Come celebrate an anniversary….Sicilian-Style! The music, dance, culture and cuisine of Sicily come to the streets of San Diego's Little Italy neighborhood as part of the 20th Annual Sicilian Festival celebration, when San Diego’s Sicilian American community invites you to “Eat, Drink & Be Sicilian” for a day. This popular FREE family event features authentic Sicilian food and entertainment, surrounded by the colorful ambiance of the Little Italy neighborhood.
People will be literally dancing in the streets throughout the day. At 11:30 am, the official Sicilian Marching Band will lead a procession of dozens of costumed dancers, musicians, and representatives of the City and County of San Diego and the many San Diego Italian organizations through the streets carrying flags from the different regions of Sicily and Italy. Three stages will feature non-stop Italian and Sicilian entertainment. The event is highlighted by the nationally acclaimed Roman Holiday Ensemble which will be on hand with their costumed musicians and dancers to provide a lively show of Sicilian and Italian music.
Food booths representing the many restaurants in Little Italy will line the streets to satisfy the hungry crowds with Sicilian specialties of all varieties. Some of San Diego's leading chefs will do demonstrations of Sicilian recipes and a pasta-eating contest will add to the day’s excitement. Visitors can even try their hand at grape stomping in a barrel as part of the Festival fun.
The Sicilian Festival is also the perfect venue for families with children. All children’s activities are free and include a large inflatable slide, puppet theatre shows, face painting and many other activities to keep the bambini entertained throughout day - without emptying your pocketbooks!
A Sicilian cultural tent will feature photo and cultural displays by local and national authors and artisans that reflect the Sicilian American heritage in San Diego. The area will also feature displays of the rich history of San Diego’s tuna fishing industry, which flourished from the beginning of the 20th century until the 1970s.
Free street parking is available throughout the Little Italy neighborhood. Free parking is available in the north lot of the County Administration Building, with a free shuttle to the Festival. The AMTRAK station is less than a mile from the Sicilian Festival area and can be reached either by foot or by using the San Diego Trolley. The Coaster also runs on Sunday. Take the MTS Trolley’s Blue Line to the County Center/Little Italy Station. And there’s free parking at many of the Trolley’s park-and-ride lots (especially Qualcomm Stadium). Also, on weekends, two children (12 and under) ride free with a paid adult (18 and over). Little Italy is the first stop on the blue line north.