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Villa Il Cupolino, where the event took place
Photo by Dario Bonazza



By Sergio Gremigni

It all started with an email from Dario:

"Hi Sergio,
... Speaking to Protege, we agreed it will be nice that the next edition of the Pentax Day could take place in Florence. This year we’ll celebrate 50 years of Pentax SLR’s, and Florence is the city where Pentax importers had their premises, hence the "City of Pentax" in Italy. At this point, thinking of people managing a Pentax Day in Florence, I thought about you and Franco Zampetti...."

In the meantime, since I had changed my job, I had less spare time. I didn’t know Franco Zeta (nickname of Franco Zampetti), but I told myself "let’s try". I contacted Franco, we met, we also discovered we have some mutual friends, and we started.

Frankly speaking, the task was not so hard. Once the venue of the 7th Pentax Day was approved, after Dario and Franco inspected the wonderful "Villa le Rondini", everything went pretty smoothly.
Following Dario’s instructions: "In practice, I just ask you (Franco and you) to get …some panels for the photo exhibit, and some photographic attractions, such as vintage cars or something else …"
I took care of the vintage cars (thanks to my friend Marco Poggiali!!), I looked for not so expensive hotels to accommodate friends coming from a distance (impossible in the Florence area!), while Franco found panels for the pictures and contacted the model agency.

Fifteen days before the event, we made a final inspection of rooms and areas of the event, at the Villa il Cupolino, the wonderful annex of Villa Le Rondini, which was completely dedicated to the Pentax Day. Together with the owner of the villa, and with Franco’s maps in our hands, we confirmed everything to be OK. At that point, our only concern was about the weather.

On the 1st of June in the morning I met Franco, Dario and Maurizio. Then Ermanno and more members came, and the teamwork quickly brought to life our 7th Pentax Day, as it happened at 5th Pentax Day in Cervia, where I also gave my small contribution. The tables and the display cases were prepared and the many nice pictures by members were exhibited.
In the mean time, Protege was displaying all current Pentax line; while Manfrotto, Ferrania and Il Fotografo setup their own areas.

I have to admit that the poster conceived by Dario for the 50th anniversary of the Asahiflex (and made with the essential technical contribution by Carlo Lastrucci) was a wonderful, unexpected gift. I cannot understand how it is possible for "Mr. Bonazza", and his always calm look, to take care of everything!!

On the 2nd of June everything went smooth, the vintage cars and the bike arrived as planned, supported by my friend Marco, dressed accordingly, and also the two models (excellent choice Franco!!!), who were immediately chased by a swarm of photographers who made them sweat their "fee". Somebody would also miss their dinner for some more shots!! Even Mrs. Francesca, owner of the hotel, armed herself with camera and joined the group.
Uncommon and very appreciated was the presence of Tiziano (Pentaxian and Franco’s friend) and his hunting falcon, young and still not so trained, but fascinating with his predator coolness.

Around 1 p.m. we had dinner at "Villa le Rondini", after walking 400 meters among spectacular ancient cypresses and landscape views of Florence (the cathedral was apparently there, at hand), Fiesole, etc.
After a good meal, we met for the scheduled "annual meeting", with a brief lecture by Dario, celebrating the 50th anniversary of Pentax cameras. Then there was the confirmation of Dario as president, Ermanno as vice-president and Massimo as the treasurer, while Roberto Romano was voted new member of the board.
At last, good news for "our" Pentax book, which will be published by this year’s end??? (thanks to the help of our member Giuseppe Carofiglio from Salerno, who will cover most of costs).

The afternoon saw our tough paparazzi in the field again, practically "X-raying" the two models, the less they were dressed, the better they looked ...

In the mean time, I lingered with friends who attended the event, all pleased for the organization, the pictures and the location beauties. Following the agenda… I lost all prize awards, with the exception of mine!!! Again, thanks to Dario for his trust in Franco and me as organizers.

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Ponte Vecchio - Florence.
photo by Dario Bonazza
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Saturday night group in Piazza della Signoria...
photo by Roberto Romano
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...and Saturday night photographer.
photo by Dario Bonazza
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AOHC Day Museum
photo by Dario Bonazza
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AOHC Day Museum.
photo by Dario Bonazza
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Fabio Augugliaro, Candido Scocco and the disassembled Spotmatic
photo by Dario Bonazza
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Tecno 2000 check-up
photo by Dario Bonazza
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Sandro Iovine
(Il Fotografo magazine)
photo by Dario Bonazza
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Photo exhibition
photo by Dario Bonazza
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Photo exhibition
photo by Roberto Romano
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Sergio Gremigni and Marco Poggiali
photo by Dario Bonazza
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AOHC table
photo by Dario Bonazza
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Falconer and falcon
photo by Franco Zampetti
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Upper hall
photo by Dario Bonazza
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Lower hall
photo by Roberto Romano
Prizes and winners:
Pentax Quiz (Pentax binoculars offered by Protege): Ermanno Barchiesi
Member coming from farthest away (Pentax binoculars offered by Protege): Giuseppe Carofiglio
Luciano Nustrini prize for best picture (Manfrotto tripod offered by Manfrotto Trading): Ermanno Barchiesi
Special prizes for organization (AOHC trophy): Franco Zampetti and Sergio Gremigni
Authors of pictures for AOHC calendar 2003 (jury by Protege and il Fotografo): Barchiesi, Calanca, D’Amicis, Lastrucci, Ponzani, Zamagna.

7th Pentax Day Report (Part II)
7th Pentax Day Report (Part III)
7th Pentax Day Report (Part IV)

Page updated 1st Sep. 2002

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