Honey Week (12-14/9/14): Montalcino buzzing with activity

#Montalcino in #Tuscany is buzzing with activity from 12-14 September with its ‘XXXVIII Settimana del Miele’ (38th Week of Honey). This is an ideal family outing packed with lots of interesting and stimulating events that will satisfy all your senses.

12/9
The exhibition opens at 10:00 in the town’s 14th century fortress and at 18:00, in the same location, there is the inauguration ceremony.

13/9
Be prepared for some intellectual activity! The exhibition will open in the fortress at 9:00 and at 09:30 (until 13:00) a national conference will be held in the Teatro degli Astrusi entitled “Can we save our hives? Results of monitoring, research and field tests“. It is a known fact that bee colonies are struggling to survive worldwide. Considering their extremely critical role as pollinators, it is paramount that nations understand the reasons for the plunge in their numbers and what can be done.

At 16:00, some fortification arrives with honey tasting in the fortress. At 17:00 in the Piazza del Popolo, there is a display of work by the Montalcino elementary school on honey and hive products in nutrition, health and cosmetics. At the same time, there is a guided tour of some of the local beekeepers’ farms. At 18:00 onwards there is the award ceremony for the best honey for those beekeepers belonging to the national association “City of honey”.

14/9
The opening ceremony kicks off again at 09:00 in the fortress and then at 11:00 (in the fortress) for a short course on first steps in apiculture (beekeeping – maintenance of honey bee colonies). At 16:00 there is a workshop in the fortress on the “Tastes of honey” with the entire event closing at 19:00.

No shortage of honey to taste…
In the afternoons of the 13/9 and 14/9 in the Piazza del Popolo you can taste crogetti with honey! You can also sample the honey entries that participated in the competition in the presence of an expert taster. The restaurants in Montalcino during the event will also serve at least one dish with honey as an ingredient.

So enjoy and savour your weekend and remember:

You can thank a honey bee for a third of your diet.
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Further information in Italian is available at:
http://www.asgamontalcino.com/settimana.html

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Settimana del Miele 40

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Ring-tailed lemurs abound at night? Take a trip to the zoo to find out!

So you are finally in Tuscany and you are attempting to keep your kids entertained… Well, pause for a second and think of the squeals of delight that would result from the following announcement: “Children, we are going to the zoo tonight! By the light of the moon, you will view lots of different animals, get a glimpse of their night-time habits and be thrilled by the strange sounds, smells and magical silence of the whole experience”.

The zoo of Pistoia is organising such a night both on 5 September and on 17 September 2014 (NIGHT@ZOO) from 21.00 to 23.30. Now the event is not cheap: 22 € for adults, 18 € for children aged 3-11 years (family offer of 2 adults and 2 children for 70 €), but it will prove to be a truly unique experience and children should draw immense pleasure from it.

Wouldn’t it be great if your children were exposed to the ring-tailed lemur (lemur catta)? That was the primate that most of them saw for the first time in the film Madagascar (2005). Surprisingly enough it could become a reality as the lemur is nocturnal so it will be awake! By the way, take a look at the National Geographic for a quick overview of lemurs. It is always good to be prepared considering the inquisitive nature of children. If you can, arm yourself with a torch!

Pistoia zoo at night
Courtesy of website of Zoo of Pistoia
Ring-tailed lemur
Ring-tailed lemur