Follonica Carnival

Follonica's carnival includes four parades of floats, district ground masquerades, marching bands, single masks, masked groups and paper mache masks. The event takes place along a circuit through the city center and runs from Viale Carducci, Via Albereta, Via Bicocchi Sud and Via Gorizia. The official logo of Carnevale Follonichese depicts the face of Gigi del Golfo, born Luigi Saragosa, an old follonichese, who died in 1985, promoter and organizer of the event. The logo, chosen after a competition held in 1980, when after an almost 20-year hiatus it was decided that the event should be reborn on the Gulf shore, was created by painter and float builder Olando Carducci.
Each year, the Folloniche Carnival Association chooses from the citizens the one who will impersonate the emblem of the event: the Carnival King. The King's arrival takes place on the Saturday afternoon preceding the first Sunday of the Carnival. Also on the Royal Chariot are the 8 Queens, one for each Ward.
During the carnival period, a whole series of side events are held in the city, which vary each year, according to the organizers' imagination: dance competitions, fishing competitions, tournaments, children's parties, parties for the elderly, and contests among the city's store windows, decorated with a theme. the
On thesecond Sunday, the most beautiful "masquerade on the ground" is awarded during the parade. The masquerades on the ground, each precede a district float and express the same identity as the float.
On thethird Sunday, instead, the "Folloniche Carnival Queen" is elected, chosen from 8, one for each float.
On the fourth Sunday, the most beautiful papier-mâché float is awarded, screened by a jury of experts from other carnivals in Italy.
The end of the Follonica Carnival is decreed by the "burning of the King," a large papier-mâché mask, which is burned on the beach in front of Piazza XXV Aprile in the presence of a congruous audience, all the Queens and all the Allegorical Floats.
There is an entrance fee of 5 euros per person, which goes to supplement the expenses already incurred by Follonica volunteers working on the construction of the floats and the support of the Municipal Administration.

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