by Dave Warner

You couldn’t find a parking spot at Canal Place last weekend, and part of that was because the Muccia family came in from all parts of the country and took up residence at the Stone Mill and Canal Side Inn.

Four generations gathered to eat, visit, and just enjoy the City. Proud great-grandpa Bob Mucica said, “This was kind of impromptu. We said, why don’t we just go back to Little Falls. We were originally motivated to do this because we thought it was going to be Garlic Festival weekend. But, like so many other things, it was canceled.”

However, he said it’s such a great time of the year, we decided to do it anyway.

Bob said that he and his wife left Little Falls and went to California, and now they’ve returned with four generations of people. “It was just the two of us, and now this is what we have to show for it.”

He said that when they left, they were both 20 years old. “I went to SUNY Canton and I was hired out of there to go to work for North American Aviation Rockydyne Division. They were hiring people from all over the world at the time because we were in the space race.”

Bob stated that he had never met anyone from the company before being hired. “I answered an advertisement in one of the New York papers.”

He was engaged at the time, and so they decided to get married before they went and they told the company about it. “They said, if you’re going to be married, we’ll pay for all your wife’s stuff to be moved out too.”

They found a place in California, and have been there for 65 years now.  He said that they used to make it back to Little Falls every year, but now it’s more like every two years. “We used to hone in on the Canal Celebration and then the others started. Garlic, and Cheese, and so forth.”

Twenty-five of the group went up to eat dinner at Bella Vista on Sunday since they were one of the few places that could handle such a large group. “Two of our grandsons will be celebrating their 30th birthdays that day,” he said.

“We haven’t seen a lot of the relatives that are from the Rochester area in a few years now because of COVID.”

He said that, “We feel that we’re really anchored to this City. My wife and I both love Little Falls. It’s not a problem for us to say go to Little Falls. There’s no debate involved with that.”

Louis Baum is a good family friend and has visited them many times in California, so much so, that they invited him to pose in the ‘family’ photo above.

Baum said, “It’s important to note that they are major benefactors for the historical society and when we did the frog fountain a couple of years ago, they were the ones that underwrote that whole thing.”