Upcoming Dates and Events

Lodge Meeting/Event Calendar Sons and Daughters of Italy, Pikes Peak Lodge 2870

5-20-23 Bunco, 2:00 pm, VFW

6-6-23 General Membership Lodge Meeting, 5:30 pm, VFW

7-4-23 General Membership Lodge Meeting, 5:30 pm, VFW

7-15-23 Bunco, 2:00 pm, VFW

8-1-23 General Membership Lodge Meeting, 5:30 pm, VFW

8-27-23 Spaghetti Dinner Fundraiser, 12:00 pm-5:00 pm Elks Lodge

9-5-23 General Membership Lodge Meeting, 5:30 pm, VFW

9-16-23 Lodge Family Picnic, 1:00 pm, Nancy Lewis Park

10-3-23 General Membership Lodge Meeting, 5:30 pm, VFW

October (Date to be Determined) Wine/Whiskey Tasting Fundraiser, 1:00 pm

11-7-23 General Membership Lodge Meeting, Veteran’s Pot Luck, 5:30 pm, VFW

11-18-23 Bunco, 2:00 pm, VFW

12-5-23 General Membership Lodge Meeting, 5:30 pm, VFW

12-13-23 Lodge Christmas Dinner, 6:00 pm, (Location to be Determined) 

May Cultural Note


In Italy, spring weather invites people outside for picnics,hiking and biking. The most famous Italian bike race is the Giro d’Italia that takes place for three weeks in May. The route changes every year, so some roads may be closed or redirected to allow the cyclists a non-stop ride. The changing route also allows Italians in smaller towns to witness a national sports event without leaving home.

It’s fun to watch the cyclists speed by, but there are always huge crowds, so bring your lunch and get comfortable, because once it starts, it’s almost impossible to get out of town!

The race began in 1909 and was organized by a sports newspaper called La Gazzetta, which was (and still is) printed on pink paper. La Gazzetta no longer hosts the race, but the leading cyclist for each day wears a pink jersey so you can spot him more easily. There are daily winners, overall winners and winners for specific events, so every cyclist has a chance to win a prize.

If you are not a fan of speed and endurance racing, you should go to the town of Gubbio in Umbria. Here the Race of the Candles (La Corsa dei Ceri) takes place in Mayvwith the same fervor as the Giro d’Italia, but without any pressure to come in first.

Since the 12th century, the residents of Gubbio have celebrated their beloved medieval bishop, St Ubaldo, with a procession of enormous 22 foot candles, (now made of wood) that have a large statue on top. One candle is for St Ubaldo, patron of stone masons, another one is for St Giorgio, protector of merchants, and the third is for St Antonio, patron saint of the farmers. It takes a team of at least six men to carry the candles on a platform through the town and to the Basilica of St Ubaldo. Each team wears a distinctly colored shirt so the townspeople can identify them during the “race”.

Unlike any other race in the world, the first team to reach the church is not necessarily the winner. St Ubaldo always arrives first because it’s his church and his feast day. The real winner is determined by the townspeople who have been paying very close attention to the race. They base their judgement on the finesse and skill of the teams in balancing the candles and working well together, not on their speed. So we have a race to fit every taste during the month of May in Italy and there’s something to appreciate about both events.

Be sure to wish all the moms in your life a Happy Mother’s Day on May 14 and let’s honor the moms we miss by carrying on their family traditions.

Submitted by Charlene Pardo



April 2023 Cultural Note

OSDIA Cultural Note for April 2023

Coming to America

As Italian Americans, all of us have an immigration story to tell. Some details we may share in common, such as the agonizing decisions to leave friends and family in Italy and try for a better life in America or the heartbreaking conditions famine, war, or unemployment that forced our families to leave Italy in the first place. Nevertheless, each of our stories is unique to our family and deserves to be told. One such story comes from the family of our lodge brother, Bill Rose.

In June of 1945, the 99th Field Artillery Battalion of the US Army arrived at little town near Mantova in Northern Italy. A young American soldier named Albert Rose from Rockham, South Dakota met a young Italian war widow named Eva and her two-year-old daughter, Gabriella. A relationship developed between Albert and Eva and they were married on June 17, 1946.

At that time, it was relatively easy to bring an Italian wife back to the United States with her American husband, so Eva was able to get her immigration papers. Bringing Eva’s now three-year-old daughter Gabriella back to the US was a lot more complicated, so the parents were forced to leave little Gabriella in Italy with her grandmother until they could arrange for her immigration.

Albert and Eva moved back to Rockham, South Dakota and then began the nightmare of red tape involved in bringing Gabriella to America. They enlisted the aid of their state senator, A.L. Coleman, as well as Karl Mundt, the US senator from South Dakota. The Rose family persisted and even got the Red Cross involved in Gabriella’s case. They were desperate to get their little girl home.

Finally, after seven years, Gabriella (who was now ten years old) crossed the ocean on a steamship accompanied by an Italian speaking chaperone from the Red Cross. After arriving in New York harbor, Gabriella spent a few nights with an Italian family while arrangements were made to fly her with a second chaperone to Chicago and then to South Dakota. A storm in Chicago prevented further air travel, so she was put on a train to South Dakota with her third chaperone. After fourteen hours on a train, Gabriella finally ran into the loving arms of her mother and stepfather. In the seven intervening years, Albert and Eva had two more children whom Gabriella now met for the first time, Dennis Rose and our lodge brother, Bill Rose.

The local newspaper noted that there were three lessons Gabriella learned from her unusual journey to America:

1.People in America are kind-hearted.
2.The Red Cross is considerate and foresighted.
3.There are a lot of people in America who speak Italian!

If any of you would like to share your family’s history with our lodge, please contact Charlene. We would love to hear your story.

Written by Charlene Pardo
Information supplied by Bill Rose

March in Italy

Submitted by Charlene Pardo

March in Italy can be rainy and cold in the northern regions of Italy, but there are still many interesting things to do. It’s a great time to go skiing in the Italian Alps and visit the majestic Dolomite mountains. Lake Garda is also a popular mountain destination in March for hiking, biking, and sailing before the summer rates go into effect after Easter. If you’re looking for warmer weather, head for Sicily and visit Palermo, Messina, or Taormina, which get impossibly crowded in summer, but are very pleasant in March.

If you’re superstitious or if you had to read the play “Julius Caesar” in high school, beware of the Ides of March! These were the fateful words of the soothsayer to the Roman emperor. On March 15, 44 BC, the so-called “friends” of Julius Caesar stabbed him to death to gain control of the Senate. Rome still commemorates the day with an historical reenactment of the deed, a marathon near the site, and visits to Caesar’s grave at the Roman Forum. People still leave flowers at the gravesite!

No matter where you go in Italy, the 19th of March will be a a grand celebration. It’s the Feast of St Joseph and Italian Father’s Day. St Joseph became very popular in the Middle Ages during a severe drought in Sicily. Starving families prayed to St Joseph for rain and as soon as the rain came down, the farmers went to work planting crops like fava beans. That’s why St Joseph’s tables always include fava beans, a drought tolerant, high-yield crop that became a staple Italian food during tough economic times.

In addition to fish, pasta, and fava bean dishes, there are breads, pastries, candles, and flowers on the home altar to celebrate with family and friends and anyone who might need a meal. Traditionally, no meat was allowed at the table because St Joseph’s Day is in Lent, but Italians consoled themselves with a big meatless feast topped off with a cream-filled puff pastry called “zeppole”.

Enjoy your March celebrations with family and friends and share our rich Italian traditions with everyone you know.

www.italyexplained.com                    www.lifeinitaly.com
www.anamericaninrome.com.           www.travelpassionate.com

Red Underwear and Other Fun Things…

Contributed by Charlene…
Although January is the off-season in Italy, you can enjoy a ski holiday in the north or a mild winter vacation in Sicily. Italian festivals and celebrations are in season all year round and January is no exception.
“Cenone di Capodanno” is the big New Year’s Eve dinner. Of course, Italian New Year’s Eve has the tradition fireworks and bubbly drinks, but Italians also celebrate by eating lentils and sausages at midnight to bring prosperity into their homes. Lentils are considered good luck because they look like little gold coins and they taste great with sausage. Starting the New Year on a full stomach is an Italian tradition, so eat up and enjoy.
“Lancio di Cocci” is the custom of throwing old kitchen crockery and other old household items out the window at midnight. The satisfying crash gets rid of all of last year’s bad luck and makes way for the good things to come.
Wearing Red Underwear. Both men and women wear new red underwear to greet the New Year and every Italian clothing store carries a full supply. There were many theories about why the underwear must be red: a passion for life, a good luck color, a symbol of courage, etc. Choose your favorite one and greet the New Year Italian style!
Other January celebrations include Epiphany (January 6th) when the good witch, La Befana, brings toys and sweets to the children. Legend says the three kings invited La Befana to join them on their journey to meet the Christ Child, but she said she was too busy. Later she regretted her decision and delivered belated gifts to every household.
January 7th is Tricolore Day, celebrating the three colors of the Italian flag: green, white, and red. It’s a day for parades, patriotic songs, and teaching Italian children about their history.
Let’s continue to share our history with family and friends and may your New Year be blessed with all good things. Felice Anno Nuovo!

Happy St. Nicholas Day

Submitted by Charlene Pardo
La Festa di San Nicola is an Italian festival celebrated today on December 6 in honor of St Nicholas. In addition to being the historical origin of Santa Claus, Nicholas was also the bishop of Myra, Turkey in the 4th century and the patron of shepherds. When the town of Pollutri, Abruzzo experienced a famine, the shepherds asked Nicholas for help. He only had a handful of fava beans, but it was miraculously turned into enough to feed the whole village. To commemorate the miracle, the town still lights fires under enormous cauldrons of fava beans on December 6th and tonight everyone has fava beans for dinner.
Nicholas also secretly helped a poor man with three daughters. The father couldn’t provide sufficient dowries for his daughters to get married, so they would have eventually had to beg or “walk the streets”.
During the night, Nicholas slipped three bags of gold into the girls’ stockings which were drying by the fireplace. This act of kindness developed into our tradition of Saint Nick bringing gifts to children while they sleep and hiding them in their stockings. It’s also the source of pawnshops using three gold balls as the universal symbol of their establishments. Take a hint from St Nicholas this Christmas and do a good deed  without telling anyone about it.
Here are some other Italian Christmas traditions to incorporate into your celebrations this year:
Spumante or Prosecco- Bubbly ways to toast “Italian style” at holiday parties.
Panettone-sweet Christmas bread with nuts and bits of dried fruit.
Cenone- Feast of the Seven Fishes (Meatless Christmas Eve dinner).
Presepio- Nativity or Manger scenes first made popular by Francis of Assisi.
Buon Natale!- Wish somebody “Merry Christmas” in Italian!

Italian Christmas Markets

The very first traditional Christmas markets date back to around the 14th century in Germany and Alsace and then spread along the Alps, including Italy. If you want a taste of the most authentic versions then you must go and discover the South Tyrolean Christmas Markets: from November to January the original Christmas markets of South Tyrol embellish the streets and squares of Bolzano, Merano, Bressanone, Brunico and Vipiteno (all in province of South Tyrol). Easily reachable also by train, these are the ideal spots where to immerse yourself in an exciting atmosphere made of colors, perfumes and tastes that
warm anyone’s heart.

No less traditional are the markets of Nativity scene art in Naples, an art dating back to the late 1700s that remained unchanged over the centuries: from early November to January 6th, the well-known Nativity scene craftsmen’s workshops in Via San Gregorio Armeno – a real institution in Naples–display figurines for traditional and more eccentric Nativity scenes. In addition to the historic craft shops of San Gregorio Armeno, for the whole Christmas period, the Municipality of Naples organizes a rich calendar of events with theatre, music and dance shows, guided tours and many markets of local and Christmas handicrafts in different parts of the city.

In Milan, instead, the Christmas markets are mainly held in relation to “Fiera degli Oh Bej! Oh Bej”, the traditional markets for St. Ambrose's Day, patron saint of Milan: to the markets, which some believe date back to the year 1288, are held from December 5th to 8th in front of the Sforza Castle. The Christmas holiday period, for Milan, includes a calendar packed with events and in particular, traditionally two historic events are held in the city: the Scala Opening Night on the night of December 7th, and the Christmas concert in the Cathedral, free and open to everyone, on the evening of December 20th.

If you want to enjoy your Christmas holiday in Italy with a high wow factor you can’t miss Matera and its evocative Nativity play: every weekend in December a sacred-theatrical representation of the Nativity takes place in the amazing setting of the Sassi di Matera, which has also been Italy’s Capital of Culture for 2019. Between Sasso Barisano and Sasso Caveso a touching itinerary rich in charm and spirituality unwinds, featuring actors who will re-enact different scenes of everyday-life in the Judea of two thousand years ago. (Province of Basilicata, region of Matera in southern Italy) Christmas is also particularly special in Gubbio (Central Italy), in Umbria, where every year, on the night of 7 December, the historic Christmas tree, the biggest in the world, is lit up. Created at the foot of Mount Igino and stretching until the medieval city walls, the tree is illuminated by over 700 multicolored lights, spans a length of 750 meters and an area of 130,000 square meters.

But Christmas in Gubbio doesn’t stop there: in Piazza 40 Martiri the characteristic Christmas markets are held, while the medieval San Martino neighborhood hosts the traditional nativity scene and last but not least, the miniature train and panoramic wheel from which visitors can enjoy an unparalleled view of Gubbio and its Christmas tree.

***Special thanks to Brother Mark Fini for compiling this information