The dragon "de na Coca" at the Saint Sebastian fiestas in January. | J. AGUIRRE

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Residents of Palma may get the opportunity to participate in the organisation of the Sant Sebastià (Saint Sebastian) fiestas this coming January. Council spokesperson, Neus Truyol, has suggested that this could be the case, albeit that mechanisms to facilitate this participation have yet to be specified.

The fiestas have been criticised in recent years, and so participation is seen as one way of restoring affection for them. Ways in which this might be done include voting on the poster and taking account of preferences for the types of music acts. The municipal institute for innovation is to be involved in advising on a pilot project to see how these means of participation can be put into effect. A further issue that will be addressed is whether voting should be confined to residents who are registered in the city or be open to all those with an interest in the fiestas.

Truyol says that associations such as Orgull Llonguet (which organised the big water-pistol battle at the Parc de la Mar last weekend) will also probably be involved. The programme for the next fiestas, she said, will be "mixed". The council's governing board has already approved the initiation of procedures for contracting artists, sound and lighting equipment providers and services for accommodation, travel and insurance as well for promoting the concerts. The budget is up by 10,000 euros to 266,549 euros, this increase taking into account accommodation for performers and the participation of an as yet unnamed international artist on the stage in Plaça Joan Carles I.