Celebrating 700 years of Dante Alighieri

Posted 10/6/21

By MERI R. KENNEDY Celebrating 700 years of Dante Alighieri The Cranston Public Library is excited to welcome Alfred Crudale as he presents "From Hell to Paradise: Celebrating 700 Years of Dante Alighieri" on Tuesday, Oct. 12, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. at

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Celebrating 700 years of Dante Alighieri


The Cranston Public Library is excited to welcome Alfred Crudale as he presents “From Hell to Paradise: Celebrating 700 Years of Dante Alighieri” on Tuesday, Oct. 12, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Central Library.

The year 2021 is very special for Italians and those who love Italian culture, as it marks the 700th anniversary of the death of the great Italian poet Dante Alighieri. This multimedia presentation provides a brief history of Dante and includes a discussion of his literary works, with a focus on his famous allegorical poem “The Divine Comedy.”

This lecture is intended for a general audience and is free and open to the public. Registration is required at The Central Library is located at 140 Sockanosset Cross Road.

Crudale, a native of the Knightsville section of Cranston, is a lecturer in the Italian department at the University of Rhode Island. He graduated from the University of Connecticut with a Ph.D. in Italian Literature.

Crudale has presented and published several essays on Dante Alighieri and the poets of the “Dolce Stil Nuovo.” His essay entitled “Versi d’Amore e Prose di Romanzi: Are the Poets of the Dolce Stil Nuovo Still Relevant?” was published in the International Journal of the Humanities, and he presented his latest essay, “The Body Damned, the Body Saved, the Body Glorified: Portrayals of the Body in Dante’s Commedia” at the John D. Calandra Institute in New York City. His forthcoming book, “The Voices of Italy: Italian Language Newspapers and Radio Programs in Rhode Island,” is scheduled for release in 2022.

Charlie’s Ghost Party

The Cranston Historical Society will host its annual Charlie’s Ghost Party on Friday, Oct. 29, from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Sprague Mansion, located at 1352 Cranston St. in Cranston.

Featured will be Jared the Magician and Mentalist, who will provide an all-new show. Card readers will be on hand and light refreshments will be served. Roam the spooky mansion rooms if you dare! Come and enjoy a ghostly good time.

Call 944-9226 to reserve your place or purchase tickets ($20 donation per person) via

Rotary Touch a Truck event in Garden City

Bring the family to the Rotary Club’s Halloween Touch a Truck event on Sunday, Oct. 31, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. in Garden City Center. The suggested donation is $10 per family and advanced tickets are encouraged.

Bring the kids to climb, explore and touch their favorite big rigs, fire trucks, police cars, buses and more. This Rotary fundraising event includes Touch a Truck, face painting, balloon animals and more. Halloween costumes are encouraged.

The purpose of the Cranston Rotary club is to connect people who then work together to solve community problems, provide humanitarian aid, and promote goodwill and peace. The club provides scholarships for Cranston high school seniors, Thanksgiving baskets to CCAP families, and supports the community.

Outdoor ‘Hocus Pocus’ screening to benefit blanket drive

Cranston Cares and Emily’s Blanket Drive will present a “Movies in the Park” event on Sunday, Oct. 24, starting at 6 p.m. at the Atwood Avenue softball field in Cranston. The movie “Hocus Pocus” will be shown on the big screen. Admission is free, but attendees are asked to bring a blanket donation to help those in need.

Emily’s Blanket Drive is organized by Emily Sanita, who was inspired by a conversation with Shawn O’Rourke at the Providence Rescue Mission about the needs and struggles of the state’s homeless population. She collected over 200 blankets for those in need and she is continuing her mission with the goal to collect 1,000 blankets. Blankets can also be dropped off at The Thirsty Braver starting Oct. 3.

‘Boo and View’ at Garden City

Garden City Center will hold “Boo & View,” a family-friendly Halloween movie night, on Wednesday, Oct. 13, from 4 to 9 p.m. Tickets cost $10 per family. The event will include a double feature of Halloween classics, activities and fun for kids of all ages.

Join in starting at 4 p.m. for Halloween crafts at the Gazebo, games, snacks and fun family photo moments.

Once the sun sets at 6 p.m., they will start their first showing of “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” (runtime 25 minutes), followed by a screening of “The Nightmare Before Christmas” (runtime one hour and 16 minutes).

Visit Garden City Center’s Facebook page for more details and to sign up. Pre-registration is a must. The event is recommended for kids 12 and under. Families should bring chair or blanket for comfort to enjoy the show.

‘Guns ‘n’ Hoses’ charity basketball game

There will be a charity basketball game, called “Guns ‘n’ Hoses,” which will be between the Cranston Police Department and the Cranston Fire Department on Sunday, Nov. 14, at 6 p.m. in the Cranston High School East gym. Proceeds from the game will go to Special Olympics and Beat the Odds Lifestyle. Admission will be $10 per adult and $5 per children.

Halloween in Knightsville

The St. Mary’s Feast Society will present “Halloween in Knightsville” on Friday, Oct. 29, at 6 p.m. The event will be held at the St. Mary’s Feast Society, located at 15 Phenix Ave. in Cranston. Enjoy free parking. A cash bar and food will be available. Costumes are encouraged! The event is free but donations will be accepted to further the work of the society in the community.

Cranston Firefighters Halloween Party

On Sunday, Oct. 31, to help create a safer environment for the children of Cranston, Cranston Firefighters IAFF Local 1363 will be hosting their annual Halloween Party. The event will be held at Station 2, located at 301 Pontiac Ave., from 6 to 8 p.m.

Please remember that the Fire Department continues to respond to multiple COVID positive patients daily and it is in your best interest to wear a face mask if you are not fully vaccinated and practice social distancing when attending.

Confreda’s Fall Festival

The Fall Festival is back at Confreda Greenhouses & Farms, located at 2150 Scituate Ave. in Cranston.

This year’s festival theme is “Rhode Island Strong.” The activities include hayrides, the Corn MAiZE, the Animal Backyard and Pumpkin Patch. They have also included rides for children with Rockwell Amusements.

For full information on the Fall Festival, visit Cranston Public Library Teen Space The teen space at the Cranston Public Library’s Central Library on Sockanosset Cross Road has been newly renovated and is open for teen patrons entering grades 6-12.

Stop by to meet the teen librarian, hang out with friends, browse the collection, or participate in one of their many programs. The teen study room can be reserved by teens for gaming, studying, group projects, and more!

If you have any questions please contact Alyssa, teen librarian, at

Thunderbolt Marching Band Invitational

The Thunderbolt Marching Band Invitational will be held on Saturday, Oct. 16. Gates open at 5 p.m. and the show will start at 5:55 p.m. There will be a total of 10 different bands, including our Cranston High School East Thunderbolts. Tickets cost $10, or $8 for seniors.

Curbside pickup of donations

Big Brothers Big Sisters Donation Center will be in Cranston on Tuesdays in October, providing free curbside pickups for clothing, shoes and small cloth items like blankets, towels and curtains. To schedule your free curbside pickup, visit website at or call 921-2434, option 2.

Free farmers market

A free farmers market with fresh vegetables, courtesy of CCAP and the OneCranston Health Equity Zone, is available from 4:30 to 6 p.m. every Thursday through Oct. 28. The market is located at the Oak Street parking lot at Bain Middle School.

Registration opens for NAMI Family-to-Family course

The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Rhode Island chapter will offer a Family-to-Family course beginning Tuesday, Oct. 19, at 6:30 p.m. This is a free and virtual eight-session educational program for family, significant others and friends of people with mental health conditions. It is a designated evidenced-based program. Research shows that the program significantly improves the coping and problem-solving abilities of the people closest to a person with a mental health condition.

NAMI Family-to-Family is taught by trained family members who have personal family experience and includes presentations, discussions and interactive exercises.

For more information or to register for this evidence-based program, visit, call 331-3060 or email

Women’s Fitness Program

The Cranston Parks and Recreation Department is excited to announce the return of its Women’s Fitness program for women aged 18 and older.

The program will run through June 24, 2022. Classes will be held at the Pastore Youth Center, 155 Gansett Ave.

Mondays will be “Dance Aerobics” with Cathy from 5 to 6 p.m. Wednesdays will be “Tunes and Tone” with Kristin from 6 to 7 p.m. Please bring one- to three-pound weights for Kristin’s class.

Please note the day and times for each class, as they have changed from previous years. When there is a Monday holiday, class will be held on Tuesday of that week from 5 to 6 p.m.

The registration fee is $40 for both nights and $20 for one night for each 10-week session. There will be four sessions total.

Session dates are as follows: Now to Nov. 17 (Oct. 11 moved to Oct. 12); Nov. 29 to Feb. 2 (Jan. 3 and 17 moved to Jan. 4 and 18); Feb. 7 to April 13 (Feb. 21 moved to Feb. 22); and April 18 to June 22 (May 30 moved to May 31).

Register through the Google Form available at this link:

Payment in the form of a check or money order can be brought to class or mailed to the Recreation Department.

Community Walk to fight hunger

A walk to call attention to food insecurity and raise funds for local pantries is being planned by a group of area churches, including Woodbury Union, Lakewood Baptist, St. Benedict, St. Kevin, and St. Mark’s. The walk will be held on Saturday, Oct. 16. All interested community churches, organizations and individuals are invited to attend. Call 737-8232 or email for more information.

Church seeking vendors for Holiday Bazaar

Our Lady of Grace Church, located at 4 Lafayette St. in Johnston, would like invite vendors to participate in its Holiday Bazaar on Oct. 17. There will be crafters, vendors, a penny social, food and more. For information, contact Pat Leon at 529-7592.

RSVP transportation volunteers

The Cranston Senior Enrichment Center’s RSVP program needs volunteers to help in many ways in the community. One is to transport homebound seniors to medical appointments or run errands for them.

The program is also seeking RSVP school readiness volunteers to assist Glen Hills Elementary School’s staff and students with an array of school activities and events.

Also needed are RSVP recycling volunteers who educate the community with assistance and guidance from Rhode Island Resource Recovery professionals on a variety of topics such as waste reduction and reuse, recycling and composting. Learn more about Resource Recovery – who they are, what they do, how they work, and much more, including a tour of the facility.

If you are interested in becoming a Cranston RSVP volunteer, contact Karen at 780-6159 for an interview. You must be 55 years of age or older to volunteer and a BCI is required. A mileage reimbursement is given to cover your travel cost. RSVP also provides insurance protection in the event that your or someone else is injured while performing your volunteer duties.

What if you do not drive or do not have a vehicle? No worries. RSVP will provide you with transportation to your volunteer station.

Did you know?

As summer fades into fall, the days start getting shorter and there is less sunlight. This is a signal for the leaf to prepare for winter and to stop making chlorophyll. Once this happens, the green color starts to fade and the reds, oranges and yellows become visible. (Source: Fall Fun Facts)

To submit your news from the community, email Meri R. Kennedy at This includes virtual events which should be submitted two to three weeks ahead of the event. Photos in jpg format are accepted and news can include community events, promotions, academic news and nonprofit events. Email today and see your news in our column in the Cranston Herald.

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