A Sharpsburg native is paying tribute to his hometown with a documentary highlighting an Italian American immigrant who brought over more than just luggage with him from Italy. Pete Ferraro, an Emmy-award winning filmmaker, producer and writer, will premiere his documentary, “il Messarggero” — “The Messenger” — Oct. 1 on WQED. Ferraro spoke Italian...

Ancient Reghion, in modern times the city of Reggio Calabria, is universally known as the City of Bronzes. Indeed, it is the Museo della Magna Grecia. In the city center, it hosts the famous Riace Bronzes, the sculptures of two warriors from the 5th Century (found at the bottom of the Riace Marina 50 years ago, in 1972).   Reggio Calabria boasts a...

The last time I wrote about Calabria was 2016, four years after spending some time with winemakers that left me wondering what the future held. What I took from my visit could have been lifted from the pages of Mark Rotella’s “Stolen Figs and Other Adventures in Calabria,” a narrative of a journey he took with his father, who hadn’t been back to th...

If you’re planning a trip through Europe, don’t forget to consider these Italian villages. “To visit them is to participate in Italy’s beauty while helping keep these enchanting places alive,” says Fiorello Primi, president of the “Most Beautiful Villages in Italy” association (I Borghi più belli d’Italia). While you know Rome, Florence, or Milan,...

Calabrian hot pepper jam is just one of the spicy foods to come out of Calabria, alongside ‘nduja and sardella, a spicy preserve that's considered the seafood counterpart to the former. It's impossible to speak of Calabrian cuisine without mentioning spicy red hot peppers that stand front and center in nearly all the southern Italian region's recip...

Calabria is one of the last Italian regions not to have been brutalized by mass tourism. It’s the right place to not feel like a tourist, because there is no tourism. Eight hundred kilometers of coasts, mostly populated only by Calabrians on vacation, and mountains, less than an hour away from the sea, that are the envy of the Alps (indeed, they ar...

Dear friends, even in August, ciao from a Rome full of American tourists and empty of us Romans!   In early August a dear friend traveling to Liguria sent me a photo, taken by him. While driving he had seen a sign that had attracted his curiosity, and he knew well that it would interest me as well. The photo is the one you see here: Cogoleto, the s...

At 97, she is the testimonial of the new campaign of the publishing house "Rubbettino" to raise awareness of reading. She is "Aunt Gina" and lives in Cervicati, a town of not even 1,000 inhabitants in the province of Cosenza, in Calabria. Gina Lanzillotta spends her days immersed in the pages of her books. She attended school for only a few years,...

It’s summer, so for many Italians, it’s the season for the annual feast days. A season where many of the Saints and the Madonna are honored in many communities. Today, I want to tell you a bit of a story, about a special painting, a special town, and a special feast. I grew up in a small town in Southern Italy called Palermiti, in the province of C...

The old saying that “a picture is worth a thousand words” can literally apply to my vintage Leto family portrait (circa 1923). Therefore, you might say this famiglia photo of my Italian immigrant grandparents and their second-generation children has a story of at least a thousand words. Many of us who cherish and share our old family photos know th...