So we had an opening reception for the Creative Retreat on Saturday evening on the Grand Hotel Villa Serbelloni's Pergola overlooking Lake Como, and it was BEAUTIFUL! Here are a few pictures of everyone...
Here's most of the group, minus the guys and one more girl coming
Enjoying getting to know each other in this perfect location
A vintage car procession also took place last night at the hotel
Then of course the reason for the event on this week...
The San Giovanni Festival and Torchlight Procession! This is an AMAZING experience that my family has done twice and I knew I wanted to host one of my Creative Retreats during this week so everyone could be a part of this night! It is truly magical with the towns people coming together to light torches, walk through the town to the Church of San Giovanni (St. John) and have a time of celebration together. It is an annual event they have to celebrate St. John and come together at the church named after him. The fact that we tourists can be a part of this local tradition is just SO special and a real "bucket list" item to me. Here are some pictures from the Torchlight Procession:
The 2 people in the above photo start the torch lighting process
Then they pass the fire on until everyone's is lit
Then we start walking through the town with everyone
I love that we are a part of the local people and their tradition
Some of the ladies enjoying the procession with their torches
Two ladies who met last year at my retreat came back this year, love it!
Walking through the town, you can see the lights forever...
As it gets darker the lighting is just beautiful
We even let Isabella hold my torch for a while!
And then at the end is a BIG celebration!
It was a GREAT start to a weeklong event here in Bellagio and I'm so excited to be here with everyone!! I know it's going to be a wonderful time with everyone and time to relax, be creative and enjoy getting to know people and make new friends!!
If you plan on coming NEXT YEAR, the dates are May 17-24, 2014 and you can SIGN UP under the REGISTRATION page over here ----->
There are about 8 spots left for next year, so sign up soon if you're interested!!