Many Calabrian events for the Week of Planet Earth

From October 18 to 25, the discovery of Calabria’s natural resources is on

The third edition of The week of planet Earth: Italy discovers Geoscience has begun. From October 18 to 15, the whole Italian territory will have seven days full of events for the discovery of our natural resources. Many of them will be in Calabria: excursions, itineraries through the historic centres of several cities and villages, guided tours, exhibitions, educational and experimental workshops for youth and children.

The initiative was created by two Italian researchers: Rodolfo Coccioni from the University of Urbino and Silvio Seno from the University of Pavia. Its main objective is to acquaint the general population with geoscience, promote natural resources and environmentally friendly cultural tourism, enhance attention to environment preservation and geologic information.

It is a one-time occasion to rediscover the most spectacular and least-known natural resources of Calabria.

Rocche di Prastarà - Montebello Ionico (RC)
Rocche di Prastarà – Montebello Ionico (RC)

The first date is Sunday, Oct. 18, in Montebello Ionico (province ofReggio Calabria), in the heart of the “land of Saints and bandits”, where St. Elias founded the first hermit’s dwelling. The geosite Rocche di Pastrarà, with its many calcareous monoliths that are so suggestive of a long-gone geological past, will be the location for an experience of geo-tuning suspended between science and spirituality. It already was the setting of a Fellini & Germi 1952 movie, “Il Brigante di Tana del Lupo”: a strip of Calabrian-Greek land on the southern mountainside of the Aspromonte range, leaning over the Jonian sea and with a view of Mt. Etna.

On the same day, Aprigliano (province of Cosenza) will host an excursion on River Cratiche, which flows steeply down to the city of Cosenza from the paleozoic-old and granitic Mount Timpone Bruno (1742 metres in height and part of the western mountainside of the Sila Mountain Range). The area around the river, especially the part that is closer to Aprignano and known as “Ponta”, was rumored to be one of the bandits’ favourite locations to abscond from police forces who were after them.

On Monday, Oct. 19, at the Institute Telesio-Montalbetti of Reggio Calabria, there will be an afternoon event, a campaign titled “Let’s run some risks for nature” and focused on the prevention of seismic risk in the area of the Strait of Messina. One of the parts of this campaign is “Bully and Jinxy and the SeaEarthquake”, a cartoon featuring a conversation about the geologic constitution and evolution of the Calabrian-Peloritan Arc and the Strait of Messina, with a focus on the area’s risks and its resources.

From Monday, Oct 19 to Friday, Oct 23, the Museum of Paleonthology of Unical – Rende (province of Cosenza) will put a skeleton of Coelophysis on display, a small-sized carnivorous dinosaur, a quick and agile (as well as probably cannibalistic) runner from the Mesozoic era (245 to 65 million years ago). The skeleton has been brought to the Museum specially for the occasion. It is a plaster cast based on the Coelophysis’ remains unearthed in the US in the 1947.

On Wednesday, Oct. 21, Verzino‘s event (province of Crotone) is going to revolve around the routes of salt, an itinerary along which visitors will observe the sedimentary series of the Crotone basin, with its evaporation sequences and its majestic salt diapirs. It is a rather unique geosite in the Italian and European context, for its morphological, structural, stratigraphical ad sedimentary features.

On Thursday, Oct. 22, Rende (CS) will put up a geo-event for children, to acquaint them with the world of Earth science through practical experiments aimed at illustrating the dynamics of volcanoes and volcanic eruptions through their different phases.

A second Thursday-event in Rende is Shores of Rende, an itinerary for the observation and study of the natural features of the territory around the Crati Valley, with an eye turned to geology, morphology, paleontology. Specifically, the object of discussion will be the sedimentary deposits the mountains in Rende’s urban area are made of. The town area belongs to the much wider basin of the Crati river, which is rich in sediments from the sea-coasts.

Lago dei due Uomini Fagnano Castello (CS)
Lago dei due Uomini – Fagnano Castello (CS)

On Friday, Oct. 23, San Marco Argentano (province of Cosenza) will host The sunny land, an itinerary through the territory of the Higher Valley of river Crati, focused on the geology and morphology of the mountains in the town’s urban area. The excursion will end in the vicinity of Lago dei due Uomini, a lake located on the hills around the Coastal Range, in the town area of Fagnao Castello.

On the same day in Mendicino (province of Cosenza) there will be Man and environment in the territory of Cosenza’s sierras, a geo-event for the promotion of the geologic and botanical heritage of the Serre Cosentine area, which is dominated by the Southern Apennine Mountain Range. Particularly of note is the excursion to Mount Cucuzzo (1541 m. above the sea the level), from whose top it is possible to admire a wide stretch of Tyrrhenian landscape (the Aeolian islands, the gulf of Policastro and mount Etna).

Finally on Saturday, Oct. 24, Cassano allo Ionio (province of Cosenza) will offer an excursion to the Sibaritide, in the Jonian Highland around Cosenza. The main topic of discussion will be water as a natural resource, to be protected in consideration of all its possible uses (in irrigation, as an industrial and thermal resource as well as, of course, a drinkable resource).

For the complete programme visit www.settimanaterra.org