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The Redentore is the oldest continuously celebrated date on the Venetian calendar. At the end of a plague epidemic in 1576, the city commissioned Andrea Palladio to build a church on the Giudecca – Il Redentore (the Redeemer). Every July, a pontoon bridge is built across the canal that separates the Giudecca from Venice proper, so people can make the pilgrimage to the church. But, while the religious part of the festival falls on Sunday, what makes this weekend so special are the festivities on Saturday night. Boats of every shape and size gather in the lagoon between St Mark’s, San Giorgio, the Punta della Dogana and the Giudecca, each holding merry-makers supplied with food and drink. This party culminates in an amazing fireworks display.
In 2013 it took place on Saturday 20 and Sunday 21 July.