Greasy pole running contest is highlight of Maltese festival

Mon Aug 31, 2015 4:47pm EDT
 
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Brave contestants run up a grease-covered pole attached at an angle to a barge in a harbor in Malta during an annual religious festival in the town of St. Julian's. The aim of the gostra competition, which dates back to the Middle Ages, is to snatch flags at the end of the slippery 10-metre (33-foot) pole before falling into the water.

The festival marks the feast day of St. Julian. At dusk hunters fire rifles from the top of a building overlooking the harbor in honor of the saint.