When it rains, it pours and I’m not just talking about the weather. The Undo’s Upper Ohio Valley Italian Heritage Festival has seen much success over the past few days, and a rainy day is not stopping them at all.

“Our customers are still coming with their umbrellas. They’re having fun. They’re smiling. We’re just making people have fun today – with bad weather or not.” 

McRay Pettigrew – Bellaire, OH

Sundays are Italian family days, and you can’t have an Italian Sunday without mass. Bishop Brennan started the final day of the Italian Heritage Festival by leading the service right on the main stage. 

“Now if we were in Italy, it would’ve been ‘nel nome del padre, del figlio, dello spirito santo’ and your part would be? Amen. Exactly.” 

Bishop Mark E. Brennan – Bishop of the Diocese of Wheeling-Charleston

While the skies stayed clear for mass, a sprinkle did start around lunch time – and I’m not talking about parmesan. However, this did not stop everyone from ending the festival strong. 

Marilyn Wehrheim, festival board vice-president understands that the showers might not be for everyone, but this festival is much more than making sales. 

“Well, it’s a labor of love for many of us. You know, I don’t because my mom was the first woman on this festival and when she passed away, of course, I took her place on the board. So, I do it for my heritage. I do it for my family, and these people all here on the board are my family. So, it’s a mission of love and it’s all about family and heritage and it’s about community.” 

Marilyn Wehrheim – Festival Board Vice-President

Community means giving back – Just as Braylon Kinder and the Bellaire Big Reds did for the Sons of Italy. 

“We’re out here supporting our local business that we grew up on and they support us every year for football, so it’s kind of helping in the end. We’re paying them back.” 

Braylon Kinder – Bellaire, OH

But – I know we’re all thinking one thing. 

“The funnel cakes. I love funnel cakes.” 

McRay Pettigrew – Bellaire, OH