Sunday, November 3rd • 1pm to 4pm Gaetana’s Cucina Italiana — 143 Christopher Street NYC
$20 in advance | $25 at the door $50 benefactor tickets is encouraged and $100 solidarity circle ticket includes choice of book or tee shirt
Please go to vitomarcantonioforum.com for advanced ticket sales.
Please help our Fund Raising effort to support Vito Marcantonio Forum’s move toward becoming a fully-integrated non-profit organization. The evening’s program will include presentations, book sales, a video documenting VMF’s most recent activities, and an open exchange among the Forum’s members and supporters. The host of the program, Gil Fagiani, will introduce Gerald Meyer’s presentation, “Vito Marcantonio: Now More than Ever,” a dramatization by Roberto Ragone of a Vito Marcantonio speech, while David Giglio’s video will run during the event. For the first time, Vito Marcantonio Forum t-shirts will be on sale.
LOCATION: Gaetana’s Cucina Italiana in the West Village, 143 Christopher Street (northwest corner of Christopher Street and Greenwich Streets), between Hudson and Washington Streets; tel. 212-675-3913. Gaetana’s will serve appetizers and their famous focaccia. A cash bar will remain opened throughout the event. For a full menu of Southern-Italian regional cuisine and specialties. www.gaetanasnyc.com/menus.html
TRANSPORTATION: By subway, No. 1 train to the Christopher Street/Sheridan Square Station
PATH Train: Christopher Street Station
Bus: Take the Crosstown M8 Bus along Christopher St. to Christopher Street/Greenwich Streets
WHO WE ARE:
The Vito Marcantonio Forum brings together people, from a wide variety of backgrounds, interested in disseminating and sharing knowledge of the life and work of Vito Marcantonio (1902 to 1954). Marc, who served as Congressman from East Harlem for fourteen years (1932 to 1950), organized a powerful political coalition of that community’s Italian American, Puerto Rican, and African American residents. Marcantonio’s dedication to his beloved East Harlem, a working-class community where he spent his entire life, continues to inspire those seeking progressive change. Marcantonio politically survived incessant attacks from the two major parties and the commercial media. Marcantonio mentor and collaborators—Leonard Covello, the Italian American educator, and Fiorello LaGuardia, who had served as the District’s congressman from 1922 to 1932—are part of the VMF’s mission. The VMF is also interested in increasing awareness of the American Labor Party, which Marcantonio led for many years, and the critical role of the organized Left that rallied to support Marcantonio. The VMF seeks to preserve the history of the radical political tradition of East Harlem, the cultural backdrop of Italian Harlem and El Barrio. Thus, emerged the “Vito Marcantonio Phenomenon,” a blueprint for a successful, progressive politician, who never compromised his principles. For more info, see vitomarcantonioforum.org.
Gil Fagiani was a founder of the political organization, White Lightning (1971-75). A clinical social worker and addiction specialist, he directed Renewal House, a residential program for recovering alcoholics and drug addicts in Downtown Brooklyn for 21 years. Gil is a cofounder of the Vito Marcantonio Forum, and a member of the Board of Directors of the Italian American Writers Association. A translator and writer, he has published six collections of his own poetry. Gil Fagiani’s latest book, Serfs of Psychiatry, was inspired by the 12 years he worked at a state psychiatric hospital in the Bronx.
Gerald Meyer is the author of Vito Marcantonio: Radical Politician, 1902-1954 and many articles on Marcantonio and related subjects. Gerald along with the late Dr Phillip Cannistraro, were co-editors of The Lost World of Italian American Radicalism. Meyer is a founding member of the faculty of Hostos Community College of the City University of New York. Since high school, Jerry has been active in progressive movements and causes.
Roberto Ragone has over 25 years’ experience in government and non-profits, working on business development and cultural tourism, along with arts and culture events. Ragone worked for the NYC Council and the NYC Mayor’s Office. Served as Executive Director of the Lower East Side Business Improvement District, Marketing Director for the Ciao America Film Project and President for FIERI, an organization promoting Italian culture. As a consultant, he conducts strategic planning, marketing fundraising, and advocacy for non-profits, small businesses, and arts-related projects. He was on theatrical production teams, acted in showcases, and most recently played Felix in The Odd Couple.
ABOUT GAETANA’S CUCINA ITALIANA:
The restaurant has been serving regional Italian cuisine in an unpretentious atmosphere since 1931, when Gaetana Di Martino arrived from Sicily. Gaetana, who was known for her incredible sense of style, had a flair for cooking from simple, fresh ingredients; her place would have made Marc feel comfortable after long day of fighting the good fight.