CALENDIMAGGIO of ASSISI is a medieval festival held in Assisi from Thursday to Saturday of the week after May 1st. The festival celebrates the arrival of spring with games, magnificent pageants and music competitions of love songs. The contest involves the two districts of the town – or parts – who compete for the Palio, a scarf symbolizing the victory of one part over the other. Most of the festival is held in Piazza del Comune which is closed for the 3 days to regular visitors. Tickets are available at Assisi’s tourist information office. Here is this year’s program:
Thursday May 7
- 3:00 p.m. – The major of Assisi consigns the Keys of the town to the master of the Calendimaggio, Maestro de Campo. Flag waving exhibition of the “Sbandieratori di Assisi”
- 4:00 p.m. – A ringing of bells proclaims the start of the festival. The Maestro de Campo takes on the supreme authority of the town. The Palio is returned to the Master. Investiture of the jury.
- 9:30 p.m. – Medieval life and food in the streets by one of the contestant parts
Friday 8 May
- 3:30 p.m. – Medieval games and proclamation of Madonna Primavera, the beauty queen of the festival
- 9:30 p.m. – Medieval life and food in the streets by the other contestant part
Saturday 9 May –
- 3:30 p.m. – The two parts publicly challenge each other in a love song contest. A pageant will parade through Corso Mazzini and Piazza Santa Chiara.
- 9:30 p.m. – Entrance of the historical pageants. Choral contest between the two parts. The winning part is chosen and receives the Palio