Boston was all wrapped in green, white and red on Friday, June 1, as the Italian Consulate launched its first fundraising event to open an Italian Cultural Center in the city.
More than 350 guests showed up for the exclusive event at Louis, on Boston’s Waterfront, where the crowd mingled inside the clothing store’s large open space, with glass walls showing off a magnificent sight of the Boston harbor.After a cocktail reception and fashion showcase, opening remarks were given by Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino and Consul General of Italy, Giuseppe Pastorelli.
“This event was long overdue,” said Menino. “We are here to preserve and nurture our Italian American heritage.” Menino also praised Consul General Pastorelli for his efforts to open an Italian Cultural Center. “We’re well on our way to accomplishing our goal.”
The goal, said Pastorelli afterwards, is to “get the Italian and Italian American communities together and finally create a great cultural center the city deserves. We will do all that is possible to make this dream come true.”
Part of the $240,000 raised, however, will be given to education non-profit CASIT to promote the teaching of Italian language in Massachusetts schools. The remaining donations will be collected in a fund for the dreamed cultural center.“The portion of funds raised from the Italianissimo! event that will be assigned to C.A.S.IT., Inc. will help us continue supporting communities that wish to preserve the study of the Italian language in their schools,” said Adelaide Guarracino, President of CASIT.
Accompanied by music by Marco Pignataro Quartet and DJ Felix Cutillo, the evening continued with a Sicilian-inspired dinner prepared by Chef Filippo La Mantia, owner of one of Rome’s most exclusive restaurants in Via Veneto’s Hotel Majestic.