In the 1970s a group of migrants from Molinara decided to form an association that would provide a place where their families could meet and socialise. A place where traditions and customs could be celebrated and passed onto their children. A group of young men set about to bring this idea to fruition.

23rd March 1971, 13 members elected an executive committee.

President – Joseph Marcus Baldino
Vice President – Cosimo Caruso
Secretary – Nicola Longo
Vice Secretary – Joe Emanuele
Treasurer- Tony Addabbo
Vice Treasurer – Giuseppe Menechella

Photo Gallery: 1970s

Molinara Social and Sports Club Incorporated was the name of the club that was chosen.

Cosimo Cirocco and Cosimo Greco went to auction and a property was purchased in 1973 at 57 Lyons Rd Windsor Gardens, after various properties were considered. Don Dunstan offered the Molinarese community a free parcel of land at Pooraka but they felt they wanted something closer to the city. After considerable work on the premises the club was officially opened by the Premier of South Australia, the Honourable Don Dunstan.

During the 1970s the club facilities were upgraded to include a hall, meeting room, children’s games room, kitchen, bar, bocce & tennis courts and car parking. The club was opened Tuesday & Friday nights and Sunday afternoon, available to members to play cards, bocce, billiards or simply socialise.

In 1972 the Ladies Committee was formed this included Teresa Addabbo, Angela Baldino, Maria Baldino (President), Carmela Callisto, Lucy Callisto, Maria Cirocco, Lesley Daysh (Secretary), Carmela Galluccio, Donata Galluccio, Grace Longo (Treasurer), Betty Seneca, Flora Seneca, Lina Seneca, and Sherida Wood. The Ladies Committee originally organised the Christmas Carnival for the children, then later they extended the role of this group. They went on to work more closely with the main committee of the club and organise fashion parades, bingo nights and plays.

The mid 70s saw the formation of a Youth Group, which organised discos, beach picnics, Red Cross collection and social outings for the youth of the club.

The San Rocco committee at this stage was a sub-committee under the banner of the Molinara Club.

The club had seven netball teams, three soccer teams, and a bocce team. All the teams are part of local competitions. In 1977 a Bocce stadium was built and the M.S.S C was part of the Bocce Federation Competition.

Molinara Club took part in the first Carnevale in Adelaide which was held in 1976 in Rundle Mall. A parade travelled from Victoria Square to Elder Park before ending with celebrations in Rundle Mall. Carnevale in Adelaide is an annual Italian festival held to celebrate Italian culture and heritage. Traditionally the Molinara club sold cavatelli and pizza at the festival.

The events that the Molinara club held were New Year’s Eve Balls, Molinarese evenings, Sports Presentation Evenings, Theatrical evenings, Picnics and Christmas Carnivals. Large Cabaret Dances were held with special guests such as Tony Pantano and Paolo Mengoli at St Claire Youth Centre attracting in excess of 1,000 people.

The Molinara Club also became part of the Good Neighbour Council of South Australia.

Historical Context

Amendments to the Migration Act 1958, replaced the term ‘alien’ with ‘non-citizen’ and ended the favoured treatment of British nationals as immigrants to Australia. Federal and State governments in the 1970s had let go of the White Australia policy and they had adopted a policy of Multiculturalism. This was introduced initially by the Whitlam Labor Government then supported by the Fraser, Hawke and Keating Governments. At a State level in South Australia, the Dunstan Labor government was very progressive in supporting Multiculturalism. The growing acceptance of multiculturalism and associated encouragement of diversity by successive governments has meant that Italians have become more forthright and visible in expressing their identity, customs and traditions.

This change in government policy coincided with the Molinaresi migrants in the 1970s had become well established in Adelaide and the majority had experienced economic betterment. This meant that the Molinaresi had the time, money and government support to establish a social club.


1972  Joseph Marcus Baldino (LL.B.SM)

1973   Joseph Marcus Baldino (LL.B.SM)

1974   Joe Emanuele (B.Tech)

1975   Rocco Gallucio (B.A.F.C.P.A)

1976   Nicola Cirocco

1977   Nicola Cirocco

1978   Donato Callisto

1979   Donato Callisto