MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) – The Market Common turned into Italy for the 28th Italian Festival in Myrtle Beach, hosted by Sons and Daughters of Italy Lodge 2662.
There were Italian art vendors, music, and food during the two day event.
“Naturally the star of the show is the food,” Frank Baldari, Chair of the Italian Festival said.
“Ask your neighbor what their favorite food is; Italian. Italian food is the best,” Baldari said.
Tucked in the corner of the festival grounds, Tina Smith, a member of Sons and Daughters of Italy Lodge 2662 was teaching attendees about their Italian heritage.
“Families need to know where they came from,” Smith said.
Each person that visited the heritage booth put a pin on the map of Italy where their ancestors were from. After, Smith taught them about their heritage and even helped a few people apply for dual citizenship.
“Today, we’re losing our heritage, our Italian heritage. In a society of social media, texting, twitter, they’re not really paying attention and sitting down at the tables where we have the Sunday dinners, where you learned to cook, where you knew of your family heritage. We’re starting to lose all of that,” Smith said.
“DNA and finding out your heritage is very important, not only to putting the myths and the truths that you hear about your bloodline, but you actually find out relatives who live near by or relatives that you didn’t know.”
All of the proceeds from the festival will go towards the nine charities the lodge supports, including the National Alzheimer’s Association, Meals on Wheels, and Welcome Home Veterans.
The next Italian Festival is scheduled for the first weekend of October in Myrtle Beach.