Italian Day on the Drive is an annual street party on Vancouver’s Commercial Drive that includes Italian food, music, festivities and thousands of people.
Italian Day on Commercial Drive
If you like street parties, live music, pasta and fun outdoors in the city, then you’ll want to check out Italian Day.
It’s reputedly the region’s largest street party event, attracting a couple of hundred thousand participants most years.
Where and When
Italian Day on the Drive takes place each year in mid-June. In 2019 the festival is on Sunday, June 9, from noon until 8 pm.
As with every year, the event runs along Commercial Drive in Vancouver’s “Little Italy” for the 14 or so blocks between Venables and Grandview.
Italian Day on the Drive
At Italian Day on the Drive expect to see over 150 different market vendors, lots of green, white and red colours, and some 20 different patios featuring Italian foods from local restaurants serving everything from pizza to pasta to gelato.
There are also cooking demonstrations, food samples, soccer games, a pasta eating contest, street performers, an Italian clothing fashion show, DJs and three different main stages offering live music and other entertainment including jazz, opera and improv live theatre.
For children there are also crafts and other activity stations, plus for adults lots of opportunities to buy great espressos and cappuccinos.
2018 Entertainment Lineup
Musicians and other performers entertain from four different stages over the course of the day along Commercial Drive. For an idea of what to expect, below is the entertainment schedule for 2018.
This smaller stage is located on Commercial Drive at Napier Street, so towards the north end of the street party.
- 2:30 pm – Venetian Opera
- 4:15 pm – Dennis Mayer
- 5:00 pm – David Pacini
- 6:30 pm – Patrizia Coletta
Grandview Park Stage
Grandview Park is located at 1657 Charles Street (on Napier Street between Charles and William Street).
- 12:30 pm – Coro Folcloristico Trevigiano
- 1:20 pm – VFRS Band (Vancouver Fire Rescue Services swing/big band)
- 2:20 pm – Lisa Petrucci
- 3:15 pm – Luna Rossa
- 4:45 pm – Edoardo Bennato (cancelled)
- 6:30 pm – Dennis Mayer
- 7:05 pm – Jany Barucci
2nd Avenue Stage
The stage is located at the intersection of Commercial Drive and 2nd Avenue.
- 12:00 pm – Opening Ceremony
- 1:30 pm – Gianni Fuoco
- 2:30 pm – Stephen Scaccia
- 3:30 pm – Federico Fuoco
- 5:00 pm – City Opera
- 6:00 pm – Antonio Larosa
- 7:15 pm – David Pacini
- 7:55 pm – Raffle Draw
Piazza Moda – Fashion Show & Entertainment Stage
(The stage is located at the intersection of Commercial Drive and 3rd Avenue.)
- 1:15 pm – Mariah Crudo
- 1:35 pm – Stephen Scaccia
- 2:00 pm – JAC Fashion Show
- 2:45 pm – David Pacini
- 3:45 pm – Jany Barucci
- 4:15 pm – Cassandra D’Amato
- 4:45 pm – JAC Fashion Show
- 5:30 pm – Venetian Opera
- 6:15 pm – Mariah Crudo
- 6:45 pm – JAC Fashion Show
Italian Day on the Drive is a fabulous family-friendly event well worth checking out. For more information see the Italian Day website.
For other events at different times of the year, see Vancouver’s Festivals and Events Calendar. Events you’ll find there that are similar to Italian Day coming up in June include the various Car Free Day celebrations on Commercial Drive, Main Street and Denman Street on the following weekend, as well as Greek Day on Broadway in late June.