WHEELING, W.Va. — One of the most prominent festivals in the Northern Panhandle is returning this weekend following a year off due to COVID-19.
The 38th annual Undo’s Upper Ohio Valley Italian Festival kicks off Friday and runs through Sunday at Wheeling’s Heritage Port along the Ohio River and features everything Italy from bocce tournaments, dancing, music, vendors, and authentic food.
“It is the Upper Ohio Valley’s Italian heritage festival and Italian heritage is prevalent here. There was a lot of disappointment throughout when it had to be canceled last year,” Olivia Litman, Marketing Director for Visit Wheeling WV told MetroNews.
The entertainment kicks off at Noon on Friday from the stage at the port. Entertainment goes until 11 p.m. Friday, 11 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. on Saturday with fireworks following, and 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Sunday. Catholic mass is celebrated at the port to kick the day off Sunday at 10 a.m.
Food includes Little Italy and homemade Italian food from spaghetti, calzones, subs, sausage, and pasta and around 40 traditional vendors with lemonade and deep-fried goodies. Litman said there is something for people of all ages.
“Games, fun amusement rides for the kids, lots of things that will grab your interest with vendors, artists will be there selling their goods. Any type of food that you could possibly imagine will be there,” she said.
Litman said around 50,000 people come to Wheeling’s waterfront in the three days during the festival. She expects a large crowd.
“I mean people are excited to get on and really appreciate maybe some of the festivals they took advantage of being in their backyard for so many years,” Litman said.