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The City of St. Helena has proclaimed “Italian Heritage Month” in October for the first time.

According to Chairman Anthony Micheli, local Italians, Sicilians and Swiss Italians (from the Swiss Canton Ticino) were important to the modern Napa Valley Wine Industry. The Nichelinis, Salminas, and other Italians and Swiss Italians continued to grow grapes and make wine during the Prohibition era 1920-33. Homemade wine produced by these immigrants helped save the knowledge needed to continue the industry.

Join the Sons & Daughters of Italy in America for the inaugural event on Oct. 5 in Lyman Park, downtown St. Helena from 10 to 4 p.m. “Festa Italiana” will feature wine, food, games and music. Your donations make this event possible.

Children are welcome, and Nimbus Arts will lead an arts and crafts project from noon to 2 p.m.

The Italian flag will be raised in front of St. Helena City Hall at 10 a.m. and the Italian national anthem sung by Katie Hopgood-Sculatti. The St. Helena Historical Society will present photo exhibits of local Italians, Sicilians and Swiss Italians.

On Oct. 12, join the Sons & Daughters of Italy in America for a spaghetti and meatball dinner at the Native Sons Hall. Cost is $20. Seating is limited to first 200 who sign up. For reservations send check made out to “Sons of Italy” and send to 1125 Crinella Dr., St. Helena, CA 94574.

At the St. Helena Harvest Festival on Oct. 19 the same exhibits will be featured by the St. Helena Historical Society.

As part of the festivities the film “It Started in Naples,” starring Clark Gable and Sophia Loren, will be shown at the Cameo Cinema on Monday, October 28. Enjoy the movie, pizza, wine and music for $5. Tickets are limited. Call 963-9779 or visit cameocinema.com.

For more information call Anthony Micheli at 486-3832.

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