Sister City – Lonate Pozzolo, Province of Varese, Italy
In 1988, a local group of residents asked the City Council to recognize Lonate Pozzolo, Province of Varese, Italy, as a sister city of San Rafael, and the residents of Lonate Pozzolo have expressed their desire to establish a sister city relationship with San Rafael in order to foster cultural exchanges as well as inter-cultural understanding between the two communities. The connection between Lonate Pozzolo and San Rafael extends back to the late 1800’s, as many Lonatese immigrated to San Rafael, and those immigrants and their descendants have contributed significantly to the civic, cultural, business, and educational life of San Rafael.
In November 1987 Milani and a group of interested Lonatese descendents met at the home of the Dalessi sisters. There they formed the Gruppo Lonatese to promote closer ties with Lonate Pozzolo. Their first project was a calendar in three languages: Italian, English and the Lonatese dialect. They discovered that traces of dialect and traditions that had faded in Lonate Pozzolo could be still found in San Rafael.
In 1988, the City of San Rafael City Council formally recognized Lonate Pozzolo, Province of Varese, Italy,as a Sister City of San Rafael.