Friday, August 5, 2011

The Pittsfield Ethnic Fair Celebrates Culture & Communities Around the World!

The 2011 Pittsfield Ethnic Fair Returns This Sunday
Featuring Food & Entertainment From Around the World

On Sunday, August 7, the first block of South Street between Park Square and Housatonic Street will be closed to traffic and filled with thousands of pedestrians enjoying tantalizing aromas, captivating rhythms and colorful costumes as once again the annual Pittsfield Ethnic Fair celebrates the many cultures that make up the Berkshires and beyond.

Free and open to all, the Pittsfield Ethnic Fair will be held, rain or shine, from 12 noon to 6pm, with dozens of international food and craft vendors and two stages of music and dance including klezmer, polka and African music, salsa rhythms, Irish fiddles, and much more from around the world.

Two stages will feature dancing music from the renowned recording artists the Eddie Forman Polka Orchestra; salsa and more from Bronte Roman (pictures above) and El Grupo Caliente; African singer-songwriter Appollo Nzima; traditional Irish tunes from Rakish Paddy; klemer music by yiddishkeit; and Middle Eastern-inflected world music by HuDost (pictured below).

Mayor James Ruberto is a big fan of the Pittsfield Ethnic Fair. "As the grandson of Italian immigrants I believe it is important for our community to celebrate its cultural heritage and to welcome and celebrate new immigrants and cultures as well. That's why we have made Pittsfield a 'Welcoming Community' for new immigrants and why each year we help sponsor the Pittsfield Ethnic Fair, to highlight and enjoy the many contributions that both old and new immigrants have made to our community."

The Pittsfield Ethnic Fair committee is chaired by Mario DeMartino, a longtime community leader. DeMartino noted, "The Pittsfield Ethnic Fair highlights and celebrates the best of our community. I'm glad my children and grandchildren are able to attend and enjoy the rich diversity found here and the wonderful music, dance, food and craft that is featured every year. Please bring your kids and grand kids to the Pittsfield Ethnic Fair so they can learn about and experience different cultures - and have fun too!"

The Fair, which is free of charge and open to all, will be held for the first time stretches on the first block of South Street, which will be closed to traffic. Plentiful and free parking is available at the McKay Street parking garage and the First Street parking lot.

Local vendors will be offering mouthwatering treats from South America, Italy, India, Ireland, Africa, Malaysia, Germany, and more, as well as wine and beer tents for those over 21 years old.  Food vendors include Lucia’s Latin Kitchen, Papa Joe's Ristorante, House of India, Flavours Malaysian Restaurant, the German-American Club, The Italian-American Club, Tony Sombrero’s, UNICO of Pittsfield, the Irish-American Club, St. Nicholas Orthodox Church, Mad Jack’s BBQ, Sons of Italy Itam Lodge, Irish Sister City Committee, cupcakes and Italian cookies from Delicious Traditions, CIAO, Civitan, Kiwanis, Krispy Kones, That’s A Wrap, and more.  Craft booths will feature handicrafts, jewelry, clothing, and more from around the world.

The Pittsfield Ethnic Fair is generously sponsored by Berkshire Bank, Greylock Federal Credit Union, Berkshire Healthcare Systems, Downtown Inc and the City of Pittsfield. For more information call 413.443.6501.

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