June 2018 Notiziario


June 2018 Notiziario


Members and friends of The Dante Alighieri Society, please note that for the month of June the cultural meeting will be held on Sunday, June 3.  Please see details on concert just below.


Our own member, Rosanna Patrona-Aurand will perform with Judy Bridewell-Biondini in a duo piano recital in the month of June.  They will be performing music of Gershwin, Dvorak, Barber, and Piazzolla.  The performance will be on Sunday, June 3, 2018, 3:00 p.m. at the Rockley Foundation Recital Hall, 8591 W. Colfax Avenue, Lakewood 80215. A reception with refreshments will follow the performance.  There is no charge and all donations will go toward the Dante Alighieri Society Music Scholarship Fund.


Gelato SocialGet ready to have some summer Fun! The Dante Alighieri Society of Denver is hosting a Gelato Social on Saturday July 21 at the 23rd Avenue Sculpture Studio for the entire Dante Alighieri family, members, guests, grandchildren and friends. Not only will you enjoy the scrumptious gelato, you’ll also be treated to the talents of Reid Belstock, a nationally touring juggler and visual comedian.

Reid BelstockReid, a graduate of the famed Ringling Brothers and Barnum and Bailey Circus Clown College Program, currently performs as part of the two-man show, Smirk.  In the past he has performed at Walt Disney World, the MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas, aboard the Royal Caribbean Cruise Line, the Hotel Juraku in Japan, the Happy Kingdom in Shen Zhen, China and numerous theatres nationwide.  In addition to the genuine Italian gelato and Reid’s amazing feats, you can also enjoy a rousing game of bean bag toss while visiting with fellow members and guests.

Tickets are $5 per person or $20 for a group of five.  All tickets must be purchased in advance as no tickets will be available at the event.  Seating is limited so claim your spot NOW! Send your check, made payable to the Dante Alighieri Society, to Susan Gurule, 2424 Stuart Court, Denver, CO 80212.  If you have any questions call Susan at 720-484-1014.

Dante Alighieri Society Gelato Social Saturday, July 21st
23rd Avenue Sculpture Studio, 3500 W. 23rd Avenue
1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.

$5 per person   |    $20 for groups of 5


The Society is glad to report that we have been contacted by two members who are willing to help the Society with social media in order to advertise our goals and events to our community.  Mille grazie!


A sincere grazie goes to Rosalie Galasso Caputo, member of the Dante and teacher of Italian at the Montessori Middle School in Evergreen. Her presentation described and showed the Cultural Video Exchange that she has established between her students and those in a Middle School in Lurate Caccivio, Italy.  The audience saw her students and those in Italy speaking Italian and English about various cultural aspects of their respective countries.  Rosalie shared with us how this exchange developed and what the goals are for the young people in both countries.

Presentation between English and Italian classes


On Sunday May 6, the annual Scholarship Awards Luncheon took place at the Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities. The nearly  forty people in attendance enjoyed the opportunity to interact with our scholarship winners, a breathtaking violin performance from our music scholarship winner and a sumptuous meal. A heartfelt “Thank You” goes out to all who have contributed to the Dante Scholarship Fund.  This most important part of the Society could not continue without your support.

Rosanna Patrona-Aurand with music scholarship winner violinist Seth Bixler

Rosanna Patrona-Aurand with music scholarship winner violinist Seth Bixler

Performance by Seth Pixler

Performance by Seth Pixler

Scholarship ceremony 2018

Our scholarship winners for 2017 are the following: Gian Aurand, from Metropolitan State University, received the Giulio Marcantonio memorial scholarship and will be going to the University of Torino. Rebecca Leyva-Hernandez, from  Metropolitan State University, will be studying at The Lorenzo de’ Medici International Institute in Florence, Italy. Seth Bixler, from the University of Colorado in Boulder, received the Vincent and Gay Taglialavore scholarship and will attend the Siena International Music Program.  Grazie to chairpersons John Giardino and Rosanna Patrona-Aurand, and the scholarship committee.

John G, academic scholarship winner
John Giardino with academic scholarship winner Rebecca Leyva-Hernandez and Gian Aurand

BENVENUTA   The Dante Alighieri Society gives a very warm welcome to Victoria Winterscheidt.



When you go to King Soopers, 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 must be purchased through Dante by calling Veronica Goodrich at 303-421-1547.


The Dante Alighieri Society will offer a 10-week summer session of Italian language classes, beginning the week of June 18, 2018.  The schedule for summer classes is posted on the Dante Alighieri website, and is listed below.  The registration deadline for the summer session is June 11, 2018.  Students must register and pay for classes through the website.  The classes are taught by experienced and talented bi-lingual teachers, and include beginner and advanced classes  Intermediate level classes will be offered in the fall session.  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 for classes, visit the web site:  http://dantealighieriofdenver.com/classes/language-classes/

GETTING TO KNOW YOU   Music chairperson Rosanna Patrona-Aurand.

Rosanna, Italian Language instructor1) 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?

My father’s parents were born in Marineo (Palermo, Sicilia). My mother’s father was Neapolitan, and her mother was from Maddalone.                                 

I had the interesting experience of living in Palermo in 1973-74, as a Rotary Graduate Fellow.  I also traveled to Italy during the 8 years I lived and worked in Lausanne, Switzerland.

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

My grandfather, Giacomo Patronaggio, arrived on Ellis Island in 1912 on the ship “Berlin”. He settled in Brooklyn and my grandparents raised 7 children, with my father being their youngest.  My mother’s parents settled in Providence, Rhode Island, and my mother was the oldest of 7 children. My parents raised us on Long Island, New York until we moved to Southern California when I was 14. My Dad shortened our last name to Patrona in 1947, but all of my relatives still have the original last name.

3) If you had to describe yourself in one word, what word would that be, and why?

If I had to describe myself in one word, it might be “grateful”. I am so glad to live surrounded by nature in the Denver Foothills, to be able to play the piano and be a nurse, and have a lovely family and good friends.

4) Who was most influential to you growing up, and why?

Growing up, I was a dreamer. I wanted to travel and see the world. People I admired  growing up included Albert Schweitzer, Sergei Rachmaninoff and Pope John Paul II.  Schweitzer I admired for his selflessness in treating people in Africa, Rachmaninoff because of the music he composed and performed, and Pope John Paul II because of his brilliance in foreign languages, holiness and intelligence.

5) Tell us a little about you, employment, family, interests and so on.

Currently, I work as a Vascular Access Specialist RN and travel to many hospitals and skilled nursing areas, inserting Midlines and PICCs in patients with difficult IV access. I also am a pastoral musician at the Shrine of St. Anne and at St. Mark’s Church.  So I work with my hands, literally. In my spare time I practice piano, take care of 2 goats and 9 chickens, and cook for my husband and sons. I especially love horses, cats and wildlife.

6) How would you most like to be remembered?

I hope my children will remember me as a person who gave unconditional love. And fellow musicians might remember me as a piano accompanist who performed well and had fun doing so.

7) What attracted you about joining the Dante Alighieri Society?

I joined the Dante Alighieri Society as soon as I returned to Denver from Europe, in 1991. I wanted to keep the Italian language fresh in my mind and be around others who appreciate Italian culture. The people I have gotten to know have become as close as relatives. It is a great group!

NEWS FROM ITALY: Traveling to Italy? These cities are fighting against mass tourism.

Venice is not simply sinking

Venice Tourism - limits starting—it's flooded with tourists and the city's mayor is willing to do whatever it takes to regulate the wave of visitors, including closing down certain streets and bridges.  The Easter weekend, at the beginning of April, saw thousands of tourists crowding Venetian streets and traditional canal ferries known as vaporetti, with local media reporting "a river of people" of an "unprecedented" proportion creating delays and long lines.  Mass tourism is not a new phenomenon for Italy, but the number of visitors to the "Bel Paese" is increasing to a point where several cities are wondering whether the inconvenience created to local residents is worth putting up with. But increased numbers of tourists during the holiday weekends and summer holidays are still proving difficult to manage.

To avoid the Easter weekend crowding, Brugnaro limited access to certain areas of the city, and he relocated arrivals by ferry to areas farther from the city center.  The city launched the #EnjoyRespectVenezia campaign to increase public awareness of the crowding situation, including an infographic that shows the expected level of visitors for any day of the year. Venice Mayor Luigi Brugnaro has been campaigning for more regulation since he was elected three years ago. In 2016, he won the government's support to install turnstiles at strategic locations in the city to regulate the influx of visitors.


Venice's problems are echoed in Capri, a small island in the Gulf of Naples often listed among the world's most beautiful places. Its reputation brings as many as 4 million visitors to the island of 12,000 residents every year.  Capri mayor Giovanni de Martino has long been flagging the unregulated influx of ferries from the mainland as an issue for the township and expressed frustration at the lack of support the island has received so far.

"Unfortunately, our appeal has not been given the right consideration because we think the solution could be fairly easy," de Martino told Newsweek. Rather than turnstiles, for which there is hardly any space, de Martino is advocating for reducing the frequency of the ferries bringing hundreds of visitors from the mainland, which only have the small Marina Grande harbor as a docking area and point of connection to the rest of the island, creating lines and traffic congestions.

"When the ferries arrive almost all at the same time, there is no possibility to let them disembark in a timely manner, so you have long queues, chaos, and, naturally, protests and frustration from those who have to wait," De Martino explained. A project to increase the harbor area is in the planning phase, according to the mayor, but that wouldn't solve the issue because of the limited size of the island.   For De Martino, one solution is simply to change the arrivals' timetable, but that is something that Capri authorities cannot control as it is a prerogative of the regional government and the Coast Guards. One of the other thorns in the mayor's side are those visitors who only come to the island for a few hours, especially cruise ship travelers. "Ideally, stay the night," the mayor advised. "There's a saying that goes 'One should see the sunset in Capri.' There are so many attractions that they should be staying for longer to fully appreciate their beauty."

Florence and Rome.  

While cities like Florence and Rome aren't limited by the territorial constraints afflicting Venice and Capri, those cities too have been struggling with containing disruptive behavior.   Last year, Florence Mayor Dario Nardella instructed the city's cleaners to hose down church steps at lunchtime to prevent people from sitting down to consume their meal—a plan that did not fully account for the warm midday sunshine that quickly dried the pavement, but managed to attract international attention.

In Rome, Mayor Virginia Raggi faced an even bigger hurdle to her goal of regulating visitors' behavior in some of the city's hotspots, such as introducing a ban on stops at the Trevi Fountain to admire its baroque style—a total failure of enforcement, as some Italian media reported.  (The Local)

From May 1st, plastic plates, cups, forks and other picnicware will be illegal on the Isole Tremiti, a chain of islands off Italy's eastern coast.

The move comes after scientists measured alarming levels of plastic particles in the waters surrounding the archipelago, which lies within a protected marine reserve off the coast of Puglia.  "Day after day we're seeing humans kill our sea and we had to do something, immediately," the mayor of the islands, Antonio Fentini, told La Repubblica.  His solution is to impose fines of between €50 and €500 on anyone – businesses or individuals – caught using plastic cups, plates or utensils on any of the archipelago's three islands. Instead, people are encouraged to switch to reusable or biodegradable picnicware.  Plastic bottles are not banned  yet, according to Fentini, who would like to see them replaced with glass. He also hopes to outlaw polystyrene containers, which fishermen commonly use to transport their catch and which often end up in the sea. (The Local)


NOTIZIE DALL’ITALIA   Le Frecce tricolori, tornano sul cielo di Firenze.

le-frecce-tricolorLe Frecce tricolori,  hanno sorvolato oggi  trasversalmente la città per due volte e quindi, dopo aver realizzato una ‘spericolata’ manovra sopra piazzale Michelangelo, hanno attraversato il cielo sopra sul centro della città, seguendo la linea dell’alveo dell’Arno.  Il loro passaggio ha costituito la conclusione della cerimonia di festeggiamenti per i 95 anni dell’Aeronautica militare e gli 80 dell’Istituto di Scienze Militari Aeronautiche a Firenze, organizzata stamani proprio al piazzale Michelangelo.  Per le Frecce Tricolori sarà la quarta volta che sorvoleranno il cielo di Firenze con le loro suggestive scie bianca, rosse e verdi. La prima fu nel luglio 1976 all’aeroporto di Peretola, in occasione della Settimana Aviatoria Fiorentina, promossa dall’Aeroclub Luigi Gori. La seconda avvenne per il Cinquantenario dell’Aeronautica Militare nel marzo 1988. Il terzo «passaggio» della Pattuglia Acrobatica Nazionale sull’Arno fiorentino è del marzo 2008, davanti al presidente della Repubblica Giorgio Napolitano per gli 85 anni dell’Arma Azzurra.   (La Redazione di ItalPlanet)


Cultural Meetings

June 3 - Concert


Gelato Social – July 27


Language –  Summer begin June 28

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.