The Saint Martin Week is growing thanks to the NPA Project
Since the beginning of the activities of the NPA Project in 2017, the link between the City of Albenga and Saint Martin is growing. The programme of the 2019 Saint Martin’s Week demonstrates this. A variety of initiatives, cultural events, and additional services developed thanks to the proactivity of the local community involved in the co-creation process promoted by the Project have finally taken (or be put in) place between the 8thand the 11thof November. In those days, the local community was actively involved to offer new products and services to the local community.
The XXI Century Pilgrim and the Via Sancti Martiniinitiative, that saw Sergio Giusto undertaking the 2.500 kilometres walk separating Szombathely from Albenga, became now an exhibition(opened until December) for sharing this trip across countries and cultures with locals and visitors. Aside pictures of the places and people met during his hike, Sergio shows some of his paintings inspired by this human and spiritual experience. Having been the Albenga Schools’ Ambassador when crossing NPA partner countries, efforts will be made for allowing the young students of the schools he met along the path to virtually visiting the exhibition with, as special guides, Albenga’s school pupils. The leg of the journey between Pavia and Albenga (‘Albenga’s branch of the Via Sancti Martini’),that Sergio marked during his walk, is now an interactive map temporarily available only at the ‘Isola Gallinaria Multimedia Centre’ and giving insights for each of the main steps. The map will be further developed in order to become a tool usable by pilgrims. A Saint Martin’s dedicated position is now functioning in this museum allowing locals, tourists and pilgrims to virtually visiting the extraordinary environmental heritage of the island, and to learn relevant information on the presence of the Saint on the Island, how his presence influenced Albenga’s history, and many other stories. Thanks to the engagement of cultural associations and civil society,sign panelsare now scattered across the city with three different thematic itinerariesfor visiting the historical centre and the main tangible cultural heritage in the city (churches, historical buildings, Roman archaeological remains, etc.). QR codesallow visitors to undertake a journey in history and traditions, and to discover unexpected local treasures. All texts were produced by local cultural associations, under the supervision of the Institute of Ligurian Studies. One of the itineraries is dedicated to the youngest, with stories allowing them to know Saint Martin and his spiritual legacy, and reproduces the treasure hunt called ‘A Look Towards the Other: The Mantle of Saint Martin’. A live treasure huntwas also organised on Monday, the 11thof November with the participation of more than 100 pupils of the Albenga’s primary and lower secondary schools. Saturday, the 9thof November in the afternoon, itinerant readingswith actors were organised thanks to the cooperation of a number of cultural associations, and they accompanied people in their discovery of Saint Martin deeds and his spiritual legacy, and a poetry readingwas also organised in one of the historical buildings in the centre of the city. As the name of Saint Martin is linked to wine production, on Saturday the 10thof November the European Day of Wine Tourism was celebrated with traditional food and local wines offered to all the people celebrating Saint Martin, also thanks to the cooperation with the local wine producers and a voluntary association. However, St. Martin means also fraternity and sharing, and this is why a clothing and toy drive was organised by the City Angels for the unfortunate. A way for making the spiritual legacy of Saint Martin live.
The seed of Saint Martin is sprouting in Albenga … and will for sure further grow!