You Sling Tuh-May-Toes, I Sling Tuh-Maw-Toes

At 10 a.m. on the last Wednesday of each August in Buñol, Spain, one man climbs a two-story greased pole to grab the ham on top. This signals a team to fire water cannons, which alert the thousands of people waiting in the city’s streets that it’s time to lob tomatoes at one another in the festival known as La Tomatina. The battle rages for an hour until the streets are bathed in blood . . . er . . . tomato paste.

Here in the Valley, Tempe’s Flamenco! . . . The Studio celebrates the annual food fight with another kind of contest: La Tomatina Gazpacho Cook-off and Flamenco Juerga. The winner receives $50 and the knowledge that his or her cuisine reigns supreme. There are no losers, ’cause everybody else gets to eat fresh gazpacho and join in post-contest flamenco dancing.

Sat., Aug. 16, 7 p.m., 2008
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Jonathan McNamara