2016 Festival Contests Announced

The contests for the 2017 Italian American Heritage Festival of Iowa have been announced:

Artistic Scholarships 

1729 (Small)

The contest is open to students of Italian descent who will be attending school in the fall at a college, university, art institute or trade school.  There  will  be  two categories: Drawings/Paintings (any form) and Photography, (black and white or color).   Three  cash scholarships will be awarded in each category: first place $750, second place $500 and third place $250.  Awards will be forwarded to the college, university or art institute the recipient will be attending in the fall.

Applicants must be a graduating high school senior or presently enrolled in a college, university, art institute or trade school. Only one entry per student in either category will be accepted. No names or identifying marks should be present on the entries either front or back. Drawings/Paintings are to be no larger than 11”x17”.  They should be either on canvas, or, if on paper, must be matted and framed.  Photo’s may be either black and white or color and are to be  matted and framed.  Only one entry in either Drawing/Painting or Photography will be accepted. A completed contest entry form must be included with each entry.

Entries may be brought to the Italian-American Cultural Center at 1961 Indianola Avenue on  Sunday, June 25th from  3:00-5:00 pm, Wednesday  June 28th from 1:30-3:30-pm, Wednesday, July 5th  from 1:30  3:30 pm, 

Deadline for entries will be July 8, 2017

For additional information please contact:

Patricia Civitate, chairperson
Cultural/Events committee
IAHF of Iowa, Viva L’Italia
Home phone:    515-244-4672
Cellular phone:  515-250-8804

Click here for Artistic Scholarship Entry Form.

Queen Contest

2015 Festival Queen Alexis Blonigan (left) with 2014 Festival Queen Autumn Weaver-Nigro

2015 Festival Queen Alexis Blonigan (left) with 2014 Festival Queen Autumn Weaver-Nigro

The Queen contest is open to young ladies of Italian descent, residing in Iowa, who are between 17 and 23 years of age.

The young ladies will be judged on personality, poise, appearance, community involvement, and overall presentation.  Immediately upon receipt of each contestant’s contestant’s entry, a confirmation letter containing instructions will be sent.

Three awards will be given: queen, first runner-up, and third place.  Final judging will take place on the festival’s Main Stage on Friday evening, July 28th.  Deadline for entries will be July 11, 2017.

For the Queen Contest registration form, click here.

Best Sauce Contest 

Past Festival Best Sauce Winners

The Best Sauce contest will be held on Saturday, July 29th.  Advanced registration is required. Upon receipt of registration the contestants will be notified by mail with  additional information regarding the time when the  sauce should be brought to the Heritage Stage.

Deadline for registration is July 9th, 2017. Registration forms, which can be found here, should be postmarked by July 9th, and mailed to:

Best Sauce Contest
The Italian American Cultural Center of Iowa
1961 Indianola Ave
Des Moines, IA 50315

Mama Mia Recognition

Past Mama Mia Recognition Entries

Past Mama Mia Recognition Entries

The Mamma Mia Recognition is open to ladies of Italian descent, residing in Iowa, who are 60 years of age or older.  Family or friends who are nominating recipients must submit a 5”x7” picture of their nominee along with a statement of 100 words or less (but no more then 100 words) as to why they feel this person is a good example of an Italian Mamma Mia.

A drawing of those nominated will take place Friday, July 28th on the Casey’s  stage.  Pictures along with the letters of nomination will be on display in the Cultural Hall during the Festival.

Entries can be brought to the Italian-American Cultural Center of Iowa on Wednesday, July 12th from 3:00 – 5:00 pm. or Wednesday,  July 19th between 1:30 and 3:30 PM.

PLEASE NOTE:  Letters of those previously entered must be confirmed in writing for the 2017 recognition by the July 9th deadline . 

Cannoli Eating Contest 

cannoliNew this year is the adult cannoli eating contest which is open to contestants 21 years of age and older.

Sign-ups will take place at the Graziano/Heritage Stage on Saturday morning from 10:45 AM until noon. Eight contestants will be selected at 12:30 PM and names will be posted at the Graziano/Heritage Stage. The contest will take place on the Graziano/Heritage Stage Saturday afternoon at 1:00 PM.

Please direct any questions concerning the festival contests to the Cultural/Events Chairperson, Patricia Civitate, at 515-244-4672 or 515-250-8804.