The season of the “sagre“, village festivals, is back! It is also the time of the year when most markets and larger fairs are organized. With the longer days, the sunny afternoons and the warm evenings, people feel like spending more time outside. Even more so if they also get to eat good local food made with seasonal products, drink good wine, and enjoy music and other shows or just spend a nice day in good company.
In the Maremma area, the most popular fair, and probably the one with the longest tradition, is Fiera del Madonnino, near the village of Braccagni, Grosseto. It is quite an event in the area! I remember going there every single year when I was younger, first with my parents and then with my friends. Most of the businesses in the province will have a stand: from car dealerships to fireplace makers, from farmers selling chicks to the John Deer truck dealers, from greenhouses to porchetta and cheese producers. Most of the visitors are families: kids love the enormous tractors and the cotton candy and the small farm animals! It’s really a piece of Maremma culture. This year Fiera del Madonnino will be on from April 22-25.
So here is what I found out about April 2010 “Sagre” and other events in Tuscany. The list is certainly not exhaustive, so please, if you know of any event that might be added to this list, leave a comment! Thank you!
- April 9-11, Sagra del Ciambellino (traditional biscuit), Rigomagno (Siena).
- April 9-11, Fior di Città, Pisa in Fiore, Pisa. For those with a green thumb.
- April 9-11, 16-18, 23-25, Sagra del Cinghiale (wild boar), Certaldo (Florence).
- April 9-18, Fiera di Primavera (crafts and food and drink), Sesto Fiorentino (Florence).
- April 10-11, Rassegna Enogastronomica Mugellana, Scarperia (Florence), food and drink of the Mugello area.
- April 10-18, Festa e Palio delle Rocche, Guazzino di Sinalunga (Siena). The festival is a celebration of the Virgin Mary. There is an interesting “Palio delle Rocche” on April 18th, at 6:30 pm, in which the town quarters compete on vehicles modeled after of Roman bigas.
- April 10-11 and 17-18, Sagra del Cighiale (wild boar), Ronta (Florence).
- April 11, Festa della Pina, Pieve ad Lamulas, Montelaterone, (Grosseto). This festival has a special place in my heart. It is a very ancient festival, in which young couples exchange colourful pine cones as a symbol of their love. The festival takes place by the ancient Pieve ad Lamulas (9th century), on Monte Amiata, which happens to be the church where we got married! The place is really beautiful and the festival dates back to the Roman era.
- April 11, Festa del Fiore e del Coccio, Torrita (Siena). Fair dedicated to ceramics decorated with flower motifs.
- April 11, 18 and 25, Festa della Civiltà Contadina, Montefoscoli (Pisa). Fair dedicated to the agricultural traditions of the area. Nice antique market.
- April 16-18, Piazze d’Europa, Grosseto. For 3 days, Grosseto houses a market of arts, crafts and traditional products of many European countries.
- April 17 and 18, Piazze del Gusto, Arezzo. Festival dedicated to the products of the province Arezzo, with 6 different types of food and drink in 6 different squares of the city.
- April 17 and 18, Enolia, Seravezza (Lucca), a festival dedicated to olive oil in front of the beautiful Palazzo Mediceo. If you like cycling you might be interested in the bike tour among the olive trees on the 18th at 9:30 am.
- April 17.18 and 24-25, Sagra del Tortello (large ravioli-type pasta), Scarperia (Florence).
- April 18, Cronomania, Sesto Fiorentino (Florence). Fair dedicated to those who collect watches. Curious.
- April 22-25, Sagra della Trota (trout), Bucine (Arezzo).
- April 23-25, 30 and May 1 and 2, Sagra della fava, baccalà e frittura di pesce (broad beans, dried salted cod soup and fried fish) Arcille (Grosseto).
- April 24 and 25, Chiusure in Piazza, Chiusure (Siena). Two days dedicated to artichoke tradition in the beautiful Crete Senesi. Two nice events are BiciCreta, a bike tour of the Crete, on April 24th at 9:45am and on the same day the possibility to take a ride on the Treno Natura stem engine train.
- April 24-25, Fiera dell’Elettronica, Pisa. For those who love technological gadgets more than food and traditions!
- April 24 – May 2, Art 2010, Fiera dell’Artigianato in Florence. Very large and popular fair dedicated to arts and crafts.
- April 25, Festa della Stagion Bona, Panzano (Florence). Literally the “festival of good weather”, the event commemorates the rivalry between the Gherardini and the Firidolfi families with a reenactment in period costumes. Lots of good Chianti food and wine.
- April 25, Regata di Primavera, Porto Santo Stefano (Grosseto). The regatta is at 6 pm, but if food is served starting in the morning. Porto Santo Stefano is a lovely town on the coast of the Maremma, in the area called Argentario.
- April 25, Il Gioco della Ruzzola, Petricci, (Grosseto). This festival brings visitors back to the time when a round piece of wood (la ruzzola) was enough to entertain people. It is also the perfect opportunity for a nice walk in an undiscovered, yet stunning, part of Tuscany. The link above will take you to a page with a video of past editions.
- April 25, Marcia dell’Indipendenza, Siena. April 25th is the day Italy celebrates the Liberation from the Fascist regime. But this Independence March has nothing to do with those events! It is a relay walk to Montalcino and back, and commemorates the “exodus” of the Sienese people in 1555 after Cosimo de’ Medici conquered the city.
- April 25, Rassegna della Pastorizia, Cutigliano (Pistoia). A day organized by Slow Food and dedicated to sheep-farming and its products in this beautiful village. If you love cheese, you have to go.
- April 25 and May 1, Sagra della Lumaca (snail), Cavriglia (Arezzo).
- April 25, May 1 and 2, I Vantaggi del Buon Gusto (the advantages of good taste), Vinci (Florence). Interesting days dedicated to food and colours. April 25 is dedicated to “green products”, May 1 and 2 are dedicated to “red products”. On April 25, you can also take a walk called “Sui Passi di Leonardo”. Reservations are required.
- April 25, May 1 and 2, Sagra del Baccello (broad beans), La Serra, San Miniato (Pisa).
- April 29 – May 2, Spinofiorito, Massa. A festival dedicated to the tradition of local wines and products of Tuscany.
- April 30, May 1-2 and 8-9, Sagra della Porchetta (roast pork), Valenza (Massa).
If you would like to see anything else listed here, please leave a comment!
I’m late in posting my page on Sagre in April in Maremma, but better late than never! There are still some running from this Friday into May for your list:
14, 25 and 30 April 2010 (and 1 & 2 May 2010)
41st Sagra del Carciofo
24 – 25 & 29 – 30 April and 1 – 2 May 2010
Sagra di Primavera
30 April 2010 (and 1 & 2 May 2010)
PIAN DI ROCCA, CASTIGLIONE DELLA PESCAIA (Grosseto)
Festa di Primavera
End of April (and beginning of May) 2010
Sagra della fava, del baccalà e del la frittura di pesce