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Shorter week next week - Find out why!

I don’t know if you heard already, but on 28th of February there is a very important holiday happening in Andalucia. On this day, everything is closed, people go to the streets to celebrate and put out the flags with all the pride. So let me tell you why do you have a free day at school or at work and what do people celebrate on this day!

Andalusia Day or in original "Día de Andalucía" is a modern holiday celebrated in the Andalusia region through all the cities in the southern Spain. Each year, this holiday takes place on the 28th of February. Fun fact - Many new streets in Andalusia are called "28 Febrero." Day of Andalucía is not a public holiday in the rest of Spain on February 28.

This day commemorates the passing of a referendum in 1980, in which voters in the southern region of Spain, Andalusia, voted in favor of the region becoming an autonomous region in Spain, with its own regional government.

Seville is the capital of the Andalusia region. Within the region, there are eight provinces: Almeria, Cadiz, Córdoba, Granada, Huelva, Jaén, Málaga, and Seville - of which Córdoba, Granada and Seville are well-known.

The founder of Andalucían nationalism was Blas Infante, who wrote the lyrics for the regional anthem and created the Andalusian flag. The Spanish constitution recognizes Andalusians as a nationality – which is multicultural including Phoenicians, Romans, Arabs and Visigoths.

On this day in Andalusia, banks are closed, as well as most shops. Trains and buses still run as any other day. Restaurants will still be open so people can spend the time with their families and friends and celebrate.

Andalusian flag consists of three equal horizontal bars. The top and lower bars are dark green and the middle bar is white. Andalucía's coat of arms is at the center of the flag. Andalucía's coat of arms consists of an image of the mythical Greek hero Heracles between two columns. The columns represent the Pillars of Heracles. These are the rocks on either side of the Straits of Gibraltar.

Most towns and villages have some sort of festivities, with cultural activities and regional honors for the past year being handed out, all accompanied by municipal bands. The regional anthem is sung, called "Himno de Andalucía." Town squares will be decorated with Andalusian flags. Some municipalities hold communal meals with traditional foods, drinks and entertainment. Local politicians may present people with certificates or medals for service to the community.

What Do People Do? Many people spend the day quietly with family or close friends. However, some people organize or attend private parties with traditional music, dancing, food and drink.

On the last day of school before the holiday, many schools serve children a free Andalusian-style breakfast ("desayuno andaluz"), which is "tostada con aceite", a toasted pitufo or mollete bun, sprinkled with olive oil, sometimes with Tomato Triturado (chopped tomato), and sometimes with thin Iberian ham slices as well. You may be given a garlic clove to rub on the bread before the olive oil. Adults usually have coffee with this traditional breakfast, but children are given hot chocolate. Kids also make flags, some put on plays and teachers always make sure children know the words to the regional anthem.

When the holiday falls on a Monday or even Tuesday as this year, events can be spread through the whole prolonged weekend in some places, so people can see the festivities in multiple cities.

So what are your plans for this prolonged weekend? Will you celebrate this day as a true Andalusian?