Subject:  Greater Wilmington's Festival Season Begins with a Big Bang this Weekend!

Contact:  Lyn Lewis, Wilmington Convention & Visitors Bureau
                  (302) 295-2212 or
LynLewis@wilmcvb.org
                  www.visitwilmingtonde.com

The Greater Wilmington Area is known for its fabulous festivals.  Enjoy musical events, house and garden tours, outdoor theatre performances and ethnic celebrations...and the fun starts this weekend.

 "Bromberg's Big Noise in the Neighborhood" Is Big News Wilmington Riverfront's Justison Landing Park, May 15

For the very first time, legendary guitarist and Wilmington resident, David Bromberg, has assembled some of the nation's top musical talents for a one-day outdoor performance dubbed "Bromberg's Big Noise in the Neighborhood".  David Bromberg and Grammy-winning artist John Hiatt headline the day-long show which will be staged in Justison Landing Park, the large grass field behind AAA's headquarters building in Wilmington's revitalized Riverfront.  The line-up includes Sam Bush and his Band, Jorma Kaukonen, Railroad Earth and Angel Band.  This impressive musical festival, with continuous performances from 12 noon to 8 PM, is part of the ongoing effort to raise funds for the restoration of Downtown Wilmington's Historic Queen Theatre.  General Admission tickets are $32 and can be purchased at www.lightupthequeen.org

Historic New Castle Day
Historic New Castle, May 15

Designated by American Bus Association as one of the Top 100 Events in North America, Historic New Castle Day is the nation's longest running house and garden tour.  On May 15, residents in this 350-year-old town open their homes and gardens to the public.  It's a unique opportunity to go inside houses that are more than 200 years old and see how they've been adapted to 21st-century living.  There's also a full complement of historical re-enactments, military maneuvers, craft demonstrations, period games, storytelling and colonial dancing and music.  For more information or to purchase tickets, go to www.newcastlealliance.org.

Fourth Annual Wilmington Grand Prix
Downtown Wilmington, May 22

The bikes return to Downtown Wilmington on May 22nd for the Fourth Annual Wilmington Grand Prix, a nationally ranked cycling event.  Catch the fever when 200 male and female professional racers put it all on the line for $10,000 in prize money during this awesome event.  Corporate Challenge Relay Races, a Family Bike Parade and a Street Festival complete with BMX stunt bikers, live music, sidewalk sales and food vendors add to the excitement.  For more information, go to www.wilmgrandprix.com.

Greek Festival                                                                                                                                                                                          Holy Trinity Church Greek Orthodox Church Grounds, June 1-4

Held on the grounds of Holy Trinity Church in Wilmington from June 1 thru June 4, the Greek festival features ethnic music, dancing, traditional garb, crafts and mouth-watering, authentic Greek cuisine personally prepared by the men and women of Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church.  Delicacies include gyros, souvlaki, mousaka, pastichio and luscious desserts.  The Greek Festival is open for 11 AM to 11 PM daily and admission is free.

St. Anthony's Italian Festival                                                                                                                                                 Wilmington's Little Italy, June 6-13

Experience true Italian culture when St. Anthony's Italian Festival returns to the heart of Wilmington's Little Italy on June 6 thru 13.  This weeklong, family-oriented festival is one of the largest events of its kind on the East Coast.  Enjoy classical music and opera, live Italian and contemporary music, string bands, strolling minstrels and traditional dance.  Artisans from Italy are on hand to display and sell their handicrafts.  It's an opportunity to explore genealogical heritage, take an Italian language lesson or watch weaving and winemaking demonstrations.  There's also a full complement of traditional midway attractions, carnival rides, games of chance and, this year, bocce returns to the festival.  The homemade pasta dinners, Italian specialties and delicious desserts are not to be missed.  For more information, go to www.StAnthony.net.

DuPont Clifford Brown Jazz Festival
Downtown Wilmington, June 14-June 20

The 22nd Annual DuPont Clifford Brown Jazz Festival -- one of the largest Jazz Festivals on the East Coast-returns to Wilmington  on June 14 thru June 20.  Sponsored by the DuPont Company and the City of Wilmington, the entire festival  is FREE, open to the public and held rain or shine.  This year's week-long celebration brings some of the most exciting names in jazz to the stage: Esperanza Spalding, John Pizarelli - Swing 7, Champian Fulton, Jerry Gonzalez and the Fort Apache Band, Omar Sosa Afreecanos Quartet, Ravi Coltrane, Marcus Miller - Tutu Revisited featuring Christian Scott, USAF Satellite Jazz Ensemble, Pyeng Threadgill and Chick Corea Freedom Band.  Most of the open air performances are held in Rodney Square in the heart of Downtown Wilmington and the final Sunday show is held in the Grand Opera House on Market Street.  For more information, go to www.CliffordBrownjazzFest.com.

Brandywine Big Bang BBQ Weekend
Brandywine Valley Wine Trail, July 3-4

Celebrate Independence Day Weekend at the Brandywine Valley Wine Trail's Big Bang Barbecue.  Throughout the weekend, each of the seven wineries hosts tastings, cellar tours, live music, art and car shows, evening concerts, special events and outdoor cooking!  Pack a picnic or take advantage of the offerings of on-site vendors.  Brandywine Valley Wine Trail Members include: Black Walnut Winery, Chaddsford Winery,Kreutz Creek Vineyards, Paradocz Vineyard, Penns Woods Winery, Stargazers Vineyard and Twin Brooks Winery.  For more information, go to www.bvwinetrail.com.

Delaware Shakespeare Festival
July 16-July 31

Enjoy Shakespeare under the stars when the Annual Shakespeare Festival returns to beautiful Rockwood Mansion Park.  The open air festival's featured production this year is Macbeth which is scheduled to run from July 16 thru July 31.  Performances begin at 7:30 PM on Wednesday - Saturday.  Sunday performances begin at 6:00 PM and children under 10 are admitted free with a paid adult ticket.  Extra craft and special activities for children are offered on Sundays.  Visit www.DelShakes.org  for more details.