The Carnival of Ascoli Piceno is an extraordinary manifestation that has been handed down for generations and involves the entire population. The spirit has obviously changed in time; if originally this festival was related to the propitiatory rites of Spring, little by little it transformed itself into a theatrical or performance event, with the emphasis on amusement, during which the entire city becomes the stage and the citizens are the actors. Protagonists or spectators of sketches that are almost always satirical in nature, with important local personalities or facts taken from current events as the stimulus.
The Carnival in People’s Square
Between February and March, in the days of Thursday, Sunday and Fat Tuesday, the favored stage is People’s Square, which is decorated for the occasion with enormous fin-de-siecle lamps, while in establishments all over town masquerade balls and parties are organized in which people of all ages and walks of life participate.
The days of Sunday and Fat Tuesday are dedicated to a local competition of masked groups, placed into categories according to the number of participants. Awards are given on the evening of Tuesday by a jury that selects the most original theme, the beat costumes and naturally, the most amusing subject.
The individual mask
Alongside the organized groups, the city is populated with individuals in costume, who, with slim budgets – and a good dose of irony – make the atmosphere of the manifestation almost surreal.
Where to stay in Ascoli Piceno
Hotels, B&Bs, apartments and country houses: search and make reservations here.