Event date: 28 August, 2019
Event place: Buñol, Valencia
It all began on the last Wednesday of August 1945, when some young people spent time in the People’s Square to witness the parade of giants and big heads and other acts of the party. The boys decided to make a space inside the procession of a parade with musicians, giants and big heads. The impetus of the youngsters caused a participant to fall who, in the grip of anger, began to hit everything in his path.
By a whim of fate, there was a vegetable stand that was fed by the enraged crowd: people started throwing tomatoes at each other until the law enforcement forces put an end to the vegetable battle.
The following year, the youths repeated the altercation voluntarily and brought the tomatoes from their home. Although the police dissolved the recent tradition in successive years, the boys, without knowing anything, had made history. La Tomatina was banned in the early 50’s, which did not deter its participants who were even arrested. But the people spoke and the party was again allowed, joining more participants and becoming more and more frantic.
The party was, again, canceled until 1957, when, in protest, the tomato burial was celebrated: a demonstration in which the neighbors carried a coffin with a large tomato inside. The parade was accompanied by a band that played funeral marches and its success was total.
Finally the Tomatina was allowed and the party was officially established. The party began to be popular in the rest of Spain thanks to the report by Javier Basilio, broadcast on the program of Spanish Television Weekly Report in 1983. Since then, year by year the number of participants and enthusiasm for La Tomatina has increased. The success has led to La Tomatina de Buñol was declared in 2002 Festival of International Tourist Interest by the General Secretariat of Tourism.