The Cant de L’Estoreta tradition came to life in the 1960s, thanks to the Fallas commission of Plaza del Árbol. Adults and kids alike dressed up in antiquated clothing, and reenacted the obsolete tradition of walking with the estoreta velleta, an old carpet upon which neighbors could place their old junk they accumulated over the year. That junk then was used to build the Fallas figures.

Nowadays, it’s more of a kids parade, featuring Valencian-themed floats, but you can see the occasional estoreta velleta. Several commissions participate, and compete for “best float” in front of the Fallera Major Infantil and her court of honor. The parade is held early on one of the first Sundays of March and we always try to see it. There’s an uplifting atmosphere, with everyone in a great mood … except perhaps for an occasional meltdown from one of the kids waiting to perform before the judges.

The parade gets going at 10am, when floats line up in Calle de Roteros almost all the way up to Torres de Serranos. The Plaza del Carmen, where the judging takes place, is usually packed, but you can find a spot to stand along the street. My favorite float of 2020 featured a group of boys dressed up as the judges of the Water Tribunal (Tribunal de las Aguas), sitting on little chairs in front of the Gate of the Twelve Apostles. A close second was the float of kids pretending to make fizzy orange soda, squeezing oranges and filling the juice up in glass bottles.

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