CHICCHI ricchi-ricchi!!! crows the rooster in Italy instead of cock-a-doodle doo. In the town of Recoaro Terme this past Sunday afternoon, the most gallant of barnyard fowl heralded an extravaganza of a parade with over 70 decorated wagons and almost a thousand costumed participants in La Chiamata di Marzo. Tractor-pulled floats rolled on by, depicting daily scenes of an era many years ago. Dancers, singers, and live music magnified the already jovial buzz in the air. Attracting hundreds and hundreds of spectators, the “March Call” is a grand collaboration where italian culture and heritage come together in a great big welcome of March and a new season.
This 16th edition carries on a revived tradition that falls on the last Sunday of February and is repeated only on even-numbered years. Records attest that the festival came celebrated with as much fervor and involvement from the 1800’s and up until the 1920’s but gradually went into decline during the period of the two world wars.
Although it was a long drive out from Lecco to Recoaro Terme, and an even longer return home with the departing exodus, I’m grateful that my husband had the wisdom to convince me that it could well be worth the trip. Between the two of us, we shot almost 300 images which goes to show the scope of this parade! With Maddie as the third cheering onlooker (she barks about 25 seconds into the clip), we enjoyed every bit of the 3 hour procession which slowly snaked through the town’s main avenues.