If you are in the town of Bunol, Spain in the Last week of August don’t forget to wear a rain coat and goggles because it’s La Tomatina time in Bunol. You might have witnessed or experienced water gun fighting or snowball fighting since your childhood but in this festival you will witness the town to be all red and and slippery with pulpy tomatoes. Some may enjoy the festival and some might find it to be weird but the festival is held every year on the last Wednesday of August.
In the festival of La Tomatina tens of metric tons of pulpy and juicy red tomatoes are thrown in just one hour’s time. Squeezed tomato puree is splashed and the biggest tomato fight is celebrated in the town. Traditionally women wear white and men wear no shirts on the day of the festival. This festival is quite famous among tourists as statistics show that around 50,000 tourists on average show up every year to witness and participate in this what I may call a juicy festival. A supply of 150,000 tomatoes (About 90,000 pounds) is arranged for the festival before hand.
The festival starts when a person tries to scale a heavily greased pole in an attempt to capture a cooked ham. Once the ham is taken down from the pole, water canons are fired at the participants and the greatest tomato fight begins in the streets of the famous town of Spain.
History states that the festival started in 1945 and became an officially recognized event by 1952. The festival is celebrated to honor the Virgin Mary and St. Louis Bertrand.
The City of Reno, Nevada in the United States also celebrates a similar event on the last Sunday of August. The organizers credit the Spanish festival and gave the festival the same name as that of the festival in Spain.
In my view the festival is an opportunity for those who enjoy wasting tomatoes and want to take a bath in tomato puree.