Thursday, September 21, 2017

Look for our booth at Festa Italiana this weekend

Our sister city group will have a booth at Fisher Hall this weekend (Sept. 23 and 24) as part of Festa Italiana. Be sure to stop by, say hi and buy your raffle tickets. Festa SPSCA membership booth

Festa will be extra-special this year, as it celebrates its 30th anniversary. Headliners for both days include opera tenor Aaron Caruso (hmmm, why does that name sound familiar?) and internet cooking sensation, Rossella Rago, who stars in the popular Cooking with Nonna show and has just published a cookbook with the same title.

On Friday, Sept. 22, you will find several board members at the "Taste of Italy." This lively wine tasting starts at 7 p.m. at Seattle Center, and includes music by Danny Quintero and a fantastic spread catered by Big John's PFI. Not to mention wine! Tickets are $25 per person for the Friday night wine tasting.

Check out the activities and schedule at the Festa website.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Beautiful tiles arrive in Seattle -- bound for Piazza Perugia

Only three weeks remain until the dedication of Piazza Perugia on Sat. Oct. 14 at 10 am. We hope all our members will join us at the dedication ceremony and related events. You'll meet our distinguished guests from Italy, rub elbows with our local Italian community, and get to know your fellow members better.

And, check out these amazing tiles that are being installed this week in the Piazza. After a slight delay in U.S. Customs, the tiles were delivered to Seattle recently and are being installed by Nadine Edelstein of Vashon Island.

The tiles were designed and fabricated by L'Antica Deruta, a ceramic arts studio outside Perugia, under the direction of Giorgio Moretti, who will be attending the opening festivities.

Piazza Perugia is part of Julia Lee's Park in Madison Valley, at East Harrison and Margin Luther King Jr. Way South. See you there!


Monday, September 18, 2017

"Tourist Plus": Scholarship winner Jen Provenzano reports from Perugia

Member Jen Provenzano is in Perugia for the month of September, after being awarded a one-month scholarship to study at the Universita per Stranieri. Here is her second report from the field.

Want to study in Perugia like Jen? Apply for a 2018 sister city scholarship. Application deadline is Oct. 31. Learn more here.

"I recently asked the owner of my favorite caffé close to Piazza Danti in Perugia what makes a good tourist. She said first, they have to be polite, and second, it’s nice when they try the language, even if it's just 20 words.. I’ve been thinking of this concept a lot after arriving in Perugia two weeks ago. And since Perugia is so centrally located, it was a breeze to get on a train and visit Florence and Pisa this past weekend. Getting a taxi at the train station to the leaning Tower in Pisa, the driver didn’t even ask me where I wanted to go, she just said, “Andiamo!”

I wanted to engage a bit more, so I explained (in Italian) that I naturally wanted to go to the Tower, but I asked her if she lived in Pisa. “Si, vicino,” she said and smiled, explaining she liked going along the Arno River downtown and some other local places. She said tourists aren’t always nice, but it’s her job.

I decided to I wanted to be a “tourist plus” or “turista più,” as I’m calling it. I want to be a respectful traveler to the locals, for aren’t the locals the most authentic part of the trip? I applied this concept recently on a hunt for a scarf. I stopped into a lovely shop in Perugia where I exchanged greetings with the clerk. After a minute, I re-approached her, explaining in Italian that I am a student and was looking for a light summer scarf. She then started talking in a flurry of Italian and showed me a seemingly secret drawer where she pulled out scarves in different colors, explaining why one was better than the other. (I purchased a fantastic beige one, pictured.) I’m learning L’Universita is my local humble passport to live and travel as a “turista più”!"

Check back later to read Jen's next installment about her month in Perugia!


Thursday, September 14, 2017

New York Times reports on 36 Hours in Perugia

The Sept. 14 issue of the New York Times highlighted Perugia in its popular "36 Hours in..." column. Reporter Ondine Cohane characterizes the city as "untouristy and authentic," calling it one of Italy's most underrated destinations, filled with remnants of an ancient past.

If a visit to Perugia is in your future, you'll find plenty of great recommendations in the article for restaurants, cafes and things to do here.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Scholarship awardee Jen Provenzano enjoys living la dolce vita

One of our members and scholarship recipient, Jen Provenzano (below, left), is in Perugia for the month of September, enjoying classes at Universita per Stranieri, making new friends and exploring the beautiful city of Perugia. Read about her first week in her report below, "The Pausa."

If you'd like to be considered for a language scholarship in 2018, the Oct. 31 application deadline is coming up fast. Find out more here.

"When my new friends from class from Lithuania, Belgium and England asked me to go out on Friday night, there was a moment’s hesitation…maybe I had been living in Seattle too long to know what solid plans felt like. But here we were, halfway around the world from Seattle, and some lovely ragazze whom I’d known only a few days were going with me to dinner and to a theater performance close to Piazza IV Novembre in Perugia.

How wonderful it is to have Italian in common, and to figure out what other similarities we share. One thing we all don’t have at home is “La Pausa,” which is the common Italian break between lunch and dinner where many shops close and employees go home to rest and enjoy lunch.

One thing is for sure…once I return to the States I’d like our sister city mayors to discuss the importance of instituting a Pausa in Seattle! But for now, I’m enjoying very much already my Pausa from normal life back home and the Perugian life in front of me."

Look for Jen's next installment on life in Perugia soon!