Dante Alighieri Notiziario - Denver

Jan 2019 Notiziario


Unlike past years, this event will take place Friday evening, January 11 at Mount Carmel Parish Hall, 3549 Navajo Street, Denver.  The Society is planning on serving pizza, salad, dessert and drinks after the installation.  Please plan to attend and support the newly elected officers.  It is important that you RSVP to Vera Buffaloe at 303-886-0608 or buffaloev@gmail.com  Grazie.


The annual holiday gathering was held on Saturday, December 8, and attracted a full house thanks to the committee who did a fantastic job organizing this annual event.   The food was plentiful and delicious, the gift exchange was fun as always and the attendees enjoyed the opportunity to socialize.  A special thank you goes to Margaret Foderaro for the beautiful flower arrangements placed on the tables.  Again, kudos to the committee for their diligent work

BUON  ANNOHappy New Year



It’s that time of year again.  Membership renewal cards will be going out at the end of the month of December.  I hope you will join us for another year of interesting lectures, movies and fun.  Please review the information on the card and make any corrections before mailing it back to me with your payment.  ATTENTION STUDENTS!  If you plan to continue taking language classes in 2019, it will be necessary for you to renew your membership regardless of when you joined the DAS.  Please pay for your class and membership at the same time.  If I receive payment prior to mailing the renewal cards, I will not send a card to you.  Instead I will check your current information from your registration and fill the card out for you.   Grazie, Rhonda Hopkins, Membership Chairperson.



The Dante Alighieri Society will offer a 10-week winter session of Italian language classes, beginning January 7, 2019.  The schedule for winter classes will be posted on the Dante Alighieri website by December 1, and is listed below.  Students must register and pay for classes through the website.  The classes are taught by experienced and talented bi-lingual teachers.  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 $100 for members and $130 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 suzannefasing@yahoo.com  or call 303-810-9042.   To register and pay for classes, visit the web site:  http://dantealighieriofdenver.com/classes/language-classes



Students will be back to school soon and the Scholarship Committee is hoping to see an increase in the number of scholarship applications.  The University of Colorado has approved a new program that will see students going to Italy to volunteer for community service.  This program fits within the guidelines of the Dante Scholarship Program so we will likely be considering applications from students participating in this program.  Thank you again to all who have contributed to the Scholarship Program last year. Without your continued support we would not be able to assist students wishing to learn more about the Italian culture.


Next time you head out to King Soopers, be sure to take a Dante Society King Soopers gift card with you. King Soopers offers organizations a simple way to raise money by returning 5% of grocery sales made on the card to the organization. The cards initially cost $25 but can be reloaded for any amount at checkout.  Every time you reload your card, King Soopers/Kroger adds the amount to Dante’s Reward account.  When the account balance in any given month reaches $5,000, Dante gets a check for 5% of the total.  If we don't hit $5,000 in that month, the balance rolls forward to the next month. The card can be used for purchases at King Soopers/Kroger Stores including gas.

(You cannot use the card for services such as Western Union, lottery tickets, stamps, money orders, ticket master or any other gift cards). By continuing to use the cards for purchases, Dante members will provide an on-going source of income for scholarships. If you give gift cards to friends, family or charitable organizations, consider giving a Dante Society King Soopers gift card. The Dante Society cards cannot be purchased at King Soopers. The Dante Society cards must be purchased through Dante by calling Veronica Goodrich at 303-421-1547




Alitalia: Washington, un nuovo volo a stelle e a strisce dal 2 maggio, nuova rotta da Roma.  L’anima dell’America è anche una destinazione: dal 2 maggio ti portiamo direttamente nel cuore pulsante degli Stati Uniti, con la nuova rotta Roma-Washington.

Costellata da monumenti nazionali e sedi governative, Washington è molto di più della città che ospita la Casa Bianca. È una metropoli pittoresca ed eccitante, emblema del passato, della politica e della cultura americana, con centinaia di siti storici, monumenti e musei.  Dagli edifici in stile neoclassico, all’iconica cupola bianca del Campidoglio, fino all’inconfondibile obelisco del Washington Monument, preparati a scoprire una città ancora più emozionante di quella dei film.  (ItalPlanet News)


Dante discount card

The agreement between the Vatican and the Dante has been renewed once again for the year 2018.   It allows us to visit the museums at a lower price and get in front of the long lines simply by presenting the Dante Society membership card.  The cost to visit the Museums is 16 euros per person, and 1 euro if you decide to purchase the Art and Faith DVD on the Treasures of the Vatican.   The Dante membership card may be obtained by contacting Rhonda Hopkins at 720-596-4169, rhop626@gmail.com, or Gianfranco Marcantonio at 303-494-3080 glm3942@yahoo.com .

For additional privileges for Dante members while in Italy, please visit the following site: http://ladante.it/diventa-socio/le-convenzioni


meet our members Mary and ZakGETTING TO KNOW YOU:   Mary Hanna with husband Zak.

  1. What region in Italy were your ancestors from? If you do not have Italian ancestors, what is the ethnic background of your family. Have you ever been there and what was your experience?

 I was born in Calabria, Italy as Maria Franca Florio, came directly to Denver in December of 1955 with my Father Enrico, my mother Teresa and 3 sisters, and I was the most mature (oldest or number one) My husband Zak & I have traveled to Italy every year for the last 10 years.  Once I took him to Italy he loved it so much he wants to keep going back; he loves Italy and my Italian family that keeps asking us to return.


  1. When did your ancestors arrive in America, and where did they settle originally? Did they come right to Colorado? 

We were brought to the US by my father’s great uncle Leo Florio, who came to the US in 1904 and also later brought my father’s 2 brothers and 1 sister. They all lived in Greeley and have the Florio shoe store that opened in 1922 by Leo and later was passed on to the 2 brothers and then to two children. It is now on its 4th generation.  We settled in Denver as his sister Erelia lived here and helped us find Teresa Maroni who was sent to us by Christ the King Church and who took us to the dentist for the first time, bought our school clothes, and more at her own expense.  I believe she had so much influence on me when I was growing up that maybe having someone who cared about us is the reason I now enjoy helping people.


  1. If you had to describe yourself in one word, what word would that be and why.

GENEROUS to young and old. I talk to all the small children in malls, especially when they are crying.  They seem to stop and the parents thank me and that is a great feeling.  I have found a great deal of satisfaction in helping and doing things for people that need my help


  1. Who was the most influential to you growing up, and why.

 My Mother—-for she had the courage to leave her parents, sisters brothers and come with my Dad and 4 girls to the United States, only to find that within a year my Dad was hospitalized in Pueblo because of mental health problems from being a prisoner of the Germans in the war and on March 14, 1959 was deported back to Italy. They gave my mother a choice either to stay in the US with her girls or leave with her husband but the family advised her to stay in the US to raise her girls because she wasn’t educated enough to be able to work in Italy and support her girls.  She worked two jobs and refused to date men or bring any men to the house until all her girls married and left the house.  She did re-marry a couple of years later.


  1. Tell us a little about, employment, family, interests and so on.

 mary's familyI have been in Real Estate since 1969 and still have my own company, Expert Realty & Management CO. I have done a lot of volunteer work:  I was a Director of the South Metro Realtor Association for 3 years, member of the American Business Women’s Association, Aspen Leaf Chapter, served as treasurer for several years and was voted “Woman of the year 1982”.  As a Realtor I served on the Professional Standards Committee and many other committees too numerous to mention.  In 1982 I was published in “Who is Who in Real Estate in America”. I was also Director Treasure/Manager for the Cherry Hills Raft Club for 25 years.  I competed in ballroom dancing in Acapulco, Las Vegas, The Broadmoor, and several other hotels in Denver. I had one son by a previous marriage who died in 2005. I have been a member of Colorado Symphony Association and have volunteered in several different capacities for 25 years.   I have been married to my husband Zak for 37 years.


  1. How would you most like to be remembered?

For my caring, warm and generous spirit.


  1. What attracted you about joining the Dante Alighieri Society.

 I didn’t know it existed until Gisella Isidori invited us to a luncheon and told me about the Dante Alighieri Society.  We do enjoy it the few times we have been there.

Passport picture of Mary (oldest) with mother and sisters.

NEW YEAR IN ITALY   From Tripsavvy by Martha Makerjian.

Italians love festivals, and they love fireworks, and during New Year's (il Capodanno), they have an abundance of both in cities and towns all over Italy for the celebrations marking the end of the old year and the beginning of the new.

La Festa di San Silvestro is celebrated December 31 on New Year's Eve. As with most Italian festivals, food plays a major role, and families and friends get together for huge feasts. Tradition calls for lentils to be served on New Year’s Eve because they symbolize money and good fortune for the coming year. The dinner in many parts of Italy also includes a cotechino, a large spiced sausage, or a Campione, stuffed pig's trotter, as pork symbolizes the richness of life in the coming year.  New Year's Eve sees many festive events in towns throughout Italy, and they’ll be crowded, so plan your visit in advance (including parking, which will be at a premium).

New Year’s Fireworks and Dancing.  Most towns in Italy have public fireworks in a central square, but Naples is known for having one of the best and biggest displays in the country. Smaller towns build bonfires in the central square where villagers will congregate into the early morning.  Many towns have public music and dancing before the fireworks, too. Rome, Milan, Bologna, Palermo, and Naples put on huge popular outdoor shows with pop and rock bands, and these events can sometimes be seen on television as well.

New Year's Eve Traditions.  Guests of private or public parties are sometimes entertained with a game called Tombola, which is similar to Bingo. The New Year is also celebrated with spumante or prosecco, Italian sparkling wine, and New Year's parties, whether public or private, will often last until sunrise.  An old custom that is still followed in some places, especially in the south of Italy, is throwing your old things out the window to symbolize your readiness to accept the New Year. So, keep an eye out for falling objects if you're walking around outside near midnight.

Don't forget to wear your red underwear to ring in the new year. Italian folklore claims this will bring luck in the coming year.

New Year's Eve in Rome.   bridgeRome's traditional New Year's Eve celebrations are centered in Piazza del Popolo. Huge crowds celebrate with rock and classical music, dancing, and fireworks. On New Year's day (while the adults are sleeping), children will be entertained in the square by performers and acrobats.  Another good place to celebrate is near the Colosseum on Via di Fori Imperiali where there will be live music and midnight fireworks. There's usually a classical music concert outdoors on the square in front of the Quirinale, off Via Nazionale, which is also followed by fireworks at midnight.  For an elegant evening with dinner in a great restaurant, panoramic views of Rome, and live jazz try the beautiful Casina Valadier in a park overlooking the city. Several theaters present symphony or opera on New Year's Eve and Rome nightclubs also have special events.

New Year's Eve in Venice.  Traditional gondola tourMany restaurants in Venice go all out with huge feasts on New Year's Eve, starting at 9 p.m. and lasting until midnight. Although expensive, they tend to be very good with many courses and lots of wine, but be sure to make a reservation ahead of time because restaurants will fill up early for these special events. St Mark's Square has a huge celebration with music, a giant fireworks display, Bellini Brindisi (toast), and a huge group kiss at midnight; the group kiss is also held in Piazza Ferretto in Mestre.  On New Year's Day, many bathers take a chilling dip in the waters of Venice's Lido Beach, so if you're planning on staying in Venice, there's plenty to keep you entertained throughout the first of the year, too.


Cultural Meetings

Feb 8


Installation of Officers – Jan. 11


Language – Winter begin Jan. 2019

NOTE: Cultural meetings, movies, and cooking classes take place at Mt. Carmel Church Parish Hall, 3549 Navajo St., Denver.

Language classes are taught at Mt. Carmel Church Office.

Connect With Us

Mailing Address:

Dante Alighieri Society of Denver
3510 Broadlands Lane, #102,
Broomfield, CO 80023


Mount Carmel Parish Hall
3549 Navajo Street
Denver, CO

Dante Alighieri Society Denver, CO

Where We Meet

© 2019 Dante Alighieri Society of Denver in Denver, CO