May 10 VFW Fundraiser Raises More than $10,000 To Sustain December Tradition of Placing Memorial Wreaths on Veteran Gravesites at Fairview Cemetery


New Britain, Conn., May 24, 2023 – More than 500 patriots who jam-packed the VFW Post 511 banquet hall on Wednesday, May 10, for the Disabled American Veterans, Hardware City Chapter 8 Wreaths Across America of New Britain Pasta Dinner Fundraiser raised more than $10,000 to help sustain the time-honored December tradition of memorial wreath placements on veteran gravesites at Fairview Cemetery.

Mayor Erin Stewart addresses the large gathering at the Wreaths Across America of New Britain Pasta Dinner on May 10.

“This event was once again a grand-slam success and on behalf of DAV Chapter 8, we’d like to thank all those who helped make it possible,” said DAV Hardware City Chapter 8 Commander Dennis Taricani, who doubled as the event’s pasta master and kitchen manager.

“I couldn’t be more proud to be associated with such a hard-working team of selfless volunteers dedicated to perpetuating this wonderful tradition,” added 2023 WAANB Honorary Chair Donna Veach. “The team worked hard, and the Greater New Britain community responded.”

The event was planned and executed by DAV Chapter 8 and a large Planning Committee of volunteers from Greater New Britain’s business, non-profit and veterans service organization communities. The Wreaths Across America of New Britain (WAANB) Planning Committee aims to raise more than $20,000 annually to fund the effort. Proceeds from this event and others will be used to fund not only this year’s placement of more than 1,250 memorial wreaths at Fairview, but placements in years to come.

“Our goal,” said Taricani, “is to have the financial security and capacity to ensure a successful program for years to come. Those from the Greater New Britain community who served, and who are now interred at Fairview, deserve nothing less. The fundraising will never stop.”

National Wreaths Across America Day takes place this year on December 16 at more than 3,700 locations nationwide and abroad, including New Britain’s Fairview Cemetery.

Guests started arriving at the Pasta Dinner as early as 4:15 p.m. for the 5 p.m. scheduled start. The event featured colors presented by members of the New Britain Senior High School JROTC, the national anthem performed by Southington High School student and Veteran Advocate Maggie Wernicki, appearances by New Britain Mayor Erin E. Stewart and Berlin Mayor Mark Kaczynski, and entertainment provided by iHeart Media personalities Renee DiNino and Amanda Jo.

Students from New Britain Senior High School’s Culinary Program, along with JROTC members, provided food service. A huge and successful MegaRaffle was organized and managed by David Obedzinski and his team of volunteers from the Community Foundation of Greater New Britain. Helping staff and manage the event were members of the Suburban Woman’s Club of Greater New Britain, the Consolidated School District of New Britain and others. VFW Post 511 provided banquet space free of charge.

Planning is already underway for the WAANB Planning Committee’s second major fundraiser of the year, a Wine and Beer Fest to take place Friday, October 20, at the VFW.

Major sponsors of Wreaths Across America of New Britain 2023 include Patriot Sponsors the Mayor’s Trophy Charitable Fund, Anthony Micacci and Family, Perkins Travel, Richards Machine and Unity Lodge 148, Connecticut Freemasons; Red Sponsors the Community Foundation of Greater New Britain, Community Chest of New Britain and Berlin, Costco, the Good Old Boys, New Britain Memorial and Donald D. Sagarino Funeral Home, Rotary Club of New Britain-Berlin, SignPro and Stew Leonard’s; and White Sponsors Acme Monaco, Peter Gladis Consulting, the Hudyma Family, Image Ink, Mopars in Motion, the Suburban Woman’s Club of Greater New Britain and Tomasso Group.

Media Sponsors are the New Britain Herald and iHeart Media Communities.

Wreaths Across America of New Britain is part of the Wreaths Across America (WAA) national non-profit organization founded in 2007 to continue and expand the annual wreath-laying ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery begun by Maine businessman Morrill Worcester in 1992. WAA’s mission – Remember, Honor, Teach – is carried out in part by coordinating wreath-laying ceremonies at Arlington and at veterans cemeteries and other locations in all 50 states and abroad. In 2022, 2.7 million wreaths were placed by more than two million volunteers at 3,700 locations.

To become a sponsor, buy a wreath, make a donation or to learn more about Wreaths Across America of New Britain and all of DAV Hardware City Chapter 8’s activities, visit


Media Contact: Dennis Buden, DAV Hardware City Chapter 8/Wreaths Across America of New Britain (860) 558-0514