August 3 to 5 ITTONA Convention

December 16, 2018   By Club Trentino

Members of Club Trentino Toronto, led by President David Corazza, were pleased to take part in the 23rd ITTONA Convention held in Cleveland, Ohio from August 3 to 5, 2018. Over 250 participants from all over North American gathered together to celebrate our heritage and share some fun-filled and meaningful time together. And fun it was! A boat cruise around Cleveland complete with lunch aboard gave those present an interesting and informative view of Cleveland and its history.
Those of us who chose to visit the famous “Rock ‘n Roll Hall of Fame” were fascinated by the exhibits, memorabilia, pictures and of course, the music which featured a history of rock n roll music right up to the present. With all the sights, sounds and screens everywhere, it was a real trip down memory lane!
This was followed by a formal supper in the evening at which each of the clubs were introduced. It was touching to see the different generations enjoying the music and company, including the youngest, a 5th generation 3-year old from Ogden, Utah, as well as an enthusiastic young-hearted Trentino who was about to celebrate her 90th birthday.
We were happy to have with us a delegation from Trento, including the Director of Trentini nel Mondo, Francesco Bocchetti, who brought greetings from the Province of Trento, emphasizing the continuing and affectionate bond between the Province and its immigrants abroad, and spoke again at the Sunday picnic.
Conferences on Saturday included a presentation of a book by Laura Perkins entitled “Wreck on the Wabash,” detailing the tragedy of a train wreck in 1901 on route to the mines of Colorado in which 100 Italian immigrants, many of whom were Trentini/Tyrolean, lost their lives, plus a presentation by Mary Beth Moser on the folk stories of Trentino and their contribution to ancestral values and wisdom, and also a presentation by Ivo Finotti on genealogical research resources and his own personal family project through these sources.
Saturday night dinner at Hoffbrau Haus was truly entertainment at its best. There were magical moments of intergenerational connection when all were invited to literally stand on the benches and sing and sway to the popular music being played by the band. The chorus of voices from the very young to the very mature was spontaneous and heartfelt. Several of us were brave enough to try our hand at “shotski,” where four people hold up a ski with four shot glasses and then drink at the same time. And you had to be there to see us navigating a “conga” line!
On Sunday, we proceeded to “Whiskey Island” for a celebration of Mass, followed by a buffet picnic. Among the delicious choices was, of course, polenta.
We would like to acknowledge the dedicated work of Nancee Visintainer of the Alpini Trentini Club, Cleveland, as well as all those who were involved in the preparations for this successful event. This passion to preserve and celebrate our collective heritage is the inspiration to continue these biennial gatherings, and so we look forward to coming together once again at the 24th ITTONA Convention in 2020.