Staying in Scicli means enriching the experience of the traveler because a journey is not only made of destinations to be reached but of places, flavors, scents and sounds to be lived intensely. Tourists are not not the mere spectators but the actors of the magical spectacle that our land offers “naturally”. For this reason we have selected a series of activities that have the advantage of involving, excite and forever touch the memory of the traveler.
Cavalcata di San Giuseppe
The “Cavalcata of San Giuseppe” commemorate the escape into Egypt of the Holy Family and is celebrated every year on the weekend coinciding with or next to March 19th.
This event is characterized by a parade of harnessed horses that challenge each other in a sort of competition for those who create the most beautiful coat, this is the most evocative moment of the whole even
It starts around 6pm on Saturday and ends on Sunday evening with dinner after a popular auction in which the best gastronomic products, donated by faithful to the church for the occasion, are beaten to the best offers.
The preparation begins many days before, when the various groups of riders come together to plan and then realize the art work made of violacciocos flowers (u balucu) that will dress their horse during the party.
After the parade that starts from the San Giuseppe district into Piazza Italia, part of the procession goes through the streets of the historic center, giving color to the streets and small bonfires that also serve as meeting places to celebrate together.
The knights dress in traditional peasant clothes for the parade: black velvet trousers and vest, white shirt, red handkerchief, traditional cap and boots.
This festival opens the spring and the various elements of this event are the symbols that celebrate the awakening after winter.
Festa delle Milizie
The last Saturday of May is tradition to remember with a theatrical performance in the square the attempted invasion of Scicli by the Saracens.
At that time (it was 1091) Scicli was under the control of the Norman Christian who finding in difficulty invoked the help of the Virgin.
The Virgin Mary appears with a blue cloak and a crown on his head over a white horse and with a sword in her hand to help the Christians and scare away the Saracens.
The event is very scenic and evocative and takes place at sunset. The most striking moments are the appearance of the Madonna on horseback and the singing of the angel.
The Turks who lost the battle are remembered in the days preceding the event with a cream or ricotta-based dessert inspired by the turbans they wore: the famous Turkish Heads (Teste di Turco). They are made in all the pastry shops of the city.
The feast day begins on Saturday night when, after the Easter vigil, the young people, gather in Scicli in the Church of Santa Maria La Nova waiting to lift Christ finally risen. Young and the less young hope are ready to show all their devotion to Christ, sovereign of their heart.
The bearers of the statue become special characters without whom no party would begin: the binge begins at noon on Easter morning, when after the return of the Venerable through the streets of the town, the bearers, followed by the musical band, acclaim with one voice: “Joy”.
Joy means the triumph of life, joy of being together as a community, joy for the sunlight that accompanies their remarkable physical effort.
Everything takes place until three o’clock in the afternoon, then repeat itself in the evening, around eleven o’clock when the simulacrum is again carried along the roads and crossroads of Scicli.
At three in the morning the most exciting show is realized, when the bearers do not find peace in having to put the “Joy” inside the Church. The party shows itself in all its irrationality, in a fanatical exaggeration between one ride and another. Whoever attends the whole event cannot refrain from shouting: GIO GIO GIOIA!!!!