Dad’s Day and Las Fallas!

[color=darkblue]Father’s Day is celebrated in Spain on St. Joseph’s Day (March 19th), as in many other catholic countries, since the good old carpenter was Jesus’ father on earth – though not biological, as we are told. As it falls on a Sunday this year, Monday is a public holiday in most of the country.

This celebration coincides with another major annual event: Las Fallas, in Valencia. This fire festival is a kind of satirical parade of huge, grotesquely funny figures made of papier mach?, wood and wax, called ‘ninots’, which are built in the streets and then set on fire (this is the best part!) at the stroke of midnight, after streetlights have been turned off. It’s said to be great fun, even for non-pyromaniacs. The Mediterranean city more than doubles its population during this colourful f?te.

The event is as popular as the (crazy?) bull running San Fermin festival around July 7th in Pamplona. In fact, the 1926 novel “The Sun Also Rises” by Hemingway has contributed to its popularity all over the world.

In English we say Joseph was Jesus’s foster father.

That festival sounds like it’s really a riot (i.e., huge, raucous fun). The thing I miss about Europe is those traditional out-of-control festivals. In one part of the German-speaking world, they have a whole festival just devoted to making bad music! Our holidays are boring compared to yours.

What is the historical origin of this pyromaniac festival?

You wouldn’t find me in a bad music festival: we hear enough bad music as it is!

No one knows for sure, but there seem to be several versions on the origins of Las Fallas. I found this in CyberSp@in:

I hope this last theory won’t throw any more fuel to a certain unpleasant and ongoing fire of our own… :frowning:

I have just corrected the date for St. Joseph’s Day: it should read March 19th, i.e. today (I don’t know how I came to write June!). So, happy Father’s Day to all daddies out there, even if you don’t celebrate it today!

Also, Hemingway’s book, set after World War I, depicts Pamplona’s San Fermin bull-running festival, not the Fallas (my sentence was a bit confusing), as far as I know.