As legend goes, a Roman patrician named Giovanni and his wife wanted to donate their possessions to the church; they prayed to be shown exactly how to distribute the assets, and that night (5 August) a miracle snowfall graces the summit of the hill. Following a dream they had the same night, they commenced building a basilica in honor of Santa Maria Maggiore on the snow-covered spot.
Now each 5 August, just as summer vacation is really heating up in Italy, "snow" falls into the streets of Rome and many other places throughout Italy. Although actual snow would be a welcome respite from the scorching August heat, alas, these flakes are actually flower petals or small confetti.
Here are some videos of the celebrations throughout Italy:
Will there be a miracle of snow this 5 August? Stay tuned!