Share our heritage | Tour group leaves for Rome in 1970s

A tour group left the area for Rome in 1970s.
A tour group left the area for Rome in 1970s. Photo provided

Each Monday, the Centre Daily Times will publish an installment in our “Share our Heritage” series, featuring photos from Centre County’s past. Today’s photo is from Carl Fornicola, of Pine Grove Mills.

The photo was published, probably in 1977. The caption under the photo reads: “ ‘Bon Voyage,’ says a former parishioner to Father Frances Balestino of a parish near Ebensburg, as he prepares to board the bus taking him and nine Centre Countians to Rome to attend the canonization ceremonies for Bishop John Neumann of Philadelphia. Father Balestino, who left Bellefonte a year ago, was the spiritual director for the tour. Behind him is Gino Fornicola of Bellefonte, one of the group which made the trip.”

The driver of the bus, name unknown, is at left.

Fornicola wrote that the photo was taken in front of the Penn Bell Hotel.

Readers can contribute to the “Share our Heritage” series by sharing their own photos. Just drop off or mail copies of the photos to Centre Daily Times, 3400 E. College Ave., State College, PA 16801 or email them to Design Editor Laurie Jones at Provide as much information as you can. All photos in the weekly series are placed in a “Share our Heritage” gallery at If you have any questions about this series, Jones can be reached at 231-6461.