Category Archives: EVENTS

St. Patrick’s Day in Ireland

St. Patrick’s Day is a special event in Ireland. There are festivals and parades everywhere celebrating Irish culture. The biggest parade is held in Dublin, of course. It is estimated that more than a million people take part in the St. Patrick’s parade in Dublin. Actually, it’s such a big occasion that the festivities get spread over several days–not just March 17.

???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????But often, the smallest of all villages will also have their own parades and celebrations. Local musicians will almost always be playing in these parades, in addition to visual and performing arts. Millions are expected to don their greens and head for the parades on March 17th, finishing up the day with a visit to the pub for a pint of the best beer they can find.

The pubs and stores are all open on this day, though the post offices, banks, and other offices are closed. The Irish people have been celebrating St. Patrick’s Day for more than 1,000 years.

StPatricksDayCeiliOnDublinStreetsNOFEE_largeFor the traditional Irish family, it would always start with a visit to the local church in the morning and celebrations in the afternoon. This is one reason why the pubs all over Ireland open a bit late in the day. The traditional families would also have a meal of cabbage and bacon.

The first parade was interestingly not held in Dublin or anywhere else in the country. It was held in New York City in 1762 when Irish soldiers from the British military marched through the city in order to reconnect with their Irish roots and unite all the Irishmen who were serving the British army. It was a hugely successful event, thus prompting the opening of “Irish Aid” societies such as the Hibernian Society and the Friendly Sons of Saint Patrick. It eventually became a wonderful tradition, which is now followed all over Ireland and elsewhere too by the Irish people.

dublin_1365114iSt. Patrick’s Day is a religious event, but it has become more of a day of fun and an occasion for the Irish to celebrate, as well as for everybody to come out on the streets and enjoy.

Events Around the Year in Florence

firenze fireworks

Florence is a vibrant city which offers several art events, music concerts, and many special events to travelers to enjoy through the year. Music, dancing, and painting represent the real prestige of Florence. Travelers from all over the world gather to visit the city of arts: Florence.

Festival of Rificolina
During this festival, children carry lamps in their hands and march through the streets. The concept originated from the fact that in earlier times, peasants on their way back home in the dark would carry candles, and so today young children honor this custom during the Festival Riflicolina.

Florence Tango Festival
During this Florence festival, some of the top international tango dancers present their art at the Saschall Theatre. An evening program is held during the festival and travelers enjoy exhibitions, dinners, and some other shows throughout the festival.

Winter in Florence
Winter in Florence is really fabulous. Travelers visit Florence during winter in order to get pleasure from concerts, exhibitions, and events. They enjoy participating in cultural activities in the city as well. Christmas is also a great time to be in Florence. Sports are enjoyed here as well.

Italian Moto GP
This is one of the most famous rallies of Florence and the Autodromo Internazionale Del Mugello hosted it in the year 2008. This rally was a great success in terms of bringing enthusiastic viewers to the stadium. Italians are known for their passion for motorbikes.

Fochi di San Giovanni
This festival in Florence is celebrated in a way to memorialize the birthday of St. John. Travelers enjoy a wonderful fireworks display.

On the whole, all of the events in Florence around the year are wonderful. Travelers from all regions, religions, and ethnicities can attend and enjoy participating.

Visit Amsterdam in Spring

According to Amsterdam’s citizen Spring is the best season to visit the city. It seems a beginning of a crescendo that’ will end up with the beginning of Autumn.  People begin to spend their time in the café terraces, city parks are even more crowded day by day even though is still cold, in particular in March and April. Spring is thea time when sunsets are already as late as 8.pm, so that locals don’t mind to sleep less and spend more time out.

Visit Amsterdam in Spring is an experience you can not miss, in particular for its colours. Trees appear as if they’ve been outlined with a lime-green highlighter as they finally start to leaf out. The famous dutch tulips begin to bloom. None exactly knows when the pick time will be to see this beautiful flowers decorate the Keukenof  Gardens or in the nearby bulb farm fields.

Spring is also the season when Dutch celebrate some of their most important holidays as Queen’s Day, Remembrance Day and Liberation Day.

New York know the fraud!

new-york-2

While I was surfing the net, I found a strange story that happened to a man visiting New York for the first time. It all started when he arrived at the JFK New York Airport (one of the 3 found in NY) yet I don’t think it’s a Kennedy curse! It can just happen to anyone visiting a new place..

Anyway..

He said he arrived at JFK (That’s short for Kennedy Airport) at around 1:30 p.m., and after the usual long airports procedures he and his friends were out at last.  Reaching for the transportation desk (where they could find some guiding about places and stuff) a man stopped them and asked if they need a taxi (New York yellow cabs) , and they said no because they were expecting a ride from the previously-booked famous tourism company. After a while, another man came and asked them the same question, they then told him what they were expecting and mentioned the company name.

new-york-1
For their surprise, the man took out a card with the company name and some details underneath, and asked them to follow him to the park. The tourist felt a little uneasy about it, specially that a professional company driver won’t start asking about their taxi  in New York needs rather than their target company!

newyork-taxi

More strangely, when they reached the park they found a car awaiting them not a bus! This was the time that the tourist insisted to see an ID card of the claimed driver, the thing which the claimed driver refused to do for reasons they couldn’t buy. So they apologized to him and went back to the desk where they found a large sign explaining how legal it is to offer a taxi ride in this area (where the desk is)!

I can’t really expect what could have happened if they went on with that guy, but it’s good to warn everybody visiting New York  about this I guess. You can always find a trustable guide at the transportation desk, unless you’ll have someone to pick you up!

Maine Festivals

festivals

Maine

June
Old Port Festival in Portland: music, parades, kiddie rides, dance and activities.

July
Yarmouth Clam Festival: crafts, seafood, performances and various artists.

August
Arts and Craft show in Cumberland: to admire Maine craftsmen.

September
County Fair in Cumberland: unmissable events like pumpkin contests, harness races, bull rides and a lot of music.

Fall Festival of Arts and Crafts in Westbrook with the Maine craftsmen.

Early December
Sparkle Week in Freeport: Carriage racing, Santa, carollers and hot cocoa for everyone.

Holiday Arts and Crafts Show in Portland with the Maine craftsmen.

The Queen’s birthday in Amsterdam

It is on the occasion of the Queen’s birthday that Amsterdam becomes an even more special city.  The daily routine is forgotten and celebrations start the day (evening) before, i.e. on April 29th, with concerts, shows and, of course, lots of beer…
On April 30th (the Queen’s actual birthday) the atmosphere of the town is joyful: a rather peculiar second-hand market is set up practically before all houses. What has become useless is on sale at rather interesting low prices.
The merrymaking for the Queen is really worth a visit to Amsterdam at the end of April. And if you want another “plus”  do not forget that this is the period when tulips are in full blossom and  the botanical garden at  Keukenhof (some half an hour from Amsterdam)  awaits you with its bikes to enjoy the multicolored fields (it is not the beer’s side-effect, they are indeed  tulips).
But don’t forget, if you plan to visit Amsterdam in this special period of the year, to book your hotel in advance.