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Photo courtesy of the office of Councilman Paul Vallone
Photo courtesy of the office of Councilman Paul Vallone
Performers, honorees and dignitaries with Councilman Vallone and Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito.

The Annual Italian Heritage Celebration was held Wednesday at City Hall and drew nearly 300 guests to the Council Chambers to honor Italian culture and commemorate the 100th birthday of legendary crooner Frank Sinatra.

This year’s event was hosted by Councilman Paul Vallone and attended by Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, friends, families, guests and dignitaries.

Vallone presented proclamations to Fire Commissioner Daniel A. Nigro and the Frank Sinatra School of the Arts in honor of the late singer. According to Vallone, both honorees are examples of the extraordinary roles Italians and Italian Americans have played in shaping New York City.

Vocalist Carlo Lauricella sang the national anthems of the United States and Italy and Vallone’s daughter, Catena, performed a rendition of “God Bless America.”

Other performances included an original dance performed by students of the Frank Sinatra School and an appearance from comedian Joe Piscopo, a former “Saturday Night Live” cast member.

“The Italian Heritage Celebration at City Hall was a true testament of what the Italian American community is all about – family, faith, pride in our country and always celebrating our heritage, especially as we Italians are preparing to celebrate Columbus Day,” Vallone said.

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