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February 13, 2013 / TAB

Carnevale 2013- Ivrea

Ivrea’s contribution to my Carnevale experience is their Battle of the Oranges. 

As you enter the town, you will see large open areas with pallets of oranges ready for the battle.

Each rione or neighborhood has staked out its territory. In the smaller piazzas, two groups will share the space. Orange decorations are everywhere. The banners of each rione define its territory and I made an instant connection to one of them.


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Battle areas are mapped out.



I found “my” team’s home base and tried to buy a bandana or flag but they are restricted to those actually belonging to the rione. Unlike places like Siena or Volterra, visitors can not claim membership in or allegiance to a neighborhood by buying the “uniform” or colors. I did manage to talk my way into obtaining a pin and sticker. 



Surrounding the battle areas are draped protective netting which I discovered the value of when I got hit by flying orange pulp. Fortunately, it seems my camera is orange juice resistant.

Horse drawn battle carts travel through the town from battle site to battle site and along the main streets. I asked a horse handler how the horses manage on the slippery cobblestones, still filled with orange pulp and he said there were special shoes the horses wore. They have little spikes in the front to add traction. 






When a cart enters the battlefield, oranges begin to fly fast and furious. I saw various war wounds including black eyes, bloody noses, and “goose eggs”. The pavement gets even more treacherous. 








At the end of the day, large bonfires are set alight in each neighborhood.


One Comment

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  1. Paula / Mar 18 2013 1:51 pm

    Now I see why you wanted to go to Italy at this time of year! Great photos. I can just smell the orange fragrance!

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