Collelongo is a small town a few miles from the National Park of Abruzzo in the Vallelonga valley, where the winter cold can really bite. On January 16th, however, the townspeople battle the night frost by gathering around bonfires in the squares singing folk songs, drinking vin brulé and eating traditional dishes. St. Antonio Abate is the patron saint of Collelongo but the origin of the celebration has been lost in the mists of time. Every year, thousands of people pour into the streets lined with old stone buildings, making their way to the various open residences with their cellars containing ‘cottore’, (large copper pots) on show to all. The houses stay open to visitors all night, offering wine, libations and ‘cicirocchi ‘, a typical corn-based dish.