Festivals

Carnival

The town schoolchildren celebrate Dijous Gras (Fat Thursday) with the typical coca de llardons (pastry sprinkled with crackling) and take part in the children’s Gitanada procession dressed as gypsies. They accompany the figure of King Carnestoltes on his way to the Town Hall, where he is enthroned and holds court during the festival. On Carnival Saturday there is a colourful procession in which carnival floats and people in costume make their way through the town streets. The riotous and festive procession ends with a lavish fancy dress ball. On Sunday evening there is a further Gitanada procession with volunteers of all ages dressed as gypsies. These festivals are rounded off with a large arrossada, a communal meal with rice dishes. During the meal King Carnestoltes’ reads out his will.

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Thyme Festival

Festa de la Farigola

(last Sunday in May)

The arrival of spring is marked by the flowering of the thyme plant and the celebration of the Thyme Festival. The Plaça Major, house façades and the town gate are all adorned with aromatic herbs and floral decorations. The day opens with a communal breakfast in the open air whilst stands are set up with hand-made products. Infusions of thyme and honey are drunk and a carpet of flowers normally representing some typical town subject is laid out. At midday the Town Hall awards prizes for the Speed-Painting and Façade Decoration competitions.  

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Cava Festival

(July)

The only celebration of its kind in the world! For just one night, cava rather than water flows from the taps of the Renaissance Fountain in the town. The young people gather to spray each other with cava and to dance on till the early hours.

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International Music Festival and International Clarinet Masterclass

(last week in July)

There are classes for three different standards over the course of a week and the classes are open to students from around the world. The teachers are amongst the best clarinettists in the world. There are also concerts every night in the Santa Maria la Major Church. The first five are performed by invited musicians and the course teachers whilst the last four are given by the pupils from the masterclasses.

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Fairs and Festivals

Fira de Prades(2nd fortnight in August)

These celebrations originated in the livestock markets held until well into the beginning of the 20th century, although they date back to the early transhumance traditions in the Prades mountains. In August every year the livestock was driven from the Pyrenees back south. Though almost all of these traditions have disappeared, a whole range of activities, sports, games, and events of a cultural and religious nature are held, chief amongst which is the speech (pregó) to open the festival of Fairs and Festivals. The last day is given over to games and shows for children and ends with a Xocolotada party featuring sponge biscuits dunked in hot chocolate.

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Festival of the Virgin of the Beehive (Verge de l’Abellera)

(first week in September)

Nestled under a rocky overhang to the east of the town is located the Sanctuary of the Virgin of the Beehive, one of a number of “Discovered Virgins”. The legend tells that the image of the virgin was found right in the centre of a swarm of bees. In 2003 the Virgin was declared patron saint of beekeepers in Catalonia and since then commemorative acts have been held on the nearest Saturday to the religious feast of the Discovered Virgins.

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Catalan National Day

11 de setembreAmongst the acts to mark the Catalan National Day there is an organized walk through the Prades Mountains and a communal breakfast. In the evening, cultural prizes, such as the Torrell de Reus Narrative Prize (Children and Adults) and the Vila de Prades Prizes for Poetry and Photography are awarded to the winners.

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Festival for the beginning of the potato harvest

Festa de la Patata(Sunday following September 11)

The Prades potato has been awarded PGI (Protected Geographical Indication) status for its special quality. When the harvest begins there is a festival which starts early in the morning with an open-air breakfast featuring the potato. During the morning there are stalls selling different local products and at midday there is a competition for omelettes and other potato dishes. They can be tasted by the public once prizes have been awarded to the winners.

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Festa Major Town Festival

(second fortnight in October)

The Prades Town Festival (Festa Major) in honour of Saint Florentina is held over the third weekend of October. It lasts four days and all kinds of cultural and fun activities are held.

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Prades Bosc

Prades Bosc(All Saints Day)

In this festival celebrating the forests in our mountains there is a dinner with game products and chestnuts as well as activities related to the natural world and the forest.

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