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The Bathtub Race

Home > Venice > Fun Things To Do | Quirky
by Marta Pin (subscribe) MP
You need to be a bit nut for this
There's no limit to human creativity. As I am getting used again to the small villages habits and traditions, I cannot but write about Vascolana competition. This feast is held on the last Sunday of July in Savorgnano -a small village within San Vito al Tagliamento town at the same time of St. James celebrations week. It is a usual Italian sagra, which involves local population on having fun and being cooperative altogether.

Vascolana is an event awaited by numerous people from every part of Friuli Venezia Giulia and people from the border regions. The race consists in crossing the river Versa with a bathtub covered in styrofoam, while people from the banks are generally throwing buckets of waters on contenders.

Every year there are more a hundred registrations, and the winner is based on time calculation. Men and women can participate, and the very passionate ones train themselves for months in rivers and water streams near their homes.The contestants are also able to make their tub as decorative as they want, and they are allowed wear everything it could be more creative as ever.

couple of friends dressed with loveboat cape and quirky quilt.

The starting point is located at La Terribile lake, from which follows the Versa creek, whereas the finish ends at the building of the older miller, facing up the church. Each single "tub" has to start every 3 or 4 minutes, in order to create a smooth and harmless course.

You have the choice to compete as a solo or as a couple. Most of the time people choose to go down on the water with a friend or a familiar, just to enjoy it better. The organizers are in charge to provide the bathtubs -generally donated by private or by companies (as they may have been faults out from production)- and the paddles from real canoas. When the brave participants arrive at the end, after being distracted by sudden bucketfuls of water, they are refreshed from the staff with salame, prosciutto, pane and vino.

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Why? Fun
When: Last sunday of July
Where: Savorgnano di San Vito al Tagliamento
Cost: Free
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