Palio di Stonemarche

Hosted by Barony of Stonemarche - Contoocook, NH

Event date: June 10th, 2011 - June 12th, 2011

Event Last Modified: April 25th, 2011

Health Acknowledgement

Although the SCA complies with all applicable laws to ensure the health and safety of our event participants, we cannot eliminate the risk of exposure to infectious diseases during in-person events. By participating in the in-person events of the SCA, you acknowledge and accept the potential risks. You agree to take any additional steps to protect your own health and safety and those under your control as you believe to be necessary.

Event details

The rival Contrade of Stonemarche are out to prove their superiority.  In order to prevent these rivalries from becoming outright warfare we have, in the fashion of the Italians, declared a Palio Event comprising of several challenges from which a winning Contrade shall be determined.  Come join us in the games and festivities that shall ensue!

What is a Palio?
In towns across Italy the Palio is a contest between rival districts, called "contrade".  The most famous Palio event is in Siena where the contrade plan all year for a horse race that determines a winner in about 90 seconds!  Many towns in Italy hold Palio events and the contests vary by town.  Some examples include jousting, crossbow shooting, cheese rolling, boat regattas and barrel rolling.  Each Palio is accompanied by a festival for the local patron saint.  Parties are thrown and parades are held with much pageantry.  The origins and pageantry of the Palio are rooted in medieval times; a tradition that continues in Italy today.

The word Palio comes from the Latin pallium, meaning covering, with reference to the cloth of silk or velvet which creates the banner (drappellone) that is given as a prize to the winning contrade.

What is the Palio di Stonemarche?
The Palio di Stonemarche is inspired by the Italian palio festivals which encourage civic pride, pageantry and games of competition where winner takes the Palio banner and bragging rights for the following year!

The Stonemarche "Contrade" (districts) are as follows:
-South (Ferrari) = Manchester, Nashua and Salem and areas in between
-East (Hippocampo) = Seacoast area, UNH, Giggleswick and east of
Concord and Rte 93 in the north (the line follows Rte 3 north of the Notch)
-West (Sole) = Keene, Hanover, Dartmouth, Littleton, Concord and west of Rte 93 in the north

Each Contrade has a Captain!
Contrade Captains are the organizers in your area who find folks interested in representing your Contrade in the Palio events.  They can answer questions and may hold organizational meetings about how to be involved in the Palio!

Who's your Captain?
South Contrade:  Master Dorio (
East Contrade:  Master Harold (
West Contrade:  Countess Svava (

Each Contrade has a unifying symbol and colors to represent and identify themselves.  Individuals are encouraged to place their Contrade symbol/colors on clothing, or display in any manner they choose.

Contrade colors and symbols are: 
-South:  Gold with black horse rampant
-East:  Red with a yellow seahorse
-West:  Purple with a white sun in splendor

What if I don't live in Stonemarche?
Never fear!  All participants attending the Palio di Stonemarche can play!
-Upon arrival at the event you will be assigned Contrade colors.  You will also have the option to camp in the area with the members of your affiliate Contrade if you choose.
-If you wish to be assigned a Contrade affiliation PRIOR to the event so that you can connect with a Contrade Captain and plan your wardrobe/regalia accordingly, you can contact Baron Juan Xavier to discuss your Contrade allegiance by email at:

What are the Palio Events?
The Palio di Stonemarche will host a number of contests (Saturday, June 11th) and points will be given to each Contrade based on their placing in each activity.  At the end of the day a special ceremony will be held to declare the Contrade with the most points the winner and award "The Palio" banner and all bragging rights for the coming year!

This year's Palio Events will include: 

Contrade A&S contest (Populous choice)
Blessing of the Horses
Archery Tourney
Rattan Challenge
Fencing Challenge
Children's Bean bag toss
Youth Hoops and sticks race
Cheese Roll (Cacio al fuso - Pienza)
Barrel Roll- Men's/Women's divisions (Bravìo delle Botti - Montepulciano)
The Grand Parade
Equestrian Challenge (gioco della scopa)
Children's Hobby Horse Palio (Siena)

The traditional Stonemarche Golden Sword Tourney will be held on Sunday morning.  This tourney is open to novice fighters with less than one year of experience that have not fought at Pennsic.  Experienced fighters are welcome to participate in evaluating and testing the novice fighters.  Contact the Knight Marshal for more info (

Join us on Friday evening for a Palio Pre-Revel!  Learn about the Palio events and meet your Contrade Captains.  Other activities this evening include Palio favor making for the Youth and an Italian Tarot demonstration.

Everyone is invited to display their A&S projects for the Palio A&S competition on Saturday.  NO DOCUMENTATION REQUIRED!  Populace choice will determine which Contrade wins the day!  All project types accepted (food entries must include ingredients list) Set-up at 10:00 a.m.  and voting starts at 11:00 a.m.

On Sunday morning there will be time to run classes or host round tables.  If you would like to teach a class, contact Anne of the Fuzzy Hat by phone (207-312-3008).  At this time there is an Athena's Thimble Roundtable and an Arrow Fletching class scheduled.

Baronessa Maria will host a Plant Swap on Saturday morning.  This is a FREE exchange of seedlings, plants and seeds for gardeners of all types (flowers, vegetables, herbs, etc.) All plant life welcome.

There will be children's games and at least one class included as part of the Palio.  If you would like to lend a hand with the kids please contact Baronessa Maria.  (

Merchants are welcome at no extra charge, with indoor and outdoor space available.  (

Site Opens: 2 p.m.  on Friday
Site Closes: 4 p.m.  on Sunday

Event Location

Hopkinton Fair Grounds
392 Kearsarge Avenue
Contoocook, NH  03229
Google Map

Registration Fees

Weekend- $20
Day- $12

Weekend- $10
Day- $6

Children 6 & under are free

A day board will be provided at no extra charge on Saturday.  Please make plans for the rest of your meals.

Make Checks Payable to: SCA Inc.  Barony of Stonemarche

Contact Information

Event Steward:

Baron Juan Xavier
mka Trevor Stanley
10 Roger Ave.  Concord, NH 03301

Send Reservations to:

Trevor Stanley
10 Roger Ave.  Concord, NH 03301

Other Contact Information:

The traditional Golden Sword Tourney will be held Sunday morning.  This tourney is open to novice fighters with less than one year of experience that have not fought at Pennsic.  Experienced fighters are welcome to participate in evaluating and testing the novice fighters.

Merchants are welcome at no extra charge, with indoor and outdoor space available.

There will be children's activities included as part of the Palio.