Senator Borrello Announces 2024 Italian American Day on Monday, May 20

Photo of Italian American Conference Members and Special Guests
New York Conference of Italian American State Legislators presents popular Mulberry Street Fair and Festa Italiana

Event will also include celebrity guests and presentation of scholarships to four students

ALBANY – Senator George Borrello, President of the Conference of Italian American State Legislators, has announced that Italian-American Day will be held on Monday, May 20 this year. This year’s events will include the popular Mulberry Street Fair in the Well of the Legislative Office Building, the Festa Italiana in Troy and three celebrity guests who will be honored for their achievements.  

“We are very excited to present a full schedule of Italian American Day events again this year. This is the continuation of a tradition that stretches back more than five decades and an opportunity to celebrate the impact that Italian Americans have had on the history and success of New York State,” said Senator Borrello.  

“We are also looking forward to honoring three renowned New Yorkers of Italian American heritage whose contributions have earned them success and accolades. They are sports media personality Gregg Giannotti, iconic musician Johnny Farina, and acclaimed composer and performer Bobby Previte,” said Sen. Borrello.  

This year’s honorees and their achievements include: 

·        Gregg Giannotti, a well-known personality from the world of sports media. Gregg “Gio” is the co-host of Boomer & Gio, the hit morning drive sports radio program in the New York City metro area that also features NFL MVP Boomer Esiason. The show blends sports talk with general life topics, dominating the ratings as the top overall morning show in the market.  

·        Johnny Farina, quintessential steel guitarist and part of musical duo, Santo & Johnny. Their iconic instrumental hit, Sleep Walk, earned them a Gold Record in 1959 and has been a soundtrack for over twenty movies, television programs and commercials. The pair also had a television show in Italy and were inducted into the Hall of Fame there for the success of their instrumental version of The Godfather Theme

·        Bobby Previte, a composer and performer who has stood on stages and collaborated with leading figures in and beyond the music world, including iconic composer John Adams, filmmaker Robert Altman, maestro Michael Tilson-Thomas, and Johnny Copeland, among many others. The New York Times said, “Previte’s music is thoroughly, stubbornly and distinctly his own…the music copies nothing and is utterly original.”

Senator Borrello noted that the day’s events will kick off with the Mulberry Street Fair in the Well of the Legislative Office Building. The free event, which takes its name from the famous street in Manhattan’s Little Italy, is a festive celebration of Italian culture and features food and specialties from local vendors and scholarship presentations to four college-bound young people. The scholarship applications, from young people residing in the districts of Conference members, are reviewed by a panel of scholars from the John D. Calandra Italian American Institute who choose the recipients.   

The day culminates with the “Festa Italiana” at the Italian Community Center in Troy, New York. The primary fundraiser for the college scholarships, the event features authentic Italian cuisine and live music. Honored at the event will be this year’s celebrity guests as well as this year’s legislative honorees, Senator Mario Mattera and Assemblymember Jo Anne Simon.  

“Italian American Day is a wonderful tradition that has endured for decades here in the Legislature. Our events are a great opportunity to gather with colleagues and friends, celebrate Italian food and culture and honor special individuals whose contributions have enriched the Italian American legacy in New York. I am already looking forward to May 20 and encourage my fellow legislators to make plans now to join us for the festivities,” said Senator Borrello.   

Tickets to Festa are $125 and are available by contacting Sarah Killeen in the Office of Assemblyman Ed Ra, 444 NYS Capitol, (518) 455-4627 or online at (choose ‘partner sponsor’ option).