Festa Italiana

Published 12:00 am Friday, July 29, 2005

Tomorrow Suffolk will play host to 90 guests from our sister city of Oderzo, Italy.

The highlight of their visit will be on Saturday when Suffolk’s first &uot;Festa Italiana&uot; will take place at Constant’s Wharf and various other spots downtown.

(See the special section inside today’s News-Herald for details).

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The event should be memorable and we encourage our readers avail themselves to what is being offered.

Many people have labored long and hard to make this exchange and festival a success. Not the least of whom was Sister Cities Chairwoman Mary Beth Naismith, who worked closely with the News-Herald, along with others, to produce the special section.

Mrs. Naismith penned an open letter to the community inside the special edition recognizing all those who have worked so hard, including generous business and industry sponsors, so there is no need for us to repeat here.

Of course it’s because of one person that this event is taking place – Planters Peanuts founder and Suffolk and Oderzo benefactor Amedeo Obici.

Mr. Obici was born in Oderzo and made his fortune in Suffolk, a fortune he shared with both communities by endowing hospitals in honor of his wife, Louise. There are few in Suffolk in the past half-century who have not been positively impacted by his generosity. Suffolkians will have a rare opportunity to glimpse Mr. Obici’s personal collection of memorabilia that is on display at Riddick’s Folly. Please don’t pass up this rare opportunity.

There are a few among us who will ever have the good fortune to visit Oderzo, in the Tuscany region of Italy. On Saturday, you’ll have an opportunity to experience the next best thing thanks to the Sister Cities Commission, the City of Suffolk and sponsors.