On Saturday Florence was buzzing with various exhibits, memorials and events surrounding the remembrance of the flood. Many shops had their own photos up in their windows, which was very interesting since many of the pictures are originals and not the shots you see over and over again in books and old postcards. The lavanderia on Via dei Neri had several interesting photographs, including one of the street decorated for Christmas that year - Christmas 1966 in Florence must have been a pretty somber event.
There was a mass at Santa Maria del Fiore, and a special exhibit by David Lees, a photographer for Life magazine at the time of the flood, opened in the Palazzo Vecchio. This exhibit is very moving and very well presented - I will be going back again before it closes.
At night, the banks of the Arno were lit, as were the bridges. The Ponte Vecchio and Ponte alle Grazie were bathed in a eerie purple light, and there were fog machines on the banks of the river producing a mysterious effect.
The Palazzo Vechhio and most of the statues in the Piazza Signoria and the Loggia dei Lanzi also had the purple light effect, while in the loggia itself there were video and slide presentations with scenes of the flood and the clean up efforts, set to some moody, techno-type music.
This is really just a cursory review of some of the things that happened on Saturday - there was also a large exhibit in Piazza Santa Croce of all the civil services, and there were speeches on the steps of the Palazzo Vechhio, as well as a full day itinerary that took place inside during the day for Mud Angels, etc. We'll keep posting news and updates as we here about things.