The Festival of St Froilan

posted in: Europe, Galicia, Spain | 0

The Festival of St Froilan is an annual event in Lugo at the beginning of October. We watched the preparations and we were there on the opening night!

St Froilan

St Froilan is the Patron Saint of Leon and Lugo. The saint was born in Lugo in 832 and his early education was strongly religious. This led him to become a hermit in the mountains at O Cebreiro. Here he ‘tamed’ a wolf and so is often represented with the animal, rather like St Herve and St Ronan in Brittany. He did not remain a hermit but eventually became the Bishop of Leon and died there in 905. In the 17C some relics of the saint were returned to Lugo and are now in the Cathedral. Today’s Festival commemorates the day of his death, 5 October.

Church of St Froilan
Church of St Froilan

Preparing for the Festival

Food stalls line one street alongside the Rosalia Castro Park. These were offering various and varied gastronomic experiences.

On another side of the park the Fun Fair was setting up before opening night.

But the really serious eating was in the boulevard at the bottom of the Park. Here the octopus sellers set up their huge cooking pots and small round plates. Opposite the kitchens the ‘sheds’ with trestle tables stood ready for the diners!

Octopus kitchen for the Festival of St Froilan
Octopus kitchen

In the Praza do Campo

We settled into a nice cafe in the Praza do Campo to watch the preparations for the Festival with a nice white wine and patatas bravas – delicious! This square was the old Roman Forum. On the Feast of St Froilan the fountain spouts wine instead of water – I think it was only coloured water, however.

Fountain in the Praza do Campo
Fountain in the Praza do Campo

Opening Night of the Festival

On the opening night of the Festival of St Froilan the streets in Lugo sparkled with glittery lights. People were everywhere, just chatting or walking quietly. There was no raucous behaviour, or drunken behaviour.

Opening night of Festival of St Froilan
Festival of St Froilan in the old city of Lugo
Festival of St Froilan in the Praza Maior of Lugo
The Praza Maior on the opening night of the Festival
Festival pronounced open from the City Hall!
A quieter street in the town

The Fireworks for the Festival of St Froilan!

And then we headed up on to the walls, just beyond the Gate of Santiago, to watch the fireworks.

The Gate of Santiago in the Walls of Lugo

And we ended the evening with a nightcap in the art deco bar on the Praza Maior.

Art Deco bar on the Praza Maior
Coffee and Liqueurs
Coffee and liqueurs!

It was a fun night! And I am sure the citizens of Lugo continued the celebrations of St Froilan, and life in general, for a long time!

I would love to hear from you!

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