Benitachell celebrates Moors and Christians during the 2nd weekend of July on St Sebastian’s day. The yearly event started as a side event as part of the celebration of the patron saint, and the first appearance of the figure of Al Garcibà. As a reply, the Committee for the Patronal Celebrations organised the parade with the current figure of Ben Abiar.
These parades, started by volunteers were, in later editions, made official. In 1989 they were organised with the current format, separately from the celebration of the Patron Saint and with its own budget and organisation.
Up to six different groups have participated in these fiestas: Les Pobladores, Cavallers, Al Moraig, Ben Abiar, Al Garcibà y Trabuquers.
The main events are:
– The Pregón or proclamation of the fiesta y presentation of the flags
– Arrival of the Moorish Ambassador
– Offering of flowers and mass in honour of St Sebastian, followed by the award of corbatines (ties) for the bands
– “Reconquista“: Christian conquest
– Arrival of the musical bands
– Grand parade of the Moorish and Christian sides
Among the additional features are fireworks, fiestas in the various kábilas, trabucería by the participants in the parades with their music bands and visits by the hermandades (confraternities) to the kábila of each figure.
Text translated from the official page of the Benitachell Ayuntamiento (in Spanish)