Sunday, September 5, 2010

CLINTON'S LITTLE ITALY FESTIVAL

Did you know that one out of five Americans have Italian Heritage? Early railroad building and mining attracted Italian workers to Clinton, Indiana. Those ancestors built an authentic gondola, the Quaido Staggiori Fountain, and a vine covered  wine garden to help celebrate their heritage with everybody during  Labor Day Weekend. The whole town turns out for the parade, great food, dancing, music, fun and games.
Onions, button mushrooms, mashed potatoes and steak was a delicious concoction. One guy told me he drives 30 miles to this festival every year just for this dish, so I had to taste it.
Tenderloin on a bun was a popular dish as well as three inch thick barbecued pork chops, bagna caud, mosticcioli, calamari salad, Italian sausages, lasagna...ummmm! All types of authentic Italian fare with Italian wedding cakes and cannelloni for desert as well.
The problem for a foodie like me is the limited number of dishes I can taste. I don't remember attending a festival with so many great food booths.
 Entertainment was provided by local groups of kids, cheerleaders, dance troups and so on. Evening entertainment provided by Italian Singers, several Polka Bands, and a Hillbilly Band on Monday.
A carnival set-up keeps its promise of thrills for young and old.
Local organizations fund raise with games for all ages. Every year the Festival raffles off a trip to Italy, and I hope I win.
You can learn how to make wine and stomp grapes, sample sauce from the Spaghetti Sauce Cookoff, enjoy Italian Singers, tumbling, cloggers.  If you are in the area, don't miss it. Check the schedule at:
http://www.littleitalyfestival.org/lift/schedules/main-stage-north

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