Sister City Signing – Bethlehem & Foiano Di Val Fortore, Italy | Photos by: John DelGrosso

Photos by: John DelGrosso

October 1, 2018 – Bethlehem PA. The City of Bethlehem held an official dedication ceremony during which the city, and the town of Foiano di Val Fortore, Italy, joined together as “sister cities.” The event celebrated the unique bond shared between the two towns which dates back more than 100 years. Both Bethlehem Mayor Robert J. Donchez and Foiano di Val Fortore, Italy, Mayor Michelantonio Maffeo were on hand for the event which included a flag raising ceremony, music performed by the Italian-American Band, and a ceremony inside Town Hall. Despite having 4,478 miles between Bethlehem and Foiano, many Lehigh Valley residents can trace their ancestors back to Foiano.

“This morning, the city I call home, and the city my ancestors called home became official sister cities! 100 years ago my family courageously left Foiano Di Val Fortore, Italy to start a new life in South Bethlehem. They helped create and shape the Lehigh Valley I know & love. It turns out this wasn’t the case for just my family but almost all Italians who immigrated from our small town in Italy as they too ended up in Bethlehem to work for Bethlehem Steel. Recently, the Mayor of Foiano noticed this connection between the cities and became interested in learning more about Bethlehem and why so many settled here. After visits, a lot of reconnecting, and a ton of research (they surprised the DelGrosso family with a complete lineage of our ancestors for the last hundreds of years!) October 1st will be celebrated as our sister city day for years to come! Can’t wait to see you next year, Foiano!”, Angie DelGrosso


For those who would like to learn more about Foiano di Val Fortore here is an amazing video.