Fogueres de San Joan 2011. Receive the fire’s hug, that of the gunpowder and the music.

‘Observe how the festival likes that you participate. You know, foreign friend, that the foguerers appreciate you even though you don’t speak the language, nor does it matter the colour of your skin. Receive the fire’s hug, that of the gunpowder and the music. We’ve got a world of festival for you to discover, you’re in the best of hands, don’t be embarrassed and join us, you will always be an equal in this most beautiful of festivals.’

June 24, 2011. Alicante, Spain. The night of June 24th is the climax of the highly anticipated festival “Hogueras de San Juan” celebrated in Alicante, part of the Valencian community in Spain. The cultural event joins friends and family together through out the entire town to celebrate the burning of the Hogueras. Hogueras: enormous and detailed art structures built by families in different parts of Alicante are burned on the summer solstice, June 24th. Burning these structures on the longest day of the year represents cleansing the city of negativity. The hoguera ritual begins at 12:00 a.m. as gunpowder and fireworks explode inside the official hoguera of Alicante “La Tierra Prometida.” After, the other 90 hogueras in the neighborhoods begin to burn as well.

Alicante, Spain. June 24, 2011. Friends and family gather on the beach with small bonfires and music while celebrating the Bonfires of San Juan, one of Spain'€™s largest and most highly anticipated festivals.

 

Alicante, Spain. June 24, 2011. A few of Los Indignados: advocates of the M15 movement in Spain, gather with their own hoguera while singing songs of political freedom and happiness during the "Hogueras de San Juan" festival. The M15 movement is a youth movement pacifically fighting against Spain's current political and social system.

 

Alicante, Spain. June 24, 2011. The official hoguera of Alicante "The Promised Land" burns at midnight on the longest day of the year, the summer solstice.

Alicante, Spain. June 24, 2011. A resident watches the official hoguera of Alicante burn during the Bonfires of San Juan festival.

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