La Festa del Papà is the Italian equivalent to the UK Father’s Day, which is an occasion celebrate across the whole world. In most countries, the date is set to take place on the third Sunday in June, while in Italy it is set to take place on the 19th March every year.
Father’s Day the way we understand it today, was born in the first decade of the 20th century, as a complementary occasion to Mother’s Day. The first documented celebration took place on the 5th July1908 in Fairmont, West Virginia, in a local Methodist Church. Though it was a lady by the name of Sonora Smart Dodd who encouraged the officiation of such an occurrence, after being inspired by a sermon in her church on Mother’s Day, and went on to organize the first celebration which took place on 19th June 1910 in Spokane, Washington.
The party was organized in the month of June as it was the same month of Mrs Dodd’s own father’s birthday, a war veteran.
In general, the date Father’s Day falls on changes from country to country. The ones that follow the American tradition celebrate it on the third Sunday in June, while in many Catholic countries, Father’s Day is celebrated on the 19th March, Joseph’s name day – Jesus’ putative father.
How Italians celebrate Father’s Day
This day has, then, become representative for all the fathers in Italy who are celebrated on this occasion. A lot of local customs are associated to this date. The most widespread habits include a great turmoil among children who are very busy in writing special cards, poems and nursery rhymes in order to give them to their daddy. Schools usually foster these activities organizing special lessons on that. Ties, wallets, socks and perfumes are the most common presents sons and daughters would give to their fathers.
Moreover, a lot of events and street markets are organized in the towns while Italian families use to have a special lunch to honor the father or they decide to go on a trip to celebrate this occasion if it falls on Saturday or Sunday and have lunch outdoors.
On that note, why not treat the fathers and paternal figures in your life to a special Italian feast at Antico?
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