My cousin Francesca shared this photo with me from earlier tonight, when she was “out on the town,” in Bagheria. This week, the citizens of Bagheria are celebrating the summertime Festa di San Giuseppe.
Yes, of course, we celebrate St. Joseph on March 19, but in addition, many towns hold large celebrations in August too, when their family members return from northern Italy, other parts of Europe, South and North America, and Australia for vacation. In Bagheria, during this first week of August, they have a large feast featuring masses, fireworks, cooking demonstrations and food tastings, dance performances, live music including classical, cabaret, jazz, and traditional folk, a parade Sicilian carts (like the one pictured), and this year, the Verdello Fest–a celebration of the Slow Food designated Verdello lemon from Bagheria (also pictured), a light green lemon that is harvested between May and September.
The height of the week’s events was when, last night, the men of the local confraternities processed through town, the sacred statue of San Giuseppe holding the baby Jesus.
Viva San Giuseppe!