The most important moment of the feast of the Patron Saint Patron of the isle of Capri, St. Constance, is the procession that takes place every year on May 14th.
The choice of the day is connected to the death of the Saint, taken from the sermon that speaks of the “Transitu Sancti Costantii.”
Originally prayers were pronounced in honour of St. Constance every 14th of May in the basilica of Marina Grande, until the erection of the Episcopal centre.
Traditionally the feast started with the “draw”, of St. Constance, when the painting of the Saint was hoisted into Piazza Umberto I, with the incessant sound of the bells.
The suggestive procession winds along the route from the ex Cathedral of St. Stephen up to the Marina Grande Church, crossing some of the main roads of the historical centre, along Via Acquaviva, that leads to Via Provinciale Marina Grande and then onto Via Don Giobbe Ruocco.
All the Island authorities take part in the celebration, from the clergy, to the members of the local congregations, the civil and military authorities, musical groups and finally the believers.
The long damasked silk drapes are extremely effective and embellish the procession together with the flower petals mixed with broom which are launched from the balconies as the Saint passes.
The statue, after crossing the Marina Grande district, is placed in the Marina Grande Church and, the following week, with a similar procession, it is returned to the ex Cathedral of Saint Stephen.
Maria SS. del Soccorso Feast
According to a ritual handed down over the years, September 7th sees the celebration for holiday makers, tourists and islanders of a popular traditional event, which is a mix of faith and folklore.
The Tiberians, the inhabitants of the Tiberio district, in the top part of the Municipality of Capri, whose committee has been reunited for over eighty years, according to a custom that is handed down from father to son, keep the genuine values of the farming culture alive and organize the celebrations of Saint Mary the Helper, with the Piedigrotta Tiberiana and the Feast of the Maruzza.
A gastronomic walk along Via Tiberio, with tastes of typical dishes, the “maruzze” prepared according to a recipe that only the Tiberian women know, rabbit “alla cacciatore”, eggplant “parmigiana” and the excellent red wine from local vineyards.
The inhabitants of Tiberio are such proud depositaries of authentic life in Capri. Neither can Villa Jovis be forgotton, the most pompous among the imperial Villas, or the legend of the “Beautiful Carmelina”, the extraordinary “landlady”, who attracted whole generations of romantic travellers to the Villa.
Saint Mary the Helper also has religious events. Near the church with the same name, located inside the excavations, church services are celebrated in the suggestive early hours of the morning.
The day comes to a grand finale with musical shows prepared by the organising committee.
June 13th, the feast of St. Anthony of Padua, patron of Anacapri, represents one of the most important days of the year for the community.
St. Anthony is represented in Anacapri with two extremely beautiful statues. One, which is an entire statute, is the one to which believers turn to during the year as it is exhibited in the chapel of the St. Sofia parish church.
The other, a half bust, is exhibited on the afternoon of June 12th.
The procession sees the statue of the Saint carried on shoulders from the church square, among the good luck fireworks and the sound of the bells which bring joy to the heart of the village.
After crossing the roads in the centre, from Via Giuseppe Orlandi up to Viale de Tommaso, Via Caprile and Via Pagliaro, the statue is placed on the high altar, where it remains for about two weeks.
Along the route, the various districts prepare small altars and carpets of broom, bougainville and hydrangeas.
“Guantiere”, full trays of flowers are prepared in every house that are thrown in handfuls throughout the procession.
A most suggestive part of the feast is the offering of the “bread of St. Anthony”, small blessed bread rolls, that are given by their children in the procession who wear characteristic tunic.
The religious programme includes religious celebrations, that begin four months earlier with the pious tradition of the “thirteen Tuesdays of St. Anthony.”
In the evening, musical events are held in Piazza Diaz.
Settembrata Anacaprese - The grape feast
Tastes, sounds, colours and passion. They are only some of the elements which characterise the Settembrata Anacaprese, an intense cultural tradition that enthrals thousand of tourists and islanders every year.
Settembrate has a long and passionate history, that started back in 1923 thanks to a small group of Neapolitans who wanted to celebrate their goodbye before returning to the city after a long vacation in the higher region of the island.
After over eighty years, the event – that involves men, women, boys and girls, shows the more sincere and genuine side of the island, with its Mediterranean flavours, typical produce, folklore, songs and historical centres of rare beauty.
The Anacaprese community is an active part of the event – the hard work of both men and women is incomparable – and there has been a succession of members from the first committees such as Filippo Tommaso Martinetti, F.M. Napolitano and his wife Emilia Subitoso Alfredo Casella, Gennao Napoli, manager of the Neapolitan Conservatory, Libero Bovio and others.
It has always been the grape festival, not only because – connected to historical periods – it relives the customs and events of the era, starting with the opening parade with around three hundred participants, then the theme events, organised by the Municipality of Anacapri during the Week, that includes the four main feasts in the contradas of Le Pietre, Le Stalle, La Piazza e Le Boffe.
St. Maria in Cetrella
Every year religious ceremonies are celebrated on September 7 dedicated to the birth of the Virgin Mary in the small church perched on the slopes of Mount Solaro – ideal for a quick stop when visiting the walking route called "Passetiello”
The events which come to a climax with holy masses are particularly suggestive, and include a pilgrimage of believers from the centre of Anacapri along the mule track that leads to the Cetrella e valley and the church of St. Mary.