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La Feria (Alhama

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The first news of the celebration of the festivities in Alhama de Murcia date back to 1558, when a meeting of the council of the village residents swore to keep the feast of San Lázaro (December 17th), as Patron of the town.

Although there are no details of those celebrations, it is assumed that they were made primarily with a religious approach, although it is also likely that the residentscelebrated the Patron festivity with other acts accompanying the Mass with sermon on December 17th and some other religious function on the eve.

Undoubtedly, the festivities of the Patron, San Lázaro Obispo, were at that time the largest in the municipality, although in October the 7th, minor acts are held in honor of the patron saint, the Virgen del Rosario.

Already in the second half of the 19th century, the City began to cover costs incurred by the religious functions, which were held in honor of the Virgen del Rosario, growing to such magnificence and solemnity the "novenas" and Masses in her honor, that from 1887, the expenses that the City paid were 140 pesetas per year, exceeding four times what the church spent on the celebration of the feast of San Lázaro, even though these festivities were the official ones for the town and were combined with other recreational activities.

The town's City Council agreed in 1895 to change the December holidays to October, which is the origin of the Feria y Fiestas (Fair and Festivities) in honor of their patron saint, the Virgen del Rosario.

It began to be named Feria y Fiestas (Fair and Festivities) starting 1906, in honor of Nuestra Señora del Rosario y San Francisco.

In subsequent years the three town priests and the district mayors joined the Festivities Committee.

Over these years the scheduled celebrations differed very little from year to year: fireworks on the day of the patron saint, concerts by some music band, cucaña (greasy pole), processions, etc.

In 1918, the festivities were suspended because of the influenza epidemic that plagued the whole country,allocating the funds forecasted for the Feria to help the prevention and relief provisions adopted by the Board of Health. In 1921, they were suspended again because of the Guerra de África (African War).

In people's memories remained the 1930 holidays, when the Regiment of Spain was in Alhama, on their way to Mula, where it was going to do some training exercises. Highlights for that year were the music band concerts, the religious functions in honor of the Virgen del Rosario y San Francisco, a football game, where the local team beat Albacete's team five goals to zero, or some vaquillas (heifers) were sacrificed and served grilled.

In the years of the Republic the festivities continued to be celebrated with increasing budget.

The festivities were suspended during the Civil War years, reopened at the end of it, with little difference in program activities with previous years, and thus continuing to languish for a long time until the arrival of the seventies and eighties, when the festivities were renovated with some fresh air and changed their location, leaving the Calle de la Feria (Fair Street) and focusing the celebrations on the Avenida de la Constitucion (Constitucion Avenue), Plaza de la Constitución (Constitucion Square), and on the Parque de la Cubana (La Cubana's Park) and surrounding areas.

With the participation of young people in the celebrations, their true meaning has been changing. Today, various festive gangs set up tents and participate in the various planned events, especially in the float parade; the Easter Brotherhoods put the gastronomic note, installing various bars, and with concerts and other musical and cultural activities involving all segments of the population.

Download the last festivities schedule:

La Feria (Alhama
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