“Chupinazo” Shared by the Pamplona Choral Society and the “Peña La Veleta”
The Mayor of Pamplona, Joseba Asirón, has delegated to these two groups the 2015 launching of the rocket “Chupinazo”at noon on July 6 announcing the beginning of Sanfermines. The fuse is traditionally lit from the front balcony of the Town Hall.
The “Orfeón Pamplonés” or Pamplona Choral Society celebrates its 150th anniversary this year, and the members of the “Peña La Veleta” are also being honored for their tireless work, beginning in the 1930s, to promote the wearing of white and red in Sanfermines.
The names of those representing each group has not yet been determined. Last year the tremendously exciting act of lighting the fuse of a rocket that explodes into the air signalling the start of the fiesta was carried out by Mikel Martínez, the president of the Red Cross of Pamplona.
The “Peña La Veleta” was founded in 1931. Its members were mainly from working classes who wanted to identify their group with clothes not worn by other associations who took part in Sanfermines – they decided upon what are now the traditional white trousers and shirt and red scarf. During the Spanish Civil War, several “Peña La Veleta” members were taken captive or killed. The new mayor, Jose Asirón, made his choice of honouring them, taking into consideration the petitions of the “Autobús de la Memoria” and the “Federación of Peñas” who asked that their work and sacrifices be recognized.
The “Orfeón Pamplonés” is celebrating its 150th anniversary this year. In addition to taking part in the launching of the Sanfermines rocket, a park on the Arrosadía lake has been named after them. The history of the “Orfeón” goes back to 1865, the year in which eleven people, presided by Conrado García, created this choral society with the goal of teaching music with no charge to “the craftsmen who apply and are accepted” into the society.