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8 famously messy festivals

By: Josh Lew on Nov. 18, 2013, 2:52 p.m.
A woman is doused in wine during the Battle of Wine in Spain

Photo: Cesar Manso/AFP/Getty Images

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Battle of Wine

Held in the northern Spanish town of Haro, the Batalla del Vino (Battle of Wine) takes place annually during the Haro Wine Festival. Plenty of alcohol is consumed during this daylong festival, but much more is thrown. Early in the morning, everyone dresses in white and parades through town behind the mayor, who rides on a horse.

The day actually starts out seriously, with a Catholic mass that recognizes the town's patron saint. After that, however, the people begin throwing red wine at one another. Even the most stain-proof clothing will be a total loss after the wine fight since everyone ends up covered from head to toe. The battle is followed by more wine drinking, music and a mock bull fight involving the town's youths and local heifers.