Omaggio a Eduardo De Filippo

IL COMUNE DI GIARRATANA RICORDA EDUARDO DE FILIPPO CON IL REGISTA AGOSTINO DE ANGELIS

GIARRATANA RICORDA EDUARDO DE FILIPPO

Nel borgo antico ‘U Cuozzu del Comune di Giarratana, sarà portato in scena il 31 ottobre alle ore 18,30, giorno in cui ricorre il trentennale dalla scomparsa del noto attore, regista e capocomico napoletano Eduardo De Filippo, lo spettacolo teatrale multimediale “Omaggio a Eduardo De Filippo” di e con Agostino

De Angelis, inserito nel progetto nazionale di valorizzazione e promozione 2014/2015 dal titolo “Luoghi,

Memorie e Personaggi della Storia”.

Il suggestivo scenario del borgo accoglierà lo Spettacolo Teatrale di parola, musica, canto, immagini, filmati e aneddoti, in cui verrà “imprigionato” il respiro di un’anima, dell’uomo Eduardo, di vasta cultura e sensibilità, rigoroso e pignolo che promosse Napoli e l’Italia del Sud, nel mondo.

Un gioco tra le voci di Bartolo Mineo, Lucia Liali, Valentina Puccio, Adriana Puccio, Maria Catena Baldanza, accompagnate dai giovani mimi Benedetta Di Pietro, Alessia Micieli, Gabriele Alderisi, Rosario e Nicolò Pagano e la chitarra di Anna Litrico. La canzone napoletana interpretata dal tenore Dario Adamo si alternerà con le parole dello stesso regista De Angelis, che come ha affermato, darà voce ai discorsi di Eduardo, alle lettere ed agli aneddoti lasciati in eredità a tutti noi.

In occasione dello spettacolo saranno utilizzate come scenografie le tele di Cetty Midolo, Marika Cassone, Giuseppe Pisana, “cruveddi e panara” realizzati in situ dall’artigiano Salvatore Di Stefano e i costumi della stilista Stefania Frasca Aurora Boreale Atelier. Presenta Ilaria Angelica.

Lo spettacolo sarà realizzato con il patrocinio del Comune di Giarratana, Festival del Cinema Archeologico di Rovereto, Archeologia Viva, Istituto Nazionale del Dramma Antico di Siracusa, Istituto di Cinematografia e Televisione “Roberto Rossellini” di Roma; con la collaborazione di Molino di Sicilia, Note di Zafferano, Avis Giarratana, Naturalmente Pane, Gusto Antico, Impresa Edile Euromuri, organizzazione Associazioni

Extramoenia e ArchéoTheatron. Ingresso libero.

Eduardo De Filippo

Surface Interval PADI Europe

Member News

Ottobre 2014

Presto disponibile la App PADI rinnovata
Scoprite la nuova versione della App PADI che fornirà ai subacquei le informazioni richieste nel momento in cui ne avranno bisogno. (continua)

Sistema ad identificazione unica PADI (PADI Single Sign On – SSO)
La App PADI verrà aggiornata con una nuova funzionalità chiamata Sistema ad identificazione unica PADI (PADI Single Sign On – SSO). Questo è un sistema di autenticazione che vi permetterà di accedere a tante applicazioni o siti web PADI con solo un set di credenziali. In questo modo risparmierete tempo e fatica dal momento che viene richiesta un solo codice login e una sola password. (continua)

showtime E’ di nuovo tempo di Fiere della subacquea
PADI Europe, Middle East and Africa sarà di nuovo presente a molte Fiere della subacquea nel 2015. La presenza di PADI è a sostegno dei PADI Dive Centres, dei membri e dei subacquei e fornisce un’opportunità di dare il benvenuto nel favoloso mondo della subacquea a tutti coloro che non sono subacquei. (continua)
depth_record Record mondiale di profondità
L’Istruttore PADI Ahmed Gabr ha migliorato il record mondiale di profondità immergendosi a 332 metri. (Cliccate qui) per leggere il racconto di Ahmed sull’esperienza che gli permesso di guadagnarsi un posto nel Guinness dei Primati.
Eilat Campionato Mondiale di fotografia subacquea 2014 – Eilat, Mar Rosso
I vincitori del Campionato Mondiale di fotografia subacquea ad Eilat, nel Mar Rosso, sono stati annunciati il 13 settembre. PADI EMEA si congratula con il team spagnolo ed il Course Director PADI Boaz Samorai. (continua)
PA Squali e mante entrano a far parte della lista degli animali protetti
Il 14 settembre segna la data in cui squali e mante sono entrati a far parte della lista degli animali protetti contro il commercio. Grazie a tutti per aver contribuito a questa campagna per la protezione di due delle specie più minacciate al mondo: squali e mante! (continua)
Sportswear Sportswear: favolose svendite per i professionisti PADI!
Ottieni fino al 60% di sconto sul tuo prossimo ordine a PADI Sportswear. Non solo otterrete sconti incredibili sul nostro webstore, ma vi offriamo la possibilità di personalizzare tutti i nostri prodotti per far vedere a tutti che siete ei professionisti. Non c’è mai stato momento migliore per ordinare su PADI Sportswear. (continua)

The New Music

Il caffè delle meraviglie

The New Music International Weeks (Settimane internazionali di nuova musica), took place in the 1960s and brought Palermo to worldwide attention in the musical and cultural debate, thanks to the enthusiasm of a group of young intellectuals including Antonino Titone, Francesco Agnello, Paolo Emilio Carapezza, Roberto Pagano and Eliodoro Sollima.
As we treasure the memory of such exciting times in the field of New Music, we think it is also time to approach this theme again, putting the experience into perspective and questioning the state of the art today.

The Teatro Massimo has decided to establish a Festival in 2014, Nuove Musiche, that will offer the general public, both local and international, a glimpse into contemporary music as well as 20th century historic and avant-garde music.
The truly interdisciplinary spirit of the Settimane will be kept alive thanks to many collateral activities and in-depth analysis debates.
With Nuove Musiche the Teatro Massimo strengthens its bond with the University of Palermo and with Palermo Conservatory of Music “V. Bellini” (whom is also going to participate to the Festival with initiatives that are being planned and will complement Teatro Massimo programme) and hopes that this festival will be an opportunity for dialogue with the city’s other institutions.

Tickets
• Concerts staged in the Teatro Massimo Sala ONU and Foyer – € 5.

• September 28 Concert (8:30pm) – € 5.

• October 3 Concert (8:30pm) – from € 10 to € 30.

• Concerts staged at the Steri and the Conservatory of Music, October 5 walking concert, conferences, video festival: free entrance.

AGOSTINO DE ANGELIS RENDE OMAGGIO A PASOLINI A GIARRATANA

AGOSTINO DE ANGELIS RENDE OMAGGIO A PASOLINI A GIARRATANA

In uno dei borghi più suggestivi del Comune di Giarratana, ‘U Cuozzu, sarà portato in scena il 27 settembre alle ore 20,30 lo spettacolo teatrale multimediale “Omaggio a Pier Paolo Pasolini” di e con Agostino De Angelis, inserito nel progetto nazionale “Borghi e Borgate – luoghi e memorie della storia” ideato dallo stesso regista, con il patrocinio del Comune di Giarratana, Festival del Cinema Archeologico di Rovereto, Archeologia Viva, Istituto Nazionale del Dramma Antico di Siracusa, Istituto di Cinematografia e Televisione “Roberto Rossellini” di Roma; organizzazione Associazioni Extramoenia e ArchéoTheatron in collaborazione con le imprese “A Giarra” e “Billy Bet”.

Il borgo antico ‘U Cuozzu, conserva i ricordi storici e il patrimonio popolare della Giarratana agricola e artigianale, oggi talvolta dimenticato dal consumismo industriale dei giorni nostri. E’ da questo luogo che il regista De Angelis, ha voluto fare omaggio ad un autore come Pasolini, che è stato uno dei precursori nel denunciare il progresso industriale e consumistico e nel preservare il patrimonio popolare e rurale dell’Italia degli anni 50/60. Portare in scena l’intellettuale Pasolini, in tale luogo, è come far rivivere lo stesso, che con una straordinaria visione del mondo, ha saputo disegnare e colorare una tela che descrive l’Italia di ieri, oggi e domani.

La pièce sarà rappresentata con interpretazione dei testi da parte dello stesso De Angelis, video proiezioni di filmati e interviste su Pasolini, con letture delle voci narranti Bartolo Mineo, Adriano Longo, Giulia Acquasana, Valentina Puccio, Lucia Liali accompagnate dai giovani mimi Benedetta Di Pietro, Alessia Micieli, Gabriele Alderisi, Rosario Pagano e dalla chitarra di Anna Litrico. In occasione dello spettacolo saranno utilizzate come scenografie, oltre la bellezza del luogo, le tele di Cetty Midolo e i costumi realizzati dalla stilista Stefania Frasca Aurora Boreale Atelier. Ingresso libero.

AGOSTINO DE ANGELIS RENDE OMAGGIO A PASOLINI A GIARRATANA

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Scuba News September 2014

What’s New at SCUBA Travel?

Top 100 dives

World’s Top 100 Dive Sites

Thanks to your votes for the world’s best dive, we’ve updated our Top 100 dive sites list at
scubatravel.co.uk/topdiveslong.html


Letters

In the last issue we had a lovely letter from newly qualified diver Gillian (“Nervous Nellie”) who’s nearly 70 asking where to dive next. This was one of the replies.

“For Nervous Nellie: Try Belize. We stayed out on the island and I did some of the most beautiful diving ever. There was a current at times that was trying if you were new but the reef was unbelievable and financially it was great.”
Carla Fritz via Facebook

Judy Harbison asked about the best diving in Curacao, answers included

“Lots of great diving in Curacao. Tug Boat and Porto Marie were amazing. Book your diving through @thedivebus love them!”
Phil Radatz (@psradatz) via Twitter

“My top 3 dive sites on Curacao are as follows: 1. Fuik bay buoy 2, Beautiful pristine coral, alot of underwater life, and alot of diversity, but you can only get there by boat. 2. Punto piku/Barricuda point, Great reef, tends to be lots of fish and turtles. 3. Playa Kalki/ Alice in wonderland great reef lots of big star coral to look under tends to have rays. For your other question their is plenty to do just depends on what your interested. Their is a big party night scene, their are plenty of good restaurants, plenty of museums, couple tourist tours, many beaches, the downtown center is nice and picturesque. People are friendly and the island is safe plus you can get everything here. ?”
Dushi Curacao Diving via Google+


Shark Fin Sales Halved in China

Prices and sales of shark fin are falling in China by 50-70% according to a report by environmental group WildAid.

Hammerhead Sharks

Around 7% of all sharks are killed every year. This exceeds the average rebound rate for many shark populations, meaning that if things don’t change they are condemned to extinction. Shark products include meat, skin, teeth and oil, but it is the higher market value of shark fins – primarily in China – that has driven the demand for these beautiful animals and their population declines. However things are changing. A campaign in China to raise awareness of the effects of buying shark products has been very successful.

Demand reduction can be very effective” says Peter Knights, Executive Director of WildAid. “The more people learn about the consequences of eating shark fin soup, the less they want to participate in the trade. Government bans on shark fin at state banquets in China and Hong Kong also helped send the right message.

The new report documents:

  • 82% decline in sales reported by shark fin vendors in Guangzhou, China
  • 85% of Chinese consumers surveyed online said they gave up shark fin soup within the past 3 years. Two thirds cited awareness campaigns with 28% citing the government banquet ban as a reason.
  • 24 airlines, three shipping lines and five hotel groups have officially banned shark fin from their operations

Up to 73 million sharks are killed for their fins. Of the fourteen shark species most prevalent in the shark fin trade, all have experienced regional population declines ranging from 40-99%, and all are classified as Threatened or Near Threatened by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN)

In the Guangzhou markets, assumed to be the new centre of China’s shark fin trade, wholesale traders are now complaining of dwindling sales and falling prices. Retailers who were selling medium-sized shark fins for as much as US$642 per kilogram are now able only to charge half as much. One Guangzhou wholesaler commented that “shark fin is a dying business” and another is quoted saying that “Yao Ming’s commercial impact single-handedly smashed my business,” in reference to WildAid’s ongoing multimedia public awareness campaigns.

The sharks most commonly killed for fins are: tiger shark, great hammerhead, scalloped hammerhead, oceanic whitetip, thresher shark, blue shark, shortfin mako shark, bull shark, silky shark, dusky shark and sandbar shark.

Tiger shark

Although the report is good news for sharks, the shark fin trade continues, both legally and illegally. For example in March 2014, WildAid interviews with Belizean fishermen revealed they continue to get US$75 per pound (approximately US$165 per kilogram) for medium to large shark fin and, comparatively, only US$7 per pound (approximately US$15 per kilogram) for the meat. Evidence of locally protected nurse sharks being targeted for their fins was also noted. In April 2014, the Belizean Fisheries Department arrested two fishermen for the attempted illegal export of 73 dried shark fins and other marine products to Guatemala.

So, good news for sharks but still work to be done to save the sharks and their oceans.

Further Reading:

Evidence of Declines in Shark Fin Demand, China, WildAid.

Shark fin sales halved in China

Boris Worm, Brendal Davis, Lisa Kettemer, Christine A. Ward-Paige, Demian Chapman, Michael R. Heithaus, Steven T. Kessel, Samuel H. Gruber, Global catches, exploitation rates, and rebuilding options for sharks, Marine Policy, Volume 40, July 2013, Pages 194-204, ISSN 0308-597X

Photo credit: Xvic (CC BY-SA 3.0)


Diving News From Around the World

Deep Sea Octopus

Mother octopus broods eggs longer than any other animal

Deep sea octopus looks after her eggs for four and a half years – breaking records for any animal’s brooding period.

No more pause: Warming will be non-stop from now on

Enjoy the pause in global warming while it lasts, because it’s probably the last one we will get this century. Once temperatures start rising again, it looks like they will keep going up without a break for the rest of the century, unless we cut our greenhouse gas emissions.

Shark

Shark Loss hits Global Ecosystems

The loss of sharks could contribute to the destruction of one of the world’s most under-appreciated sources of carbon storage: seagrasses. Not that sharks eat the seagrass, but they do eat the turtles which feed in the seagrass meadows. Add this to the problems of pollution, mooring and destruction of seagrass, means this vital habitat – and the sharks – need help.

TEPCO Eyes Pacific Ocean As Dumping Ground for Radioactive Water

Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO), the embattled owner of Japan’s crippled nuclear reactors, has said it is running out of space to store water contaminated with radioactive materials and is proposing to treat the water and dump it in the Pacific Ocean.

WWF calls for Canary Islands whale sanctuary and no oil drilling

The environment group WWF is calling for the creation of a whale sanctuary off the Canary Islands after Spanish energy giant Repsol announced recently it wants to start exploratory drilling for oil and gas in the region in October.

Rising CO2 levels will intensify algal blooms across the globe

Rising CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere will stimulate harmful algal blooms at a global level. This warning is issued by scientists of the University of Amsterdam, on the basis of new mathematical models, laboratory experiments and field research.

Loggerhead Turtles

Young loggerhead turtles not going with the flow

Juvenile loggerhead turtles swim into oncoming ocean currents, instead of passively drifting with them. After loggerhead turtle babies leave nesting beaches, they live in the ocean for 7-12 years before migrating to the coast.

Gurnard and chips, please: warmer seas change UK fish stock as cod head north

Marine experts say the British will soon have to get used to eating hake, mullet and other species as coastal waters heat up

Declining Cod Need Safe Places to Recover

The already bad news about Atlantic cod in New England just got worse. Scientists at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Fisheries Service have found that the cod population in the Gulf of Maine is at an all-time low. Virtually every indicator of the stock condition declined in the past year, to the point that the total of adult fish, known as spawning biomass, is estimated to be just 3 or 4 percent of a healthy, sustainable population. Researchers also found very few young fish, another bad sign.

Hammerhead sharks

Newly discovered juvenile whale shark aggregation in Red Sea

A newly discovered juvenile whale shark aggregation off Saudi Arabia is giving researchers a rare glimpse into the lives of these giants.

Crayfish turn blood into neurons

Crayfish have a “nursery” in their heads where blood cells transform into neurons – the process may one day help us to regenerate our own brain cells.

Boat noise stops sea hare eggs developing

The development and survival of an important group of marine invertebrates known as sea hares is under threat from increasing boat noise in the world’s oceans, according to a new study by researchers from the UK and France.

Ship noise slows eels and lets predators catch them twice as quickly

Eels are losing the fight to survive when faced with marine noise pollution such as that of passing ships. Scientists from the Universities of Exeter and Bristol found that in the presence of ship noise, european eels (Anguilla anguilla) were 50% less likely to respond to an ambush from a predator, while those that did had 25% slower reaction times. Those that were pursued by a predator were caught more than twice as quickly.

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We are happy for you to copy and distribute this newsletter, and use parts of it on your own web site, providing the above copyright notice is included and a link back to our web site is in place.

Photo credits: Tim Nicholson; Damien du Toit (CC BY-SA 2.0); Xvic (CC BY-SA 3.0); Terri Goss (CC BY-SA 2.5).

Previous editions of SCUBA News are archived at http://www.scubatravel.co.uk/news.html

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Gangi for sale – 1,30 € per house

Gangi (Italy) (AFP) – It’s an offer you can’t refuse: rustic abodes in a picturesque hilltop village on the island of Sicily, once home to Italian peasants and their donkeys, are up for sale for just one euro.

Hewn into the Madonie mountains and dotted throughout the town of Gangi, the houses were left empty after their owners emigrated in the 1920s. They boast period features such as 18th-century tiles, original wood-burning ovens and wooden beams, along with spectacular views.

Around 20 houses are on sale for one euro ($1.30), with another 300 or so going for up to 15,000 euros in an initiative the village hopes will reverse decades of population decline and boost the local economy even as Italy falls back into recession.

Australian film director Dominic Allen is one of a crowd of potential buyers from the United States, Britain, Dubai and Sweden who have rushed to Gangi to snap up a bargain and transform the sparse living spaces and animal stalls into summer homes.

“You couldn’t buy a parking space in Australia for the price of this house,” Allen said, gazing around a narrow three-story building with a rudimentary kitchen cut out of the rocks and views of wheat fields and woods in the valley below.

“In many ways if you like the Italian lifestyle and you’re into a bit of adventure, it seems like a fun thing to do,” said the 33-year-old, who was looking for a place he could use with friends or rent out to tourists.

Buyers must put down a guarantee of 5,000 euros for the council to ensure they renovate the properties within three years, with the cost estimated at 20,000 euros to make the homes habitable — more for those that need re-roofing.

Sheltering from the harsh midday sun under the arches of a medieval tower in the town centre, Cataldo Piazza, 83, said he was delighted to see families of Italian and foreign tourists filling the streets, drawn by the one-euro offer.

Read more >>

Exploring Sicily by Bike

Exploring Sicily by Bike

Cefalù-beach-Sicily

Sicily’s breath-taking beauty, varied landscapes, quaint towns, and, of course, excellent weather make it an excellent place for a biking holiday. But just as with any cycling holiday, exploring Sicily by bike takes some planning to make it a reality, and visitors should ensure their bike is properly covered against theft or damage, are fit enough to make the trip, and have accommodation booked along the route. With that in mind, here is an overview for everything you need to know to make the once in lifetime cycling trip to Sicily.

About Sicily  

Sicily is Italy’s largest island – and the largest island in the whole Mediterranean, in fact – and lies 5 kilometres off the southern tip of the country. Known for its extensive aesthetic scenery, culturally rich sites of interest, and proud, unique population, the island has become one of Italy’s premier tourist destinations for both Italians escaping the city and foreign tourists eager to see what makes the island a special place.

Biking Sicily: Things to Know

Arriving

Before any biking routes are determined, visitors will need to know where in Sicily they will be arriving. The two most popular airports on the island are Catania-Fontanarossa and Palermo International Airport. They are also frequent ferries between the island and mainland Italy as well as trains from Italy’s biggest cities. If the biking tour starts from a different part of Sicily, use the inexpensive and relatively widespread train system to move to other parts of the island.

Renting

If a bicycle needs to be rented, it’s a good idea for visitors to look up bike rental shops in the city they are arriving in to as Palermo, Catania, and Syracuse have plenty of options available. Though it’s not necessarily required, it’s always good practice to book in advance to ensure the right bikes are obtained, especially if multiple bikes are needed.

Transporting Own Bike

Bringing bikes from home is another option, and may be the better option if it’s a good bike to begin with as the cost of transporting it to Sicily could be the same as renting a bike for a week. If travelling by plane, check with the airline that it is allowed and how much it will cost. Always make sure that the bicycle is insured and that it is covered for overseas excursions.

When to Go

Sicily is beautiful at any time of the year, but not all months are cycling-friendly. Though winter in Sicily is mild, it can also be rainy, and is not the best time to go. Visitors should also be aware that the height of summer (July/August) can be very warm, and may be uncomfortable or dangerous for those unaccustomed to the heat. The best time to cycle Sicily would be between March-June and September-October.

Fitness

Before deciding on a route, make sure all members of the party are fit enough to cycle it without any problems. Sicily’s geography includes hills, mountains, and flatlands, and some people will struggle with the more strenuous terrain. The trip should be hard work, but it should primarily be about fun, and if the route is too difficult then it might end up being less fun than planned. Also make sure that there isn’t too great a distance between hotels – few things are worse than realizing you’ve misjudged how long you could cycle in any one day.

Picking a Route

Sicily can be split into fairly distinct geographical regions, which is a good starting point for deciding on a route.

The northern coast is full of medieval towns, castles, and hills; the west is more sparsely populated, with beautiful open land and the adjacent mountain range making up the bike routes here; the southern coast has long beaches, and is less touristy than other places – be prepared to not understand anything when visiting the small towns, unless you speak Sicilian – but does house the thousands of years old Greek Valley of the Temples; The east has Mount Etna, Sicily’s active volcano and one of its most famous highlights.

As you can see, Sicily is a diverse land, and it’s better to focus on just one particular region during a bike trip, especially if it’s for a week or less. The best thing to do is pick a region that appeals most to you and then take it from there. It is guaranteed that there will be plenty of interesting sites along the way and, really, there are no bad routes on this fascinating island.

contributed by Susie Henley

Il Viaggio Dantesco

Lo spettacolo “Il Viaggio Dantesco” di e con Agostino De Angelis alle Terme Taurine di Civitavecchia

Lo spettacolo “Il Viaggio Dantesco” di e con Agostino De Angelis alle Terme Taurine di Civitavecchia

Tutto pronto per lo spettacolo teatrale itinerante “Il Viaggio Dantesco” per la regia, allestimento e adattamento all’opera di Agostino De Angelis, che sarà portato in scena il 29 e 30 agosto nelle Terme Taurine a Civitavecchia.
Le terme racchiudono, con la loro straordinaria bellezza, una storia antica nel tempo; infatti anche il poeta Rutilio Claudio Namaziano quando visitò nel 416 d.C. le terme narrò in una sua poesia che il nome della sorgente prendeva origine da una leggenda secondo cui un toro, probabilmente assimilato ad una divinità, avrebbe raspato la terra prima di iniziare una lotta, e così sarebbe sgorgata la sorgente miracolosa di acqua calda sulfurea.
Un luogo pieno di fascino e suggestione, ideale per la mise en scene del viaggio nell’oltretomba, dove Dante e Virgilio condurranno gli spettatori dall’inferno, attraverso il purgatorio ed infine al paradiso incontrando i personaggi principali dell’opera, accompagnati da mimi, musica dal vivo, danza e con luci che esalteranno la scenografia naturale del luogo.
L’evento è promosso da Soprintendenza Archeologica per l’Etruria Meridionale, Fondazione Cassa di Risparmio di Civitavecchia, Proloco di Civitavecchia, Comune di Civitavecchia con il patrocinio della rivista Archeologia Viva, Rassegna Internazionale del Cinema Archeologico di Rovereto, Istituto Nazionale del Dramma Antico di Siracusa, Istituto per la Cinematografia e Televisione “Roberto Rossellini” di Roma. Organizzazione Proloco di Civitavecchia e Compagnia Teatrale Allumiere.
Il sito archeologico di Civitavecchia è la terza tappa del tour Nazionale ideato dallo stesso regista De Angelis in collaborazione con le Ass. Cult. Extramoenia e Archéotheatron, gli stessi già protagonisti del Viaggio Dantesco nei siti Unesco della Valle dei Templi di Agrigento e Noto Antica, prossimo appuntamento il Castello di Mussomeli (Cl) il 2 settembre.

Lo spettacolo “Il Viaggio Dantesco” di e con Agostino De Angelis alle Terme Taurine di Civitavecchia
Per info: Proloco Civitavecchia 392.7962486 e su Fb – Compagnia Teatrale Allumiere 328.9643302
.

Sicily and the Sea

Sicily and the Sea

The sparkling blue sea is an inescapable part of the Sicilian landscape. The island is surrounded by the Mediterranean, Tyrrhenian and Ionian seas, and separated from the mainland by the Straits of Messina. The sea has shaped the island’s history and culture, so whether you are flying in over the water, stopping off for an island break as part of a longer cruise, or ferry hopping your way around the Mediterranean islands, the sea will play a major role in your stay on Sicily.

trapani

Sicily’s Maritime History

The Sicilian people have just as close a connection to the sea as any other islanders do. It has played a major part in the island’s history, and it continues to shape the way that people live their lives today. One of the most important historic sites on the island is the city of Syracuse, which has two important harbours on the southeastern coast. This connection with the sea made the site an attractive choice for settlement and helped the city to become a great player in the ancient world. Although the area had already been inhabited, the city itself was founded in the 8th century BCE by Ancient Greeks from Corinth, and quickly became an important part of the Mediterranean trade routes. Cicero described it as the greatest and most beautiful Greek city. Syracuse later became part of the Roman and Byzantine empires, and although it was never as great again as it had been when it was part of Magna Graecia, it continued to thrive as a trading port throughout the Middle Ages, under both European and Arab rule. Other cities on the island also had close connections to the sea, and enjoyed busy trade with other ports in the Mediterranean. Palermo is a great place to find out more about this maritime history. The Bourbon Arsenal and Sea Museum in this city provides an interesting insight into the importance of the sea to Sicily. Exhibits include sale models of many historic vessels that once sailed to ports around the island.

selinunte

Enjoying the Sicilian Sea

You will be missing out if you don’t take the time to get closer to the water while you are staying in Sicily. Even if all you do is splash around in the shallows when you visit the beach, experiencing the water for yourself will help you to understand the local character. If you are feeling a little bit more adventurous, you can always try scuba diving, or hire a boat to take you around the neighbouring islands, such as the Pelagie islands, Ustica, Egadi and Pantelleria. The nearby Aeolian Islands, which have been included by UNESCO on their list of World Heritage Sites, are particularly beautiful. Their inclusion on the list reflects their importance in vulcanology, the study of volcanoes. They are an important example of the creation of islands by volcanoes and they have been studied since the 18th century. If you want to visit more of the local islands or see more of the Mediterranean while you are visiting, you can also join a longer cruise, stopping off on Sicily before heading out to some of the other ports that have had such strong historic connections with the island. Popular destinations for cruises that include Sicily are Malta, Rhodes and Santorini.

Favignana-island-sicily-sunsealove

A Culture Shaped by the Sea

Once you have explored the historic sites and experienced the seas around Sicily for yourself, you might also want to explore some of the ways that the local culture has been shaped by its close maritime connections. Modern Sicilian culture is a unique blend of different cultures that met here at the crossroads of the historic trade routes. You can taste dishes inspired by tastes from around the Mediterranean, or join the Sicilian people to celebrate sagre or food festivals dedicated to local produce such as pistachios, cous cous and artichokes. There are also some spectacular saints’ festivals in places like Catania and Palermo, and on Good Friday, an impressive procession occurs through the scenic streets of Trapani. You can also experience some of the intriguing history of Sicily by joining in the fun at the Norman-Arab jousting tournament held in Piazza Armerina, or enjoying some of the other celebrations such as the Infiorata festival of flowers in Noto or the kite festival in San Vito Lo Capo.

San-Vito-Lo-Capo

contributed by Susie Henley

Shark Week: A time to celebrate and advocate for sharks

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Project AWARE Foundation

Dear Gunnar,

If you’ve been lucky enough to encounter a shark while diving, then you know that few underwater experiences can match the thrill of seeing one of these remarkable animals.

But unfortunately, not everyone views sharks the way you and I do.

Most people’s perceptions are warped by sensationalist portrayals –– like the movie Jaws and the new Shark Hunters show –– that depict sharks as frenzied killing machines. A fundamental misunderstanding of sharks’ critical role in the health and balance of our ocean planet contributes to relentless and often cruel overexploitation of sharks, with little public outcry. As a result, many species of sharks –– which predate dinosaurs –– are being pushed to the brink of extinction.

As a diver and a Project AWARE supporter, you’re helping to set the record straight and save vulnerable shark species. But the start of another Shark Week reminds us that we have a long way to go.

Gunnar, won’t you please give a boost to Project AWARE’s vital work to protect threatened sharks by clicking here now to make a special tax-deductible gift*?

Save Vulnerable Sharks 

Your support of Project AWARE has already helped mobilize divers to help protect sharks by:

  • Closing loopholes in the European Union’s ban on finning, the cruel and wasteful practice of slicing off sharks’ fins and dumping their bodies overboard
  • Raising awareness of sharks’ vital role in the marine ecosystem and the threats to their survival through educational initiatives like our AWARE Shark Conservation Distinctive Specialty Course and the Finathon, our peer-to-peer swimathon fundraising events that raise awareness for shark protection.
  • Securing protections for eight shark and ray species under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).
  • Educating and empowering thousands of divers from all corners of the globe to speak out and act to protect sharks.

But with shark fishing largely unregulated around the world, overfishing, bycatch and finning continue to kill thousands of sharks and other marine life every day! Project AWARE urgently needs your continued help to end this reckless overharvesting –– by pushing for stronger protections for the most vulnerable shark species, catch limits and bycatch restrictions, and effective, enforceable bans on finning.

Gunnar, please help Project AWARE build on our successes in the fight to protect sharks by clicking here now to make a generous tax-deductible gift*.

The job ahead of us is not easy. But by mobilizing divers to speak out on behalf of sharks, Project AWARE is changing the way the world views these magnificent creatures. And by building on our successful track record of fighting for shark protections, we can implement the additional measures needed to save them from extinction.  Please support this critical work today.

Thank you for standing with more than a million other divers worldwide to protect sharks.

For the Ocean,

Alex Earl Executive Director Project AWAREAlex Earl
Executive Director, Project AWARE Foundation

P.S. Together we’ve made important progress toward saving vulnerable shark species. But with inaccurate, sensationalist portrayals continuing to smear their reputation, we have a long fight ahead to end the heartbreaking loss of these magnificent animals. Please help Project AWARE ramp up our work to protect these remarkable creatures by clicking here now to support our work with a tax-deductible* gift. 

* tax deductible where law allows

 
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