The Harvest Festivals in Jerez (also called Autumn Festivals) are held in September (well when else would you have it?!), and pay tribute to the ritual of picking grapes given that the end result is the essence of the city. This is another rare chance to see traditional costumes and decorated horses and hear gypsies singing in every corner. If anything characterises this fair - with its medieval market in the city, singing competitions and equestrian shows - it has to be the 'grape stomping', organised every year in front of the City Hall. Here the harvest masters remove their shoes, step into barrels and support each other whilst stomping relentlessly on the fruit. It is believed that this ritual comes from the Phoenician influence 3000 years ago.
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