Rose Angelica From the 2018 Dean Martin Festival
The Dean Martin Festival Committee has donated over $100,000 in the past 20 years
to local charities and to high schools for The Dean Martin Music Scholarships
STEUBENVILLE – Patrons at the Spot Bar took turns impersonating the King of Cool Thursday night for the start of Steubenville’s 20th-annual Dean Martin Festival, one of the city’s favorite yearly events. Steubenville, Ohio, may be known as the City of Murals, but its other great claim to fame may be bragging rights as the birthplace of legendary singer and actor Dean Martin.
Each year, for three days in the middle of June, thousands of visitors descend on Steubenville for a festival of films, memorabilia, concerts, food, a parade and more. Celebrate the life of the “King of Cool” along the banks of the Ohio River and recall the golden days of Hollywood
Every year in Dino’s hometown of Steubenville, Ohio his life and music is celebrated. Country Music Singer Rose Angelica has been chairman of The Dean Martin Festival for 21 years. “We have had many celebrities and family members here , “
Rose said. “The Fans are the best and have attended from all over the world.” All money raised goes to The Dean Martin Music Scholarship at Steubenville High School, where Dino learned to play the drums, sing and dance.
Dino loved Country Music and sang it on his show every week and in his concerts. His last album was recorded in Nashville and titled The Nashville Sessions. Dean Martin was the only entertainer to have a hit record, movie and tv show out all at the same time. Not even Elvis or Sinatra achieved this. In 1964 he knocked the Beatles out of the #1 spot with Everybody Loves Somebody Sometime.
Dino recorded 33 albums and made 51 movies. His favorite was Westerns. Dino Crocetti, the son of Italian immigrants, started his entertainment career singing in Steubenville and other Ohio nightclubs.
Pictured to the left are: Elvis Jr, Pat Benti. John Griffeth, Russ Loniello, having a good time at the festival
This eventually led to his name change to Dean Martin, and a successful six-decade career as a singer and actor in New York City, Hollywood and Vegas. In 1996, Steubenville Mayor Domenick Mucci assembled the Dean Martin Committee, led by Dean’s daughter Deana and her husband John Griffeth, with the purpose of establishing an annual festival in honor of the entertainer.
Pictured to the right are Actor Lou Martini Jr & Joe DiAlbert who had the pleasure of kick off the festival. Throughout the festival, memorabilia are on display in the Dean Martin Room of the Jefferson County Historical Museum and Library.
Today, the Dean Martin Festival benefits the Dean Martin Scholarship Funds for local high school students pursuing music and the arts. Other occasional events include a film festival, Dino’s Father’s Day Buffet, and the Dean Martin Horse Race at Mountaineer Racetrack and Gaming Resort (mtrgaming.com).
Some of the highlights of the festival included Deana Martin who put up am amazing show as she performed her Dad’s songs and stories much to the delight of the audience. Some history of the festival that some don’t know, Jerry Lewis and Dean Martin performed in the Steubenville parade way back in 1950.
Dino’s 100th Birthday celebration this year will be remembered for the next 100 years for it really was extra special this year, thanks to all who attended.
Dino Crocetti was born on June 7, 1917 in Steubenville, Ohio.
He died on December 25, 1995 in Beverly Hills, California