Saluda holds lasagna dinner fundraising event

Published 12:14 pm Tuesday, February 6, 2024

Gourmet lasagna, traditional songs raise money for international cause

 

SALUDA—The City of Saluda held its inaugural lasagna dinner fundraiser for its Sister City program on the evening of Saturday, February 3. 

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Saluda and the town of Carunchio in the region of Abruzzo, Italy, have been sister cities since 2015. They share the same approximate population, elevation and latitude. Carunchio is located roughly 150 miles east of Rome.  

The dinner, held at the Saluda Senior Center, had 20 different styles of lasagna from different regions of Italy, salad, focaccia bread, wine, and desserts. The lasagna dinner was sold out, and organizers said they’re looking into a larger venue next year. The Mountain Page Players also regaled those in attendance with traditional Italian songs. 

Ticket holders voted on their top three favorite lasagnes and professional chefs chose their favorites, as well. The winners received a gift bag containing various goodies, including gift certificates from local businesses and an Italian cooking class. 

Approximately 100 were in attendance, and $2,200 was raised at the event. Funds raised will allow local students sent to Italy through the Sister City program to try various Italian dishes, take cooking lessons and take tours of the Abruzzo region. They will also tour a cheese factory, the second largest bell foundry in the world and an olive grove to see how olive oil is made. 

Funding will also send Saluda teachers to Carunchio to teach an English immersion program in 2025 and has provided an Italian language course for grades 2-5 at Saluda Elementary.

“So now every student has their own separate language track they do on their computer or iPad, and Sister City paid for part of it and there was a grant for it,” said Judy Thompson, Chair of the Saluda Sister City program. “And then we’re paying for incentives to reinforce the kids to keep them going and keep them moving along.”

Other Sister City fundraisers have included a Venetian Carnival fundraiser last February, and an upcoming four-course meal is planned for Thursday, March 14, at the Orchard Inn. 

Saluda’s Sister City program is also searching for volunteers to house two students visiting soon from the Abruzzo region. 

For more information, visit saludasistercity.org.