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Barcelona is a modern city so there are always lots of events and festivals throughout the year ranging from the performing arts to sport to carnivals. For example, in September you can watch a carnival, an air show, fireworks, a George Michael concert, a Flamenco and opera show and a football match.
One of the main highlights of the summer in Barcelona is the Festa Major in the district of Gràcia - the biggest of Barcelona´s neighbourhood festivals. For a week each August the area is transformed with wonderfully decorated streets, live music and plenty of things going on in the numerous plazas.
For a brilliant weekly update visit http://www.thisweekbcn.com/latest.pdf you can also pick up the printed version of this leaflet in many places.
A big weekend is at the end of September: The Merce Festival. Lots of free music concerts, particularly drummers, a carnival, street performers, fireworks, and many other events. Be warned that it is very crowded though, so may not appeal to everyone.
For kids (and young adults) there is the Festival of Santa Eulalia (La Laia), every year around the 12th of February. Plenty of activities for the young ones including a children's correfoc (firerun).
Shortly after is Barcelona's Carnival (also in February). It lasts for a few days and it is at its most spectacular in the nearby town of Sitges (an easy train ride).
Here are a couple of websites to visit for more information:
Aboutbarcelona.com has a list of all the important holidays and traditions.
The Barcelona World Guide has a month by month summary of events and festivals.
Whilst in Barcelona, why not go and see one Barcelona FC football match inCamp Nou Stadium (ne of the biggest stadiums in the world). You can buy your tickets in avance online (check out www.footballticketsbarcelona.com or http://www.spanishfootballtickets.com/) or at the stadium on the day of the match.