For every self-respecting area there is a cultural tradition to discover and tell. Each land brings with it a history, more or less ancient, which becomes indivisible and indelible heritage. Between Ragusa, Modica and Scicli the traditions and folkloristic-religious events, which follow one another, are many and it is worth participating in it to appreciate and discover the various features.
San Giorgio in Modica festival
San Pietro and San Giorgio are the two patrons of the city of Modica. The patronal feast is dedicated to San Giorgio, held every year the following weekend on April 23rd. A fundamental moment of this festival is the procession in honor of the saint. The start of this anniversary is announced by cannon shots, which are fired as early as Saturday morning, while the procession begins on Sunday afternoon.
All the believers and devotees of the patron saint gather to take the statue from the church and carry it on their shoulders through the streets of the city. Since St. George, in the iconography, is represented on horseback, the statue of him is made to gallop among the people; all accompanied by flyers and fireworks that color the festive atmosphere that you breathe.
To close the procession are other fireworks that mark the entrance and return of the statue to the church: here the devotees make the statue run and turn around the aisles of the Cathedral dedicated to it, almost as if greeting all the faithful present there.
Near the Christmas holidays, you can breathe the sweet smell of chocolate in the streets of the city. The ChocoModica is organized every year and is a food and wine event dedicated to the famous and inimitable chocolate of Modica.
Among the architectural beauties of this Baroque city you can discover the goodness of a chocolate that has its roots in ancient times: those of the conquistadors of Latin America. It was they who imported chocolate into the territory and the modern processing is the ancient, original, artisanal and low temperature one, which makes this chocolate a unique specialty in the world.
The streets are filled with stalls offering their artisanal and different product, workshops are organized to work and produce chocolate, shows and many “sweet” events (and more!) Not to be missed.
Holy Week in Scicli
Holy Week is, for the inhabitants of Scicli, one of the most awaited, due to the many processions and events that take place in those days. The population feels these days of celebration a lot and is completely dedicated to the realization of celebrations that want to recall the last days of Christ’s life before the resurrection of Holy Monday.
On Palm Sunday the first procession is organized with the statue of Our Lady of Sorrows of Santa Maria la Nova, at the center of the veneration of all citizens.
On Holy Tuesday the procession of the Addolorata di San Bartolomeo takes place in the streets of Scicli, added only recently to the processions of Holy Week, as if to underline the rivalry between the two Confraternities.
On Holy Wednesday there is the re-enactment of the Via Crucis and on Thursday the chapels of the various churches are set up with “Saburcara” that is the sepulchres, which must be visited, as usual, in odd numbers.
On Good Friday, Our Lady of Sorrows is carried in procession along the streets, also known as “of the hospital” because she was kept and venerated in the hospital church. The procession starts from the Church of San Giovanni from which the simulacrum of Our Lady of Sorrows completely dressed in black is carried, followed and acclaimed by a crowd of faithful to the Church of Santa Maria la Nova. Here other faithful await the arrival of the Madonna, venerating the simulacrum of the dead Christ, kept in a glass case which is then placed at the head of the procession. The procession also closes with a statue of “Christ at Calvary and Jews” and an “Ecce Homo”.
The faithful and all those present accompany the procession through the streets of the city, waiting in a real religious silence for the arrival of Holy Saturday. At midnight the bells of all the churches are made to ring alternately; the last to stop are the bells of Santa Maria la Nova, as the Easter rite belongs to it and it is here that the “Joy”, the statue of the risen Christ, arrives. The rites of the Holy Week of Scicli are part of the history of the tradition of this land and the Region of Sicily has included them among the “Great events” not to be missed.
In August, Scicli is tinged with colors and adorned with colorful flowers. All this thanks to the Infiorata: carts and horses parade through the streets covered and decorated with flowers. This event attracts many tourists and not only, to admire and take part in this colorful folkloristic event that takes place in the heart of the baroque city.
“Taranta Sicily Fest”
In via San Bartolomeo every year, in August, this popular music event is held which attracts people from all over the region, passionate about pizzica and eager to let loose to the sound of taranta. The Taranta Sicily Fest is an event in which many southern popular musicians take part and has the objective of promoting this musical genre among the younger generations. If you are going to spend your holidays in these areas of Sicily, don’t miss this fantastic folkloristic music concert.
The “Blue Fish festival” in Donnalucata
Donnalucata is a seaside village fraction of Scicli, famous for its limpid and crystalline sea and fine and golden sand, a fundamental stop for those who spend their holidays on this coast of South Eastern Sicily. The blue fish festival is organized in the marina, which continues throughout the promenade with stalls and stands of various types.
The protagonist is fish but there are also other products and typical specialties, of all tastes. If you are a fish lover, it is one of the most delicious events in the Ibleo area, where many theatrical and musical performances are also organized, to make this party even more enjoyable.
The feast of “San Giorgio” in Ragusa
On the last Sunday of May the grandiose party is organized in honor of the patron saint of Ragusa: San Giorgio. As early as Friday, the Mother Church is decorated, for the occasion, with red damask drapes and portals and floral compositions. The statue of St. George and the Holy Ark are positioned in the side aisles, to give the faithful the opportunity to venerate them closely. Then they are carried in procession: the Ark is left in the Church of Purgatory, while St. George is left in the Church of San Tommaso.
On Saturday the two statues are reunited and are brought back to the Mother Church. The sound of bells and fireworks announcing the feast on Sunday morning, also marking the saint’s exit and entry from the Church.
The procession is heard by many faithful and devotees, who accompany the statue through the streets of the city; but one of the most evocative moments is the so-called “ballad of the Saint”: carrying him high with outstretched arms, those present continually shout “all Truonu!” which means that he is the patron saint of the city. This weekend the city is filled with events of all kinds, shows, exhibitions, concerts and performances by groups of various artists.
The feast of San Giovanni Battista in Ragusa
The feast of San Giovanni Battista in Ragusa Another patron of the city is San Giovanni Battista, to whom one of the most heartfelt festivals of the Ragusans is dedicated, which takes place in August. On August 19th the statue of the Saint is taken from the niche and is taken every year to a different parish between songs, liturgies and prayer vigils. in the Cathedral.
Then on the 29th all the faithful set out in a procession of candles; many of them decide to take part barefoot, as if to underline their devotion to the saint. Even during these holidays Ragusa is full of events that make these holidays pleasant.
The festival of street artists in Ragusa
The festival of street artists in Ragusa The “Ibla Buskers” is the festival of street artists organized in the baroque heart of Ragusa Ibla, in October. Tightrope walkers, jugglers, actors, street artists come from all over the world to cheer these days of fun and relaxation in this pearl of South Eastern Sicily with their art.
Sacred and profane come together in these popular festivals, arousing the curiosity of those who love traditions and are always looking for new customs from which to learn, learn and then tell.