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Posts tagged ‘Festival’

Sensa Festival

The Sensa (Ascension Day) Festival also known as Festa della Sensa is celebrated by Venice on the day of Christ’s Ascension (40 days after Easter). Sensa is the Venetian dialect word for ascension. It commemorates two important events in the life of the city: one on 9 May in the year 1000, when Doge Pietro Orseolo II came to the rescue of the inhabitants of Dalmatia, who were under the Slav menace. The second event took place in 1177, when, in the reign of Doge Sebastiano Ziani, Pope Alexander III and Emperor Frederick Barbarossa signed the peace treaty in Venice that put an end to the century-long diatribe between the Papacy and the Empire. The rite of the Wedding with the Sea used to take place on the occasion of the Ascension Day Festival. Every year on that day the Doge on his state barge, the Bucintoro, sailed to Sant’Elena, at the level of San Pietro di Castello Church. The Bishop waited to bless him on a boat with gilt sides. To emphasise the Serenissima Republic’s dominion over the sea, the Festival culminated with a kind of propitiatory rite: the Doge sailed to the channel between the lagoon and the sea and threw a gold ring into the water.

Thanks to the Comitato Festa della Sensa, Venice began to celebrate Ascension Day again in 1965, with a programme that goes far beyond mere re-evocation: the Gemellaggio Adriatico (“Adriatic twinning”) project now links the Serenissima Republic with a city or a geographic area that has had a special historical relationship with Venice, joined in a bond of culture, love of the sea and the activities connected with the sea. In 2010 the ring that is its symbol has been given to the City of Larnaca (Cyprus). In addition to this, the Festival is the occasion for the award of the “Premio Osella d’Oro della Sensa”, which is given to public bodies, institutions and private citizens that have given lustre to the city by means of their activities in the spheres of culture, crafts and trade.


This historical festival is held from May 19 to May 20, 2012 in Venice, Italy and is suitable for all ages.

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Part of the today commemoration  will be the Doge’s procession in San Marco Square, the Sensa Market at the Church of San Nicolò on Lido, Venetian style rowing races, a water parade by the local rowing clubs, the Fort of Sant’Andrea Festival and many other events that confirm that the Sensa today is a great time for meeting and fully realising the value of Venetian history and traditions: it is the festival of the city itself and its relationship with the sea.

Tourist Information Center:
APT della Provincia di Venezia Castello 5050, 30122 Venezia
Tel. +39 0415298711
Fax +39 0415230399


Festival of the Ceri

Festa dei Ceri is a solemn act of devotion on the part of the Eugubini towards their Bishop Ubaldo Baldassini which started in 1160, the year of his death. Since then, every 15th May, the eve of the day of mourning, the devotional offering to the patron Saint is a fixed appointment for the people of Gubbio who are said to have taken part in a great mystical procession, carrying candles all around the town and up Mount Ingino (where since 11th September 1194 the body of Saint Ubaldo lies, in the church which bears his name). Certainly, the Eugubini dearly loved their important townsman, especially from 1154 onwards, when Gubbio conquered no less than 11 allied cities. The victory seemed miraculous, and was also thanks to the intervention of Bishop Baldassini. The wax candles, offered by the Arts and Crafts corporations, probably became difficult to transport with the passing of time, and towards the end of the 16th century were substituted by three wooden structures, which were agile and modern. They have been replaced a number of times. They have kept their original form up until today and on the same date; they follow the same route to the same place.

This religious and historical festival is held in Umbria, Gubbio, Italy, on May 15 of each year. The Ceri are three wooden structures weighing about 300 kg each, crowned by statues of St. Ubaldo, St. George and St. Anthony and vertically grafted on many stretchers in the shape of “H”, which enable the strucutres to be carried on the shoulders by ceraioli. The most important part of the celebration is the race in which the Ceri are carried on the shoulders of Ceraioli along the city streets up to the Basilica.


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This festival is suitable for people of all ages. Whoever wants to get fully involved in the festival of the Ceri needs to wear comfortable casual clothes, a pair of flat shoes, possibly trainers, leaving everything that is superfluous. The festival on 15 may, takes over the entire town which is decorated for the occasion with banners and flags bearing the colours and emblems of the three Ceri, and the emblems of the town itself. The race is so involving that one is obliged to follow the river of ceraioli and the people who follow the Ceri. It is important to be careful. During the race, the Ceri move at the highest possible speed around the town, accompanied by a large enthusiastic crowds.

Tourist Information Center:
IAT Gubbio – Via Ansidei, 32 Gubbio
Phone: +390759220790