A massive food fight—drawing tens of thousands annually—covered the small town of Bunol, Spain, in tomato guts Wednesday.
La Tomatina’s website calls it the “World’s Biggest Food Fight.” More than 100 tons of over-ripe tomatoes are thrown in the town’s center, Plaza del Pueblo. The attendance in 2012 was reported at 50,000, according to the website—a significant swelling of the town’s usual population of 9,000.
The food fight technically begins with someone climbing a two-story-high greased pole to reach a ham at the top. This feat usually takes a while to accomplish, however, so the tomato tossing usually begins in practice shortly after the gathering time of 11 a.m.
Due to the mass interest in the event, this year, attendees had to pay 10 euros for a ticket and the attendance was capped at 20,000.
After the festival, fire hoses clean the streets with water from Roman aqueducts, and participants wash up in the river.