For $20, today's side deal gets you one all-day admission to Festa Italiana on Friday, July 16 (a $12 value), plus one ticket to a Chris Botti concert (a $40 value) in the Marcus Amphitheater at 7:30 p.m. (a total value of $52). The Italian-American extravaganza provides fun for the whole famiglia, showcasing a colossal collection of Italian food, art, and culture.
In preparation for Festa Italiana's biggest year yet, five champion sand sculptors will shape 200 tons of sand into an 18-foot Pinocchio perched atop the Roman Colosseum, surrounded by sculpted vignettes of popular Italian landmarks (you can watch the sculpture come to life starting one week before the festival). At the festival, adults and children can get their thrills on 18 exciting amusement rides without paying any additional ticket fees, and recharge between rides with tasty Italian treats. A multitude of food merchants throughout the grounds will serve up suitable sustenance, including Angelo’s Pizza, Bella Caffe, Cataldo’s, Glorioso's Deli, Koepsell’s Popcorn, and more. Aid digestion by watching professional Italian dancers and eight-foot puppets in the Pinocchio Parade.
Six stages will provide ongoing live entertainment throughout the day, two of which will feature kidtastic performances geared toward the wee ones. At 7:30, make sure to check out the Chris Botti concert in the Marcus Amphitheater. Botti has four number-one jazz albums, two Grammy awards, and five Grammy nominations under his trumpet, and has earned multiple gold and platinum certifications for his albums. Finish your evening by watching Festa's signature spectacle of Italian-style fireworks over Lake Michigan at 10:15 p.m.