Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Gigi d'Alessio is coming to town

My hubby is Neapolitan so Gigi d'Alessio is a big feature in our household. The 48-year-old Italian singer and songwriter is presenting his tour called "Progetto Malaterra", a project of Gigi D'Alessio and #CampaniaSicura.

In this tour Gigi D’Alessio puts together a show where tradition and innovation merge creating a unique atmosphere. This event will be full of magical moments and unexpected surprises but will also spread the message of the cause that inspired the whole project.

The tracklist will include some of the worldwide renowed hits of the music from Naples. These tunes will also be included in Gigi D’Alessio’s new album, all sung in the traditional Neapolitan language, half of which are written by Gigi himself.

During the event there will be a space dedicated to the food products from Campania and to the efforts needed to fight the reality of “Terra Dei Fuochi” literally “the land of fires” that is affecting the Campania’s economy and life.

In this respect, at every European stop, Gigi D’Alessio will screen the documentary called “Malaterra” in which the artist personally promotes the treasures of Campania through a real and round reportage in his homeland.

Gigi D'Alessio looks back on a 20-year career with more than 20 million albums sold, a diamond and more than 100 platinum albums back. A concert not to be missed if you like Italian music.

Venue: Concerto Gigi d'Alessio
Where: Palazzo dei Congressi, Piazza Indipendenza 4, 6900 LUGANO
Date: Wednesday October 14th, 2015
Time: Door opens at 19:00 Concert starts at 20:30
Click here for tickets:

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Swiss Children's books

Back in the days when I was a little girl, the TV programme did not start until teatime and internet was not anywhere on the horizon. No need to mention Playstations or X-Boxes. Facebook and i-Tunes still needed to be invented and phones had round dials rather than touch screens. This latter fact entertains my kids to no end...

Anyways, I read a lot as a child, so I thought I'd share the most typical traditional Swiss Children's books with you. Here goes:


Globi is a mixture of a parrot and a human being. He always wears the same checkered trousers. He was invented in 1932 and there have been 79 books published so far. Globi’s adventures are funny and very entertaining.

Papa Moll

Papa Moll was invented in 1952 by Edith Oppenheim-Jonas connected to Pro Juventute. It’s a funny comic strip for childern. There are 12 books published so far. Papa Moll is a family dad with 5 hairs to his head and who always wears a tie. With Mama Moll he has three children: Willy, Fritz und Evi.

Schellen Ursli

Schellen Ursli is a childern’s book by Selina Chönz and illustrator Alois Carigiet. It’s one of the most popular books in Switzerland. Schellenursli is set in the canton of Graubünden, surrounded by beautiful mountains and tells the story of a boy and his big cow bell.


The most typical Swiss children’s book  was written by Johanna Spyri in 1881. All the kids know Heidi whom with her friend Peter experiences lots of wonderful adventures in the Swiss alps. She also gets to spend some time in Germany with her aunt Dete and cousin Clara.

What is your favourite childhood book?

Saturday, September 26, 2015

An evening of two Choirs in Lugano

The International Women's Club of Lugano
2015 Charity Committee
invites you to

An Evening of Two Choirs 

Sunday, 27th September
16.00 - 18.30

St Edward’s Church
Via Clemente Maraini 6, 6900 Lugano

Performance followed by
Prosecco & Canapés

Ticket price 20 CHF (10 CHF for children under 15)
To include canapes & 1 complimentary glass of prosecco, iced tea or mineral water
Additional drinks 5CHF each

On the programme:

To Benefit the Associazione Consultorio delle Donne di Lugano

‘Coro Val Genzana di Massagno’
Conducted by Fabio Valsangiacomo
‘Piccolo Coro di Monte Carasso’
Conducted by Linda Buzzi and Cristina Morisoli
Special Guest Violinist Joseph Fröhlich

Please RSVP to

Friday, September 25, 2015

StraLugano 2015

Get ready this weekend. There is a fantastic sporting opportunity for you and your kids coming up. It is a social happening that you cannot miss. Head down town and enjoy the last summer vibes during the annual event of Stralugano.

Stralugano's philosophy extends from elite athletes to the occasional runner but - above all - it has a big heart. A heart logo displays the sensitivity not only in sports but towards neighbours and especially towards those who are not lucky enough to live full and free movement of their body.

Therefore, since it's creation ten years ago, Stralugano has paid particular attention in supporting worthy organizations and enhance their sensitivity.

The six races planned are:
- 30 km - for the usual runners that practice the marathon or the half-marathon
- 10 km - half competitive: 10 winners will be chosen by lot from the finishers
- StraLugano Relay - race on the 30 km course with 3 fractions
- Kidsrun - race for children and kids (max 14 years old)
- Handbike

... and NEW this year the FLUORUN! On Saturday 26 at 21.00 get ready for a run that will illuminate the streets of Lugano! 45 minutes of non-competitive race, full of energy and super sparkly. So, choose your favourite fluo color and... participate together with your friends in Lugano's first FluoRun!

Hurry, you can still register until September 26th, 2015 (between 14.00 and 20.00) at the "Centro Manifestazioni" in via Campo Marzio.

The Stralugano is a run and fun event: a folklore festival is held at the "Stralugano Village" that includes amusements, music, fitness, shopping and support for various charity associations. The festival kicks off on Saturday afternoon and continues all Sunday.

Here's the programme:

Saturday, September 26th, 2015
14.00               Piazza Manzoni - Apertura Villaggio StraLugano
14.00 - 20.00   Centro Esposizioni - Ritiro pettorali e iscrizioni tardive
14.00 - 18.00   Piazza Manzoni - Iscrizioni e ritiro pettorali KidsRun
16.00 - 20.00   Piazza Luini - Iscrizioni FluoRun
16.00               Liceo 1 – Verifiche tecniche partecipanti gara handbike
20.00               Piazza Manzoni – Lungolago – Gara Internazionale di handbike
21.00               Piazza Luini – Lungolago – Partenza FluoRun
21.00 - 24.00   Piazza Riforma – Evento Musicale - 10 anni di StraLugano
                        Concerto dei Karma Krew e dei Vad Vuc

Sunday, September 27th, 2015
Race 30km, Staffette, 10km
07.00 - 09.00  Centro Esposizioni – Ritiro pettorali
08.30 - 09.45  Piazza Luini – Warm Up SUVA
09.55              Piazza Manzoni - Lungolago-Cerimonia di partenza con inno svizzero
10.00              Piazza Manzoni - Lungolago – Partenza 30km, Staffetta e 10km
10.30              Piazza Manzoni - Lungolago – Primi arrivi gara 10km City
11.30              Piazza Manzoni - Lungolago – Primi arrivi gara 30km Panoramic
12.00              Piazza Manzoni - Lungolago – podio maschile e femminile gara 30km
12.00              Centro Esposizioni – Migros Pasta Party
13.00              Centro Esposizioni – Premiazioni 10km City
14.00              Centro Esposizioni – Premiazioni 30km Panoramic e Staffette

Fino ore 12.00 Piazza Riforma - InfoPoint ultime iscrizioni
Fino ore 13.30  Piazza Riforma - InfoPoint ritiro pettorali
13.30              Riva Albertolli – Ritrovo partecipanti
14.00 - 15.00 Piazza Manzoni - Lungolago - gare delle diverse categorie
15.15              Piazza Riforma – Premiazioni
15.30              Chiusura della 10a edizione della StraLugano

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Désalpage - a Swiss tradition

Coming up on 26 September, the village of L’Etivaz (in the canton Vaud) will celebrate the herds of cattle that, after spending the summer in the mountains, will head back to the stables for the wintertime. It is called the "Désalpage".

I decided to share this fact with you since I have a very soft spot for the region of "Le pays d'Enhaut".

In a joyful clanging of bells, in the profusion of colours of their flowered headdresses, the herd will return to the plain on the fourth Saturday in September. This "Rindyà" (descent from the mountain pastures in patois) is the reflection of mountain traditions and guarantees their continuance.

YOU can join in the “Désalpe de L’Etivaz” cow procession, which combines Swiss traditions with local specialities and offers loads of fun entertainment and activities.

YOU can be among the first to taste the newest wheels of L’Etivaz AOP cheese produced in summer 2015, fresh out of the cheese cellars.

Feel free to contact +41 269 246 281 for more information, or e-mail: This "Désalpe" is an event that will stick in your memory forever!

Désalpage from 1964

50 years later, the cows make the same way down to the plain after grazing in the alpine pastures for four months. 

Extrait du film: Tout un art... maillis from etivaz on Vimeo.

Monday, September 21, 2015

A simple 5 min. morning routine

The mornings are becoming darker by the day. In two days autumn will begin and soon the sun will be rising after us.

Take five minutes to recharge and refresh after your long slumber, it will awaken your inner drive and - hopefully - motivate you to tackle your day more easily. This routine can be done before you even leave your room, so go ahead and let the sun shine in your heart if not your room.

1.) Turn off your alarm (30 seconds): Place your alarm out of reach, away from your bed, so you have to get up to turn it off. Smile as you walk, which releases hormones that create happy feelings. Tell yourself it's going to be a good day — out loud!

2.) Let in morning light (10 seconds): Wake up with some natural light, it will instantly elevate your mood and send the signal to your brain that it's morning.

3.) Do a sun salutation (one minute): Spend one minute moving your body. You can do jumping jacks, sit-ups, or a body-energizing sun salutation.

4.) Meditate on your day (one minute): Take one minute to visualize your day and imagine how meetings will go, the things you need to remember, and happy outcomes of important conversations and interactions with others.

5.) Be grateful (30 seconds): Say out loud what you're grateful for. Starting the morning on an appreciative note sets you up for a day of caring, understanding, and thoughtfulness.

6.) Make your bed (one minute): Tidying your bedroom psychologically gets you motivated to leave your room. And it's so nice to come home to a bed that's already been made. Use any extra time to pick up clothes or clear side tables.

7.) Sing along! (remaining 50 seconds): Turn on a wake-up song and sing along as you dance out of your room. Singing releases endorphins, which naturally elevate your mood and energize your body.
You're all set for your day — and ready for anything!

Sunday, September 20, 2015

US Consular Outreach in Lugano

Guess who is coming to town? The American Consular Officer to Switzerland J. Barrett Travis and his consular assistant from the U.S. Embassy in Bern. They will be here to offer a wide range of consular services to the American community. This is a unique opportunity to have documents notarized, passport applications signed, and applications processed for “Consular Reports of Birth Abroad.” Fees for consular services are payable in cash only (currency: Swiss francs).

After the main consular event, there will be time allocated for Questions and Answers. Do take the chance to engage in an active Q&A session and have all those pending questions addressed in person!

Venue: US Consular Outreach in Lugano
Where: THE PALMER CENTER, TASIS, Via Collina d’ Oro, 6926 Montagnola
Date: Friday, September 25, 2015
Time: 16:30 – 19:30
16:30 – 17:00 Welcome and introductory speech by Consul J. Barrett Travis
17:00 – 19:00 Consular services – no appointments are necessary, visitors will be handled
19:00 Q&A

Friday, September 18, 2015

What does Switzerland sound like?

This question will be answered  by Coop in association with the online newspaper 20 min. They are inviting the community to join their music project called "The Sound of Switzerland".

Four musicians - SNOOK from the Grisons, Alejandro Reyes from western Switzerland, Make Plain from Ticino and Anna Känzig from German-speaking Switzerland have been mobilized under the leadership of Roman Camenzind to sing together in all four national languages. They'll get help from all linguistic regions of Switzerland's music scene. As for the chorus, this is where the whole country comes into play: the Swiss population is to form the largest choir in Switzerland ever.

As of 25 September, the population - yes, that would include YOU - is called to sing via the new 20-minute app to chorus of the song or dance, upload the video, thus contributing to the music video of the song.

Be part of this unique project and help break the Swiss language barriers. Sounds like fun to me. Following is the link for the registration (in German) online:
Deadline is September 27th, 2015.

So klingt die Schweiz - Aufruf from Pixel Love GmbH on Vimeo.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Ticino's most beautiful season

The most beautiful season to visit the Ticino is not necessarily summer like many tourist think, my personal favourite is autumn. It brings us days that are still sunny, ideal for strolling through the city, on the lakeshore or among the market stalls. It allows for wonderful excursions into the valleys or even some trekking in the mountains. Autumn’s colours are sweet and golden, and the seasonal scents of grapes and roasted chestnuts stir the emotions. Autumn in Ticino is a truly re-invigorating experience. What is your favourite season here?

Sunday, September 13, 2015

15 intriguing facts about Switzerland

The tiny landlocked nation of Switzerland is known for its beauty, landscape, cheese and above all as a financial haven. But did you know that...

1. The average salary of a teacher in Switzerland in 2010 was $112'000 per year.
2. In Switzerland, it is illegal to deny that the holocaust happened.
3. Switzerland is unique for having enough nuclear fallout shelters to accommodate its entire human population.
4. In Switzerland, it is illegal to keep just one guinea pig. You got to have them in pairs.
5. Men in Switzerland are required to keep the firearms they are issued during their military service at home even after they leave the military to have the countries men ready to mobilize in the event of a threat.
6. There is a 500-year-old statue of a man eating a sack of babies in Bern, Switzerland, and nobody is sure why.

7. A Swiss Jeweler made a $68 million ring that was made entirely out of diamond.
8. One of Switzerland’s main defense strategies is to demolish every main access into the country via roads, bridges, and railways. There are at least 3,000 locations currently prepared to blow at a moment’s notice in case of an attack.
9. In Switzerland, a group of citizens may challenge a law passed by Parliament, if they are able to gather 50,000 signatures against the law within 100 days. A national vote is scheduled where voters decide by a simple majority whether to accept or reject the law.
10. Assisted suicide is legal in Switzerland. It is also legal in Belgium, Luxembourg, Netherlands, and three American states (Oregon, Washington, and Montana).
11. The German township of Büsingen am Hochrhein is entirely surrounded by Switzerland.

12. Switzerland claimed neutrality during WW2 and therefore thousands of people deposited their hard-earned money in Switzerland. When the depositors died, the relatives were denied any access to their funds, funds that the banks continued to make interest off. They also funneled hundreds of millions into Nazi Germany.
13. There has been an ongoing research in Switzerland about using LSD to alleviate end of life anxiety for terminally ill cancer patients coping with their impending deaths. The preliminary results from the study are being deemed “promising”.
14. Switzerland has no single Head of State. It instead has a seven-member executive council, which serves as the Swiss collective head of state.
15. About 56% of electricity generated in Switzerland is from hydroelectricity and another 39% from nuclear power, resulting in a nearly CO2-free electricity-generating network.

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Grand Opening of Lugano's LAC

Finally the time has come after years of construction the LAC is celebrating it opening this week.

LAC (Lugano Arte e Cultura) is the new cultural centre dedicated to the visual arts, music and the performing arts, which promises to become one of Switzerland’s most important cultural institutions, with the aim of promoting a wide range of art and establishing Lugano as a cultural crossroads between northern and southern Europe.

LAC will also be home to the newly-created Museo d'Arte della Svizzera italiana (Art Museum of Italian Switzerland), formed by the amalgamation of the Cantonal Art Museum and the Art Museum of the City of Lugano. Located over three floors, the gallery will hold a permanent exhibition containing the collections of the City of Lugano and of the Canton Ticino, temporary exhibitions and site specific installations. A new 1,000 seat concert and theatre venue, entirely wood-panelled and fitted with a special modular and removable acoustic shell, is ready for a varied programme of performances and concerts.

The center is guaranteed to have an International touch thanks to its Canadian born director Michel Gagnon.

Here is just a sneak preview for the three coming weekends:

Saturday 12 and Sunday 13 September 2015
Raise the curtain! A universe of magic, poetry and music for everybody: residents, families and the wider public

Saturday 19 and Sunday 20 September 2015
Two days dedicated to the contemporary with focus on young and local talent

Friday 24 and Saturday 25 September 2015
Music Grand Finale

Click here for the detailed programme: LAC events

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Schellen-Ursli at the Swiss National Museum

If you grew up in Switzerland chances are you have read a "Bell for Ursli" by Selina Chonz. It is a classic Swiss children's story from 1945 and set in the canton of Graubünden, with pictures by award-winning Swiss illustrator Alois Carigiet.

Alois Carigiet (1902 – 1985) was a gifted author and illustrator of children’s books, as well as a highly versatile and talented painter.

Currently the National Museum in Zurich illuminates the many different facets of the work of this multi-talented artist. The exhibition starts with a look at Carigiet’s home, the Canton Graubünden. Visitors experience Switzerland’s rich Rhaeto- Romanic culture, the world of children’s literature and Carigiet’s graphic art and painting.

Generations of Swiss children whom have grown up with Schellen-Ursli will experience a blast from the past by stepping into the world of children’s literature and Carigiet’s graphic art and painting.

If you happen to travel to Zürich take your kids to the Swiss National Museum and share a piece of Swiss tradition. The exhibition is open until January 3rd, 2016 at the Landesmuseum Zürich (Museumstrasse 2) right behind the main train station.

Or else make yourself comfortable at home and read it to your children.

On 15 October 2015, Ursli comes to the cinema, with his shaggy black hair and high-water pants, his pointed cap and beaming smile. Don't miss it!

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