The Italian-American Civic League Steak Fry 

Good food in good company is what the league strives for

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Something about tradition makes food taste better—and Italians know that better than anyone else.

The Italian-American Civic League Steak Fry is a charmingly old-fashioned event that's been held yearly for the past 35 years. It's a chance for families and friends to come together, share food and reminisce about the old days. It's also a way to welcome potential members into the organization.

According to Dominic Fratto, president of the men's chapter, Salt Lake City's Italian-American Civic League was established in 1934. The nonprofit group promotes "civil, social and educational growth and support—not only the Italian-American community, but of the Utah community," Fratto says. "As we like to say: 'Per noi, per la Comunità!'"

Imagine the tantalizing scent of grilled steak wafting through a park, crowded picnic tables with generations of Italian-Americans sharing food and wine and joyfully talking over each other. Baked potatoes and fresh corn on the cob were served along with the perfectly grilled steak. After dinner, folks gathered for bocce ball, scopa (an Italian card game) and bingo.

It might seem strange that no traditional Italian food was served, but the Steak Fry is just one of the many events hosted by the IACL. Its biggest event, the Festa di Colombo, is right around the corner. A celebration of Italian culture and heritage, complete with a four-course Italian meal, drinking and "enough dancing to make your feet numb," will take place Oct. 11 at The Leonardo. It's open to the public, so feel free to join the party.

There are several other events throughout the year, such as wine tastings, charity poker tournaments, bocce tournaments and a booth serving Italian food at the Living Traditions Festival. Visit ItalianAmericanCivicLeague.com for information on future events and how to join the organization.

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