Malaga's Fair, a Reminder of its History
This week Malaga, its people and thousands of visitors should be celebrating one of the city's most important weeks, the August Fair or Feria de Málaga. Although the unusual situation has prevented its celebration, we'd like to remember this important festivity and explain why it is celebrated every year at this time. We are sure that this review of its history will mean that next year we will all experience it with even more emotion.
The Fair commemorates the capture of the city by the Catholic Monarchs on 19th August, 1487, incorporating it into the Crown of Castile. It was the Catholic Monarchs themselves who gave the city the statue of the Virgen de la Victoria.
The newly formed Town Council agreed that on Assumption Day there should be an annual festival to commemorate this event. On 15th August, 1491, it was celebrated with a procession. In 1492 the celebration was moved to the 19th, the Feast of St. Louis. The procession began in the Cathedral and ended in the Church of Santiago, where a mass was held. There was also a fireworks display and a bullfight. Over the years, the festival of St. Louis became reduced to a mass.
The Municipal Council of Malaga decreed that the popular festivities of the city would begin on 15th August. In 1887, in commemoration of the 4th centenary of the capture of the city by the Catholic Monarchs, the traditional date was taken up again and the procession of the Virgen de la Victoria was established, which simulated the entry of the Catholic Monarchs into the city.
The Malaga Fair has taken place in different locations over the years, from the Muelle Heredia pier, through the Malaga Park and Teatinos to the Cortijo de Torres.
The Cortijo de Torres fairground hosts activities throughout the day every year, although the historic centre of Malaga also has its own daytime fair, receiving large crowds of people.
Over the days of the Fair, the streets of the centre are decorated and host shows for all ages. The verdiales groups perform traditional folk songs and dances, and flamenco is present on every corner. The Real del Cortijo de Torres awaits its public every day with its spacious casetas (marquees), fair stands and attractions.
This is always a very special week for the city, and it is sadly missed in 2020; however it is sure to be experienced with even more enthusiasm, respect and affection next year.