Easter: The ‘li Schietti’ festival in Terrasini

The Li Schietti festival, which is unlike any other festival anywhere, attracts thousands of enthusiastic visitors every year. The star of the festival is a tree. The test of skill features a young man or schetto (bachelor) showing off his ability and strength to impress and win the heart of the girl he loves. To accomplish this he must pick up a 50-55 kg orange tree, raise it over his head and, with one hand, twirl it for as long as possible as a show of his strength and virility. The festival is not an old one and dates to the late 1800s – early 1900s. It recalls pagan spring festivals held in honour of Adonis and connects the beginning of the equinox with Easter and the triumph of new life.

The celebration of spring also includes a banquet to which everyone is invited for the traditional manciata of mutton and roast sardines, all, of course, washed down by great local wine.