Wednesday, September 9, 2009 7:05 PM EDT
26th International Festival set for Sunday in Peabody
By Laura Paine / For The ItemPEABODY -- Leather City is once again gearing up to celebrate its diversity, with the 26th AnnualInternational Festival planned for Peabody Square on Sunday from 11:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. There will be more than 70 booths of food, drink and arts from representatives of the more than 25 ethnic groupsthat call the city home."It is highlighting the diversity of the city of Peabody with lots of booths and entertainers," said DianneMarchese, executive secretary to Mayor Michael Bonfanti. "We have the Higgins Middle School doinga booth this year, Cub Scout Pack 88 and Green Peabody, an ad-hoc committee set up by the Mayor atthe direction of the City Council, to research and advise on helping Peabody become a greener city."The Artist's Galleria, located at 10 Chestnut St., will feature works from more than 50 local artists.There will be live entertainment from 17 performers throughout the day, including Grupo Fantasia, North Shore Acapella, Orfeas and the Helenic Pride Dancers and the Italian Serenaders.A special ceremony will take place at 2:30 p.m. at the entertainment site located in Peabody Square.Bonfanti and International Festival Committee Co-Chairmen Barry Osborne and Michael Zellen willwelcome the 60,000 anticipated visitors to the festival. There will be an introduction of committee
members and special guests, including the New England Champion Peabody West Little League Team.During the ceremony, the Torigian Memorial International Festival Award will be given in honor of thelate former mayor, Peter Torigian, who founded the festival to bolster community pride and celebratethe city's many cultures."When a community comes together to celebrate, and he had many festivals over the years, it really
makes a difference," said Torigian's daughter, Jeanne Torigian Burbridge. "Each year we look for someone who has made a difference and embodies that Peter Torigian spirit."