June 16, 2009

June 24th- St John the Baptist- Florence's Patron Saint

There is nothing like being in an Italian town when it is celebrating.
Florence's patron saint, John the Baptist, is celebrated June 24th. Here is a small taste of the parade!

It is also when we make Nocino, with unripe green walnuts. So now that I am living in the countryside- I will gather my walnuts, instead of heading down to see the parade.

But if you are in Florence, you MUST go! Usually they all gather in Piazza Santa Maria Novella where the parade will start, then head down Via Tornabuoni, ending up in Piazza Santa Croce where the historic soccer game is played in costume ( if they are not too violent this year!)

Fabulous fireworks at night to be seen on the Arno River, set off in the Piazzale Michelangelo.


  1. Joan Schmelzle5:06 PM

    I well remember the time I planned my trip to Italy in order to see this celebration. Can't remember how long ago, but I know the game was not played in Piazza Santa Croce, but somewhere past the Boboli Gardens. Never could see that there were any rules to the game. It was very exciting and muddy; lots of break-away shirts and the refs running off the field after throwing the ball up between teams. Great fun.

  2. Anonymous9:19 PM


    Would love to know how to make nocino. Would someone please pass on their recipe to share?

  3. just added the link for my nocino recipe. Often when in doubt... there is a search engine in the above left hand side of the blog!

    This summer's project is to gather all the recipes in one place!

  4. Here, in Quebec, Canada, we also celebrate St. Jean the Baptist on June 24th, although the celebration is not as elaborate as the one in Florence.

    I absolutely love Florence and can't hardly wait to come back and visit.

  5. Lillian- I adore Montreal and the market there. I know if France they make a vin d noix- do you too?

  6. Anonymous1:51 AM

    Hi Judy, Enjoyed seeing you "often" on my last trip - truly enjoy your blog & am using your recipe for Almond Semifreddo tomorrow for our Italian guests.
    Thanks for the lovely book(s) which I will give as Christmas gifts to daughters-inlaw" Continue all the "good" stuff.
    Sharon McCaffrey