Origin and history of the Tomatina
How did it start?
It all started on the last Wednesday of August of the year 1945, when some young people were hanging out in the Town Square to witness the giants and big heads parade and other acts of the party. The story of La Tomatina tells that the boys decided to make a place for themselves inside the entourage of a parade with musicians, giants and big heads.
The impetus of the young people caused a participant to fall who, caught in anger, began to hit everything in his path. By a quirk of fate, there was a vegetable stand there that was pastured by the angry crowd: people started throwing tomatoes at each other until the public order forces put an end to that vegetable battle.
The following year, the young people repeated the altercation voluntarily and brought the tomatoes from home.
Although the police broke up the recent tradition in successive years, the boys, without knowing anything, had made history.
La Tomatina was banned in the early 50s, which did not deter its participants who were even arrested. But the people spoke and the party was allowed again, more participants joining and becoming more and more frantic.
The party was, again, canceled until 1957, when, as a sign of protest, the tomato burial was held: a demonstration in which the neighbors carried a coffin with a large tomato inside.
The parade was accompanied by a music band that performed funeral marches and its success was total.
Finally the Tomatina was allowed and the party was officially established.
Weekly Report popularized it
The party began to be popular in the rest of Spain thanks to the report by Javier Basilio, broadcast on the Spanish Television program Informe semanal in 1983.
This is how the history of La Tomatina began in its Moderna period, which has given it international projection.
Since then, the number of participants and the enthusiasm for La Tomatina has been growing year by year. The success has led to La Tomatina de Buñol being declared a Festival of International Tourist Interest by the General Secretariat of Tourism in 2002.