Since 1868, the town of Roquemaure (near Avignon), has been hosting an annual romantic letter writing contest and kissing festival in honor of Saint Valentine, the patron saint of love. Today the event draws over 20 000 people.
Contestants can submit their entry by e-mail, letter or poem. There are no prizes but the most romantic letter is read aloud to the entire village. And maybe just maybe the recipient of that letter will make a similar declaration - no better prize than that.
And if all of this kissing and romanticism wasn’t French enough, local wine growers also chose Saint Valentine's Day to celebrate the pruning of the vines. A procession of vine clippings and the relics of Saint Valentine (legend has it he passed through the village) parade through Roquemaure in hopes that this homage will grant the appellations good quality wines the following season.
From 12-14 February 2010. www.saintvalentin.org