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Swiss Italian Festa             back on track for 2021

September 28th, 2020Swiss Italian Festa back on track for 2021

FORMER Australian House of Representatives speaker and Swiss Italian descendant, Anna Burke, has been appointed patron of Hepburn Swiss Italian Festa. The Festa, like most events, has been cancelled for this year but the committee is already busy working on its return in 2021.

President Robyn Rogers said the committee was also launching a refreshed website featuring Lliam Amor’s artwork with a whimsical alpine design on Monday, September 28.
“As well as keeping people up to date with the Festa’s return in 2021, the site has information on the history and legacy of the Swiss Italians who settled in this region in the mid-1800s.
“It will also feature stories about the great life enjoyed in the region today. swissitalianfesta.com”
Anna is a descendant of the Adami and Rolleri families who arrived in Australia to find their fortune on the Victorian Goldfields. Striking gold, the Rolleris purchased Parma House and the nearby hotel, running a successful guesthouse for many years. The Adamis established vineyards, bringing a touch of their previous life to their new homeland.
Anna’s maternal grandmother Nina Millman (née Rolleri, daughter of Ernest Rolleri and Kate Adami) entertained her grandchildren with tales of growing up in and around the guesthouse and vineyard.
Ms Rogers said Anna spoke at a fundraising dinner last year, telling some fascinating stories about her family and memories of life in Hepburn Springs.
“The Springs have been an important part of my life, since childhood visits with my grandmother, to recent visits with my own children. It has been a joy to see the area preserved, enhanced and thriving. The Festa has become a key part of the area’s history, a great opportunity for descendants to learn more of their heritage, for others to experience the rich culture, produce and beauty of the springs, and at the same time boosting the local economy.
“I always love coming to the Festa, bringing my mum who has a deep connection to the place, catching up with relatives, experiencing a sense of belonging to a precious thing – that is what the Swiss Italian Festa means to me.”
Ms Rogers said besides being a descendant of one of the first Swiss Italian families to settle in the area, Anna was a former MP and Speaker of the Australian House of Representatives, and continued to work in the government sector today as a Member of the Administrative Appeals Tribunal.
“Anna has continuing ties to the area and a high public profile, both of which the committee felt were important in the selection of a Patron.
“We are very grateful that Anna has accepted our request to be our patron and look forward to working with her throughout the coming year. Locals and visitors can expect a fantastic Festa in 2021 including traditional and artisanal food and wine, parades, performances, art shows, heritage tours, bocce tournaments and fireworks.”

Link: www.swissitalianfesta.com



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