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For Immediate Release
Monday October 8, 2012

Laura Longero

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Weekend Celebrating Italian Food, Music and Fun a Success!

31st Annual Eldorado Great Italian Festival Winners and Contest Results

The streets of downtown were packed this weekend for the 31st Annual Eldorado Great Italian Festival October 6 and 7. Locals and tourists, Italians and those that wanted to be Italian for the weekend, all came out to celebrate the sights, sounds and smells of Italy. Attendees enjoyed great Italian food, free entertainment, bocce ball an Italian farmers market and some friendly competition!

The sauce cookers competition is an annual favorite with fierce competition. More than forty families spent the weekend cooking their secret sauces for a panel of judges that included Johnathan Wright and Laura Longero of the Reno Gazette-Journal and Ivano Centemeri, executive chef of the Eldorado’s signature Italian restaurant, La Strada. This year three families walked away winners—the Lopriore family, who hail from the Calabria region of Itlay, took first place honors, the Salerno family of Sicily came in second place and the Chiaravalle family of Abruzzo simmered in at third. A total of 45 sauces were judged over the two-day event with scores given for flavor, aroma, appearance and consistency. The crowds crowned the Bianco family of Piedmont the people’s choice winner.

Each of the sauce cooker’s booths were also judged for the decorations. Many hung Italian flags, grapes and bread baskets, pasta sauce cooking awards and other Italian-inspired decor. This year’s top designers were from the Marini family who hail from Genoa. The Alessi family of Palermo came in second and the Caparella family of Lazio came in third.

Perhaps the liveliest event at each Italian Festival is the grape stomp. Each year the Eldorado invites members of the local media and political circuit to participate in a special stomp on Sunday afternoon. Members of Reno’s radio stations, television studios and print publications are a competitive bunch and this year’s stomp was no exception!

The highest ranking grape stompers in the media category for 2012 were stomp veterans Conor Flanagan and Casey Massangale from 92.9 FM The Bandit. Pat Hambright and Catherine Van of KOLO-TV stomped their way to a second place victory while first time stompers Debbie McCarthy Torres and her partner Kelly McGrillis secured third place on behalf of Nevada Matters Media and 99.1 FM Fox News Radio.

Oscar Delgado, who is running for City Council Ward 3 took the top honors on behalf of the politicians.

Congratulations to all our Eldorado Great Italian Festival winners for 2012! The Eldorado would like to thank all the guests and volunteers that make this annual Festival a hit year after year. For more information on the 31st Annual Eldorado Great Italian Festival, visit or find us on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. You can also get details by calling 775-786-5700.