19 and 20 May: La Festa della Sensa in Venice

Every year in May, in Venice we are in for boat celebrations: on the first occasion, Venice celebrates the Festa della Sensa (the word "sensa" is Venexian, meaning "ascensione" in Italian) on Christ Ascension Day.

This year, the festivities including the boat regata including the display of the Bucintoro boat took place on 19 and 20 May.
You can read more on Venice Ascension Day and the Sposalizio del Mare here following the link

The Republic of Venice celebrated this day every year since the year 1000 in commemoration of Doge Pietro Orseolo II's successful liberation of Dalmatia from the onslaught of Slavic enemies.

On Ascension Day, on the bucintoro (golden stateship) the Doge and his entourage went as far as the Island of Lido where the Doge threw a ring into sea, saying the words on behalf of the Maritime Republic of Venice that by this act he was "marrying the sea". And it was the sea that for centuries safeguarded Venice's very existence.

By the way: the second boat celebration is called Voga Longa and will take place on 27 May.