In 1944, during a parade of gigantes y cabezudos, young men who wanted to participate in the event staged a brawl. Since there was a vegetable stand nearby, they pickedup tomatoes and used them as weapons. The police had to intervene to break up the fight, and forced those responsible to pay the damages incurred.
The following year the young people repeated thefight, only this time brought their own tomatoes from home. They were again dispersed by the police. After repeating this in subsequent years, the party was, albeit unofficially, established.
Changesthroughout its history
In 1950, the council allowed the party to happen. The next year however it was opposed, and some participants were arrested. These people were quickly released thanks to pressurefrom town residents and other participants.
When the festival was finally officially sanctioned, the launching of tomatoes became inventive. Methods such as using water canons, catapults and fillingof fountains of rivals became common. Between the noise and chaos, participants typically primed with those who were mere spectators, including local personalities. By 1957 the festival was once againbanned with strict penalties, including imprisonment, threatened against those flouting the ban. In that year, the neighborhood decided to organize what they called "the funeral of the tomato", whichcame in a procession carrying acoffin with a great tomato, accompanied by a band playing funeral marches along the path.
Due to local pressure, in 1959 the town finally approved the Tomatina, butimposed a rule that people could only throw tomatoes after a horn sounded and should end when it sounded a second time.
Between 1975 and 1980 the festival was organized by the ordeal(?) of San Luis...