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The Feast of St Mark in Italy

The Feast of St Mark (La Festa di San Marco) is an annual local public holiday in Venice, Italy, on April 25. It honors St Mark, the city’s patron saint, and coincides with Liberation Day.

Is The Feast of St Mark a Public Holiday?

The Feast of St Mark is a public holiday. It is a day off for the general population, and schools and most businesses are closed.

Gondolas on the Grand Canal in Venice, Italy.
Gondolas at the Grand Canal in Venice, Italy.
©iStockphoto.com/AmandaLewis

What Do People Do?

One of the highlights during the Feast of St Mark is the Regata di Traghetti, a boat race featuring gondoliers who compete while transporting passengers in their gondolas.
Other events in Venice around this time of the year include:

  • Church mass.
  • Concerts.
  • Carnivals.
  • Markets.

Public Life

St Mark’s Day is a local public holiday in Venice so many businesses and public offices are closed.

Background

St Mark (San Marco) is Venice’s patron saint who died on April 25 in 68 CE. He was one of Jesus Christ’s disciples and believed to be author of the Gospel of Mark. It is believed that the relics of St Mark were moved to Venice in 828 CE, where it attracted pilgrims from around Europe.

Symbols

One tradition associated with St Mark’s festival was the Festival of the Blooming Rose, symbolizing love and romance. The custom of giving a rose bud (bocolo) to a loved one is still practiced today.

The Feast of St Mark Observances

YearWeekdayDateNameHoliday Type
2010SunApr 25The Feast of St MarkLocal holiday
2011MonApr 25The Feast of St MarkLocal holiday
2012WedApr 25The Feast of St MarkLocal holiday
2013ThuApr 25The Feast of St MarkLocal holiday
2014FriApr 25The Feast of St MarkLocal holiday
2015SatApr 25The Feast of St MarkLocal holiday
2016MonApr 25The Feast of St MarkLocal holiday
2017TueApr 25The Feast of St MarkLocal holiday
2018WedApr 25The Feast of St MarkLocal holiday
2019ThuApr 25The Feast of St MarkLocal holiday
2020SatApr 25The Feast of St MarkLocal holiday

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