The celebration of "Convito" in Roccavaldina
The feast of "Convito" is one of the most characteristic religious traditions in Roccavaldina and takes its origins from a legendary episode according to which, following a terrible famine, the fortresses asked the help of St. Nicholas and miraculously appeared at the closest port a ship full of rice to feed the population.
Since then, the feast of "Convito", falls on the first Sunday of August with a cadence that according to tradition can not be less than five years and more than fifty.
The Banquet is very reminiscent of a typical pagan rite with the sacrifice of a calf that is sacrificed in honor of the patron saint, San Nicolò di Bari. The meat of the "sacrificed" animal is boiled, and in its broth rice is cooked without salt.
The celebration of the Banquet opens with a religious procession that moves from the Mother Church to the main square of the village, to which at some point joins the procession consisting of men carrying cauldrons containing boiled meat and rice, Botticelle with wine, some women dressed to serve, bring baskets with bread. Libations are followed by the notables, the band and a crowd of faithful.
The procession ends with the group of priests and the vara with Saint Nicholas blessing seated on the throne. Arrived in the square where long tables have been arranged, the statue of the saint is placed on a canopy and in turn those present can sit at the table where they will be served a plate of rice cooked in veal broth, bread and wine.