That’s Italian for “Let’s eat!”, and the theme for this year’s Italian Day on The Drive, taking place Sunday, June 12th in Vancouver’s official Little Italy neighbourhood along Commercial Drive.
In it’s 7th year since returning in 2010, the day long street festival promises to be a food lovers’ paradise.
Pizza, pasta, gelato, cappuccino, barbequed Italian sausage in a bun, and cannoli are some of the culinary treats that will be on offer to the estimated 300,000 people expected to descend on one of Vancouver’s oldest neighbourhoods.
As well as cuisine, Italian culture will be on full display with four stages of entertainment throughout the day. It all kicks off with the official Little Italy neighbourhood designation ribbon cutting ceremony at noon. In April, the City of Vancouver voted to recognize 8 blocks of Commercial Drive as Little Italy.
New to this year’s event, there will be several Piazza-style attractions from Venables to the Grandview Cut, where attendees can sit and enjoy the atmosphere and energy of the day, indulging favourite Italian bites, drinks, music and conversations.
Featuring Cioffi’s Deli, Il Centro Kids Zone, Radar Gun Soccer Kick, Amphitheatre stage for entertainment, Bike Polo at Tennis Courts, and a Water Truck for free water.
Napier Greenway Piazza
Enjoy Parmigiano wheel cracking and sampling from Choices Market, Brittania Community Centre crafts (pasta jewellery), food vendors, and Opera singers.
Italian food galore, with offerings from Cibo, Uva, and Nonna’s table, free salami samplings from Mastro & San Daniele, and Jack FM will be on site to bring on the party with Italian tunes.
Little Italy Piazza
On 3rd Ave, is a consortium led by the Consulate General of Italy Vancouver which includes partners: the Italian Chamber of Commerce, the Ministry of Education who are sending cooking school delegates (from Italy), and Il Centro (Italian Cultural Centre) – highlighting language, culture and agri-product conversations. Piazza will include a mini-stage with Opera and other performances on the hour, as well as lifestyle references through the love of motorcycles and cars with Ducati and Fiat products.
On 4th Ave, presenting live demonstrations on sausage making and quick Italian meals, and will include other food vending such as a pig roast (pulled pork), arancini, and other packaged retail products available for purchase.
7th Ave Vancity Piazza
Features Vancity’s community partners from Sole Food Street Farms, East End Food Co-op, Fresh Roots, Vancouver Farmers Markets, Recycling Alternative and Mr. Arancino. The Vancity Piazza will bring to life the full circle around the importance of buying local and organic, food security, learning to grow in creative ways, while minimizing your compostable waste.
Car2Go’s Graveley Piazza
A special activation for Car2Go members, featuring an on-site chef, food, lounge, and DJ.
Where: Commercial Drive from Grandview Cut at 8th Avenue north to Venables Street.
When: Sunday, June 12th from Noon to 8pm.
Full event details: www.italianday.ca
- With limited parking, people are encouraged to train, bus, bike, walk or Car2Go.
- Skytrain: Broadway Station is one block from the beginning of the street festival.
- Bus: The #20 bus runs along Clark Drive, which is 4-5 blocks west of Commercial Drive.
- Bicycle: Free secured bike parking will be available at 1st and Commercial.