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Le Infiorate di SpelloBy Anthony Parente
Preparation for this event takes place throughout the year as the infioratori chose their design and determine what flowers they will need to make it a reality. Teams will set out along the slopes of Monte Subasio, which is a part of the Apennine mountains, and through the fields of the Umbrian valleys collecting the flowers. This process occurs during each of the seasons as flowers bloom during different times, but spring is the most demanding season. The flowers are then cleaned, preserved and stored until they are needed on the eve of Corpus Domini.
The infioratori must have everything done by 8:00 am on Sunday because each floral carpet needs to be judged before the procession, which precedes the 10:00 am mass. The best time to see these works of art are early in the morning before the crowds get bigger. You will be able to stroll down the street and look at each design and admire the incredible detail and amazing work by these artists. Following mass, the procession begins, and these floral carpets become the path that the Bishop will walk as he carries the monstrance, which holds the Eucharist. Once the religious celebration is over you can take one last stroll along the route capturing photos of these lush fragrant carpets before workers come in and clean the streets. Later in the evening everyone will gather at the piazza as prizes will be awarded. Each group listens with excitement hoping that their floral masterpiece will be chosen as the winner. The town has a museum dedicated to the Infiorate located in the Piazza della Repubblica, which details the history of the event including photos throughout the years.
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