The Italian-American Sports Hall of Fame has closed its museum at 1431 W. Taylor St., with George Randazzo, Hall of Fame founder and president, promising a “premier” new location that will include the Joe DiMaggio statue that has stood across the street since 1999. The Hall of Fame organization took the $150,000 Joe DiMaggio statue with it when it...

For more than 20 years, a statue of Joe DiMaggio has called Little Italy home since Piazza DiMaggio was dedicated to the New York baseball player in 1998. The legendary Yankees ballplayer even attended the ceremony when the plaza was dedicated to him. But late last week, the statue in the plaza at 1004 S. Bishop St. was abruptly removed and is now...

Muai Thai Champion, Mixed Martial Arts Contender, Hollywood Actress and Fitness Model. From pioneering women’s MMA to blazing a trail in movies, Gina Carano is one of Hollywood’s most unique rising stars. Carano began her training with Muay Thai to competitive MMA, where she competed in Strikeforce and EliteXC.  Her popularity led to her being call...

Three time NCAA Men’s Soccer All-Ivy League Honoree and Owner and Chairman of the New York Cosmos. Rocco Commisso is one of the most successful Italian immigrant entrepreneurs in America’s history. A member of the prestigious Forbes 400, his illustrious career in cable television spans 40 years. He is the Chairman and CEO of Mediacom Communications...

MLB All-Star and World Series Champion Player & Manager. In 10 seasons as the Yankees’ manager, Joe Girardi guided New York to six Postseason appearances and a World Series Championship in 2009. Girardi managed the Florida Marlins in 2006, winning the NL Manager of the Year Award in his managerial debut. Born in Peoria, Illinois, Chicagoland native...

Head Men’s Basketball Coach at St. Joseph High School – became all time win leader in Illinois during February 2017. Gene Pingatore was born and raised in Cicero, Illinois, the son of Annette and Frank Pingatore. While at St. Mel’s High School, Gene was an Honors student and three year varsity letter winner in basketball and a member of the 1954 Ci...

Earlier today, the International Boxing Hall of Fame (IBHOF) announced that Tony DeMarco (58-12-1, 33 KOs) would be inducted with the Class of 2019. Induction weekend will take place June 6-9 of next year at the IBHOF’s headquarters in Canastota, NY. A resident of Boston’s North End neighborhood, DeMarco, known throughout the boxing world as “The F...

One of this area's most accomplished baseball players was selected to join a hall of fame. No, not that Hall of Fame, the one into which Peoria native Jim Thome was inducted earlier this year. But it's still a pretty formidable hall. Former big-league player and former and probably future big-league manager Joe Girardi, the pride of East Peoria, wa...

Welcome to the “The Grid,” the Chicago Sun-Times’ in-depth look at Chicago neighborhoods. Today’s stop: Little Italy. Located four miles west of downtown Chicago, Little Italy was the first stop for many Italian immigrants arriving to the city in the late 1800s and early 1900s.  Filled with family-owned shops, restaurants and churches, it was the h...

Former Columbia University men’s soccer player and Cosmos owner Rocco B. Commisso will be inducted into the National Italian American Sports Hall of Fame in Chicago Saturday, Nov. 3. Commisso, the founder, chairman and CEO of Mediacom, will be enshrined alongside former New York Yankees manager Joe Girardi, MMA legend Gina Carano and Illinois high...