The Club Vicentino of Toronto was founded in 1969. We are a non profit, social and recreational club affiliated with the "Ente Vicentini nel Mondo" whose head office is located in Vicenza, Italy and a founding member club of the Federation of Veneto Clubs and Association of Ontario (Veneto Federation).
In the fall of the founding year, Adelino Vicentini, an immigrant native of the province of Vicenza sensed a need to create a social framework where vicentini residing in Toronto and the surrounding area could meet and share common interests, dialect, traditions and stories of their homeland. The concept was well accepted and soon thereafter, on November 2nd, the Club held their first general assembly.
Our inauguration, attended by 800 or more guests was held at the Rotonda Banquet Hall on April 4, 1970. During the ceremony, Dr. Giovanni Bisson, a representative of the House of Commerce of Vicenza, presented our President, Adelino Vicentini, our official flag.
Throughout the initial years of our existence, the objective of elected committees was to provide the membership with the opportunity to socialize among friends. This was achieved by organizing various social dances and special events for the children. The major events organized at the time were:
- Lanerossi Vicenza soccer team arrives in Toronto to play an exhibition game against the Toronto Metro. Final score was 3-2 for Lanerossi Vicenza.
- A trade exhibition was held where products from Vicenza were on display.
- A dinner attended by the Mayor of Toronto; the Mayor of Vicenza, Dr. Sala; Senator Onorio Cengarle, assistant secretary of the Italian Ministry of Transports and Civil Aviation and Lorenzo Pellizzari, president of the Ente Vicentini nel Mondo.
- "Incontri Triangolari" in Kingston whereby the 3 Vicentini Clubs from Toronto, Montreal and Ottawa competed for the Pigafetta Trophy.
Breaking with tradition, in 1984 for the first time a woman was elected President of our club. This encouraged other women to play an active role within our organization. A Youth Group was formed to organize specific events and outings for the younger members.
As time progressed, our programs evolved with the changing needs of our members, such as:
- Evenings at the theatre …Zorba, Evita, Tango Argentino.
- Art Exhibit of oil paintings by Marco Campini
- Conference on Palladian Architecture presented by the Mayor of Vicenza
- Participation at the International Conference of Vicentini in Italy
- Participation at the CNE's Marostica Human Chess Game
- Traditional summer picnics
- Visit from Santa Claus and the "Befana"
- Easter Egg Hunt for the children
The Ladies Guild was formed to give a new spark to the club. Its intent is to organize events for the ladies, a family get together at Christmas and our traditional Festa della Madonna di Monte Berico.
On November 20th, 1999 a special evening is planned to commemorate the 30th anniversary of our Club. This achievement attests the commitment of our members and elected committees who have volunteered their time in order to keep our social and cultural spirit alive.
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