Lehigh Valley

Italy makes a mark in south Bethlehem

BETHLEHEM, Pa. - A cultural exchange between the Lehigh Valley and a small town in Italy is the talk of the town in south Bethlehem.

The town is Foiano di Val Fortore, which is 50 miles northeast of Naples.

Five people from Foiano are visiting the area, which is home to a large Italian immigrant community dating back more than 100 years.

Bethlehem Mayor Robert Donchez officially welcomed the group to City Hall. 

Their visit was set in motion when Lehigh Valley residents who were looking into their ancestry found links to Foiano.

"For me it's an emotional thing. My father passed away when I was 14 so it's kind of like inviting family back into my home. I lost touch with his family so for me this was like a reconnection," said Maria DelGrosso Dangelmajer, co-organizer of Cultural Exchange.

Northampton County District Attorney John Morganelli's family is also from Foiano. The delegation will meet with the new bishop of Allentown and tour the area until Sunday.

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