BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Buffalo’s Italian Heritage Festival is coming back this year after the COVID-19 pandemic kept it from happening in 2021.

“Bringing it back, bringing it back a little bit different, I think is going to be really exciting,” said Lindsey Lauren Visser, who’s the Deputy Director of the Italian Cultural Center. “I think it’s just been something that people have been constantly talking about waiting for it to come back and just the energy surrounding it is, unless you’ve been to it, there’s no way to describe it.”

It’s not clear where, and it’s not known when, but News 4 has confirmed it’s happening. Typically, the festival takes place in July, but festival organizers won’t announce specific details until next week.

“We are so excited. It has been a long couple of years without it,” Visser said. “Obviously we understood it wasn’t the right thing to do at the time and now that things are improving we’re so happy to be able to welcome people back. To celebrate together. To embrace our Italian heritage and cultural and do it in such a fun way.”

The Greek Festival is also returning this summer. The Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church on West Utica street organizes the Greek fest. It’s scheduled for June 3-5.

“It’s the start of the festival season. The start of summer. We’re going to embrace getting back to normal,” said Nick Malamas, who’s the youth director at the church. “Of course there’s going to be music, we have an authentic Greek band. All of our Greek food. The souvlaki and gyro.”

A week after the Greek Fest, people can check out the Allentown Art, and Allentown West Festival. The event draws thousands to Allen street in Buffalo where local art is displayed for people to look at and buy.

“For us and the community, to be able to allow these artists to showcase their work and have it wind up on the walls and in living rooms throughout the region is just the most wonderful thing,” said Jonathan White, who’s the communications chair for the Allentown Association.

News 4 will provide more information when it becomes available.

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