New Italian-American heritage group SIAMO holds first event at Adezzo in Scranton on Jan. 31
From a press release:
SIAMO is a new, all-volunteer Italian-American heritage group based in Scranton dedicated to promoting the Italian language, history, and culture through free or low-cost events for anyone of all ethnic backgrounds to enjoy. The group’s first event, an Italian language meetup, will be held on Sunday, Jan. 31 at 2 p.m. at Adezzo in downtown Scranton.
This Italian conversation hour at Adezzo (515 Center St., Scranton) is not a class, but a chance for anyone who speaks Italian to practice their skills and meet new people.
SIAMO’s goal is to help preserve Northeastern Pennsylvania’s Italian-American heritage through publicly accessible activities, such as art and photography exhibits, reading clubs, and Italian language meetups. There is no fee to join, and members don’t even need to be Italian – they just have to have a love and passion for all things Italian-American and a desire to see that heritage passed down to future generations.
“SIAMO” means “we are” in Italian. The name is meant to unite all Italian-Americans in a common identity, no matter what town, province, or region their ancestors might have come from. NEPA is statistically one of the most heavily-concentrated Italian-American regions in the United States. While there are many valid Italian-American organizations throughout the region, there is not one that is dedicated exclusively to heritage.
Founder Stephanie Longo has been active in the NEPA Italian-American community for her whole life. The author of several books highlighting the area’s Italian-American culture, she has made it her life’s mission to work actively in Italian-American affairs.
Stephanie’s grandfather, the late Joe Longo, was originally from Guardia dei Lombardi, Avellino, Italy – Scranton’s sister city since 2014. Her mother, Annie Longo, taught her about her heritage from the time she was little. She dedicates her work to her mother and grandfather, with the hopes that it inspires other people of any ethnicity to do similar work.