The 2023-2025 Dante Alighieri Society Board of Directors was sworn in at our regular cultural meeting on Friday, January 13. That date, Friday the 13th, has become known as a day when bad things happen. From my perspective, just the opposite occurred that evening. I am truly privileged and honored to be surrounded by the people with whom I work on the Board. Every one of them is dedicated, hard- working and has the best interest of the Dante Alighieri Society of Denver at heart. I look forward to the next two years as we work together to “share and celebrate the richness of the Italian culture and language with the entire community”. You can see a picture of the 2023-2025 Board members in this Notiziario and on our new website; www.dantealighieriofdenver.com . As always, please contact me with any questions or concerns. I have a great team who can help.
John Giardino, President
The Dante Alighieri Society of Denver’s Board for the 2023-2024 term.
Left to right: Hospitality, Camilla Marcantonio; Scholarship, Pamela Marcantonio; Historian, Gianfranco Marcantonio; Education, Suzanne Fasing; President, John Giardino; Secretary, Idamae Casagranda; Treasurer, Nick D’Adamio; Vice President, Veronica Goodrich; Membership, Rhonda Hopkins.
COOKING CLASS In Cucina con Capocuoco Adam Giardino
Just in time for Valentine’s Day, the February 11 culinary class, Cena D’Amore, will provide the opportunity for you and your sweetheart (if you so desire) to prepare a meal you’ll fall in love with. Begin with an antipasto of spicy roasted red peppers, capocollo and gorgonzola piccolo rollino served with a basil salad bruschetta; dine passionately on a primo of seared beef tenderloin with a creamy lobster sauce and heirloom tomato salad; and finish sweetly with a dolce of Italian strawberry crepes drizzled with a chocolate hazelnut sauce and topped with ricotta whipped cream. Space is limited to ten persons (or five couples!) so register now on our new website, www.dantealighieriofdenver.com under the culinary tab, or contact Rhonda Hopkins at
FEBRUARY 10, 2023 CULTURAL PROGRAM
Just in time for Valentine’s Day, our February cultural program features a presentation by prominent music historian Betsy Schwarm. L’amore dell mia vita: Italian love songs with a dash of Puccini. Italian lovers have long had a passionate reputation, especially in their music! We’ll sigh along with songs of Tosti, Leoncavallo, and de Curtis, along with a Puccini aria on the theme of how love can conquer even the coldest heart. Texts and translations will be provided.
JANUARY 13, 2023 CULTURAL MEETING
Following the installation of Board officer, President John Giardino gave an interesting presentation on how the Venetian gondola is made because the gondola is not just an ordinary boat. He described how it is designed and constructed in addition to the nuances on how to ensure its safety and navigability.
It's that time of year again. Membership in the Dante Alighieri Society runs from January through
December so 2023 renewal cards will be mailed near the end of December. Please make any corrections on the card before mailing it back with your payment. Thank you, Rhonda.
You can renew and pay for your 2023 membership online when you register for the January classes.
ITALIAN LANGUAGE CLASSES SPRING SESSION BEGINS MARCH 2023
The Spring 2023 session of Italian language classes offered by the Dante Alighieri Society of Denver will be in-person language classes at 3549 Navajo Street, Denver 80211 in the parish office of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Church. Each class meets for 90 minutes, once a week, for 10 weeks, beginning in late March 2023. Beginner, intermediate and advanced classes will be offered. The class schedule will be posted on the Society website by February 20, 2023. Classes are taught by talented bi-lingual instructors who have significant experience teaching Italian. Cost is $115 for members and $145 for non-members. New members are welcome to join the Dante Alighieri Society when they register for classes. For more information, please contact the Education Chair Suzanne Fasing at
The Dante Alighieri Society of Denver seeks nominations for the Annual Donne di Merito Awards
The Dante Alighieri Society of Denver has long acknowledged the contributions and achievements of Italian and Italian-American women to society as a whole. The Society now wishes to recognize Italian and Italian-American women: donne di merito (women of merit), who have demonstrated outstanding accomplishments that have contributed to the promotion, maintenance and preservation of the Italian culture. Candidates can be local, national or international women who have significant ties to Colorado and have made enduring contributions to Colorado’s Italian heritage. Awards may be given to historical or contemporary women. Award nominations are due on February 18, 2023. Recipients will be announced on March 10, 2023, at the Dante Alighieri Society’s cultural meeting in conjunction with International Women’s Month. Presentation of the awards will be held during the Society’s Awards Luncheon on Sunday, May 7, 2023, at the Mount Vernon Canyon Club.
Donne di Merito candidates may be submitted online HERE
Deadline for nominations: Saturday, February 18, 2023
Recipients announced: Friday, March 10, 2023
Presentation of awards: Sunday, May 7, 2023
MOTHER CABRINI SELECTED FOR COLORADO WOMEN’S HALL OF FAME
St. Frances Cabrini (Mother Cabrini) has been selected for induction into the Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame, based upon the nomination submitted by the Dante Alighieri Society of Denver. Mother Cabrini is receiving this prestigious award for her outstanding accomplishments as a champion of immigrants, children, and the poor. A native of Italy, she was sent to the United States in 1889 at the direction of Pope Leo XIII to assist the masses of Italian immigrants who were living in harsh conditions. She established 67 schools, orphanages, hospitals, and social service agencies in the United States, in Central and South America, and in Europe. Mother Cabrini arrived in Colorado in 1902. At that time, Italian immigrants working in the mines were dying of lung disease, leaving many children orphaned. Mother Cabrini started her first orphanage in the Notary house on Navajo Street. Soon after she established a bigger orphanage, the Queen of Heaven orphanage at 4825 Federal Boulevard which operated until 1968, when orphanages were closed and replaced by foster care homes. Mother Cabrini has a special connection to Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Church. She was one of the leaders who raised funds to rebuild the Church that is standing today, after the original structure was destroyed by fire. She established its elementary school for the children of Italian immigrants in 1902. Mother Cabrini founded a summer camp for orphan girls on the grounds of the Shrine in Golden in 1910. On March 15, 2023, Mother Cabrini will be inducted into the Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame in a formal induction ceremony and celebration at the Sheraton Downtown Denver Hotel. Tickets to the Gala will be available in January at www.cogreatwomen.org If you would like to sit at a table with other Dante Alighieri Society members, please contact Suzanne Fasing at
SCHOLARSHIPS TO STUDY IN ITALY 2023-2024
We will again be awarding scholarships to university students planning to study in Italy in the coming year. If you or a student you know might be a candidate for a scholarship, please look for more information and application forms on our website HERE
AUGURI DI BUON COMPLEANNO
We wish our members Buon Compleanno during their birthday month.
Jeff Warrington - Feb 1
Michelle Link - Feb 4
Veronica Goodrich - Feb 7
Bob Badovinac - Feb 10
Samantha Hagan - Feb 10
Mary Hanna - Feb 12
Stephanie Panozzo - Feb 12
Tony Tapia - Feb 13
Margaret Foderaro - Feb 15
Mike Lovette - Feb 18
Pamela Marcantonio - Feb 22
Chantel James - Feb 23
Michael Lanciloti - Feb 23
Jackson Vaughan - Feb 24
Vincent Lupo - Feb 25
Kellie Mills - Feb 25
Shari Ulrich - Feb 25
Thomas Nesler - Feb 26
Tony Andrews - Feb 28
Rea Jackson - Feb 28
We want to include more members in this column, so please send a quick email,
with your birthday month and day, to Dante Society board member, Suzanne Fasing, at
The Dante Alighieri Society of Denver gives a warm welcome to the following new members:
Marcus Abeyta, Micharl Barthelmes, Sue Berkowitz,Bruna and Robert Brashears, Andrea Friesner, Alex Keegan, John Nunziato, and Alex Stephan.
TIPS ON ITALY By Tonya Clement. One of the most famous chocolates of Italy.
Baci Perugina is an icon that was created in Italy in 1922 by an original recipe used by Luisa Spagnoli. Luisa Spagnoli was born in 1877 and created the Perugina chocolate factory with Giovanni Buitoni in the historical center of Perugia.
Spagnoli’s recipe is still used today, 100 years later, which makes this candy so beloved and special in the hearts of many people. The candy has a soft interior with a hazelnut grain and an exterior coated in dark chocolate. Luisa called her little candy a “Cazzotto” because it resembles a punch or a fist. Buitoni did not like the name and changed it to “Baci” reasoning that consumers would prefer a kiss to a punch.
Perugina is best known for their little foil wrapped Baci Hazelnut Kisses. One of their most popular candies for Valentines, offers a chocolate covered cherry in luscious syrup in place of the hazelnut which appears similar to the local Brach Chocolate covered cherry found in the US but as we all know, everything from Italy tastes better. It is said their standards are higher for producing chocolate.
The candies are known for housing a love note inside each foil wrapper. You see Giovanni Buitoni, was the CEO of the factory. According to legend, Luisa used to send Giovanni love notes on little pieces of paper which she wrapped around the chocolates that had to be tested. Her sweet gesture was the spark that made Baci Perugina go down in history as the perfect symbol of love for Valentine’s Day or any day.
Now available worldwide, the company is located just outside of Perugia which is a hilltop city in the center of Italy. The company was actually founded in 1907, was purchased by Nestle in 1988 and began offering a chocolate making school in 2007. If you visit the factory, you can schedule a tour or take a class on making candy. In the meantime, order a box on-line just in time for Valentine’s Day.
BRIEF NEWS FROM ITALY
- Italy's Health Ministry is preparing to recommend measures against the current Covid pandemic if the situation worsens.
- The cost-of-living crisis continues into 2023, but there are reasons to be optimistic about life in Italy in the coming 12 months.
- Travel is picking up again across the globe, and Italy is no exception.
- Foreign visitors may think a fee of just two euros to see Rome's famous Pantheon is more than fair, but the suggestion of charging for entry at all has sparked anger in Italy.
- Italian anti-mafia police caught Sicilian godfather Matteo Messina Denaro last Monday, ending a 30-year manhunt for Italy's most-wanted fugitive.
- Italy launched a new high-speed Frecciarossa train linking Rome and Milan in two hours and 45 minutes, the shortest journey time yet for the 565-kilometre trip
The Dante Alighieri Society of Denver expresses sincere condolences to the family of Barbara Tinucci who passed on December 31, 2022. Barbara and her husband Bob were very active and contributed to the Society for many years. Among other facts, Barbara was the project leader in creating the attractive Dante banner. Her husband Bob was treasurer for several years and was president of the Society for the term 2002-2003. The Dante Alighieri Society of Denver will miss these two excellent members.
FUND RAISING OPPORTUNITY FOR SCHOLARSHIP FUND
King Soopers offers organizations a simple way to raise money by returning 5% of grocery sales made on your card to the organization. To participate in the program…
For Computer Users:
- Go to kingsoopers.com - in the upper right-hand corner of the page – hover over the Account icon
- First sign into your account. (Or create a new account) Once that is done, go back to the same drop-down menu by hovering over the account icon again, this time click on the My Account Button.
- This will take you to another page – scroll to the bottom of the page and look for COMMUNITY REWARDS SECTION – click on the view Community Reward link.
- This will take you to another page look for the Find Organization Spot – type in Dante Alighieri and hit the magnifying icon and it will bring up Dante Alighieri Society of Denver click that and you will be enrolled.
To enroll using the app on your cell phone:
- Go to the King Soopers app once you are there go to the top right of the of the app where the three lines are, hit the three lines.
- This will send you over to another page – three spots down on this page is the Rewards Link, hit that spot.
- This will take you to the rewards area, click on the Community Rewards Link
- This will take you to the enrollment page – hit the blue button to search for organizations – then type in Dante Alighieri and hit the search and this will bring up the Dante Alighieri Society of Denver click on the name and you will be enrolled.
After you shop, at the bottom of your receipt will state: “we are contributing to the Dante Alighieri Society of Denver”.
If you have any questions, kindly contact Veronica Goodrich 303-421-1547 or Carol Marsala 303-237-0688.
Cooking class – Feb. 11
Spring term begins in March, 2023