La Carota

April 2022 LaCarota

Presidents Message:

Ciao Club Paesano Members.

As always, I hope that this edition of “LaCarota” finds you all, Happy, Healthy and Safe! Our seasons are a changing. We have “sprung ahead”, both in our season and our time change. Our days are slowly becoming longer, the temperature is creeping up the thermometer and the trees are in full bloom. Flowers and trees are being pruned, with the anticipation, of a new crop, spectacular colors and the fragrant scents of a new beginning. Spring has always been the revival and birth of the new year. Hopefully we can all get out and take advantage of everything that our Pacific Northwest Spring time has to offer. Gardening, hiking, camping, fishing and the annual spring cleanup around the house. Enjoy the season, and take full advantage of what “Mother Nature” has to offer.

Carnevale Dance:

Our Carnevale Dance, went well and proved that there is a light at the end of this pandemic. We sold 182 tickets to the event, which is about 60 tickets more than our Halloween Dance. I’m encouraged by the gradual increase in ticket sales. Of course, it’s not up to the number of guests that we would like to see, or are used to, but with the progressive increase in the ticket sales from event to event, it keeps me hopeful that once this pandemic is finally over and gone, that Club Paesano, and the rest of the world, will get back to normal and people will feel 100% comfortable with going out again. We will get there!

Heritage Dinner:

Our Heritage Dinner that took place Sunday March 13th, and was a great success! This was something that I had wanted to do for a while and was so happy that we finally got everything together to make it happen. It took a little work, but went 100% according to plan. The first thing that I will do, with our board and membership, is move to make this an annual event and part of our Club Paesano

Calander. I received nothing but positive feedback and comments about doing it again. We enjoyed an evening that started with our accordion player, Phil Hall, playing some of our favorite Italian music and requests, conversation, a fantastic meal, followed by some beautiful and informational key note speakers, that educated us all about our Club Paesano history. We also had a showcase of old pictures, literature, books and videos on display. Joe Rossi was gracious enough to bring out some of his dad, Aldo Rossi’s, old memorabilia too, including some old Club Paesano shirts, and the very 1st Club Paesano gavel that was made into a plaque. Truly a great evening. A walk down memory lane, and a history lesson for our newer members. So many to thank, and I hope that I mention you all. Forgive me if I forget anyone. 1st and for most, I’d like to thank Cedarville Lodge for allowing us the time and room to have this event take place. I need to give a huge shout out to one of our newest members, Greg DiMaestri and his brother in-law, Dennis Gring, for volunteering and showcasing their amazing culinary skills and talent by putting together a fabulous 5-course meal including a handmade dessert for our dining pleasure. Our kitchen and serving help, Lori DiMaestri, Rebecca Gring, Chelle Ordway, Joe Rossi, Marc Battilega. Our bartender, Mike Farley. Our keynote speakers, Anna Nassib, Pete Rebagliati, Richard Calcagno, Marc & Kathy Battilega. Special thanks to our friend and member, Phil Potestio, for taking time out of his vacation in Italy, to make and send us a video with commentary of his family’s involvement and history with our club. Our video editors who were responsible for editing and playing our Club Paesano Historical DVD, John and Skylar Benagni. I’d also like to give a big thank you to my lovely wife Diane, and daughter Adriana Cervi for coming in on Saturday night, and helping me decorate the club for the dinner. Much love and thanks to all of you that could attend and help make it a special night. Let us never forget our Italian heritage, and do all we can to preserve and keep it alive and well!

Spring Dance:

Our Spring Dance is scheduled for Saturday May 7th. Doors open at 5:30pm, Cocktail social from 5:30pm till 6:45pm. Dinner to be served at 6:45pm. Enjoy our “World Famous” Spaghetti & Meatball dinner, salad, rolls and dessert followed by a fantastic night of live music and dancing from “The Hit Machine”. If you’ve

never heard them before, you are definitely in for a huge treat. Tickets are now available for purchase on our website at Tickets will also be sold at the door, but why wait. Be the first to reserve your tickets for your favorite tables and seats. Bring your family, friends, co-workers and acquaintances. Let’s do our best to promote, and to invite as many people as we can to this event. Post fliers up, and blast it on your social media accounts. After being cooped up all winter, what a great way for you and your favorite people to let off some steam, and welcome in the new season! Let’s break our last attendance list by 100%. We can make it a blowout! Please do all that you can to help us get back on track. We are almost there!

Primavera Italiana:

On Sunday May 15th we will be having our “Primavera Italiana”. From 2pm to 6pm, or later. This is a collaboration between Club Paesano and some of the other active Italian associations in the Portland- Vancouver area. The event is open to all Italians. One of the main reasons for doing this is to introduce the Italian General Consul of San Francisco, Sergio Strozzi and the new Honorary Consul of Italy, Vytas Babusis. We will also be introducing, recently elected Representative of the Comites of San Francisco, Angela Zagarella. There may be some other key speakers as well. This is an Italian extravaganza for the who’s who of Italian representatives for us on the west coast and the Pacific Northwest, and are very honored and lucky to have them here, in person for this event. After the speeches, Andreas Scasso, from KBOO’s Italian Hour, will be spinning music for our musical and dancing entertainment. The other reason for doing this event, is for our Italian community to come together for a meet and greet. In the last 2 years during this pandemic, we’ve had a lot of Italians that have moved into the area, and haven’t been able to get out, meet fellow Italians, and explore what the area has to offer. I also looked at having this event, as a great way for the Italians in this area, to meet Club Paesano, and Cedarville Lodge & Park. A fantastic way for them to meet us, and to see what we’re all about. Potential new guests to our events, and most importantly, maybe some new Paesano members. This will also be a way of showcasing Cedarville Lodge & Park, for new venue rentals as well.

The Associazione Culturale Italiana, will be supplying light appetizers and some desserts. They are encouraging guests to bring some cookies, cakes or appetizers too. At this point, Club Paesano won’t be selling any food (Subject to change), but will be providing a “No Host” bar, for refreshments and adult beverages. We will charge $10 per person, 10 yrs and younger are free. We would like you to go to “Eventbrite” to register if you are coming, just so we can have an idea of how many people will be attending. The “Eventbrite” link is Club Paesano will need some volunteers to help the event run smoothly. We’ll need people to help set up/tear down, help at the gate, and behind the bar. The other clubs will be asking their members to volunteer as well. I would like to have some of our members man a Club Paesano/ Cedarville informational booth. I would also like to have members walking amongst our guests to give information about us. If you would like to volunteer, please get a hold of me so I can add your name to our list. Email me at or call me at 503-891-7374. This has the potential of being a real big event, so please come out and invite fellow Italians that you may know. Most importantly, please come out to represent and to show our fellow Italians how special Club Paesano is!

Paesano Bocce Club:

I would like to congratulate 3 of our Club Paesano members who played and placed in a bocce tournament in Auburn WA, 2weeks ago. Mario Pompei & Doug Burchak whose team placed 2nd, and the team that I played on took 3rd place. A very good Paesano Bocce representation. We had our registration meeting last week. The meeting was to sign up your teams or to register as an individual player. We went over some new rules, and the state of our new bocce courts and facility. If you are interested in playing bocce, and becoming a member, please go to our website to register or contact Mario Pompei, Doug Burchak, Dino Gavazza, or myself for more information. Our league nights (Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday) are filling up fast, so don’t hesitate if you are interested. On Sunday, May 8th we would like to invite anyone who would like to play or learn the game. We will start at 10 am, and will play for a few hours. We will be having a bocce “Meet and Greet” on Sunday May 22nd, in collaboration

with the Festa Italiana committee. It will be a fun day to get together, learn the sport and get to play some bocce. This event is open to everyone. Come on out to support our Bocce club, and the Festa Italiana. We are in the process of building our 2 new bocce courts, and are still trying to raise funds to do so. We have many ways that you can donate to the cause and get a tax write off too. We are still selling personalized pavers, signs, both personal and for business, and of course any monetary donations are more than welcomed.

Concert in the Park:

Our Concert in the Park, is scheduled to take place on Saturday August 6th. Entertainment provided by “5 Guys named Moe”. Our concert will take place outdoors in our beautiful park. It’s always a huge hit, and our biggest event. I hope that you will all take part in it, and invite as many people as you can. Please reserve the date. No time like the present to start planning on it. We will have more information to follow.

Festa Italiana:

Festa Italiana will have a one-day event that will take place on Sunday, August 21st at Cedarville Lodge & Park. Cedarville Lodge has once again been gracious enough to allow this event to happen here. Paesano Bocce will also have its annual Festa Bocce tournament starting in the morning. Club Paesano will provide food for purchase and our “No Host” bar, while the Festa will incorporate other food vendors, entertainment and raffle items. The Festa Committee is also working on some other ideas for the day as well. Club Paesano and the Festa will be in need of volunteers to make this event a success. Please contact Chelle Ordway our “Events Volunteer Coordinator” at 503-250-2356 or if you can help us out. Once again, please invite family, friends and let’s have a great Club Paesano representation.

Fun Committee:

The Fun Committee is still meeting every Monday night at the lodge for our “Monday Night Social”. If you haven’t been to one, plan on attending some time. A great way to get to know some of your fellow members better and a fun night out. We’re still working on other events for the rest of the year. More information to be announced.

Cedarville Lodge & Park:

Our beautiful Cedarville Lodge & Park is starting to pick up steam again in its venue rentals and events rebooking, but is still in need of some help. As always, if you or anyone you know are in need of a venue now or in the future, please make Cedarville Lodge your 1st choice. Contact our “Venue Events Director”, Maria Duong at 503-577-8471 for information and price lists. She’ll be happy to help with your rental needs.

Cedarville Shares:

If you are interested in purchasing Cedarville shares, please contact Steve Petruzelli at 503-620-3447 or All purchases of shares help to strengthen the lodge and park, and makes you a partner in this beautiful facility.

Club Paesano Dues:

2022 Club Paesano membership dues will be due on June 1st. If you still owe monies for any past dues or events, please contact John Kern at 503-519-5560 or to balance your account.

LaCarota Question:

Congratulations to John Benagni for winning last month’s question, and the coveted bottle of wine. Will we have another new winner for this month’s question? If you don’t play, you can’t win, so here we go.

In keeping with our “Club Paesano Heritage” and the history of our wonderful club, my question this month is simple.

I want you to name all of the members of the very 1st Club Paesano “Board of Directors”. All of the officers, and the four other founding members. Also, what was the year that Club Paesano was incorporated?

All correct answers will have the chance at winning the prize. Please email me your answer at .

Final Thoughts:

Well, we did it. We had our Club Paesano Heritage Night, and I thought that it was a great success. So much so, that in our next board meeting, I will move that we make it an annual event for our members. Coming from a big Italian family and a huge Italian community, I’ve been spoiled and have always been surrounded by my Italian culture. Our Heritage Night proved to me that our Italian culture is alive and well where ever you go. My father always says to me, “No matter where you go in this world, you’ll always find Italians”. “We are all over the place”. I believe that he’s right. I was so happy to see our members come out to this event, especially our older members, that came out to share with us their stories of our history and our club. The stories from Anna, Pete, Richard, Marc and Kathy kept us all interested and held our attention. I didn’t hear any background chatter while our speakers where speaking to us. I think that we all grew a little bit closer to the club and what we are all about. I say it time and time again. We are one of the only Italian clubs in the area with our very own building and property that we can call our own. Please take advantage of it and cherish the fact that you are a “Paesano”. Be proud of that fact and wear it on your sleeve. Let’s make our founding members proud of what we do, now and in the future. Here’s to prosperity and longevity! Ecco a Cento Anni!