WHEELING, W.Va. (WTRF) – When you talk about the Undo’s Upper Ohio Valley Italian Heritage Festival, a lot of people think about food first. 

If it starts with a ‘P’ and it’s pasta or pizza that’s my favorite.

Michele Fabbro, President, Undo’s Upper Ohio Valley Italian Heritage Festival

For some it’s the Italian pastries. Others enjoy pasta, the Sons of Italy sausage sandwiches, or a good slice of pizza; but the festival has even managed to add some new options for visitors this year. 

The gnocchi is delicious, but the mushroom ravioli is to die for with alfredo sauce.

Brooke Price, Centre Market Manager

The Festival Board said they’ve wanted to bring the famous “Little Italy” back for a while, and this year it’s finally happening! You’ll find it on 12th Street right up the stairs from the stage at Heritage Port.  It may be better than ever because much of the food will be made by local eateries.  

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We really, really appreciate all of our vendors. Some of them have been with us probably for the whole 39-years. This will be the 39th festival, but they come from sometimes out of the city, even out of the state. We thought it’d be important maybe to get the local people involved and give them some exposure and set it up so they’ll be able to make a little bit of money too.

Michele Fabbro, President, Undo’s Upper Ohio Valley Italian Heritage Festival

Fabbro said the entire Festival Board is excited about the new partnerships that make the restaurant, market and bakery inside Little Italy happen. 

One of those is with For the Love of Pierogis. 

They will have available for sale, frozen pasta, ravioli, gnocchi and their pierogis.

Brooke Price, Centre Market Manager

Yes, pierogis!

It’s the Italian festival’s way of supporting the Ukrainian people. For the Love of Pierogis is also becoming famous in Center Market for its pasta, which will also be available to feast on. They have 18-different types of pasta, spaghetti and fettuccini.

We’re excited to have a touchpoint that people will be able to be like ‘oh this is at Centre Market’. Now we can go down to the market, see what else is new down there and really see what all we’re doing down here now.

Brooke Price, Centre Market Manager

The Market Café is also representing Centre Market with a coffee stand at the festival, which may pair quite well with the Italian bakery. 

On sight we will be making homemade pizzelle and also zeppole, which is an Italian favorite.

Michele Fabbro, President, Undo’s Upper Ohio Valley Italian Heritage Festival

“Little Italy” also includes an Italian market with pasta available to take home and other products to make your favorite dishes like pizzelle irons, espresso makers and even pasta presses.

Much like the family Sunday dinners, there’s the same welcoming atmosphere at the table in Little Italy. 

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We do have some people that do their kind of family reunion. They just make sure that their family reunion back home, in the hometown, happens during the weekend of the festival.

Michele Fabbro, President, Undo’s Upper Ohio Valley Italian Heritage Festival

The Undo’s Upper Ohio Valley Italian Heritage Festival continues until Midnight on Friday, from 11:00 a.m. until Midnight on Saturday and from 11:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m. on Sunday.

A full schedule of events and entertainment is at italyfest.org.