Lebanese Food and Music Festival – Parma, Ohio

The Lebanese Food and Music Festival takes place at the St. Sava Picnic Grove in Parma, where it offers various ethnic dishes and desserts, belly dancing and live performances, a bounce house and more.

2024 DATE: TBA
Location: St. Sava Picnic Grove
2306 W Ridgewood Dr
Parma, OH 44134
Website: https://www.nolaa.org/


The post below documents my experience on July 8, 2023.

Festival Overview

The Lebanese Food and Music Festival is an annual festival put on by the Northern Ohio Lebanese American Association (NOLAA). The festival takes place at the St. Sava Picnic Grove, just west of the St. Sava Serbian Orthodox Cathedral on West Ridgewood Drive.

There is a large parking area at the entrance and a nicely sized pavilion in the grove area where the heart of the festival takes place.

Under the pavilion, festival goers can find a bar that serves water, soft drinks, beer, wine and 50/50 raffle tickets.

They can also purchase food from various food stations that serve appetizers/starters, sandwiches, dinner platters and desserts.

The pavilion also provides plenty of seating for visitors to enjoy the food and drink – and under safe cover as well.

On that particular day, I knew the rain was coming during my visit and the pavilion’s shelter helped me relax as I ate my lunch.

I never felt the need to rush (the rain finally came shortly after I left).

While there is a DJ station set up so that music can play as people enjoy their food, the main entertainment occurs in the evening.

That’s when there are belly dancer performances and live entertainment.


Outside the Pavilion

If you have children, they will not likely be under the pavilion for long.

An inflatable bounce house is where they all end up. And, while a sign on one side of the house read “2 at a time,” a pile of shoes near the entrance made it clear that there were often more. Still, during the time I was there, all the kids were great with each other and there were no issues.

There is also a playground at the Grove.



On this particular visit, there was only one vendor present (Ashwini’s Krafts n Creations) who sold jewelry. But this wasn’t ordinary jewelry.

She had an entire wall of miniature food jewelry that was fun, playful and rather delicious-looking.

See for yourself.


The Food

The food is obviously why people come to the Lebanese Festival.

Not only can you enjoy delicious favorites like baba gannouj, hummus and grape leaves…

…there are also spinach and meat pies…

…manakish (Lebanese pizza) with spices or cheese…

…sandwiches, salads, dinners and more.

I got a nice assortment for my lunch…

…including a delicious shawarma (I’m a sucker for pickled turnips).

At the Dessert and Coffee tables, all the desserts look decadent.

The showpiece is easily the knafeh, where cheese, rose water syrup, pistachio and pastry come together harmoniously.

I’ve only had it once before and I absolutely loved it. I knew I would definitely have to get this again.

The namoura (semolina cake) cakes are also inviting – one soaked in honey and the other topped with coconut.

And, not only is there traditional baklava with all its rich butter flavor…

…but there are also pistachio baklava and turtle baklava.

It made it so hard for me to decide between them.

So I pretty much got them all!

And it was memorable.