Fiesta dates for Pego
(all dates are approximate)
The Three Kings - Procession and distribution of presents to the children.
Fiesta of San Antonio - Tradition says that the faithful must circle the hermitage bearing the Saints name three times in order to receive a blessing. Afterwards there is a fair with stalls and traditional food.
FEBRUARY - dates vary, usually at Lent
Carnestoltes - Carnival with fancy dress, and parades, dancing in the street to live music, fireworks and the Burial of the Sardine !
MARCH 16th - 19th
APRIL - dates vary
FALLAS - The traditional Valencian festival of Saint Joseph the carpenter. Originally a contest amongst carpenters to create an effigy of the Saint, it has escalated to become one of the most spectacular fiestas of the calendar year, with municipal districts competing for the prize for the best papier mache monument. Each year the monuments get bigger and better with more and more money invested in creating incredible 50-100ft high Disney-type cartoon depictions of both current event and political characters together with fictional figures. Hundreds of thousands of Euros are spent each year in building these monuments which are all burnt in the final ceremonial act of the celebrations. Festivities include, processions with participants wearing elaborate traditional costumes, street entertainment, fireworks and live music. The largest fiesta of this kind is held in the city of Valencia, where up to 300 massive monuments block the busy streets of the capital and commercial life comes to a halt. Here a 150ft high statue of the Virgen Mary is built out of flowers brought by participants of a day long procession through the city streets. This is a fiesta you will never forget.
EASTER - Throughout Spain the week of Easter (Semana Santa) is celebrated with somber religious processions, usually entailing an effigy of Jesus on the Cross being carried through the streets followed by mourners wearing black and carrying candles. Spaniards of all ages take part and one cannot help being struck by the sense of community and dedication to tradition that the celebrations reflect. On Easter Sunday, doves are let loose over the two religious statues in the Pla de la Font.
JUNE - dates vary, usually the end of the month
Moors and Christians Fiesta. - This festival is celebrated all over Spain as their history is deeply rooted in the battles which took place over control of Spain in the 13th to 15th century. Each fiesta is a theatrical performance with participants dressed in elaborate and expensive costumes depicting both sides of the battle. The music played by the live orchestras is especially composed for the fiesta and is very dramatic. Battles are re-enacted using replicas of the weapons used so it can become a little noisy.
Each town has its Patron Saint and a fiesta is held in their honour which usually last one week. During this time the towns commercial activity virtually shuts down as celebrations go on practically 24 hours a day. Festivities include processions, dancing in the streets, live music, sporting events, firework displays and bull-running.
The famous bull running event is held in many towns at different times of the year all over Spain. Large, generally aggressive bulls are let loose in designated streets to chase after those who think they are fast enough to jump out of their way, run behind the many wooden barricades or into the steel cages set up for their protection, before they get gored. Not for the faint hearted, and definitely best left to those with more experience as it is not as easy as it looks. The bulls are very fast and many people - usually foreigners - get hurt, and occasionally killed each year due to them tripping and falling before they manage to get to safety. These bulls have large horns, and will attack through fear. Hundreds of people attend the events, sitting upon makeshift platforms above the streets or standing within the steel cages. It can become rather noisy with everyone shouting and jeering at the bulls who naturally feel trapped and we all know how a cornered wild animal reacts to this kind of situation.