Celebrating March 8th in Tuscany

A few Surprises in 2017 for the Festa della Donna

You can expect more than a bouquet of yellow mimosa flowers in Tuscany this year on March 8th to celebrate the International Women’s Day. Free museum entrance, special happy hours, a parade of solidarity and recognition joining others throughout the world to promote the key values of equality, diversity and inclusion and fun events highlighting women entrepreneurs in the wine producing community of Tuscany.

Perhaps in 2017, this internatioanl holiday has regained abit of its original theme which is to promote the well being of women at home, work and everywhere.  If you are in Florence while on holidays – and want to make your voice heard – then join with others in Piazza Santissima Annunziata alle ore 18.00 (6pm local time) on march 8th and bring your noisemakers (whistles, clappers, or just your voice). The march will start in front of the church and head towards to city center ending in Santo Spirito where you will find happy hour and music.

Piazza Santissima Annunziata, Florence, Tuscany
Piazza Santissima Annunziata, Florence

Free Entrance on March 8th

This is the best way to start the crazy month of March: free entrance for the ladies on March 8th at select civic museums in Florence. (FYI:  March 5th is also free Sunday for everyone in the museums) Take your pick between Palazzo Vecchio, the Roman Theater archaeological digs, Torre di ArnolfoSanta Maria NovellaCappella Brancacci, Novecento Museum and Bigallo Museum.  As for the state museums you can count on free entrance into Bargello, Uffizi and the Accademia (see this list for all state museums in Florence and state museums in Tuscany).  A few cities have special exhibitions and art shows programmed highlighting women, for example:

Donne allo Specchio (Women in the Mirror)
Where:  AREZZO, Archaeological Museum “Gaio Cilnio Mecenate” and Roman Amphitheater

Percorsi femminili (Women through Time)
Where:  CASTIGLIONE DELLA PESCAIA, Archaeological Museum Isidoro Falchi

La donna dipinta e la donna artista (Women in Art & Women making Art)
Where:  PISTOIA, Biblioteca Fabroniana

Non Solo Sante (Women Protaganist in Art, not just saints)
Where:  SIENA, Pinacoteca Nazionale di Siena

Donne d’altri tempi (Women From other times)
Where:  CHIUSI, National Archaeological Museum di Chiusi

Courtyard in Palazzo Vecchio., Florence, Tuscany
Courtyard in Palazzo Vecchio in Florence

Appreciation & Good Times for the Ladies

The classical method of celebrating is the gifting of small bouquets of the early blooming mimosa flower, little yellow fluff balls – and a good old fashioned girls night out. Sometimes it’s just among the ladies, and sometimes it is “his” opportunity (if he really goofed San Valentino!) to show her how important she is. Either way – all over Tuscany you will find restaurants, wellness centers and pubs with special prices and menus all just for the ladies. How about an evening pampering yourself at the Theia pool at the Chianciano Wellness Center, with happy hour and music or lounging just outside of Florence at the Asmana Wellness Center?

Asmana Sauna, wine thearpy, Florence, Tuscany
Asmana Sauna, wine thearpy!

For those looking for a celebration that doesn’t include any political statement you might want to check out a night on the town at some of the local hot spots like that of Otel, Twist or Yab where they will be a special menu, prices and dancing. Many local pub and bars will be offering special deals on drinks and happy hour – so stop in and ask!

Yellow Flowers, the classical gift in Italy for the Festa della Donna
Yellow Flowers, the classical gift in Italy

Lady Wine Producers in Tuscany

If you find yourself in the countryside the weekend before (Saturday March 4th) then definitely make a note to take advantage of the event that the women wine producers have put together. Women make up approximately one third of the Tuscan wine producers, and as of 1988 they have joined together to strengthen their voice and polish their image. From Lucca to Pitigliano, you will find cantinas opening their doors and combining the theme of motors with wine. Check the official website for hours and programs closest to you.

Festa delle Donne del Vino in Tuscany
Festa delle Donne del Vino in Tuscany

About Donna Scharnagl