Schieti, an ancient castle enclosed within walls centuries old, could be considered a crossroads between Pesaro and Urbino and the Montefeltro region. It was a mandatory passage for the lime and brick kiln workers on the left side of the river, for the sulfur miners on the right, and for the numerous charcoal makers who descended to sell their goods on the coast. The village, embraced by a bend in the Foglia river, was an obligatory stop for refreshments in the taverns before continuing the journey by fording the “Passo dei carbonai” (Charcoal Burners’ Pass). These charcoal makers used stilts to cross it, just like the farmers from the other side of the river, leaving their characteristic equipment under the loggia of Cà Matteo’s property.The stilts were not just idle, but during the warm season, they became a racing instrument for both the young and the not-so-young, racing to the center of the castle, giving rise to a local celebration called the “Palio dei sampp” (Stilt Palio). The winner was rewarded with a wheel of cheese and a flask of wine. After the race, to the sound of popular instruments, people danced the evening away with folk dances like the furlana, saltarello, and palombina.We want to revive this race, that celebration, to experience a bit of the unspoiled rural and village atmosphere today, free from sophisticated noises, to relive and strengthen family, community, and social roots. A journey back in time together to rediscover almost forgotten scents, sensations, and emotions.
Raniero Bartolucci

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