Many municipalities and neighbourhoods have their fiesta mayor in summer, as good weather guarantees a smooth festival with a programme of several different activities. Locals have meals together out on the streets, there are concerts and shows especially for children, but you can also encounter competitions, parades, correfocs and other cultural activities typical for that city, or part of a city.
As August is the best month for these festivities, Barcelona celebrates two of its most important fiestas mayores in the city: those in the Sants district and those in the Gracia district. Both have been competing for the best programmes for many years, and neighbourhood residents strive to decorate their streets exquisitely. Today, this article by ShBarcelona will tell you more about the fiesta mayor in the popular neighbourhood of Sants.
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Discover the fiesta mayor in Sants
Before the fiesta mayor in the Sants district starts, neighbourhood associations have decorated plazas and streets, just as you may have seen at the fiesta mayor in Gracia, which is celebrated a few days before the one in Sants. You will also be able to observe several local and cultural elements, such as giants, castellers (human castles), diables (devils) and other imaginary, Catalan characters, as organizations in Sants take really good care of promoting them during their fiestas.
And of course there will be, among many other festivities, dances, lunches and dinners between locals out on the streets, Havana concerts, workshops for children and fairs.
Fiesta mayor is a celebration in honour of Saint Bartholomew, the patron saint of the neighbourhood. According to legend, he – like many other Christians in the region – lived his martyrdom in Sants at the time of Roman Emperor Diocletian. Saint Bartholomew suffered great injuries, and among many of them, was the fact that his skin was torn off. This is probably why he is regarded as the patron saint of trades related to working with leather, such as leather tanners, leather cutters and other leather professions.
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During the fiesta mayor in Sants, you will be able to see and participate in many different activities, but it all starts with the opening speech, that will be given by a relevant personality from Catalan society.
Once the festivities have officially started, the competition to decorate the streets and other relevant areas, such as neighbourhood plazas, will begin. Concerts and dances will take place, there will be parades with giants and bigheads, correfocs de diables (fire runs by devils), craft fairs, butifarradas (butifarra is sausage) and communal meals in the streets. The festivities wouldn’t be complete without a photography contest and several activities and shows for children.
The fiesta mayor in the district of Sants begins on August 17 and ends on August 25, 2019. As in previous years, the streets in Sants will be decorated fabulously, in order to surprise the visitor and make its residents proud.
Many characteristics of the activities during the festivities in Sants are equal to the ones in the district of Gracia, and they have been competing with each other for many reasons. The festivities in both districts almost take place at the same time, there are similar activities and programmes, and they both have the competition of decorating the streets in common.
Have you been to the fiesta mayor in Sants before?