Ontinyent st. stephen festival fiesta

Ontinyent Festival of St. Stephen

Ontinyent Festival of St. Stephen

The Festival of St. Stephen in Ontinyent begins with a sonorous “roll over” of the church bells, accompanied by the setting off of fireworks to announce to the inhabitants of the municipality, the beginning of two days of festivities.

Later, the Hermitage of the Saint is illuminated by a great lantern, that substitutes the traditional bonfire lit in the past. The night culminates with a popular “dinner of brotherhood”. The second days’ festivities begin with the parting from Plaza Mayor of the pilgrimage to the Hermitage where Holy Mass is held, after which there is a luncheon and diverse leisure activities are held. San Esteban (St. Stephen) reaches its peak with a traditional mountain folklore festival.

The month of July has lost most of it´s traditional festivity, such as Saint Abdó and Senén and the Santets de la Pedra. Lorry drivers celebrate the day of Saint Christopher on the Saturday nearest to the 10th when lorries are blessed during a procession past a figure of the saint. The celebration ends with a firework display.

The penultimate Saturday of July is dedicated to Saint Esteve, when followers have already presented the queen of the fiestas and her court of honour at a supper. A bonfire is lit in the parish of San Rafael in memory of the now defunct “falla” which used to be lit at San Esteve. Nowadays, the “Light of Saint Esteve” is an electric display at the hermitage. There also used to be a procession which passed through most of the city.

On Sunday morning there is a procession to San Esteve called the Romeria which is more often than not made by car, although there is a growing number of people who make the arduous walk on foot. After mass at the hermitage there is a breakfast, this is followed by a folk festival with sack races, songs and poetry recitals.

Photo credit: Jordi Nll

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Jul 04 2020 - Jul 05 2020


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Ontinyent Town
Ontinyent, Spain


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Ontinyent Festival of St. Stephen

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