Our spring gathering was held on April 16th. It was a sold-out event entitled a “Celebration of the Dolomites”, dedicated to the renown Trentino mountain climber, Bruno Detassis (1910-2008). Click here for a video of Bruno Detassis climbing the Dolomites at the age of 82. Consul General Mauro Battocchi, who is also from Trentino, contributed with a testimonial. Detassis’ great niece, Paola Tonelli, coordinated this intriguing presentation.
A special Trentino menu was catered by Antonella della Muta. In addition, Roberto Engstrom of Prestige Wine Imports, the distributors of Mezzacorona wine in the US, donated several varietals from Trentino.
A special thank you goes out to the Leonardo da Vinci Society for organizing the event, and in particular to President Amelia Antonucci and Paola Tonelli.
Also, a special thank you to the Museo Italo- Americano for hosting the event, and in particular to the Museo’s Trentina staff member, Bianca Friundi.
Laura Floriani Vitlacil was one of the founding members of our club 36 years ago, and our first vice-president. For years she has worked tirelessly as our treasurer, but she recently decided it was time to retire.
At our Christmas gathering, in the company of her 2 daughters and son, she received a plaque as well as a heart-rendering letter from none other than the President of the Trentino Province, Ugo Rossi.
Here’s a quick translation:
From the US a mysterious messenger relayed your intention to retire after more than 25 years of service as the treasurer of the Circolo Trentino di San Francisco. I know as well that you were the club’s first vice-president. It is comforting to know there are people like you that bring honor to the entire Trentina community. You have supported your fellow Trentini with passion and thoughtfulness while balancing family demands, and we are forever grateful. I can only imagine what a full life you have led. You carry uncountable experiences and memories in your heart. Each has brought meaning and purpose, including your encounter with husband Antonio, the birth of your children and grandchildren, and your immigrant experience. Life was certainly a challenge in your birthplace of Bieno and in Trentino, and so you were forced to leave for a faraway land to seek better conditions.
Please know, dear friend, that you are in our hearts. In the name of the entire Province of Trentino, I extend the fondest of wishes. Your beloved Trentino sends you a warm embrace.
We had a huge turnout for our Christmas gathering in Stockton. A hearty thank you to the Trentini of the Central Valley for organizing such a wonderful event. Our plan is to meet there again in 2017. Also, a big thank you to Ron Agostini for acting as the master of ceremonies.
During the event we had a changing of the guard. Frank Rauzi and Bob Zenoni had spearheaded these Christmas gatherings for eons with help from many others. They felt the younger generation should take over, and they did in an overwhelming manner. Frank and Bob each received a plaque honoring their years of distinguished service to our club, along with a bottle of grappa and Rotari, a Trentino sparkling wine. Attilio Mussi also took over the role of Central Valley Representative from Bob.
This was the title of an article published November 3rd of last year by the L’Italo- Americano newspaper based in Los Angeles. The author was club member Bianca Friundi, who works at the Museo Italo-Americano in San Francisco and writes occasionally for the newspaper.
Bianca grew up in Milan, but her mother hails from Pergine Valsugana. Luca is one of our board members and is the US representative to both the Province of Trentino (“consultore”) and the Trentini nel Mondo Association (“coordinatore”). In the article Luca talks about the history and composition of our club, our goals, and the fact that we just celebrated our 35th anniversary. On a more personal level, he recounts his move to California 25 years ago and his friendship with Father Efrem Trettel.
A big thank you to both Luca and Bianca for being such wonderful club ambassadors!
Rosemary Marcellin, nee Rauzi, passed away on January 13th at the age of 86 in Ripon, near her birthplace of Stockton. As a child Rosemary spent six months in her father’s hometown of Cloz in the Val di Non. She was preceded in death by her husband of 68 years, George Marcellin. She was an avid golfer and engaged in many charities. We send our condolences to her older brother Frank Rauzi and the entire family.
Flora Rosek nee Rizzi passed away in Stockton on July 20th at the age of 86. She was originally from Superior and Rock Springs, Wyoming, where many Trentini settled to work in the mines. In fact, the Circolo Trentino of Wyoming is located in Rock Springs. We send our deepest condolences to her family.
Jim Boin’s partner, David Tureaud, passed away from an apparent heart attack. David was a mere 50 years old. David enjoyed attending our Circolo Trentino events and was very accepting of Jim’s passion for all things Trentino and Italian. He was also a friend of the Circolo’s Facebook page. Our deepest condolences to Jim.
In September we had a large, fantastic gathering at the Yob’s residence. Ralph and Rosie were gracious hosts as usual, and Rosie made her dynamite canederli for all to enjoy.
Two couples from Tesino were visiting California and joined us, Roberto Biasion and Valentina Ponchia, and Francesco Gasperini and Annapia Ceccato.
Our president Giuseppina Piasente Alvarez is from Pieve Tesino.
She and the two couples provided us an overview of Tesino, also referred to as the Altopiano (upland) del Tesino and the Conca (basin) del Tesino. There are 3 towns, Castello Tesino, with a population of around 1,300, Pieve Tesino with 700, and then Cinte Tesino with 400. Valentina was from Castello, but the other 3 visitors were from Cinte. Roberto is on the Cinte town council and is the former vice mayor. There is a move to combine the 3 towns into one. Last year in a Trentino newspaper interview Roberto expressed his approval of the concept, but not of the implementation plan. Giuseppina said Cinte had a monastery, and so it was well known for producing many priests and nuns. Her brother attended the monastery but then chose another vocation in life.
Last July our club was featured in a 2-page article in the Trentini nel Mondo magazine, which included various photos from the past and from our 35th anniversary cruise on the Bay.
Click here to access the July issue, and then click forward to the article. In the same issue you will also find a photo of the 19 world representatives (“coordinatori”) to the Trentini nel Mondo Association, including USA’s Luca Dorigatti.
In August the descendants of sisters Erinna (Irene) and Fiorella Menghini from Brez, Val di Non, gathered for a barbecue and dinner.
Erinna (Irene) Menghini married Arturo Prevedel (changed to Prevedelli), also a native of Brez. The Prevedelli family is celebrating 70 years of apple farming in Watsonville:
You’ll find their organic apples at most Bay Area open markets.
Fiorella Menghini married Giovanni Battista Zuech (changed to Zueck). Their descendants, the Zuecks and Aspromontes, live in Santa Cruz and Southern California.
Every summer the Province of Trentino organizes a youth exchange program.
Unfortunately, our club has not had a participant in the last couple of years. Emily Kalstad of the Seattle Club took advantage of this program last summer and spent time with the Schwarz family of Smarano in the Val di Non.
Then, 26-year-old Giulia Schwarz spent time with the Kalstad family in Seattle. Giulia’s mother is a member of the Menapace/Pilati family from Tassullo and related to our club members Linda, Valerie, and David Pizzorno.
Giulia came to California to do some sightseeing and to visit her relatives. Several members of our club hosted and assisted her: Dan Aspromonte and his son Daniel, Lino and Janet Rizzi, Michael Job and Heidi Vitlacil. Dan Aspromonte even discovered that his cousin and Giulia’s father attended high school together in Cles and were the best of friends. It’s certainly a small world!
During the summer of 2012, the video documentarian Vincenzo Mancuso interviewed around 20 members of our club. Due to the constraints of time, snippets from only a handful of those interviews were used in the documentary. Included were club members Silvia Torresani Prevedelli, Gemma Angeli Zueck, Vero Oliveri, Ralph Yob, our president Giuseppina Piasente Alvarez, our treasurer Laura Floriani Vitlacil, and of course, Father Efrem Trettel.
Vincenzo produced documentaries on several Trentini clubs in the US under the auspices
of the Trentino Historical Museum Foundation. For years Father Efrem produced radio and
television broadcasts for the Italian community of the Bay Area. Father Efrem donated his some of that material appears in the documentary.
Here it is possible to see the documentary about the SF area. Enjoy!!