Community rallies around statue in Arrigo Park

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During a typical summer, Carlo Vaniglia attends patron saint celebrations almost every weekend. With most of them cancelled due to the coronavirus, Vaniglia has hatched a groundbreaking way to spend his newfound free time. “I thought, ‘Why not gather in front of the Columbus statue in Arrigo Park to show our support for our monuments and answer questions people might have?’” Vaniglia explains. And so, Coffee With Columbus was born.

Vaniglia has attracted groups of between 20 and 60 people each Sunday morning simply through word of mouth, and the feedback from passersby has been largely positive. “We’re not there to protest, we’re there to inform,” Vaniglia says. “When people ask, we tell them what we’re doing and share the truth about Columbus. We’ve had pretty good results so far.”

The get-togethers have been peaceful and upbeat. A youth day is under consideration as a future gathering. (708-217-1004)


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