JULY 2020

President’s Message

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

As we are still adjusting to the new normal, I hope this letter finds everyone healthy and happy.
I am sure that most of you miss meeting in person as much as I do. As soon as I am informed when it will be possible to meet at St Joseph’s hall, I will advise.

In the month of July, we will continue to have our council meeting and general meeting via zoom. Invitation to the zoom meeting will be sent via email the day before each meeting. If you need assistance with zooming, please notify me or Jovina for help.

I would love for as many members as possible to attend the next zoom meeting. Your opinion as to when and how you would like our next live meeting run is very important. Your opinions matter. And I would like to hear them.

Thanks to ALL our Brothers and Sisters for your continued support. With your help, we will make our meetings fun and successful! Each member who attends the next general meeting, July 9, via zoom will have their name put in the hat to win a calendar. See you at the next zoom meeting.


President Patricia Russo

Buona Fortuna Lodge

Installation Dinner 2010 058

Membership Information

Important Information Due To The Virus Pandemic

Our next General Membership Meeting will be on Thursday, July 9, 2020, at 7 PM through video conferencing with the Zoom program. 

General Membership Meetings are held the second Thursday of every month at 6:00 p.m. usually at St. Joseph’s Parish Hall, 140 W. Government St. Pensacola. Yearly membership dues are $45 and are due every year by January1.  Checks should be made out to Buona Fortuna Lodge #2835. You may mail your check to Buona Fortuna Lodge #2835. P.O. Box 12351, Pensacola, FL 32591.  

Newsletter Ad subscription cost is $36.00. See below under Newsletter Ads for more information.

Council Meetings

The first Thursday of every month at 6:00 p.m. at Franco’s Italian Restaurant will resume after the quarantine restrictions are lifted. Until then the meetings take place via video conferencing.

Grand Lodge

The Grand Lodge’s website: https://osiaflorida.org/

Here is the link to the Grand Lodge’s Quarterly Newsletter. Click on the name The Floridian

Meeting Set Up/Clean Up Committee:

We need all the members attending a meeting to help set up before the meeting and clean up after the meeting. 


If you have a charity that you would like supported by Buona Fortuna, please contact the charity chairperson, Giovanni Mirra, john.mirra@att.net  Please send your 2020 requests to Giovanni by September.

Lodge Committees

The current list of committees is located on the Buona Fortuna Officers page on our website. Here is the link: 


Buona Fortuna needs your participation. If you would like to join a committee, please contact President Russo.

Dates For Upcoming Events:

You can visit our website calendar for all the year’s events at https://soibuonafortuna.org/home/buona-fortuna-calendar/

No events have been planned as of this newsletter edition due to the restrictions caused by COVID-19. As soon as the restrictions are eased, Thomas Cacciatore, Social Committee Chair, hopes to organize a dinner-dance social.

Dining Out With Giovanni 

A Dine Out date has not been planned for July. 

Lodge News

Buona Fortuna Scholarship Award

Haley Downs, a graduating senior from Washington H.S. has won the Buona Fortuna scholarship. The presentation of the award will be in July at an outside location downtown. Members are encouraged to attend. More information to follow via email.

Zoom Tutorial:  https://youtu.be/ygZ96J_z4AY

The Manna Food Bank sent a letter thanking the lodge for our donation to help them during the crisis. Click on the link below that will open in a new window. Then click Manna Thank You Letter.

         Our Italian American Heritage

The Constitution

Italian Influences In America’s Fight To Gain Independence

Between 1776 and 1789 the thirteen British colonies emerged as a newly independent nation, the United States of America. The colonies were largely self-governing and they developed their own political identities and systems which were in many ways separate from those in Britain. This new ideology was a decidedly political viewpoint, which rejected royalty, aristocracy, and corruption and called for sovereignty of the people and emphasized civic duty. The British government began to impose taxes in a way that deliberately provoked the Americans, who complained that they were illegal because Americans were not represented in Parliament. Parliament said the Americans were “virtually” represented and had no grounds for complaint. From the Stamp Act of 1765 onward, disputes with London escalated.

Colonists called the First Continental Congress in 1774 to inaugurate a trade boycott against Britain. Twelve colonies were represented at the meeting. Georgia was under tight British control and did not attend. When resistance in Boston culminated in the Boston Tea Party in 1773 with the dumping of taxed tea shipments into the harbor, London imposed the Intolerable Acts on the colony of Massachusetts and sent in the British Army to take control. The Patriots in Massachusetts and the other colonies readied their militias and prepared to fight.

The fighting started between colonial militias and the British Army in 1775. The Second Continental Congress issued the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776. Under the leadership of General George Washington, the Continental Army and Navy defeated the British military securing the independence of the thirteen colonies. In 1789, the 13 states replaced the Articles of Confederation of 1777 with the Constitution of the United States of America. With its amendments, it remains the fundamental governing law of the United States today.

There was, as most know, no united country called Italy at the time of the American Revolution. The Italian peninsula at that time was divided among a collection of minor states and the dominions of the Pope, most of them under the direct or indirect rule of a major European power. However, Italians played a considerable part in the American war and events in Italy, both historic and contemporary, inspired America’s Founding Fathers. The independence movement in Corsica, first against Genoa and later against France, was something that inspired many colonists and the historic legacy of the Roman Republic had a major influence on the establishment of the United States government.

Some of our Italian forefathers contributed to American’s Independence. The most famous line in the Declaration of Independence, “all men are created equal,” can be attributed to writer and political activist Filippo ‘Philip’ Mazzei. Born in Italy, Mazzei became involved in the American cause after visiting Virginia in 1773. As a friend to the first four American presidents, Mazzei spent time sharing ideas with his closest confidant, Thomas Jefferson. Thanks to his friendship with Jefferson, Mazzei received an original copy of the Declaration. Jefferson himself credited Mazzei with the idea for the famous line.

In addition to Mazzei, several other Italians contributed to the American cause including:

Pascal DeAngelis who at the age of 13 became one of the first native Italians to bear arms against the British. He fought for the Americans in the Revolutionary War.

Born and raised in Italy, Francesco Vigo came to America as a fur trader. When the Revolutionary War came to the Northwest Territory, Vigo accepted IOU’s from the American Colonel George Rogers Clark in exchange for providing Clark’s men with food, clothing, ammunition, and strategic battle support.

Additionally, in 1779, two regiments with Italian recruits arrived to fight for the American cause. They were the 3rd Piemont regiment with 473 men and the 30th Du Perche regiment with 1064 men.

Cesare Beccaria served in laying the foundation for America’s future government in his treatise, “Delitti E Delle Pene” ( On Crimes & Punishment). The book was the first full-length Italian novel translated and published in the American colonies. One of the first to quote directly from Beccaria’s book was John Adams, who influenced the course of events of this country and when he quoted directly from Beccaria, he had an electrifying effect on the colonists.

The passage that found itself in the Declaration of Causes of 1775, the Declaration of Independence of 1776, the Constitution of 1778, and the Bill of Rights:

” Every act of authority, of one man over another for which there is not an absolute necessity, is tyrannical,” and, ” No man can be judged a criminal until he be found guilty; nor can society take from the public protection, until it have been proved that he has violated the conditions on which it was granted.”

Cucumber Strawberry Cooler

Cool off this holiday with this refreshing cocktail.

2 cocktails

1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup water
4 to 5 strawberries, sliced, plus more as a garnish
1 small Persian cucumber, trimmed and sliced
4 ounces of vodka of choice
Prosecco or Sparkling water 

In a medium saucepan, set over medium heat, combine the sugar and water. Stir until dissolved. Set aside until room temperature.
Add a tablespoon of simple syrup to two glasses. Add a few slices of strawberries and cucumber to each glass. Muddle the strawberry and cucumber together. Pour in the vodka and then add a splash of Prosecco. Give it a stir and then taste test. Garnish with slices of strawberries and cucumber.

Buona Fortuna 2835 Lodge Officers

President Patricia Russo

Immediate Past President Brooke Hardy

Vice President Joe DelSignore

Orator Paul Renninger

Recording Secretary Virginia Barberi

Financial Secretary Shayla Kaestle

Treasurer Kathy Ahlen


Louis Brizzi, Thomas Cacciatore, Nick Calabrese, Al Hargis, Vincent Tucei

Guard Shirley Cotita

Mistress of Ceremonies Liberia Reid

Master of Ceremonies Andy Fricano

Corresponding Secretary Jovina Coughlin

Past Presidents Gene Valentino, Mark De Nunzio, Pete Resedean, Joyce Russo Bollenbacher

Herald  Tod Wilson

Public Relations/Webmaster/Newsletter Editor: Jovina Coughlin

Lodge Chaplain  Giovanni Mirra

Lodge Photographers: Thomas Cacciatore/Shirley Cotita

State & National Officers

State Trustee-Region 1 Lucy Smith
Grand Lodge Orator and National Foundation Trustee Mark DeNunzio
Arbitration Commissioners

Giovanni Mirra, Tod Wilson, Dawn Wilson, Barbara Ferg, Al Hargis

 Alternate Commissioners
1st Paul Pecora, 2nd Lucy Smith, 3rd Mary Resedean, 4th Daniel Kaestle

Lodge Contact Information:

Sons & Daughters of Italy in America – Buona Fortuna Lodge #2835. P.O. Box 12351, Pensacola, FL 32591.

Corresponding Secretary/Webmaster/Editor – Jovina Coughlin.  jovinacoughlin@gmail.com

Website Address: https://soibuonafortuna.org/

Visit Us on Facebook, https://www.facebook.com/sonsofitalybuonafortuna 


Remember Those Who Are Ill

  • Rita Somma
  • Vera Fricano
  • Larry Fordham
  • Barbara Ferg
  • Gunther Hascher
  • Al Lombardi
  • Joyce Bollenbacher


Ginny Barberi
Albert Hargis
Gunther Hascher
Elaine Gregory
Pete Resedean

Italian Cookbook For Sale

Preserving Our Italian Heritage. Cost per book $15.00. Great gift for Birthdays, Weddings, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Easter, and Christmas. 

Grand Lodge 2020 Calendar For Sale

Calendars are available to purchase and the program is part of the Cash Three-Evening Florida Lottery Program. Prizes range from $100.00 to Special Holiday prizes for up to $1000.00.  You may purchase a calendar at the General Membership Meeting. Checks should be made out to the Grand Lodge of Florida for $25 for the remainder of this year.

Newsletter Article Deadline

The newsletter is published monthly on the first day of the month. The deadline to submit information is the 30th of the previous month. Submit all information to Editor:  jovinacoughlin@gmail.com

Newsletter Ads

Members’ Personal Ads for Selling Consumer Goods cost $3.00 per month. Business Ads cost $36.00 for 12 months and are payable each January. Email a copy of your business card information or your personal ad information and a photo of the item you are selling to  jovinacoughlin@gmail.com . Please make the check payable to Buona Fortuna Lodge and mail it to Buona Fortuna Lodge #2835. P.O. Box 12351, Pensacola, FL 32591.

Community Business Ads


8190 W Fairfield Dr
Pensacola, FL 32506







The Drowsy Poet Coffee Company


“Best Cup of Coffee on the Coast!”

86 Brent Ln, Pensacola, Florida 32503

  (850) 696-2887