Reunions are held within many families and give relatives a chance to reconnect, meet new family members, share memories and photos, and allow younger cousins to become acquainted with each other. As enjoyable as these events can be, whether they are small or large, they are particularly exciting when large, extended families come together across many miles. We, the descendants of Poggiorealesi immigrants, have come together from time to time over the years to form a most unique reunion that involves multiple surnames and diverse personalities that share a bond in their upbringing based upon their Sicilian roots.
While there is no way for us to know about all such American reunions that involved Poggiorealesi descendants across several states ever since they first arrived in America during the late 1800s, we do know of some recent, larger-scale reunions that were organized in the spirit of calling together those who share the same enthusiasm for celebrating their Poggiorealesi roots. Notably, Robert Lowry, Jr. of Houston helped organize five reunions in the 1990s and early 2000. They were attended by many from the Houston area, but also from other states, and even some folks from out of the country! If you attended any of these gatherings and have special memories or photos from these "Families of Poggioreale" Reunions, feel free to share them with us and we will be happy to post them here for you to show your fellow Poggiorealesi relatives and friends! Contact the editors via poggiorealeinamerica.com.
Poggioreale in America Holds Modern Reunion in 2019!
On June 22, 2019 PIA founders held the first Poggioreale in America Reunion in Bryan, Texas at Saint Anthony's Church which was attended by over 300 descendants of the original Poggiorealesi who came to America, many of whom found their way to the Brazos Valley from New Orleans and other parts of the U.S. It was an historic reunion because it its keynote speakers were the current Mayor of Poggioreale, Sindaco Girolamo "Mimmo" Cangelosi who represented modern-day Poggioreale, and Australian Cav. Pietro Maniscalco who represented the hundreds of Poggiorealesi who left Sicily for the Sydney, Australia area.
KBTX-TV had their reporter, Tennyson Guthrie, attend the Reunion to record the excitement!
There was a traditional Italian lunch as well as family history displays, local authors, and speakers. Ross Todaro, formerly of Bryan, TX was the Master of Ceremonies. The Mayor of Poggioreale, Sindaco Mimmo Cangelosi, and International Good Will Ambassador for Poggioreale, Cav. Pietro Maniscalco, spoke to the enthusiastic crowd. Sindaco Cangelosi traveled from Sicily and Cav. Maniscalco traveled from Sydney, Australia to be with these descendants of Poggioreale. This was an historic first! They received heartfelt thanks and many gifts in appreciation, several Texas-themed. Dignitaries from Bryan also were in attendance and spoke to the group.
A special thanks to PIA President Ross Todaro of Bryan, Vice President Tina (Todaro) Anderson of Cincinnati, and Marilyn (Maniscalco) Henley of Houston for planning and spearheading this First Poggioreale in America Reunion. More reunions are in the future!