Settembre 2023

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Warm, Lemony, and Perfect for Fall: Try Fresta Limoncello!

Inspired by his already emerging brand, The Pasta House Company, and deep rooted Italian heritage, founder Joe Fresta shares his journey to crafting his own citrus liqueur, Fresta Limoncello.

“I became interested in branding years ago when I discovered the power of social media promoting…” Fresta said when asked if there was a particular moment or idea that sparked the idea of Fresta Limoncello, “I was literally creating and building my brand.” Joe Fresta used social media to promote his philanthropic work through my Cancer Care Foundation - helping raise money, promote events including the notable “The Steinberg Winter Classic,” and more. Social media also helped promote his Facebook Food Critic page and now weekly radio show, “The Weekly Special.” Fresta was no stranger to the creation, execution, and promotion of ideas.

When approached with the idea of branding his own alcoholic beverage, Fresta had his hesitations. “I didn’t want to do bourbon, vodka, tequila, wine or beer simply because there were too many other people putting their names on those products already making them extremely saturated,” Joe said, “ I told {him} I would

do a limoncello and so the process began.” Collaborating with master distiller Derik Reiser, Joe meticulously crafted the perfect recipe using all natural ingredients, no artificial coloring, and lemons free of wax coating. “I’m very proud of the fact that Fresta is an all natural product.”

Rejecting excessive sweetness, Fresta focused on achieving a product that had both a lemony smell and flavor plus that slight burn and lingering warmth as it rolls over the back of the palate. The liquor went on to win the Silver Medal in the New Orleans Spirits Expo Liqueur Category just two weeks after hitting the market. Not a bad start for this limoncello brand!

Proudly distilled, distributed, and packaged right here in St. Louis, Missouri, Fresta Limoncello is handmade in small batches to assure its exceptional quality. You can find Fresta Limoncello in bars, restaurants, and markets throughout St. Louis, including Viviano’s on The Hill, DiGregorio’s Market, Urzi’s, and more! Follow Joe Fresta on Facebook to stay up to date on where you can find his award winning limoncello!

Labor Day Weekend in St. Louis

Are you spending Labor Day weekend in STL with family and friends?

Here is a list of all the festivals, food, and fun you can get into over the long weekend:

1. Greek Festival at St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church. Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. - 8 p.m. and Monday from 11 a.m. - 6 p.m.

2. The Gateway Cup Cycling Races starting Friday, September 1 at Lafayette Park for the Tour de Lafayette. Giro Della Montagna will be held on Sunday, September 3 on The Hill and is the third leg of the Gateway Cup Race.

3. 22nd Annual Big Muddy Blues Festival at Laclede’s Landing.

4. Missouri’s Botanical Garden Japanese Festival on Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. - 8 p.m. and Monday from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

5. Eckert’s Applefest at Eckert’s Belleville Farm on Saturday from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.

6. Alton Jazz & Wine Festival at Liberty Bank Alton Amphitheater on Saturday from 6-10 p.m. Tickets are between $5 and $80.

7. St. Louis World’s Fair Heritage Festival & Games at the upper Muny lot at Forest Park on Saturday from 5-9 p.m. and Sunday and Monday from 11 a.m. - 11 p.m. There are so many more events and activities going on around the city. Continue to check local news stations to stay up to date on events happening in your neighborhood!

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2023 Article/Ad Deadlines

October: September 15

November: October 13

December: November 17



Degli articoli firmati che appaiono sul giomale sono responsabili i singoli autori, i quali non rappresentano necessariamente il punto di vista generale, ne’ esprimono la politica de “Il Pensiero.” Operando conforme alle nostre vedute democratiche, si accetta la collaborazione di persone esprimenti il piu’ largo arco di opinioni, senza pregiudiziale di sorta.


The signed articles appearing in Il Pensiero “The Thought” are the opinions of the individual authors, who do not represent the general point of view, nor do they express the views of Il Pensiero. We accept the collaboration of people expressing the most wide range of opinions. Opinions expressed in Il Pensiero “The Thought” are not necessarily those of Il Pensiero and Il Pensiero does not accept responsibility for advertising content. Any images supplied are at the owner’s risk.

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Official Photographer Mike and Sadie Woodling Jamey and Tori Torregrossa and friends with Gus Torregrossa Alex, Frank and Macy Cusumano Giuseppe Abbate Archbishop of St. Louis, Mitchell T. Rozanski

NIAF and City of Genoa Join Forces to Strengthen Cultural Ties and Foster Growth

The National Italian American Foundation (NIAF) and the Municipal Government of Genoa have embarked on a dynamic partnership aimed at promoting education, research, cultural exchange, and economic growth in their respective nations. The two organizations recently inked a three-year Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that solidifies their collaboration on these key initiatives. This strategic partnership further enriches the longstanding relationship between the United States and Italy through joint initiatives and collaborative programs.

The MOU signifies the Parties’ shared commitment to advancing their respective missions and achieving common goals. Key areas of collaboration include:

The Legacy of Christopher Columbus and Centro Studi Colombiano

Recognizing the profound impact of Genoese native Christopher Columbus’ historic voyage to the Americas in 1492, NIAF and the Genoa Municipal Government will spearhead efforts to cultivate a comprehensive understanding of Columbus and his enduring legacy. Esteemed academics and professors specializing in Columbus studies will engage in knowledge exchange programs, while a biennial conference in Genoa will explore the ongoing impact of Columbus’ exploration.

The Prestigious Premio Paganini Violin Competition

Both organizations will unite to publicize the renowned Premio Paganini Violin Competition in their respective countries. Named for the Geneose master violinist Niccolo Paganini the award celebrates the exceptional talents of musicians worldwide.

Showcasing the National Museum of Italian Emigration

Acknowledging the profound influence of Italian emigration on Italy itself and the significant contributions made by the Italian diaspora to their adopted countries, NIAF and the Genoa Municipal Government will collaborate to promote the National Museum of Italian Emigration which is located in Genoa in honor of the role the port city played in transporting Italian emigrants to destinations around the world.

“This agreement with Genoa will expand NIAF’s reach and provide new ways to share the Italian culture on both sides of the Atlantic,” said NIAF President Robert Allegrini “As the birthplace of Columbus, Genoa holds deep meaning for Italian Americans and we are honored to solidify our commitment to preserving our rich Italian heritage.” Mayor Marco Bucci of Genoa echoed this sentiment, saying, “Genoa values its historic ties with the United States and vibrant Italian American community,” said Mayor of Genoa Marco Bucci. “We look forward to increasing collaboration through this partnership with NIAF.”

NIAF will serve as the exclusive agent for Genoa in the United States, ensuring the successful realization of the MOU’s objectives.

About NIAF

The National Italian American Foundation (NIAF) is a nonprofit organization based in the United States that promotes the Italian culture and heritage. Founded in 1975, NIAF has been a leading advocate for Italian Americans, preserving their legacy and promoting their contributions to the United States.

Fall 2023 Italian Language Classes

Sponsored by the Italian Club of St. Louis

Italian for Travelers


September 11, 2023 – October 9, 2023

6:30 – 8:30 p.m.

Class held in St. Ambrose Church basement on Wilson and Marconi Avenues.

Tuition for this 5-week class is $50.

Instructor: Barbara Klein.

This class is designed for those planning to travel to Italy. The course will introduce students to the fundamental vocabulary and phrases useful to get around and meet basic travel needs.

Beginner’s Italian I Wednesdays

October 25, 2023 – December 13, 2023

6:30 – 8:30 p.m.

Class held in St. Ambrose Church basement on Wilson and Marconi Avenues.

Tuition for this 8-week class is $80.

Instructor: Maria Brandle.

Beginner’s Italian I is designed to introduce students to the fundamentals of Italian grammar to help them to develop basic communication skills. Emphasis is placed on basic grammar, vocabulary building, pronunciation and listening comprehension. Textbook required.

Please visit our website to register:

Dinner to Honor Formula 1® President & CEO Stefano Domenicali, Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Neil Giraldo, Paychex Founder Tom Golisano and Philanthropist Veronica Berti

The National Italian American Foundation (NIAF) will host its 48th Anniversary Gala on Saturday, October 14, 2023, at the Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington, DC. The annual black-tie event celebrates the rich Italian culture and brings together business, political, and cultural leaders. The evening will also commemorate nearly five decades of the Foundation’s work celebrating Italian American achievement since its inception in 1975.

This year’s gala will honor EmiliaRomagna as NIAF’s 2023 Region of Honor. The tastes, sights, and sounds of this iconic region will be highlighted throughout the evening’s program. An aperitivo reception presented by Campari will kick off the celebration.

The gala dinner will be emceed by acclaimed Italian Americans Maria Bartiromo, Anchor and Global Markets Editor for FOX Business Network and FOX News Channel and Joe Piscopo, entertainer, actor and radio host. Their presence will undoubtedly enhance the gala experience. This year’s distinguished gala honorees thus far include Founder of Paychex, entrepreneur, and civic leader, Tom Golisano; philanthropist Veronica Berti Bocelli; President & CEO of Formula 1® Stefano Domenicali; and musician and songwriter Neil Giraldo. Additional honorees will be announced in the near future. The night will wrap up with an entertaining AfterHours celebration featuring a Venetian Hour.

Earlier in the day, NIAF will also host the NIAF Forum, a series of seminars focused on the global Italian diaspora and transatlantic relations. The Italian diaspora consists of over 80 million people of Italian descent living outside of Italy. Major diaspora populations reside in Brazil, Argentina, Canada, Australia, Venezuela, and Uruguay. Finalized seminar schedules detailing the sessions and times will be made available at a later date.

Proceeds allow NIAF to provide impactful educational, cultural, and youth programs. Sponsorship opportunities are available at Applications for media credentials are now being accepted on the NIAF website.

About NIAF

The National Italian American Foundation (NIAF) is a nonprofit organization based in the United States that promotes the Italian culture and heritage. Founded in 1975, NIAF has been a leading advocate for Italian Americans, preserving their legacy and promoting their contributions to the United States.

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NIAF to Host 48th Anniversary Gala Celebrating EmiliaRomagna and the Italian Diaspora


Semir Durmišević

Lisa Gandolfo

Antonino Lombardo

Carina Marino

Margaret Marino



James and Linda Marino


David and Silvia Fritsch


Tony and Marisa Gandolfo

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A Special Note:

Enjoy the crisp and cool air of the approaching fall weather.

Carina Marino

and the Il Pensiero staff

EcoTones Concerts Presents Performance

Inspired by Prairie at Bellefontaine Cemetery and Arboretum in St. Louis, MO on September 16, 2023

Musicians will perform new music inspired by prairie ecosystems along an outdoor “music trail” and during a concert at the historic cemetery.

EcoTones Concerts presents imaginative outdoor performances sited in public nature spaces, exploring connections between humans and the natural world. Sponsored by the Missouri Prairie Foundation, the EcoTones Bellefontaine Cemetery and Arboretum concert, on

Labor Day Mediterranean Artichoke Dip

2 cans of artichokes

1 cup of mayonnaise

1 cup of Parmesan cheese

Chop up artichokes and add the ingredients and mix together. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until bubbly. Serve with your choice of cracker.

September 16 at 2 p.m., invites audiences to interact with and listen to musicians along a half-mile “music trail” through Bellefontaine Cemetery’s prairie planting, getting up close and personal with instruments from all four instrument families, and gaining insight about prairie ecosystems from volunteer naturalists.

New music will be performed, inspired by the prairie ecosystem, its superpower roots, specific native plants, and the flora and fauna alongside the trail. The “music trail” portion of the event is followed by an outdoor sit-down concert sited on a wheelchair- and stroller-accessible paved area near the trailhead. Chairs will be provided. The performance features St. Louis-area professional musicians from the St. Louis Symphony Orchestra as well as mainstay players on the regional and international jazz, blues, and folk scenes.

“The Missouri Prairie Foundation is pleased to sponsor this innovative music event,” said Carol Davit, executive director of the Missouri Prairie Foundation. “Prairie is an original American landscape that is home to a stunning diversity of plant, animal, and insect life, and provides a long list of ecological benefits. We are excited to help bring this unique performance, inspired by prairie, to St. Louis.”

Visit to learn more and for tickets. This event is made possible by a program support grant from the Regional Arts Commission of St. Louis, business sponsors Jackson Pianos, Top Notch Violins, Grow Native! Member Pure Air Natives, and donations from private individuals.

The mission of the Missouri Prairie Foundation, a 57-year-old conservation organization and land trust, is to protect and restore prairie and other native grasslands through acquisition, management, education, and research. The Missouri Prairie Foundation also runs the 23-yearold Grow Native! program ( and the Missouri Invasive Plant Task Force (

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Italian Fest Opens With Visit to Tuscany

A special Tuscany exhibit and a film from Italy open this year’s Collinsville Italian Fest at the Collinsville Library, 408 West Main.

Tuscany is known worldwide for its impressive landscapes, art, villages, wines, and food.

The exhibit “Beyond the Tuscan Sun” (September 1 - October 16) includes a unique Walk Through Italy, featuring more

than thirty photographs and information.

There is also special coverage of the twenty-four ancient bronze statues and other pieces found buried in a hot, thermal spring near Siena.It’s estimated the statues were placed there 2,300 years ago.

Exhibit curators are Annette M. Graebe and Barbara Klein with special assistance from Marty Cavanough, Sharon McAley, Kyla Waltermire, and library staff.

On Thursday, September 14 (6 p.m.), the award-winning film “PALIO” will be shown free in the library’s Community Room.

It’s the story of Italy’s famous horse race known throughout the world. The film,

sponsored by the Italian Film Festival USA, is in Italian with English subtitles.

On September 15 and 16, Collinsville’s Italian Fest (Main Street Festival) takes place with a grape stomp, Italian foods, wine garden, and more.

On Saturday, the Bocce Tournament is held at Glidden Park, and the parade begins at 4 p.m. on Main Street.

On Friday and Saturday (all day), the Collinsville Library is sponsoring a free Tuscan activity for children.

For more information, visit (Click on Events (or red box), or call the library at (618) 344-1112.)

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From Sicily With Love The Hill, St. Louis, MO

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July 8, 2023



500 N. Michigan Ave., Suite 1850 Chicago, IL 60611

phone: 312-467-1550

fax: 312-467-1335

Hours: (open to public)

Monday-Friday 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

Onorario D’Italia/Honorary Vice Consul Joseph Colagiovanni

Office: 314-275-0351

Mobile: 314-705-2413

















Italian Trade Agency 401 N. Michigan Ave., Suite 1720 Chicago, Illinois 60611


Agenzia Nazionale del Turismo/ Italian Government Tourist Office 500 N. Michigan Ave., Suite 2240, Chicago, IL 60611



Presidente Luigi Sciortino

Facebook: Comiteschicago Illinois 3502 N. Harlem Ave. Chicago, IL 60634 +1 773-414-0636

Emergency Number

Italian Citizens ONLY: (accidents, arrests, serious medical problems, etc.)

+1 312-909-0304

Emergencies between

10 p.m. and 8 a.m. CT, contact the MAECI at 011 39 06 36912666

Istituto Italiano di Cultura di Chicago

Italian Cultural Institute of Chicago 500 N. Michigan Ave., Suite 1450 Chicago, IL 60611 phone: 312-822-9545 fax: 312-822-9622

Dott. Luca Di Vito, Director

Settembre 2023 Il Pensiero Pagina 11

Il Pensiero Love in London

London residents, Georgia and Roberto Carisi visted the United States in July.

Roberto is from Bologna, Italy, St. Louis’s sister city, while Georgia was born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri.

Georgia’s younger sister, Merope got married in Chicago, Illinois. As family traveled to Chicago to celebrate the bride and groom, one cousin in particular didn’t leave St. Louis without Il Pensiero. Katerina Nicozisin picked up the newspaper for her cousin and her husband to read before they headed back home.

Katerina has participated in many Italian events and community gatherings

most of her life living in St. Louis and growing up with close Italian friends. She wanted to share a piece of The Hill and the Italian heritage with both Georgia and Roberto.

Georgia and Roberto are expecting their first baby sometime next year … hence the picture with the onesie!

It is so special to share Il Pensiero with those you love.

If you or someone you know has introduced Il Pensiero to you or a loved one, please share your sweet story with us! We can’t wait to hear how Il Pensiero has impacted you and your family.

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