Joe Avati "Back to Basics" Boston Concepts Presents
Joe Avati “Back to Basics”

Was Held: Saturday, June 14, 2014 7:30PM
Where: Regent Theatre, 7 Medford Street (off Mass. Ave.), Arlington

Joe Avati returns to Boston with his brand new award winning bilingual Italian standup comedy show 'Back to Basics'. This event will sell out so get your tickets early. Avati's observational brand of comedy have earned him comparisons to Jerry Seinfeld, and is often referred to as "the Italian Seinfeld". His observations are drawn from the life around his Italian family, particularly his experiences growing up. The characters and traits that Avati mentions seem to be universal in Italian families, which is why audiences familiar with this cultures are able to identify with him. His parents are from Calabria, Italy and he lives in Australia.

Italia Unita Sponsors
La Befana Membership Party 2014

La Befana Membership Party 2014
La Befana Membership Party 2014
La Befana Membership Party 2014
La Befana Membership Party 2014
La Befana Membership Party 2014
La Befana Membership Party 2014
La Befana Membership Party 2014
La Befana Membership Party 2014
La Befana Membership Party 2014
La Befana Membership Party 2014
La Befana Membership Party 2014
La Befana Membership Party 2014
La Befana Membership Party 2014
La Befana Membership Party 2014
La Befana Membership Party 2014

Italia Unita Sponsors
Italian Home for Children Toy Drive

It's that time of year to spread the joy of Christmas! We are once again supporting the Italian Home for Children. Our annual Italia Unita Open House will be Saturday, December 7, 2013 from 9:00 AM to 11:30 AM. Please join us that day and donate your items while celebrating some holiday cheer!

Our office is located at P.O. Box 685, East Boston.

Below you will find a list of items along with a FAQ list to learn more about the gift giving program. On behalf of our Gift Giving Chairperson, Maria Spada and the board of Italia Unita we thank you in advance for your generosity!

Our 2013 Holiday Wish List

Toys Needed Most
  • Action Figures (Non-Violent) – Skylanders
    and Marvel’s Avengers are the biggest request this year!
  • Arts & Crafts Kits – Rainbow Loom bracelet kits, scrapbooking, journaling
  • Art Supplies (including yarn and gimp)
  • Books (ages 4 – 14)
  • CDs (No “Parental Advisories”)
  • CD Boom boxes
  • DVDs - Monsters University, The Croods,
    Despicable Me (1 & 2), Percy Jackson, Planes, etc.
  • Headphones, Ear Buds
  • Jewelry & Bead Kits (for older children)
  • Moon Sand
  • Lego’s
  • Matchbox Cars and Trucks
  • Personal CD/MP3 Players
  • Playstation 2, xBox or Game Cube & games
  • Puzzles
  • Stress balls
  • Yoga Balls
  • Pillow Pets Dream Lites
Other Toys
  • Model Magic
  • Clay for Sculpting
  • Crossword Puzzles/Word Searches
  • Children’s DVDs (G & PG only)
  • Disposable Cameras
  • Dolls (All Ethnic Groups)
  • Handheld Games (Tetris, Yatzee, etc.)
  • Musical Instruments (any kind)
  • Nerf Over the door basketball hoop
  • Remote Control Cars and Trucks
  • Small “Goody Bag” Toys
  • Dodge Balls
  • Volleyballs
  • Basketballs
  • Soccer balls
  • Coloring book
  • Stickers
  • Children’s trivia cards
  • Helmets

(All kinds needed, but especially AA and 9-Volt for toys, remotes, etc.)

Aggravation, Boggle, Cadoo, Checkers, Chess, Clue, Connect Four, Don’t Break the Ice, Educational Games, Mancala, Memory, Mousetrap, Pictionary for Kids, Playing Cards, Sorry, Uno, Uno Attack, Scrabble Slam, SpongeBob Kid Cranium, The Best of Charades for Kids. (Please no Candyland or Chutes and Ladders games – we get more than we need every year) :)

Drorm Needs
Bakeware, Bean Bag Chairs, Birthday Party Supplies, Cooking & Serving Utensils, Decorative Pillows& Blankets, DVD Players, Microwave Ovens, Plastic Tablecloths & Utensils, Posters (Kid Art, action figures, Disney characters, sports players), Pots & Pans, Storage Bins, Toasters, Toy Chests, Tupperware, TVs, Wrapping Paper, Tape and Ribbon, VCR’s, Ear Buds.

School Needs
Books, Drawing Paper, Educational Children’s DVDs, Glue, Laminating Paper, Paint Brushes, Paints, Playground Balls, Poster board

Sizes: Girls sizes 6-20, Women’s 12-22, Boys 8-20, Men 30-38 inch waist, S-XXL including Husky sizes, Athletic wear, Baseball Caps, Bathing Suits, Bathrobes (Boys & Girls), Belts (Boys & Girls), Boots, Casual Shirts, Dress Shirts, Dresses, Flip Flops, Gloves/Mittens (winter), Hats (winter), Jackets (winter and spring), Jeans, Pajamas, Shoes, Shorts, Socks, Slacks, Slippers, Sneakers, Snowsuits, Sports Team jerseys, Sweaters, T-Shirts, Underwear

Hygiene Items
Bath & Shower Gels (for boys and girls), Body Lotion, Brushes, Combs & Picks, Deodorant, Hair Care Products (for all ethnicities), Plastic Soap Holders, Shower Caps, Shampoo, Toothbrushes, Toothbrush Holders, Wave Caps/Head Wraps

Gift Cards
AC Moore, Amazon, AMC Movie Theatres, Best Buy, Gap, Jo-Ann Fabrics, Macy’s, Michaels, Showcase Movie Theatres, Target, T.J. Maxx, Toys-R-Us, Wal-Mart, Build-a-Bear, Chuck E. Cheese

Italian Home for Children Holiday Q&A

Can I donate used items?
Due to state safety and health regulations, the Italian Home can only accept new items. Unused hand knit/crochet items are also welcome!

Should I wrap my item(s)?
It is preferable that donations NOT be wrapped. This way we can ensure that children do not get duplicate gifts. Many donors give wrapping paper and Along with the ribbons with their donations rather than wrap the gifts themselves.

Do you give out duplicate lists? What if someone purchases the same toy(s) as me?
Any duplicate gifts received may be used in several ways:

• Given to kids who come into our program the week of Christmas & therefore don't have a wish list.
• Given to siblings of the children in our care who may not otherwise receive gifts.
• Put into a “toy closet” to be used for future use: like birthdays, and goodbye gifts, to name a few.

Do you prefer a donation of toys, clothes, gift cards or money?
Any items donated are always welcome. Gift cards are a nice way for the Home to purchase any last minute wish list items that we did not receive as well as gifts for children who come to the Home the week of Christmas. Certainly cash is always helpful to cover the cost of providing all the essentials (both holiday and life) the children need.

Italia Unita Sponsors
Meet the Members/La Befana/Italian Karaoke Party

When: January 7, 2013, 6-9 PM
Where: Jeveli’s 387 Chelsea Street

La Befana / Meet the Board 2012
La Befana / Meet the Board 2012
La Befana / Meet the Board 2012
La Befana / Meet the Board 2012
La Befana / Meet the Board 2012
La Befana / Meet the Board 2012
La Befana / Meet the Board 2012
La Befana / Meet the Board 2012
La Befana / Meet the Board 2012

Italia Unita Sponsors
Christopher Columbus Day Parade in East Boston

When: Sunday October 7, 2012 at 1:00PM.
Where: Parade route begins at Suffolk Downs in East Boston.

Italia Unita Artistic Director Pascal Gangi built this float which will be used by Italia Unita. Please join us!

Italia Unita Sponsors
Carnevale 2012

Whether you call it Mardi Gras or Fat Tuesday it will no doubt be a celebration for which Italians call it CARNEVALE! This tradition has long been celebrated throughout Italy where the streets come alive with costumes, masks and masquerade balls.

The event consisted of skits, jokes, masquerade and fun! Italia Unita Youth Artistic leader Pascal Gangi had on display paper mache art, while an ongoing slide show of “Carnevale” around Italy will was highlighted throughout the day. People dressed up or put on a complimentary mask at the event while Italia Unita’s artistic group entertained everyone.

We served up plenty of Carnvevale desserts such as Pignolata (a Sicilian specialty) and Chiacchiere literally translates into “chatter”, “chit-chat”, or “gossip”, but in this context it is a strip of sweet pastry dough fried and coated with powdered sugar.

Photos courtesy of Rosario Scabin of Ross Photography. Click to enlarge them.

Italia Unita Gathers Toys and Clothes to Benefit the Italian Home For Children!

Italia Unita collected MANY toys, clothes, books etc. to benefit the Italian Home for Children today at their office in East Boston. The flood of support was evident as they collected hundreds of items during the morning hours. Students from the local Catholic school stopped by to lend support and were treated to cookies, arts and crafts and a brief Italian language course! Many thanks to everyone who supported this wonderful cause.

Celebrate Italian American Heritage Month this October with Italia Unita!
Join Italia Unita for a special screening of Mal’occhio

When: October 9, 2011, 3 - 5PM, Screening at 3:30 PM
Where: Zumix Firehouse, 260 Sumner St., East Boston

In MAL'OCCHIO, filmmaker Agata De Santis sets out to uncover the world of the evil eye - where one can become physically ill by another's envious glances, where the only remedy is a phone call to the old woman down the street, and prevention involves wearing strange-looking amulets. Agata travels to Italy, New York, and to her mother's kitchen in Montreal to decide once and for all if the evil eye is real. Click the following link for more information

$5 suggested donation. Free for Italia Unita members.

Italia Unita Sponsors
Carnevale 2011
Carnevale which means “goodbye to meat” has been celebrated in Italy throughout it’s 150 years as a unified sovereign nation. Please join us to celebrate the tradition of Carnevale in Italy and the 150th Anniversary of Italy’s Unification!

• Hors D'Oeuvres and light fare
• Cash Bar
• Presentations on the History of Carnevale
• Traditional dances performed by the Beverly Richards Dance School
• Demonstrations of paper mache’ float building Music by DJ LaVecchia and more

Italia Unita Sponsors
La Befana - Meet the Members Party
Where: Jeveli's Restaurant, Day Square, East Boston

This is event celebrated the Italian holiday, La Befana or the "Epiphany" held on January 6th in Italy. This event brought our members together for an evening of complimentary refreshments with a cash bar. You had to be a member in good standing to attend, but could bring a friend who could join that evening.

Italia Unita holds Toy Drive for the Italian Home For Children
Italia Unita once again gathered gifts for children at the Italian Home For Children in Jamaica Plain. View the 2010 Drive Details

Italia Unita Sponsors
Columbus Day Parade Float 2010

Italia Unita teamed up with Pascal Gangi a native of Sciacca, Sicily who is so proud of his roots that he has started a paper Mache group that builds floats. There most recent float was entered in the Wakefield 4th of July Parade and won 2nd prize! This same float was used to for the East Boston Columbus Day Parade for Italia Unita, on Sunday, October 10, 2010.

October Heritage Month
Celebrate A Special Performance
by Patrizio Buanne With Us!

Was Held: Saturday, October 2, 2010
Where: Berklee Performance Center, 136 Massachusetts Avenue, Boston, MA 02115-2602

Tickets: $50 and $70 (to benefit Italia Unita) call 617-561-3201 or e-mail About Patrizio Buanne:

Patrizio on YouTube | That's Amoré

Italia Unita Sponsors
'Gravy Wars' Book Signing
Where: 80 Border Street, East Boston, MA
June 12th, 2010 at 3 - 5 PM

Please join Italia Unita and author Lorraine Ranalli at the upcoming book signing of 'Gravy Wars'.

Gravy Wars is a humorous narrative about the flavor of Italian culture in South Philadelphia, Gravy Wars describes a way of life that is unique to the region where gravy, a.k.a. tomato sauce, is a distinct hallmark. Italian immigrants in other parts of the United States scoff at its usage. Rather than acquiesce to the common term for sauce, however, this sector of Americana takes pride in the moniker and readily defends it.

Most Italian-Americans are competitive when it comes to culinary skills, especially when it comes to preparing gravy. In a comically deprecating style, Gravy Wars exposes this and many other idiosyncrasies characteristic of South Philadelphians. In addition to a heap of nostalgia, the book includes dozens of family recipes split among eleven chapters in categories that relate to each chapter’s topic.

Download the Gravy Wars Book Synopsis and One Sheet Promo.

Visit the Official Gravy Wars website for more information.

Italia Unita Presents
Founded in 1998 by Sergio Bellotti and Tino D'Agostino,Spajazzy is a musical project where labels find no meaning. What about if John Coltrane grew up in Naples or Andrea Bocelli lived in Washington D.C.? A great song starts with a beatiful melody. Whether an original or a rendition of a classic we strive to make sure the melody remains the center of what carries the rhythm, the harmony and all the colors in between these elements. Come to a show to hear what a funk groove sounds like over a Neapolitan classic by Toto' or Edoardo De Crescenzo. Or simply kick back and enjoy some originals where our musical heritage meets the usa jazzy sound we grew up to since the mid 90's.

To view a video of SpaJazzy visit

Italia Unita Sponsors
Boston Blazers Lacrosse Team's
Italian Heritage Night!
Was held on April 3rd, 2010

Tickets are only $20 -- see link below to order your tickets today.
Complete information is on the attached flyer.

“Whether your Italian by blood or by heart, come celebrate at Italian Heritage Night! Featuring a performance from the Dante Alighieri choir! A portion of the proceeds will go to supporting Italian Language Education.”

Visit the Boston Blazers official site at

Italia Unita Cena Dinner 2010
Hosted by Rino's Place Restaurant in East Boston, MA

Here are some photos from the Italia Unita Cena that was held on March 3rd, 2010 at Rino's Place Restaurant in East Boston, Massachusetts.

October Heritage Month 2009
Featuring the works of Photographer Valentina Oppezzo.

About the Exhibit
Beginning October 12 through October 31, 2009 an exhibition was organized by “Italia Unita” at 80 Border Street, East Boston; works by the artist were on display. Her works include pictures from her photographic works about toys and food, and landscape photos taken in Trieste, Italia, where she lived for eight years. Join us on October 29th from 6:30 – 8:30 at 80 Border Street, East Boston (Atlantic Works Building) for a cocktail reception. Please RSVP to Donations are accepted.

About the Artist
Valentina Oppezzo is a young Italian photographer now living in Cambridge (MA). After a training of a couple of years as a drawer, she has decided to work in the medium of the Fine Arts Photography. Her photographic work reflects both her previous experience as illustrator and her Master studies in Cinema. She’s specialized, in fact, in creating tiny photographic “sets” using as subjects everyday objects (like her toys, or things bought at the supermarket, or food), that become the “protagonists” of indefinite, magical, ambiguous stories. Her still life pictures have been displayed in several groups and solo exhibitions in Italy, and recently at the ArtMarket Gallery of Downtown Boston, at the Exhibition area of the Harvard Medical School and during the 3DB event organized by the Duplessy Foundation.

Italia Unita Cena Dinner 2009
Hosted by Sofia’s Restaurant in Hudson, MA

Here are some photos from the Italia Unita Cena held at the Sofia's Restaurant in Hudson, Massachusetts.

Tutto Dante Inferno!
Saturday, June 6th, 2009

Berklee Performance Center
1140 Boylston Street
Boston, MA

Actor/Comedian Roberto Benigni in his first U.S. Tour! Benigni starts in a poetic journey through Dante's divine comedy in Italian with English titles. Tickets go on sale March 10th, 2009!

You can purchase tickets through italia Unita by calling Ticketmaster at 1-800-745-3000 or by visiting

Italian Heritage Month 2008
'Calabria' Photo Exhibit by Nicole Connolly
Italia Unita celebrated Italian Heritage Month on October 7th, 2008 at the Atlantic Works Building on 80 Border Street in East Boston with sample Calabrese refreshments provided by Rino's restaurant. Nicole Connolly's photo exhibition "Calabria - Italy's Southern most province" was the main attraction. and the entire event was offered to Italia Unita members for FREE with non-members getting in for only $8.00!

Italia Unita Presents
Dinner Dance 2007
These photos are from our 2007 Dinner Dance. Italia Unita wishes to thank everyone who came out to support us as well as to dance and have fun at this wonderful event!

Italia Unita Presents
Cucina Rustica 2006

These photos are from our 2006 Cucina Rustica held at Rino's Place in East Boston. Italia Unita wishes to thank everyone who came out to support us through this event.

Italia Unita Presents
Italo-Australian Comedian, Joe Avati!

Italia Unita celebrated Italian Heritage month with Italo-Australian comedian, Joe Avati. This was Joe's first time in Boston and he was well received by the Boston crowd. Below are some photos from Joe's visit to Boston.

For more information about Joe Avati please visit these sites. or

Sample Clips: 01 :: 02 :: 03

Italia Unita Presents
Columbus Day Parade 2006
The Columbus Day Parade is shared between East Boston and the North End and is alternated every year between each community. Italia Unita hosts a float every year to commemorate Christopher Columbus and the achievements of Italians.

Italia Unita Presents
World Cup Soccer 2006
Italia Unita Celebrated the World Cup Italy Victory on Sunday July 9, 2006 at the Embassy Suites Hotel in East Boston. Over 200 people packed the place cheering on Italy! The East Boston streets were filled with people waving flags from cars.

Italia Unita was formed 12 years due to Italy's participation in the '94 World Cup. The streets were filled with people celebrating Italian pride and it was then that a few members of Italia Unita decided to form an organization to produce an annual festival. This victory is very symbolic for Italia Unita as we celebrate our 12 year anniversary with a double celebration.

Italia Unita Presents
Night of Song at Victory Gardens 2006
Italia Unita held an evening of Italian songs for the Victory Garden residents in East Boston.  The entertainment was well received by the residents who felt nostalgic about the music.  Most of the residents were either born in Italy or 1st generation Italians. "We feel that our elder residents in East Boston deserve to experience the entertainment that we offer and unfortunately some may not be able to attend the festival, so we brought the festival to them." said Gene Schepici, Italia Unita Board Member and Cultural Chairperson. The event was sponsored in part by Verizon Communications and pastries donated by Napoli Pastry on Salem Street, North End.

Italia Unita Presents
Cena Dinner 2006

Scenes from the Italia Unita Cena held the first Wednesday of the month at the Rino's.

Italia Unita Presents
Chianti Classico 2005

Chianti Classico sponsored a wine tasting on September 1, 2005 at the Ritz Carlton in Boston. Italia Unita assisted in promoting the event. Italia Unita members enjoyed an evening of fine wine and olive oil tasting.

Italia Unita Presents
Caturano Photography Exhibit

In addition to the Italian festival here are a few samples of past events:

Italia Unita recently hosted a black and white photo exhibit "La Vendemmia ~ The Harvest" by Christina Caturano at the John Raimondi Gallery located at the Vitale, Caturano & Co, in Charlestown, Massachusetts. 

"The small, mountaintop village of Prezza is located in the Italian region of Abruzzo. It is an area rich with traditions and culture. My love for wine and desire to learn my family history brought me to the area for this simple picture story on “La Vendemmia,” or “The Harvest.” Getting out into the fields gave me a great and unique perspective on rural Italian life as I witnessed the livelihood of the people who hold family and tradition so close to their hearts."

- Christina Caturano

Italia Unita Presents
Strictly Sinatra!
Was held on Friday,
October 17, 2003;
7pm - Cocktail Hour; 8pm - Dinner

Join us for an evening of entertainment and celebration with Al Natale's Classic Swing Orchestra featuring vocalist Jim Baramante and Al Vega singing Sinatra tunes. Go back to the days of the supper clubs as we pay tribute to one of Italian-American's finest singers, Ol Blue Eyes.

Hosted by WPLM/WGBH Broadcast personality, Ron Della Chiesa.

Click to download the PDF.

Italian Heritage Month
The Bel Canto Opera
Throughout the month of October Italia Unita sponsors a variety of activities and celebrations in honor of Italian Heritage Month. In 2000 Italia Unita presented an opera brunch to celebrate Italian Heritage Month and continues to honor October as Italian Heritage Month in Massachusetts.

Italia Unita
P.O. Box 685, East Boston, MA 02128

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