Free Admission to the Academy Gallery for Florence Residents

This year, no vibrant parades, historical sport in traditional costume fireworks and music will take place in post-lockdown Florence in honor of the city’s patron saint of St. John the Baptist on his feast day, June 24.   The Festa di San Giovanni as the day is called in Italian, is also a legal holiday within city limits, with offices, banks and many shops closed.   There is one bright spot, however:  the Academy Gallery (known as l’Accademia to the Italians) will be accessible at no charge to residents of Florence that day with a photo I.D. that includes their address.

This offers an opportunity to admire Michelangelo’s masterpieces, from the iconic David to the Prisoners trapped in marble in addition to medieval paintings.  The visitor can also tour the famous Gipsoteca, a “hall of models” filled with life size plaster works by famous Romantic sculptor Lorenzo Bartolini that he created as models before each definitive work in marble.  Hours are 9 am to 2 pm.  (rosanna cirigliano)