La Dolce Vita! Columbus Parade brings Italy to Brooklyn

October 13, 2015 By Paula Katinas Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Hon. Patricia DiMango, star of “Hot Bench,” was one of three grand marshals in the Brooklyn Columbus Day Parade in Bensonhurst on Saturday. Eagle photos by Paula Katinas
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Hon. Patricia DiMango, star of the hit CBS show “Hot Bench,” came back home to Brooklyn to star as a grand marshal in the 34th annual Brooklyn Columbus Day Parade on Oct. 10, riding along the parade route on 18th Avenue in Bensonhurst in an open air car accompanied by her proud parents, Mafalda and Anthony DiMango.

Justice DiMango shared grand marshal duties with Joseph Bova, Democratic district leader of the 49th Assembly District, and Biagio Madaio, vice president of business development at Investors Bank.

Grand marshals Bova and Madaio marched the entire parade route waving Italian flags.

Bova is a Eucharistic minister at his parish, Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church, and is a former chairman of Community Board 10 (Bay Ridge-Dyker Heights). Madaio is a member of the board of directors of the FIAO and is involved in numerous nonprofit organizations.

Sponsored by the Federation of Italian-American Organization of Brooklyn Inc. (FIAO), the Columbus Day Parade is a popular tradition in Bensonhurst that even non-Italians have come to enjoy.

Featuring school marching bands, colorful floats and colorfully costumed marchers, the parade started at 18th Avenue and 61st Street and ended on 18th Avenue and Benson Avenue, outside Il Centro, the community center the FIAO is currently building.

The day’s festivities began with a celebratory mass at Saint Athanasius Catholic Church at 2154 61st St.

DiMango was a justice of the New York State Supreme Court prior to starring in “Hot Bench,” a courtroom show in which she and to two other judges, Tanya Acker and Larry Bakman, preside over real cases. “Hot Bench,” which was recently renewed for a second season, was developed by Judge Judith Sheindlin, the famous Judge Judy, a television superstar. The show airs on CBS weekdays at 9 a.m.

DiMango was having a grand time at the parade, riding in the open air car and smiling and waving at the crowd lining the parade route.

Her parents were also having a great time.

Mafalda DiMango, a former member of the Community Education Council of School District 20, and her husband, Dr. Anthony DiMango, a retired dentist, live in Bay Ridge.

DiMango, Bova and Madaio were the guests of honor at a luncheon hosted by the FIAO at the Dyker Beach Golf Course on Oct. 4.


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