With Governor Jared Polis again formally proclaiming October as Italian Heritage Month, the Dante Alighieri Society of Denver is proud to announce its Fourth Annual Italian Heritage Month celebration, an event worthy of participation by Italians and non-Italians alike. You will find the full schedule of events in this issue of the Notiziario as well as on our website and in the October issue of Andiamo! Mark your calendars now so you can attend as many events as possible. Most events are free but don’t forget to RSVP for those special events which require reservations. Whether it’s the Italian language, food, history, culture, or music, we have it all for your entertainment and educational desires. A special thanks must go out to Susan Gurule who first imagined such a celebration four years ago, and to her committee which had to plan, change, adapt, and rethink the logistics of this celebration in order to make it happen. Please take advantage of this wonderful opportunity to indulge yourself in all things Italian! You’ll be glad you did. Buon divertimento! John Giardino
October - Italian Heritage Month
OCTOBER CELEBRATION: Our Society will be celebrating Italian Heritage Month with a calendar full of activities and cultural events, so please plan to enjoy as many of them as you can throughout October. Please see the attached flyer and look forward to events such as a presentation on Dante Alighieri, a musical concert, cooking classes, an Italian film, Italian dinners and more.
Welcome in the fall with a full celebration of Italian heritage. There’s a little bit of something for everybody. And, if you’re looking for a way to refresh, hone or practice your Italian language, look for the members at each event who are wearing a badge that says “io parlo italiano.”
The month kicks off on Saturday, October 1st with music, food and wine – all three classically Italian. Bonacquisti’s Winery will serve as the Dante Alighieri Society’s host with music by The Four Amicis featuring Mark Giarratano on vocals and Sal Martorano on the saxophone. Food from Three Sons includes housemade sliced bread with butter, caprese skewers, Italian egg roll bites, farfalle in red sauce, roasted peppers and Belfiore Italian sausage, a glass of red or white wine, and dessert.
You won’t want to miss Dr. Seth Fabian’s presentation on Friday night, October 7th on Dante Alighieri. Dr. Fabian has been a hit at the two presentation he has given the DAS members and we are eager to hear this year’s talk “Synthesizing Western Culture: Dante and Europe’s Christian, Classical, and Germanic Roots”. Dr. Fabian’s illuminating presentation will examine the cultural and historical context of Dante Alighieri’s masterpiece, the Divine Comedy, written in the Twelfth Century. Dr. Fabian will explain how western culture evolved from its Classical roots in ancient Greece and Rome, and was influenced by the Germanic warrior culture, which then resulted in a Christian worldview that emerges fully in Dante’s Divine Comedy. Dr. Fabian will also address the “Twelfth Century Renaissance”, an era of fascination with nature that revived Greek science and produced the first universities. Dante brings all of these traditions together in the Divine Comedy, presenting the literary summa of what still defines western culture.
The DAS has recreated an Italian piazza at the Sons and Daughters of Italy hall on Saturday, October 8. There will be delicious gelato, entertainment, Italian cars, an Italian backdrop for photo opportunities, a chance to sit and play Scopa, purchase books written by DAS members, Italian landscapes by a local artist, and more. And, he was very popular last year, Chad Straka is back drawing caricatures of everyone. You’ll even be able to learn how to dance the Tarantella at the Piazza Italiana.
If you have been missing the restaurant scene, join us at Colore Italian Restaurant on Sunday, October 9, for a delicious three-course meal featuring the famous Colore salad, choice of entrée with something for everyone, and selection of one of four tempting desserts. A glass of red or white wine is included. This event fills quickly, so reserve soon.
For those who have wanted information on obtaining their dual citizenship:
You’ll be pleased to know that two people who have gone through the process, one has even written a book on it, will show you how it’s done. Paula Coffee and Joe Mauro will guide you through the process.
Chef Adam Giardino has come up with fantastic recipes for two cooking classes. Read more about them in the flier in this Notiziario. But remember, the cooking classes are limited to twelve people and fill up quickly. If you’re interested, don’t wait, you may lose out.
Of special interest will be the concert in the afternoon of October 16 being broadcast from Matera, Italy featuring Giulia Olivieri and Paola Montemurro on piano and Davide Olivieri on the violoncello. The concert entitled “Maestri all’opera” will feature the music of Vivaldi, Chopin, Casella and others.
How different can Italian bingo – Tombola – be from American bingo?
Come and find out and win some prizes in the process. You’ll get to enjoy pizza while having fun, you can’t go wrong with that.
And, is there any better way to spend a Friday night than watching a good movie?
On Friday, October 28th, the DAS will be showing Un boss in salotto complete with popcorn and beverages. See you at the movie!!
The Dante Alighieri Society of Denver gives a warm welcome to the following new members:
Saqib Amir, Sarah Bleau, Angela Bruns, Elaine Hartman, Sabrina Iacovetta, Hannah Khalil, Killian Knowles, Carrie Licata, Patrick Lynch, Tiernan McKay, Lindi Mills, Nikolas Mehan, Joseph Pennino, Michelle Peterson, Natalie Montoya, Lindsey Venner, Jeff Warrington, Monica and Ted Wendelin, Maggie Wilson, Scott Wise,
ITALIAN LANGUAGE CLASSES
The Society’s fall session of Italian language classes has begun. The 10-week winter session of Italian language classes will start in January 2023. The schedule for winter classes will be posted on the Dante Society website by December 1, 2022. The classes are taught by experienced and talented bi-lingual teachers, and include beginner, intermediate, and advanced classes. Each class meets for 90 minutes, once a week, at 3549 Navajo Street, Denver, in the parish offices of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Church. 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. Please register early because classes do fill up. For more information, please contact the Education Chair Suzanne Fasing at
Hospitality Chairperson seeking volunteers:
Camilla Marcantonio has agreed to serve as Hospitality Chairperson for our Society and will be recruiting members to help with refreshments at our monthly cultural meetings. If you are willing to contribute to our social hour following a cultural program by bringing a dessert to share, please email Camilla at:
AUGURI DI BUON COMPLEANNO
We wish our members a Buon Compleanno during their birthday month.
Nancy Landolfi - Oct 1
Dave Puzo - Oct 1
Joe Pennino - Oct 6
Barbara Amato - Oct 10
Maggie Wilson - Oct 17
Dina Horwedel - Oct 23
Leslie Minor - Oct 24
Ania Chudziak - Oct 27
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
COOKING CLASS OF AUGUST 27TH
Thanks to chef Adam Giardino we have been able to offer more cooking classes than in previous years. Keep an eye on the Notiziario for news about upcoming classes.
The class started with an eggplant and roasted tomato caponata followed by pan seared cornish game hens with smashed fall vegetables and a zucchini salad. Dessert was a butternut squash pie with an amaretto glaze and whipped cream. Adam always puts his own spin on the recipes and everything was delicious.
Many thanks to Francesca Howell for a delightful presentation on the hidden festivals of Italy and their origin and celebration today. We hope she will return to share her knowledge and experience about this topic again. Such great information for those of us planning a trip to Italy! The presentation took place on Friday, September 9 at Mt. Carmel Parish Hall.
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…. Go to web site www.kingsoopers.com/communityrewards
- Sign in or create new account, have your loyalty number that is on back of card if you have one
- Once you have account, enroll nowfrom list of organizations
- Can type in Dante Alighieri Society of Denver in search for it to pop up, or go through list which is alphabetical
- Then click on it and you are enrolled
This will be easy once enrolled, just swipe credit card for all purchases.
The Dante Society has already received over $1,000 toward our Scholarship Fund through the King Soopers Neighborhood Reward Program. A hearty thanks to our members and friends who have participated in the program. If you have any questions, kindly contact Veronica Goodrich 303.421.1547 or Carol Marsala 303.237.0688.
TIPS ON ITALY By Tonya Clement. Percorso 66
If you ask 100 Italians, what is the first thing they think of when they hear the words Italian Heritage more than half will likely suggest something related to food or memories of gathering around the table to share recipes passed down through many generations. We can surely all agree that one of the best things about going to Italy is indeed the food, but I am quickly learning that I do not have to travel all that way to find a good homemade Italian meal. With a little patience and research, it can be found in almost city in America and almost always at an event hosted by the Dante Alighieri Society.
It is estimated that more than 4 million Italians immigrated to the US between 1880 and 1924. While Italians loved all that America offered, they did not abandon their roots or their family traditions. They brought with them recipes handed down from generation to generation and the desire to form strong friendships and maintain close family structures. Italians know the best way to forge solid friendships is over food and wine.
It is easy to find concentrated pockets of great Italian restaurants in most major cities like San Francisco, New Jersey, Denver, NYC, St. Louis and Chicago. They all have very dense and tightly knit Italian communities and neighborhoods with given names such as The Hill, Little Italy or Little Sicily. Over the years, like all American families the children of these immigrants began to marry or follow careers that took them away from these original settlements and consequently the Italian magic pixie dust was spread all over our country. Now it is simply a matter of driving past the American Chain restaurants like Olive Garden and spending five minutes doing a google search to locate a hidden gem.
This past week I found myself just over 100 miles West of Saint Louis in a small town of Rolla, Missouri just off I-44 doing that very search. To my surprise Di Trapani’s at 400 E. 6th Street popped up in the feed. I was not sure what to expect in what felt like the middle of nowhere but the second I entered the restaurant, I felt I had been exported to Italy. The walls were covered with photos of generations of the Trapani family doing what Italians do, enjoying one another at the dinner table surrounded by food and wine.
As I perused the menu, I looked around for some history about the restaurant and nothing was found. I asked the waitress if she could shed any background. She said, I will send the chef over to your table. Within a few minutes of receiving my wine Michael Scheffer approached my table with a warm friendly smile. With a little prompting, I learned that the restaurant was named for his mother’s family which immigrated to the US from Sicily in the 1920’s.
I was quick to tell him that I was not a food critic but that I instead was responsible for providing our membership an Italian tip each month. This month I had chosen to write about the benefits of seeking out small town, family-owned Italian restaurants when traveling. I knew I could count on receiving a good meal and a good glass of wine but I did not expect to receive a historical soundbite about a triple shooting in St. Louis’s Dogtown neighborhood and learned that one of the victims was Tony Di Trapani.
Michael encouraged me to read a book titled Gangs of Saint Louis (Men of Respect) to get the full story. It turns out this murder resulted in this Italian gang receiving one of the most quirky nicknames in American criminal history, The Pillow Gang. You will have to read the book to find out how and why this name stuck.
Seeking out Di Trapani’s was a rewarding and enriching cultural experience. From the food, to the wine, to the conversation, to the history and to the finale, the best Cannoli on Route 66. Each one made to order to ensure the crust remains crispy. This was the end of a good evening.
BRIEF NEWS FROM ITALY From The Local and We the Italians.
- Italy will hold national elections on September 25 to elect a new
- Life is getting more expensive in Italy amid soaring inflation, but there are big differences in the prices of everyday consumer goods depending on which part of the country you're in.
- Italian energy giant Eni said Russia had delivered less gas than usual on Wednesday after the closure of a major pipeline, in the latest interruption to European energy supplies.
- The isolation period for symptomatic Covid cases will be cut from seven days to five as Italy’s epidemiological situation improved again, according to an update from the health ministry on Wednesday.
- The Universal Man In Las Vegas: Leonardo A new museum for immersive and high-tech digital art installations, opened on June 10, 2022 in Las Vegas with the world premiere of Leonardo: The Universal Man.
- Wine: the world's largest barrel is in the Langhe in Piedmont, Guinness World Records says: More world records in Italy: this time we are talking about wine, more specifically the world's largest barrel located in the Langhe region and certified by Guinness World Records.
- For the first time ever, Italy tops European swimming championships medal table. The 2022 European Championships wrapped up from Rome, Italy but not before the host nation sealed its spot atop the overall swimming medal table. For the first time ever, Italy has won the European Championships medal table, amassing a total of 35 pieces of hardware. The nation’s women claimed 13 medals while the men grabbed 20, with 13 golds falling into Italy’s combined total.
- Pavarotti honored with star on Hollywood Walk of Fame. A star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame was posthumously unveiled honoring legendary opera singer Luciano Pavarotti. His daughter Cristina Pavarotti accepted the star on behalf of the family.
- Flash flooding triggered by heavy rainfall left several towns in the Marche region devastated on Friday, with at least 11 people killed and four missing. The wave of severe storms currently hitting Italy has taken the number of extreme weather events this summer up to 1,642 - five times the number recorded a decade ago, records show.
October – Italian Heritage Month
See flier for many events.
Fall term began – September 19
The Dante Alighieri Society of Denver exists to share and celebrate the richness
of the Italian culture and language with the entire community.