Heathcote took on a Spanish flavour during the third El Rocio pilgrimage on the weekend.BARBARA SUNGAILA March 19, 2014 4:10am
Pilgrims paraded down High St on Friday to start the Heathcote El Rocio festival. Photo: Barbara Sungaila
Spain came to Heathcote over the weekend when visitors flocked to the third El Rocio pilgrimage.
The footpath outside the RSL was a swirl of colour on Friday morning and the sound of castanets and flamenco music filled the air.
Maria Gormez, originally from La Mancha, said the festival was about community and religion.
‘‘We get together and share our food, religion and laughs,’’ she said.
Virginia Alcazar, originally from Madrid, said she had been to all three El Rocio festivals in Heathcote.
‘‘A lot of us only see each other here. We have busy lives,’’ she said.
Celebrations started with a flamenco mass, and then a walk with pilgrims following the Virgin del Rocio in her highly-decorated cart.
Tiffany Ayres led the procession on her Andalusian horse Romanzo, from Yalkin Stud in South Australia.
The McIvor Creek stood in for the Rio Quema
El Rocio began in 1653 when the Virgin of Las Rocinas was appointed Patron Saint of Almonte in Andalusia, Spain.
In Andalusia pilgrims travel in groups for between one and seven days, generally sleeping outdoors before taking part in a number of religious ceremonies.
The original Spanish festival has attracted more than one million pilgrims in recent years but the Australian event is on a far more modest scale.
BREAKING: Emergency services called to unit fire on St Georges Rd in Shepparton.
Yarrawonga/Mulwala's largest ever professional golf event, the Shepparton BMW Senior Victorian Open, got underway today with 124 players hitting off from 8am to 1pm on Yarrawonga's Black Bull Golf Course at Silverwoods.
Tatura’s rainfall for the last three months of 2015, 116.6mm, was marginally down on the long-term average for the same period, 120.8mm.
JON Lam’s exhibition Heart to Art will open at Alton Gallery on Friday
ATHLETIC talent clearly runs in the Hayes family.
Special supplement in this weeks edition
For Tocumwal’s Lynda Snowden, working the land hasn’t stopped her from falling in love with the majestic surrounds of her day to day life.
TOOLLEEN Recreation Reserve Committee of Management presented three awards on Australia Day in front of 80 local residents.
The cuteness level at Maryanne Ryan’s place is overflowing the bucket, with the arrival of baby Dougal the donkey.
Deniliquin doctor Marion Magee says she is disgusted with the treatment of local nurses.
After 27 years of dairying, Undera farmer Rob Backway gave up 130 cattle to move into cropping — and he has never looked back.
The News magazines are online - read high quality magazines in your time. Check in regularly for the latest editions.
Riverine Herald's well regarded locally produced magazines. They're now online, so you can read them whenever and wherever you like.
Search for published and unpublished photos from McPherson Media Group newspapers and magazines. All our photos are available to purchase.
Place an advertisement in any one of McPherson Media Group's local newspapers.