Tales From Wilderland
פסטיבל הדרקון- Dragontide
After almost two centuries of misery, the people of Wilderland are finally free to celebrate arvest and planting festivals, Yuletide, the breaking of Spring and the end of Winter without impending threats. The streets of Lake-town are crowded for the most part of the year, but teem with activity especially in the period that goes from September to December, when many crops are sown and animals are slaughtered, and people from the neighbouring lands enter the town leaving their woods and fields and pastures to bring their goods to the market.
Many foreigners from all over Wilderland join the townsfolk of Esgaroth in the festivities called Dragontide, held to celebrate the death of Smaug. This is a three-day festival held in Lake-town from the first of November to the third, celebrating the killing of Smaug the Dragon and the end of the harvest season. All three days are given to much eating, drinking and singing, as hundreds come to enter the town, or camp on the grounds cleared for the purpose on the shore at the end of its bridge.
The first day opens with the most popular archery contest of the region, the Day of the Black Arrow: the best bowmen of the region put their skills to the test in different games.
On the morn of the second day the richest farmers of the area cross the bridge in a procession of carts decorated with garlands of flowers and colourful ribbons, carrying their choicest cattle destined to be slaughtered for winter food. In the evening, bonfires lit in the fields illuminate the surrounding countryside, while villagers throw the bones of the slaughtered animals into the flames for good luck (not in Lake-town itself though, as for obvious reasons bonfires are strictly forbidden inside its boundaries).
The festival draws to a close on the eve of the third of November, when artificers from Dale inflame the surface of the lake with a spectacular display of fireworks (the creation of which is an art practiced in Dale since its refounding and seemingly inspired and encouraged by no less than the wizard Gandalf).