By Joe Nunziata
At the 15th annual Pelham Rotary Tastings fundraiser, well over 100 lower Westchester residents sampled the delights of nearly 20 nearby restaurants. They also tasted wines presented by Blue Dog Wines & Spirits (Andy Johnson, owner) and honored retiring Town of Pelham Supervisor, The Honorable Peter Di Paola.
According to Betty Bucher, Chair of the Rotary Tastings XV event, “The Fundraiser was a huge success. The Rotary netted more than $16,000, enough to provide cardiac surgery for another third-world child, fund an American team to train doctors abroad and also contribute to local programs that benefit children. However, as Rotary Club President Marty Ketels added, “To continue our largesse, we need to attract new members. And that’s exactly what we’re doing!”
Similarly, Peter Di Paola, in his remarks, urged his well-wishers to consider joining the Rotary as he had done a number of years ago Peter was honored for more than 40 years of public service that made a difference in the lives of many residents of the Pelhams.
Distinguished Proclamations were presented to Peter from Amy Paulin - New York State Assemblywoman, Assembly District 88; George Latimer - County Executive of Westchester County, New York and Dan McLaughlin - Town of Pelham, New York Deputy Supervisor.
Here is a list of his exemplary accomplishments:
- Member of the Rotary Club of the Pelhams
- Recipient of the 2019 Rotary Paul Harris Fellow Award
- Member of the Pelham Civic Association
- 2019 Grand Marshall of the Pelham Memorial Day Parade
- Member of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Church & Usher Society
- Volunteered on Pelham’s “Sod Squad” to refurbish and build new athletic fields
- Member of Pelham Chamber of Commerce (Vice President)
- Member of PACT
- Pelham Little League Coach
- Pelham Soccer Coach
- Pelham Town Supervisor (2011 to present) Pelham taxing authorities, maintain emergency shelters, Pelham Public Library and animal control.
- Pelham Town Councilman (2004-2010)
- Mayor of the Village of Pelham Manor (2001-2003
- Police Commissioner of the Village of Pelham Manor (1999 - 2001
- Pelham Manor Fire Commissioner (1997- 1999)
- Pelham Manor Commissioner of Public Works (1995-1997
- Pelham Manor Trustee with oversight of Finance and Administration Planning (1993-1995
- Pelham Manor Planning Board (1991)
Julieta DiPaola, Peter’s wife, a longtime member of the popular singing ensemble The Pelham Larks, arranged it so The Larks made a surprise appearance for Peter and performed!
The $16,000 was generated through ticket sales, a successful silent auction and major sponsorships by Stiefvater Real Estate of Pelham; Pelham Manor resident Phillip Kiamie, Kiamie Properties, Rye and New York City and Charles Fazzino 3D Pop Art, a Pelham resident with offices and gallery in New Rochelle.
Music throughout the evening was provided by Backwater Groove, a quintet of talented Pelham Memorial High School students: Shep Solimine, guitar; Lukas Matos, bass; Stephen Tahbaz, saxophone; Jack Denison, drums and Max Cuomo, piano.
Culinary exhibitors included AJ’s Burgers, Cantina Lobos, DeCicco & Sons, Dubrovnik, Escape Latino, Flowerbake, F&J Pine, Gina Marie’s Trattoria, Go Greek, La Fattoria, La Fontanella, Luangisa, Mikey Dubbs, Magno’s Grill, Modern Restaurant, Provisions, Rockwells, Spadaro Roman Kitchen and Texas Roadhouse.
The Picture House served popcorn while Pomp & Whimsy poured in liqueurs.
Peter and his wife Julieta have three children and six grandchildren: Julie Marie; Peter Jr. & Julianna (Lily, Jake & Matthew) and Billy & Anne (Billy, Michael & Fiona)
For more information about Rotary Club of the Pelhams, visit pelhamrotary.com