Author Topic: What is the coolest festival of your hometown?  (Read 359 times)

Savonarola

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What is the coolest festival of your hometown?
« on: July 13, 2018, 08:57:55 am »
I came across this article in the National Geographic about the Fallas de Valencia.  (The article focuses on the Falleras, or women who dress up in the traditional-ish costume rather than the entire festival.)  I was curious if anyone came or lived in a place with a cool festival.

Here in Florida every day is a Saturnalia, so there's really no need.   ;)  Seriously the best festival here in Melbourne is our Festival of Lights (Christmas Parade) where, along with the usual marching bands and church floats, the various air boat operators put Christmas lights on their air boats and tow them along the parade route.  Some dress up an alligator as Santa Claus to ride in the air boat.  It's very Florida.

The best in Detroit used to be Devil's Night (October 30th) where the people came together to burn the city down.  Unfortunately that's gone out of fashion.  Today I think it's Thanksgiving, which has a run (Hob Nobble Gobble), Parade, and Lion's game.
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The Brain

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Re: What is the coolest festival of your hometown?
« Reply #1 on: July 13, 2018, 09:00:24 am »
In Swedish "festival" means "partyinwhale". :)
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celedhring

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Re: What is the coolest festival of your hometown?
« Reply #2 on: July 13, 2018, 09:39:26 am »
The Festes de Maig (May Festival) in my hometown Badalona is decently cool. The centerpiece is the burning of a devil figure to purge the sins of the town, which is accompanied by a pretty big fireworks display. It's a small scale version of Las Fallas in that regard. There's also the auto sacramental depicting how the patron saint of the town freed it from the Black Plague (depicted as the devil's work) which again climaxes up in a fireworks battle between the saint and Lucifer & his demons, in order to save the town. People actually can join into the fray (that's actually how I got my tinnitus, btw, too many fireworks exploding near my ear  :lol:).

That whole shit is simply amazing when you're a kid. Nothing like mixing fire & brimstone Catholicism with actual fire & brimstone.  :lol:

« Last Edit: July 13, 2018, 09:41:38 am by celedhring »

Syt

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Re: What is the coolest festival of your hometown?
« Reply #3 on: July 13, 2018, 09:47:41 am »
By far the biggest is the Donauinselfest in Vienna, a 3 day, free entry open air festival on the Danube Island. Dozens of music acts on a number of stages, plus activities, and food. It draws between 500k and 1M people per day. Personally, I have some fond memories of some of the acts I've seen there (Tito & Tarantula, Billy Idol, Simple Minds, ...), but the quality in recent years has gone down, plus they no longer have the big firework display on the first night, or the metal music stage. :(

Another big one is the annual open air concert at Schönbrunn Castle by the Vienna Philharmonics; also free of charge (except for the "concert hall" seats in front of the stage. Impressions: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4wvpdBnfiZo

During summer we also have all kinds of open air cinema events; my favorite is at the Rathaus, where they show concerts, operas, and ballets on a giant video screen, flanked by food stands offering all kinds of food. The program this year: https://filmfestival-rathausplatz.at/programm/



In my old home town of Kellinghusen, the highlight was the annual pottery market. :mellow:

In Itzehoe it was the Itzehoe week, with one of the largest flea markets in Northern Germany, and a wine fest. During my college days we would frequent the Kieler Woche in Kiel, the world's biggest sailing tournament. It's accompanied by many open air stages with music, parties, and - most importantly - a food area with nomnom from 50+ different countries.
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Re: What is the coolest festival of your hometown?
« Reply #4 on: July 13, 2018, 09:57:57 am »
I never went to it but apparently it is this: (well for one of my hometowns)

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derspiess

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Re: What is the coolest festival of your hometown?
« Reply #5 on: July 13, 2018, 10:17:02 am »
Oktoberfest Zinzinnati is the biggest, drawing in 575,000+ people for the weekend.  It's kind of a watered down experience IMO but people love it.  Taste of Cincinnati is a close second, drawing in 550,000 for a two day festival.  Usually way too hot & too crowded for me.

Both of those take place downtown, and as a reference Cincy has a population of about 300,000.

As far as the best, for me it was the Überdrome, which was a sort of adjunct festival to the main Oktoberfest.  Felt more authentic.  Since Christian Moerlein stopped doing it, the best is probably the Donauschwaben Oktoberfest-- a small but well-attended Oktoberfest with amazing food and good beer selection.
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Re: What is the coolest festival of your hometown?
« Reply #6 on: July 13, 2018, 10:43:16 am »
For Winnipeg it's probably Folklorama.  It's a two week festival of multiculturalism which runs for two weeks. Dozens of different cultural groups set up pavilions around the city.  You go in, eat some ethnic food, drink some ethnic beverages, see some singing or dancing.  According to Wiki it has some 20,000 volunteers and 447,000 visitors (in a city of 600,000 or so).  And yup, I volunteered with Ukraine-L'viv a couple of times (Ukrainians being Ukrainians, they could never all get together and there are two competing Ukraine pavilions).

Edmonton has a similar festival, the Heritage Festival, but it runs only a single weekend in a single park.

For Edmonton... it's probably the Edmonton Fringe Festival.  Now lots of places have Fringe Festivals, but apparently Edmonton is the largest in north america, and second only to Edinburgh in the world.

Caliga

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Re: What is the coolest festival of your hometown?
« Reply #7 on: July 13, 2018, 02:06:36 pm »
Either the Derby Festival or the Bourbon Festival (the latter is held in Bardstown, but that's basically a Louisville suburb).
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Maladict

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Re: What is the coolest festival of your hometown?
« Reply #8 on: July 13, 2018, 04:56:34 pm »
The International Four Days Marches is the biggest event in town, and in the country.
About 40,000 people come to walk, about a million more come to party in a city of 150,000.
I tend to stay clear of the city that week  :sleep:

Tyr

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Re: What is the coolest festival of your hometown?
« Reply #9 on: July 14, 2018, 03:15:29 am »
We used to have a festival. An annual blues festival. Not many locals were into blues but it was still a fun day.
Then austerity hit and it was cancelled.
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Zanza

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Re: What is the coolest festival of your hometown?
« Reply #10 on: July 14, 2018, 06:01:55 am »
Lots of festivals in my hometown, the best known being the Cannstatter Volksfest, the second biggest beer festival in Germany after the Oktoberfest. It still draws like 4 million visitors or so. Not sure about cool though...

« Last Edit: July 14, 2018, 06:03:27 am by Zanza »

Maladict

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Re: What is the coolest festival of your hometown?
« Reply #11 on: July 14, 2018, 07:07:59 am »
We used to have a festival. An annual blues festival. Not many locals were into blues but it was still a fun day.
Then austerity hit and it was cancelled.

Maybe a blue drink festival would be more popular.

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Re: What is the coolest festival of your hometown?
« Reply #12 on: July 16, 2018, 09:36:56 am »
Montreal is where all the festivals happen but for my suburban hell our coolest is the Firefighter fest. Couple of foot races, a marathon & a parade.
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Re: What is the coolest festival of your hometown?
« Reply #13 on: July 16, 2018, 09:45:09 am »
There are lots in Toronto - the Pride Parade, Caribana, etc.

I avoid them all like a party pooper - I hate big crowds of people.

The one I can't avoid is the Kingsway Street Festival, both because it is held literally right outside my front door, and because it often features Ukrainian folk dancing, which my son does.  ;)

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Re: What is the coolest festival of your hometown?
« Reply #14 on: July 16, 2018, 10:05:33 am »
We have these things called 'SXSW' and 'Austin City Limits'. I liked them before they were cool.

We used to have this goofy summer festival called 'Aquafest' which took place downtown near the Colorado River. It included a tug-of-war competition between the antagonistic nations of North Austin and South Austin where the loser would be pulled into the river. Both the traditional antagonism and rivalry between the two sections of the city and the festival are long gone now though. I miss them.

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