10-12 April. Milan welcomes Alpine troops and veterans.
Milan will be the backdrop for the colourful parade and rally marking this year’s gathering of the National Alpini Association celebrating the famous mountain warfare infantry corps of the Italian army.
Thousands of alpine troops and “Veci”, or veterans, many with their families, will throng their temporary citadel in Milan’s central Sempione Park, and welcome visitors to an exhibit of their historical and contemporary equipment, including their Lince tactical 4x4s and Bv206 tracked and articulated all-terrain carriers.
Adults and kids alike will enjoy displays of mine-clearing, rock climbing and civil defence work. Instructors will be on hand to answer questions from school groups
On Friday at 18.30 they will parade from Piazza Del Carmine through the streets of the city centre to Piazza della Scala, their band playing and pennants from their historic battles flying as they march.
There will be more music, with fanfares and mountain choirs, on Sunday at 20.00 in Piazza Mercanti, the Vittorio Emanuele Gallery, Piazza San Carlo and Piazza del Liberty.
A 64-page guide to all the events of the three-day rally and the history of the Alpine corps can be downloaded from the rally website, or collected free from ATM and Trenord stations and all Lombardy regional and city information points in Milan, Monza, Bergamo, Brescia, Lecco and Varese.
Italy’s Alpini are the oldest active mountain infantry corps in the world, founded in 1872 to defend Italy’s northern borders. They are currently deployed in Afghanistan.