Friday Flashback #100

This is the month of year when — for a quarter century — Westporters flocked to Festival Italiano at Luciano Park.

We were joined by thousands of others — plenty of actual Italians, and many more wannabes — from as far away as Brooklyn.

The Italian Festival is gone. So are the days when Saugatuck was a true Italian neighborhood, filled with extended families, shops and restaurants handed down through generations, and a special atmosphere remembered lovingly by the ever-dwindling number of people fortunate enough to grow up there.

Sam Febbraio did. The other day, while going through his mother’s papers, Tony Giunta found a list Sam made.

Tony thinks Sam typed it up in the mid-1960s. It’s filled with his best recollection of the names of people and places in Saugatuck in the 1930s and ’40s.

If you are a native Westporter — particularly from Saugatuck — you’ll remember many of these names.

If you don’t: You missed some of the best times — and people — our town has ever seen.

I’m sure “06880” readers will have comments about some of them. We should all read them.

It’s a way of celebrating our own Festival Italiano.

15 responses to “Friday Flashback #100

  1. I do recognize a number of these names and especially have fond memories of the Arrow and the Nistico family.

    What I didn’t realize is that Peter’s Bridge Market was apparently operating as far back as the 1930’s or ‘40s. When did the Bridge Market open? Thanks.

  2. Madeleine Pompeia

    I dated Joe Pellicone & Gene Pesacrata while in high school, (a hundred years ago). They were both fun and gentlemen.

  3. K .F. Spearen

    Thanks for sharing this Dan ! … I remember many of the people and places , I was very friendly with many of them .. Many years later I’m very good friends with many of the Children / Grandchildren , whose parents names are listed above ……

  4. Peter Barlow

    I remember just about all those names. Went to school with many of them.

  5. Some awesome names/people right there. I’m proud to say that I know most them..

  6. Barry Tashian

    I sure remember a lot of those names too. As Peter Barlow said…went to school with a lot of them. And I think of The Arrow Restaurant very often!

  7. Michael Calise

    A kaleidoscope of memories

  8. Tom Feeley Sr

    Many names in the VFW 🇺🇸

  9. Carolanne Curry

    And here we are in 2018 trying to save this history and this community from the predators…
    The developer Felix Charney, a predator who would destroy the life and history of Old Saugatuck so he can make a buck…..

  10. Bonnie Bradley

    Remember many of these people in Saugatuck, especially Lou Nistico and others who worked for him at the Arrow. Lou had the proverbial heart of gold and a wonderful smile for everyone who frequented the restaurant. He would often sit down with us at our table to chat. Lou truly loved children and was very kind and patient with them.

    On a related note, my grandfather J.P. Bradley gave a new American Flag to the Saugatuck Firehouse every year for many years. He was very proud to do so, as I remember.

    Peter’s Bridge Market existed at least as early as during World War II. Bill Vetromile, Peter’s brother, was a special friend to my mother: I remember her telling me how Bill always saved a box or two of Jellow under the counter for me during the War when I was a tiny girl and such things were rationed or hard to get. She a was very grateful.

  11. Mary Cookman Schmerker SHS '58

    wonderful memories of very special people. I remember many of the names and have them in my Staples Year Book. The Bridge Market, of course was a wonderful place. If I remember correctly you could call in your order and they would deliver. Everyone was so helpful and pleasant. Just love seeing the list of names. Gilberti… You can still buy Gilberti Greens and they are wonderful.

  12. Loretta Santella Hallock

    The Franklin Market was owned and run by my Uncle Pat Capasse
    It was a small grocery store on Franklin Street.
    My Dad was John Santella. We lived on Saugatuck Avenue until I95 claimed our house. His barbershop was next door to the Jockey Club and Frannies. Great memories. Saugatuck was a great place to live. I was young when we moved over the bridge but remember so much.
    I believe we were part of the original beach school run by the Digisi girls where Luciano Park is now. Marion Digisi taught most of us kids To swim..

    So great to see all those names.

  13. Sally Campbell Palmer.

    A walk down memory lane of classmates.

  14. Joseph Stroffolino

    Forgotten was Ethical Pharmacy next to the firehouse on Riverside Ave. owned by St. Rep. Louis Stroffolino also helped many families come to Saugatuck area.