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Tomatina 2011: Buñol Tomato Fight Paints The Town Red

First Posted: 08/31/11 01:08 PM ET   Updated: 10/31/11 06:12 AM ET

The streets ran red during Buñol's annual tomato fight on the last Wednesday of August. Following opening shouts of "Tomato! Tomato!" at 11 this morning, tens of thousands of participants had exactly one hour to pelt each other with over 120 tons of tomatoes.

The Spanish town in Valencia is perhaps best known for the street food fight Tomatina, which attracts tourists from around the world. This year's attendance exceeded the town's expectations, as over 40,000 revelers took to the streets. Trucks drove by slowly, throwing tomatoes at the crowd below while shirtless festival-goers bathed in a sea of pulp.

The event organizers recommend wearing old clothes and goggles to protect against the acidic tomato juice, which may sting the eyes. Nonetheless, this year 26 people received medical assistance for minor injuries, heat stroke, and eye irritation, according to Europa Press.

As attendance increases each year, the local city council imports increasing quantities of tomatoes from Extremadura, where lower-quality, cheaper tomatoes are grown especially for the festival.

Check out photos from this year's Tomatina below.


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Filed by Clare Richardson  |