4. La Tomatina, Bunol, Spain
La Tomatina festival held on last Wednesday of every August in Bunol town, in Spain. During this event participants around the world throw tomatoes each other. For the safety of participants city council follows number of rules for La Tomatina festivals such as participants of this festival recommended to wear goggles to protect their eyes and they demand to throw only squashed tomatoes on others to avoid injuries. Every year one hundred metric tons of tomatoes are thrown during La Tomatina festival in the streets of Bunol.
La Tomatina start with an event called ‘palo jabon’. The goal of this event is climb a greased pole and drop ham from it’s top. Once someone from the group of participants succeed in this event authorities gives signal for the start of tomato fight. Water from trucks also being fired into the air from all corners of the street. At that time number of trucks will arrive at the street and provide tomatoes in abundance. Tomatoes for this festival are imported from Extremadura, one of divisions of Spain. The week long La Tomatina festival also features music, dance, parades and fireworks.
La Tomatina is a festival that is held in the Valencian town of Buñol, a town located in the East of Spain 30 km / 19 miles from the Mediterranean, in which participants throw tomatoes and get involved in this tomato fight purely for entertainment purposes. Since 1945 it has been held on the last Wednesday of August, during the week of festivities of Buñol.
The tomato fight has been a strong tradition in Buñol since 1944 or 1945. No one is completely certain how this event originated, but there is one popular theory that disgruntled townspeople rioted and attacked city councilmen with tomatoes during a town celebration. Whatever did happen to begin the tradition, it was enjoyed so much that it was repeated the next year, and the year after that, and so on. Other theories include a food fight among friends, a juvenile class war between bare-footed Trotskyist macarras and upper class pijos from Madrid on summer vacation, a volley of tomatoes from bystanders at a carnival parade, a democratic protest against the city council and the ensuing aftermath of an accidental truck spillage. The holiday was banned in the Spanish State period under Francisco Franco for having no religious significance, but returned in the 1970s after his demise. In 1957, demand for the popular festival led to its becoming official, with certain rules and restrictions. These rules have gone through many modifications over the years.
Another important landmark in the history of this festival is the year 1975. From this year onward, «Los Clavarios de San Luis Bertrán» organized the whole festival and brought in the tomatoes, which had previously been brought by the local people. Soon after this, in 1980, the town council took over responsibility for organizing the festival.