Porch Parties, Malcolm Gladwell, and Southern Italians

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As we are finally gaining a little bit of that sweet summer momentum, it’s about time for a little Porch Party action in downtown Indy!

Now folks, what if we told you that Porch Parties were not only a great time, but also physically good for your health? Well, it’s true! 

In Malcolm Gladwell’s book Outliers, Gladwell speaks of a small town about 90 miles east of Bangor, Pennsylvania called Roseto. While Roseto (which was essentially a transplant of a small Italian village with the same name) may have seemed like any other unassuming, salt-of-the-earth “quarryville” on the surface, it was far from ordinary.

In the 1950s a physician by the name of Stewart Wolf was intrigued when a Roseto doctor told him that he hardly ever saw anyone from Roseto under the age of 65 with heart disease. This was astonishing because in the 50s, heart attacks were the leading cause of death in men under the age of 65. This made no statistical or medical sense! Wolf couldn’t help but investigate, and what he found was nothing short of incredible.

As it turns out, the only explanation that Wolf and his colleagues were able to uncover as to the secret of the Rosetans good health was community. If you were to walk through Roseta, you would see friends speaking joyfully to one another in Italian, and most importantly, you would see neighbors sharing festive meals on the porches of their homes.

You see, place can hold sway on both our mental, and physical health. So maybe instead of starting an aspirin regimen we should get out on our porches for a steady dose of hospitality, and neighborliness. Trust us when we say that your heart, and the hearts of your neighbors will thank you!

Sign up to host your very own Porch Party on Sunday, July 12 here!