino.
While security has the safety aspect covered, organizers say their main concern now — is keeping with traditions and showcasing their heritage as they hope their work ethic shows to the thousands who come out participate in the festival’s fun.
“It shows in our success,” said Sciortino.