Ponies also have their day in the festivities of Caravaca de la Cruz. Although they were taking part in the Wine Horses celebrations since the 1970s, it was not until the year 2005 that they got their own parade. After that and three years later, it was integrated in the Festival as “The Race of the Ponies”. Being beautifully embroidered and each being led by four children each, they do a tender race of 80 metres up to the castle. It takes place on the morning of 3rd May.
Moors and Christians & Bath of the Cross
In the evening takes place the Solemn Procession of the Bath. Moors and Christian factions parade along the main streets, whilst the Holy cross of Caravaca is taken to the templete, where, after the Parlamento between the moor and christian kings and a mock battle, the Bath of the Cross and the Blessing of the water are performed.
History about the Cross of Caravaca
Around the XIII Century, when Caravaca was a Moorish Kingdom under Zeyt-Abuzeyt, a Christian missionary was captured and taken to the king, this latter was curious about the christian rituals and asked the missionary to celebrate a mass. He was willing to do it, but when he become aware of the lack of a crucifix (all of them destroyed by the arabs) he refused. Suddenly a bright ligh with two angels appeared and placed a two-armed-cross on the altar. Overcome by the vission, the king decided to convert himself and his family to the Christian faith. Since then, the Vera Cruz of Caravaca gained the reputation of a powerful protector as well as healer.
The race of the ponys is touching and is much calmer than the Wine Horses.
In respect of the events around the Cross of Caravaca, they are unique since it is through the miracles of the Cross, that Caravaca de la Cruz became fifth holy town of the Christianism.