Friday, June 01, 2012

Info about attending a sagra / festa (food themed or religious festival) in Italy


Here are some links about attending a sagre / feste (food themed or religious festivals) in Italy:


      • Found on sagre / feste posters
        • The posters may be in bright neon colors: green, orange, pink, etc.
      • Found on banners
        • These banners may be located on buildings, fences, overhead across a street, etc.
      • Found on flyers, handbills left in bars, restaurants and other business establishments.
      • Found in mailers sent to homes, apartments and businesses in the local area.
      • Found on entertainment posters 
        • These separate posters are for entertainment or about entertainers appearing and performing at a specific sagra / festa.
        • These specific entertainment posters will start appearing on the roads by or where the sagra / festa is being held. 
      • Usually occurs the same time and location every year or for example, depending on whenever Easter is - 2 weeks after
      • Because of this fact, the banners and posters normally do not appear until 2 weeks before the start of the sagra / festa. There are exceptions (popularity, size, etc.) to when the banners and posters will start appearing sometimes 4 weeks prior to the sagra / festa
      • Usually, the sagra / a fund raisers for the youth sports teams or a comune (town, village, etc.) project or a group in the community
      • Its all done by volunteers from all age groups. Except for the food preparation and cooking, they are inexperienced individuals.
      • Many things get donated to the sagra / festa.
    • Very few sagra / festa provide directions to their respective event. When my wife and I first started to attend sagre / feste, we did not know where they were being held. Now, we know to look for: a campo sportivo (sports field). the centro storico (historic center) of a town or village, a giardini pubblici (public garden), white tents, etc.
    • Also, you can look for entertainment or entertainer's posters along the side of the road
    •  They are found on the poster and the TIMES are in a 24 hour format:
      • cena (dinner) usually starts between 19,00 (7:00 PM) - 20,00 (9:00 PM)
      • pranzo (lunch) ONLY ON SUNDAY starts between 12,00 (12:00 PM) - 13,00 (1:00 PM) and is usually over between 15,00 (3:00 PM) - 15,30 (3:30 PM)
      • entertainment (singing or dancing, etc.) starts at 21,30 (9:30 PM)
    • My wife and I like to go early to avoid crowds and to find the sagra / festa, if we have not been to the sagra or festa before, or to find relatively close-in parking. Depending on the popularity and size of the sagra / festa, there may get be a shuttle bus to take you to the event.
    • If is a sagra, there may be a food theme, e.g., anatra (duck), ciliegia (cherries), cinghiale (wild boar), pesce (fish), struzzo (ostrich), oca (goose), pasta, pizza, tartufo (truffles), porcini / funghi (mushrooms), etc. If it's a festa, there may be a culinary specialty, food speciality or gastronomic speciality from the surrounding area.
    • There will be food choices for most folks. However, for vegetarians and vegans, there may be. In Toscana/Tuscany, a typical menu for cena (dinner) may look like the following:
      • Antipasto (appetizer) – In Toscana/Tuscany, it will be crostini with various toppings, for example, grounded chicken livers, pomodori (tomatoes), etc. and slices of pecorino (sheep cheese), prosciutto, salami, etc. and a sagra / festa specialty item
      • Primi piatti (first course), usually pasta - couple choices
      • Secondi piatti (second course), usually the specialty of the sagra or festa plus a few other choices that may include but not limited to bistecca (steak), maiale (pork), etc.
      • Vendure or contorni (vegetables): cannelloni beans, patate fritte (french fries potatoes) 
      • Insalata (green salad) served with olio e aceto (oil and vinegar) - NO other choices!
      • Dolci (dessert)
    • The price for your meal is posted or listed on a menu board: a full/complete (completo) menu or order just whatever you would like to eat or pizza. You can usually make your selections on a pre-printed form (if available) and pay at a cassa (cashier). Then, you take a printed receipt with your selections on it to where there is a person directing you to sit. If there is no person telling you where to be seated, you seat yourself at an available table for your meal.
    • Normally whatever you order will cost a whole lot less than a restaurant meal
      • There is a coperto (cover charge) usually around 2 Euros or less.
      • There is a charge for beverages (bevande) except where you may have ordered the full/complete (completo) menu selection:
        • water: naturale (still) or frizzante/gassata (bubbles)
        • vino - rosso o bianco (red or white wine)
        • biera (beer)
        • coke (no diet soda selection)
        • caffè (espresso)
      • There is a charge for dessert.
    • Starting around 21,30 (9:30 PM), you may find one or more of the following taking place:
      • ballo (dancing) – all types: ballroom, disco, tango, samba, rumba, line, etc.
      • (singing)
    * = Blog entry has been updated.For your specific interest, please search the web for further information using Google .

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    That's it for Friday, 1 June 2012: venerdì 1 giugno 2012

    Ciao, Ben

    Moving2Italy2 – #1 source of links About, For or On Italy for those individuals moving, traveling or already living in Italy. 

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