Burning the candle in Le Marche
After a hot and exhausting day doing nothing at the beach or around the pool, what better way to rejuvenate yourself than by partying at one of the many festas and events that are being held throughout the Le Marche region during the Spring, Summer and Autumn months.
Festa season in Marche
The greatest number of festas traditionally occur in late July and August, particularly in the weeks surrounding the Ferragosto,or “Assumption day”, holiday. Festas are essentially al fresco parties where communities can meet and celebrate together and typically there is a theme that underpins the event, this is usually a tradition or local food or wine- local festa themes range from theatrical performances about the legend of the Sibillini Mountains to river prawns, Wild Boar or “Vino Cotto” the delicious local fortified/cooked wine.
Pick your Italian festa carefully
After a number of years living in Le Marche we tend to become more selective over our festa going habits (well, you cant go to them all!) and there is more than enough happening right on our doorstep as the local village of Sarnano has a very full calendar during the Summer months- Ask around for a bit of a heads-up on the best forthcoming festa as many are not that widely publicised and there are the many festas in small outlying hamlets, where you will be served up glorious food and there is usually music and dancing.
For example, for a few years now we attended a superb festa in the woods at Madonna delle Pace church near Garulla, you are transported back in time as local folk relax in the happy and carefree environment. The last Food included Bruschetta, Polentone (polenta Lasagne), roast chicken and Beans, bread and cakes plus unlimited wine and water for €14, the band played piano accordions, mandolins and other instruments creating a very special atmosphere and the dance floor was a whirl for the whole evening.
Other events in and around Sarnano in Summer range from a Raduno where vintage Fiats 500s are rallyed and displayed, an annual uphill motor race, Summer discos at the Terme, a nightly medieval banquet at “Taverna della Luna” in the centro Storico, Rock, Classical and Jazz concerts, street theatre, photographic and art shows, fireworks, the August funfair. The 3 local late music bars; Sticky Fingers, Memphis Belle and Revers also host regular gigs and there is even a politico-punk club Arci albatross that has random happenings that are always a good crack.
For the first 2 weeks of August, the Centro Storico takes a step into the past and the ancient streets are filled with candlelight and medieval music as artisans create food and goods in traditional ways, there are pop up taverns serving sumptuous spit roasted fare and wine and all purchases must be made using the Sarnano denari currency that is minted for these special evenings. Many of Sarnano’s medieval events are found on the Sarnano festa website.
Internationally recognized Le Marche festas
Themes for festas have in recent years been broadened as villages and towns compete to attract the biggest numbers. This years selection of the more culturally diverse events includes www.perpianosolo.com a series of piano concertos by acclaimed musicians at the Theatre in Amandola, San Severino Blues Festival that included artists such as folk/indie band “Joan as Policewoman”, Musica al Castello a mini Glastonbury music festival at Castello della Rancia in Tolentino, ballet and contemporary dance, including performances by Mikhail Baryshnikov at www.civitanovadanza.it , Tango Festival Tango Y Mas at San Ginesio, Madame Butterfly and La Traviata at the incredible www.sferisterio.com opera house in Macerata, the Camerino classical music festival www.camerinofestival.it and even a fantastic Mexican Festa complete with great bands, DJs refried beans, chilli and burritos. Also a bit further a field are teh jazz festivals in Fano and Perugia.