The Friendship Festival is back this Sunday, June 23 from 10am until 3pm at Spinks Park in the  Lismore CBD.
The Friendship Festival is back this Sunday, June 23 from 10am until 3pm at Spinks Park in the Lismore CBD. contributed

When in Lismore, do as the Italians do

THE 2019 Lismore Friendship Festival - Piazza in the Park is set to once again tantalise your inner Italian.

The community celebration acknowledges the contribution Italian settlers have made to the region's cultural heritage and will titillate the senses with authentic Italian favourite flavours, colours and dancing to the beats of traditional music.

Each year the Piazza attracts thousands of attendees to Spinks Park for a free family friendly fun day of authentic Italian food and wine, active involvement in arts and leisure activities and entertainment.

Organiser Ros Derrett said the main feature of the festival's annual program encourages attendees to become Italian for the day.

"We have been trying to build visitation to the city and momentum ahead of the event with things such as the Italian Cafe Culture Trail, because we are doing our festival in conjunction with the Lantern Parade and the weekend is something great to do for visitors,” she said.

"A number of exciting elements are taking place this month... the outdoor riverside location will be filled with Italian music, food and wine as well as a number of diverse activities with a distinctive Italian twist.

"This is the fourth festival and we are expecting around 4000 people to attend.”

Locals and visitors will be tempted to play a round of bocce with friends, cheer on a team in the tug-o-war challenge, sing and dance along with the kids at the popular Curly Cousins performances or dance with the tarantella accompanied by Domenico and his Latin Mafia Band all day.

There will be opportunity to dress up and perform with Antonio Mazzella a commedia dell'arte performer, chat to owners of fancy Italian motor bikes, all the while tasting amazing pasta, pizza, polenta, gelato, classic desserts, and sip Prosecco in excellent company with great coffee.

There is a raffle to raise funds to ensure the Lismore Friendship Festival's Piazza in the Park can continue to be free for residents and visitors.

There are lucky door prizes and a non-stop program of things people can do by spending time with their family and friends.

Festival Manager Aliison Kelly, the 2019 Lismore Citizen of the Year, said the "park will be pumping”.

"People of all ages and stages will be able to sit and listen to the accordions or feast on fine fare at our food market stalls, buy specialist festival inspired merchandise, share stories with visitors in a human history project in the CWA Rooms or take a few lessons in the Italian language,” she said.

The festival is on this Sunday, June 23 at Spinks Park in the Lismore CBD from 10-3pm.

For more information visit: www.LismoreFriendshipFestival.com.au



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