31 May 2013
Festivita’ del Beato Egidio da Laurenzana
Last weekend we were in Laurenzana for the Festivita’ del Beato Egido da Laurenzana, the patron of the city. A group from the US had arranged with us through My Bella Basilicata to visit the town from which their grandparents emigrated. This was significant for us as Valerie also has family connections from this mountain town that is less than thirty minutes from Trivigno.
We attended the mass in the morning and joined the procession that included carrying the statue of Beato Egidio down the sometimes steep and narrow streets, through town and back up to the church. The procession is led by the priest and included a band and the faithful. The church, Chiesa Madre dell’Assunta, sits on the edge of town near the rocca and has recently been reopened after several years of restoration. They did a great job, in my opinion one of the most beautiful church interiors in the area.
This town of about 2,000 people that sits at 850 meters has also unveiled a new piazza that sits below the church and the rocca. This provides a great view of these majestic structures that overlook the town. The rocca has also been undergoing some repairs is the past few years but is only open on limited occasions.
In the past Laurenzana was noted for the production of caffe’ flavored liquors but unfortunately all of the distilleries have closed. There is a restaurant, pasticceria and several bars in the centro storico. Being located in the mountains this town is a great jumping off point for those wanting to explore nature.