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Italian sister city welcomes Grass Valley couple

My husband, Amos, and I traveled to Italy for a family visit, and while there, we went to Grass Valley’s sister city, Limana.

Limana is a village in the province of Belluno in the Italian region of Vento, about 70 km north of Venice, with about 4,000. It is a serene northern town.

The owners of the bed-and-breakfast inn where we stayed made us feel like a welcome guest in their home and city.



The next day, Mayor Mario Favero and several city officials picked us up and showed us around their beautiful little city, including their very old city hall. Someone accompanied us each day of the four days we were there, and one of them always spoke English.

They also took us to the town of Cortina, which hosted 1956 Winter Olympics. There, the landscape of the Dolomite Mountains offers spectacular beauty. They took us to lunch and coffee at a beautiful old restaurant.




One day, they took us to the Castello De Zumelle, built in the 700s, according to legend. It was magical walking through the castle.

Our hosts enjoy having friends from their sister city of Grass Valley. Their beautiful countryside is very similar to our Lake Tahoe area, only everything is so very old. Anyone interested in visiting can contact their tourist center by writing to italianculturalfoundation@gmail.com or turismo.limana@valbelluna.bl.it

We wished we could have stayed longer in Limana.

The rest of our trip also has an important connection to the Grass Valley area and the history of Italian immigrants in Nevada County.

Amos’ mother came from the Rondoni family, which arrived in Grass Valley in 1873 and bought property still owned by the family in the Chicago Park area.

Amos has many cousins in Domodossola, in the region of Piedmont. The city is a spectacular sight, with mountains reaching up to the sky at the foot of the Italian Alps.

Domodossola is a minor passenger rail hub, accommodating Swiss rail passengers to Locarno (a Swiss city of Italian language). We took the train trip, stopping in many small Italian villages in the Alps.

Two of our grandchildren, Bryan and Brianne Hodges, came from London to spend some time with cousins they had never met. They climbed to a small, hillside church that was built in 1500s.

Amos’ great-great-great-grandfather was baptized in the church, and it was an awesome feeling to be in this old building that still has some of the same furnishings and paintings on the ceiling and walls. A service is held there once each year.

We also visited Ricetto Candelo, one of the most beautiful medieval villages in Italy, offering a fascinating journey through time in the “village of flowers.”

After a week in Domodossola, we traveled to the charming medieval village of Bellagio, on the top of a hill facing Lake Como with a backdrop of soaring mountains.

After three days there, we traveled to Bergamo, one of northern Italy’s loveliest urban cities, 50 km northeast of Milan.

Amos’ father was born in Premelo, a tiny village outside of Bergamo. We visited his cousins and went to the house where his father was born, still owned by the Seghezzi family.

Nevada County residents Amos and Beverly Seghezzi are looking forward to enjoying the first Italian Festa, celebrating Nevada County’s Italian heritage.


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