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Mirboo North Italian Festa 2023

Home > Melbourne > Day Trips | Escape the City | Family | Festivals | Fun for Children
by Gayle Beveridge-Marien (subscribe)
Gayle Beveridge is a past winner of the Boroondara Literary Awards and her work has appeared in Award Winning Australian Writing. Gayle is passionate about family, writing, photography, and with Victoria’s beautiful Bass Coast which she now calls home.
Event:
A Festival for the Family
The Mirboo North Italian Festa is back in 2023 and is as strong as ever. The Festa has its roots planted in 1966. Anything that endures for more than half a century has to be good. This family friendly community festival serves up more than 40 food stalls of authentic Italian favourites. My mouth is watering just thinking about it. Add to that more than 80 market stalls, the on-stage entertainment of music, singing, dancing, and comedy, the children's activities and the fabulously zany grape stomping competition and it's a must do event.

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Image from the Mirboo North Italian Festa Facebook Page

But it's even more than that. The stated objectives of the Mirboo North Italian Festa are "to respect history and tradition, to engage all members of the community, especially children and youth to celebrate and appreciate the best of Italian culture, food, music and entertainment whilst attracting visitors to the beautiful region of South Gippsland."

So, without further ado, let's look at the top seven things to do at the Festa. The question to be answered is not why would you come but why wouldn't you.

Food, Food and More Food.
Come ready to eat and drink. Nibble all day or binge; whatever takes your fancy. There will be more than forty food, drink and sweets stalls serving traditional Italian foods. Choose from an array of Italian fare including pizza, pasta, gnocchi, arancini, polpette, and salsicce. Select from the many drink options. Try some Italian beers, or whet your whistle on wines and cocktails, freshly squeezed orange juice or lemonade. There will be three bars at the Festa with local wineries and a brewery offering cold drinks.

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Image from the Mirboo North Italian Festa Facebook Page

Dessert lovers have not been neglected. How could you go past Italian classics like tiramisu, gelato, cannoli, and zeppole. Then, when you're ready to slow down a little grab yourself one of the many coffees. The Festa caters for everybody and also offers vegetarian and gluten free options. For those wanting to have a sit-down meal the cafes, the hotel and other food venues in town will be open on the day.

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Image from the Mirboo North Italian Festa Facebook Page

That's quite a list isn't it, but in case you're not yet convinced, here's some more. Previous festivals have offered homemade Italian biscuits, wood fired pizzas, iced treats paella, charcoal spit roasted lamb, and cannoli.

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Image from the Mirboo North Italian Festa Facebook Page

Market Stalls, Produce, Crafts, and Tastings.
Shoppers, this one's for you. You can expect more than eighty market stalls this year. Shop for fresh and home-grown produce, such as olive oil, garlics, sweets and preserves. Taste local wines and beers. Marvel at the handmadema goods and crafts, jewellery, furniture, homewares, beauty products and art. The market stalls will be located at the east end of the park, the football ground end.

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Image from the Mirboo North Italian Festa Facebook Page

On-Stage Entertainment and Grape Stomping.
On-Stage Entertainment. Don't miss the music, singing, dancing and comedy. Previous festivals have hosted well known comics and traditional Italian folk music.

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Image from the Mirboo North Italian Festa Facebook Page

Grape Stomping. Are you game to enter this crazy competition? They will be so much fun and make great content on your social media. Kick off your shoes, roll up your jeans and jump into a barrel for the grape stomping competition. Even the kids can have a go. Grape stomping is traditional wine making methodology. The grapes are trodden, trampled, mulched and mushed in vats or barrels by barefoot participants. The process release juices from the grapes and begins the fermentation process.

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Image from the Mirboo North Italian Festa Facebook Page

Fun Activities Just for the Kids.
This is very much a family event and there is plenty for the kids to enjoy. There will be a jumping castle, a giant inflatable slide and an obstacle course. The Bendigo Bank will be hosting some lawn games in the grass and there are children's playgounds in Baromi Park. Don't fret mums and dads, the kids' activities are free although gold coin donations may be requested. Other activities typical of the Festa include face painting and balloon art. The Mirboo North Playgroup centre in the middle of the park will be open for children under five and for nursing Mums.

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Image from the Mirboo North Italian Festa Facebook Page

Nonna's Secret Recipe Books.
Make sure you pick up your own copy of Nonna's Secret Recipe Books. Buy just one or get both volumes. Both books will be on sale at the Festa but are also available now for online ordering at $20 each plus postage. If you are keen to secure your copy visit the Shop pagehttps://www.italianfesta.net/shop/ of the Festa website. The book is also in stock at The ArtSpace at 81B Ridgeway, Mirboo North and Mavro's Deli in Church Steet Morwell.

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Image from the Mirboo North Italian Festa Facebook Page

Open-Air Mass and Street Procession.
This all began in 1966 when a statue of St Paul, the patron saint Solarino in Sicily, arrived in Mirboo North, giving rise to the first St Paul's Festival. The name was changed to the Mirboo North Italian Festa on 2016. To celebrate the Feast of St. Paul here will be an open-air mass at 10am, followed by a traditional procession of the Statue through the park. All denominations are welcome to attend the mass.

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Image from the Mirboo North Italian Festa Facebook Page

Where, When, Parking and Other Things to Do.
The festival takes place from 10am on Sunday 12th February 2023 in Baromi Park, 49 Ridgway St, Mirboo North VIC 3871. Mirboo North is an easy day trip at around and hour and twenty minutes from Melbourne's south eastern suburbs and around two hours from the CBD along the South Gippsland Highway.

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Image from the Mirboo North Italian Festa Facebook Page

There is no entry fee to the festival although there may be a gold coin donation requested for parking and some other activities. What you spend in the day is up to you. Even if your budget is tight you can still come for a look, enjoy the entertainment and watch the competitions.

Parking is available in the side streets, at the Walter J Tuck Reserve, the Mirboo North Primary School and Baths Road Reserve. Check the Festa's FAQ page under 'Is Parking Available' for the addresses.

For more information visit the Mirboo North Italian Festa website or check out their Facebook Page which is regularly updated.

The Festa is just one reason to visit this picturesque area and if you don't come for a weekend and have a look around you are short changing yourself. The organisers of this festival have got everything covered so checkout the Visitor Information Page on their website. Find out what else you can do in the Weekend Notes article Top 13 Reasons to Visit Mirboo North. Don't miss the town murals while you're there either, the town is a bit of a mural pioneer. Check out the Top 12 Murals to see in Mirboo North and see if you can find the new one.
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Why? This is a family fun extravaganza and one not to be missed.
When: Sunday 12th February 2023 from 10am
Where: Baromi Park, 49 Ridgway St, Mirboo North VIC 3871
Cost: Free entry.
Your Comment
So much is coming back now and that's wonderful. People are always happier when they are together.
by betty (score: 2|702) 14 days ago
This sounds like a fun place to visit and eat good foods.
by Roger (score: 2|825) 14 days ago
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