Candelaria festivities in l'Ametlla de Mar

01/02/2023 - 05/02/2023
L'Ametlla de Mar

L'Ametlla de Mar is having a Festival! The population celebrates the Fiesta Mayor de la Candelaria, and as in all similar celebrations, the main motivation is the religious devotion towards the Patron Saint, the Virgen de la Candelaria.

Although in modern times the religious meaning of the festival has been reduced, yes in l'Ametlla de Mar a special devotion to the patron saint is kept, which gives meaning to the Procession that is celebrated in her honor on the afternoon of every February 2 where lime makers pay homage to him through the main streets of the city, with a lighted candle (torch) in hand.

The solemnity of the procession, which peaks when it reaches the port, traditionally receives the presence of many visitors and onlookers from nearby regions and other parts of Catalonia.

Traditions evolve but the meaning is the same. This is what has happened with the young men and women in charge of carrying La Candelaria during the Procession. Until the early 1980s, it was the limited liability of boys who had completed their military service during the year. Currently distributed among the "fifths", men and women who turn 18 during the year, and who, in addition to carrying the Virgin, become, together with the "pubilas", the protagonists of the festival.

But the tradition of La Candelaria is not limited to religious sentiment, but rather unfolds in any of the fields of the lime society, gastronomy being one of the most outstanding parts, basically with the most autochthonous sweets, cakes and " corassons ", accompaniment to any well-set table.

Popular culture is represented throughout the holidays with the music of Murgas and the beloved presence of the Cabezones (nanos), some of whom have become true characters of the popular imagination. Giants linked to history such as Saint George and the Dragon, with Los Pedro and La Candelaria, a couple of giants with the name of the local patron saints, lead the parades, although the one that shines the most is the Floral Offering to the patron saint, the same February 2.

Musical festivals, popular aperitifs, sports activities and exhibitions come together during the holidays in which the evenings keep alive one of the oldest traditions of the festival, the Dance in the square and the raffle for the last cake.

On the other hand, there are others that have been lost, although they have occasionally been recovered, such as the Baile de la Candela, a dance reflected by Joan Amades in the Costumari Catalán, which featured single men and women leaving mass in the Plaza de la Iglesia on the day of the Festival, which ended by lighting the skirts of the Majorala with candles. This tradition was recovered by the local cultural heritage, and staged a few years ago by some of the country's popular dance groups.

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