Scalabrini Village Griffith celebrated Festa della Repubblica last week with a huge lunch-time fiesta to commemorate this very important event in Italy’s history.
Festa della Repubblica is a national holiday held in Italy each year that marks the day in 1946 when Italians voted to abolish the monarchy and for Italy to become a republic.
Although many Scalabrini Village residents left Italy shortly after the country became a republic, it was a memorable event for them occurring after World War II, in which many of Scalabrini's residents fought-in and recall vividly.
As proof of Griffith's abundant community spirit, more than 200 Scalabrini Village residents, staff and volunteers attended the lunch event. They enjoyed traditional Italian meals including pastas, pizzas, salads and tiramisu desserts at a courtyard adorned with many banners and Italian flags.
Local Italian musician, Louie Forner, kindly volunteered his time to play traditional music on the piano accordion.
The piano accordion is a favourite instrument for many Italians. The event culminated with a group sing-a-long of traditional Italian love songs.
Melissa Bazzacco, village secretary, said the residents loved reminiscing and telling each other stories about their past.
“It was truly amazing to see the residents make new memories while discussing old ones with our volunteers and friends,” Ms Bazzacco said.
“I’m certain our Festa della Repubblica celebration will be the talk of our village for a long while to come.”
The day is significant because it turns a dark page in Italian history, one that began with Benito Mussolini’s Partito Nazionale Fascista (National Fascist Party) marching on Rome in 1922. King Victor Emmanuel III, fearing civil war, handed power to Mussolini on 28 October 1922.
The 2 June 1946 referendum that resulted in a formal end to the monarchy also saw the exile of Victor Emmanuel and Umberto II.
Vittorio Emanuele, the last claimant to the monarchy, renounced all claim to the throne in the early 2000s.