From the 13th to the 17th of August the city’s oldest festival will take to the streets of Ciutat Vella with traditional activities and family entertainment
Celebrated almost uninterruptedly since 1589, the Festes de Sant Roc is Barcelona’s oldest ongoing cultural event. For 5 days around the feast day itself, the 16th of August, the streets of the Ciutat Vella district will throng with activities such as the traditional cucaña, or greased pole, and the "Porró-Llarg", a local version of the British yard of ale.
From the inaugural street parade by the company “En Cu-cut dalt del ruc” on the evening of Wednesday the 13th, to the 31st “correfoc” (literally, fire-runs) by the Diablos del Barrio Gótico on the night of Sunday the 18th, the Plaça Nova will be the epicentre for a series of activities that will include a crafts fair, sardanas (traditional Catalan circle dances), puppets, clowns, traditional habanera singing, games, competitions and night-time dances.
On Wednesday the 13th at 7.15 pm the hoisting of the official heraldic flag will signify the official inauguration of the Festes de Sant Roc, the programme for which includes the 33rd Meeting and Dance of Giants on Friday the 15th at 5.30 pm.
On Saturday the 16th, the Gran Traca (a deafening a string of fireworks) will give way to the traditional procession and Solemn Sung Mass at the high altar of the Santa Maria del Pi basilica in honour of Saint Roch. As is customary the ceremony and tribute dances will precede the hoisting of the green flag on the Sant Roc festival committee and the traditional tribute to man’s best friend at 5.30 pm.
On Sunday the 17th at 6.45 pm in the Plaça Nova the Giant Balloon of Capitan Munyon will be inflated and launched by the children of the district, who will also have a final opportunity to try their luck on the greased pole.
The Festes de Sant Roc also celebrate their 425th anniversary this year with a free exhibition in the Casa dels Entremesos. The festival will take place in Ciutat Vella from the 13th to the 17th of August and a complete programme of activities and schedules may be consulted here.
Information about the event
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