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Benvenuto to the 29th Annual Eldorado Great Italian Festival!

ItalianfestAs the air gets a little more crisp across Reno it can only mean one thing—the Eldorado Great Italian Festival is almost here!  The 29th Annual event celebrates the food, culture, music and traditions of Italy on Saturday, October 9 and Sunday, October 10. 

Start the weekend on Friday, October 8 with the Eldorado’s Fall Crush party featuring the wines of Ferrari-Carano Vineyards.  Celebrate the vineyard’s harvesting season with all different varieties of Ferrari-Carano wines paired with the Eldorado’s spectacular hors d’oeuvres in the Eldorado Convention Center.  Tickets are available for just $40 per person—call 775-786-5700 or visit the Eldorado Information Desk to reserve.

The party hits the streets on Saturday as the 29thAnnual Great Italian Festival kicks off! One of the most anticipated events of the year, the main feature of the Festival is the authentic homemade Italian cuisine. This year’s menu consists of both traditional Italian dishes and Italian favorites with contemporary flair.  Six different booths will feature everything from ravioli, lasagna, risotto, Italian pizzas and polenta.  For those looking for a new Italian dish, try the New York Steak Flatbread or the Garlic Parmesano fries.  No meal would be complete without dessert!  Stop by the homemade Gelato booth or grab a piece of melt-in-your-mouth tiramisu.

This is also the chance for Italian families across the West Coast to compete in the highly anticipated Great Italian Festival Sauce Cookoff!  Hailing from Lombardia, Puglia, Sicily and so many more, each family has a “secret recipe” for sauce that guests can sample for themselves!  Pasta bowls are available at 2 p.m. each day, but careful, they go fast!

Italian Fest 2Free live entertainment adds to the fresh air and Italian faire, with Festival favorites like Ray Massa and the EuroRythms, Moreno Fruzzetti, Pasquale Esposito and Dick Contino, the legendary virtuoso of the accordion.  The ladies of Tre Bella will also be heating up the stage with everything from their new hit dance track to pop, R&B and the Italian classics.  A new, young face with a booming, Sinatra-esque voice will also wow the crowds.  Mitch Franco may only be 16 but boy this kid can sing!

Kick off those shoes and take part in traditional Italian activities like the Grape Stomp, where guests actually get into a barrel of grapes and compete against others to find the master of grape-mashing!  Play Bocce Ball on the lawn or browse through the Italian-inspired arts and crafts booths to find a souvenir.  Children’s games and face painting are also available.

The fun continues inside the Eldorado with the Famous Italian Buffet, served nightly at The Buffet on the mezzanine level beginning at 4 p.m.  Guests can also enter to win a Mediterranean Cruise by stopping by our Promotion Center for details.

Join in the fun at the 29thAnnual Eldorado Great Italian Festival on Saturday, October 9 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday, October 10 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. For more information on the Italian Festival visit www.eldoradoreno.com or call 775-786-5700.

-Diana Rogers

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