This custom has been taking place for decades in the central port of Ermioni, on the evening of Easter Sunday. It is currently organized by the Municipality and the Municipal Community with the cooperation of the Angling Club. A group of members of the Club undertakes two to three days before to make the effigy of Judas. It is made with care and imagination. It consists of an iron frame dressed in a full engineer’s overalls into which they put straw, wood, gas canisters and some firecrackers, oil and olive oil to keep the flame burning longer.
In the middle of the body they place a sparkler, which they set off at the right time. using fabrics. This effigy is placed by them in the harbour on Holy Saturday. They hang it on a raft and carry it in front of the harbour in a prominent position, throwing two anchors to hold it.
On Easter Sunday evening the fishermen with their boats set off from the picturesque forest of Bisti (ancient name of Poseidon) in Ermioni with lit smoke flares. These boats make three circles around the effigy and the leader takes charge of the burning, lighting the sparkler they had earlier put on Judas.
The spectacle is impressive and is accompanied by music, fireworks and flares. Before the event there is a historical review of the custom followed by traditional dances by the dance team of the Municipal Community in an area next to the main port. At the beginning of the century the custom was held on the afternoon of the Resurrection, after Love (“Agapi)”. They would set up the effigy of Judas at the west entrance of the Church of the Archangels (Taxiarches), on top of a large pile of stones resembling a “skull place” and then they would set it on fire. The effigy of Judas was a huge anthropomorphic demon made of burlap and sackcloth, stuffed with straw, fruit, nitro powder, gunpowder, travertines, fuscia and a large bomb in place of his heart. His face was painted with many colours, and his hands with red minium, representing the blood of his master. Around his neck they had horns hanging around as well as horns all over his head making him look like Satan. Under his feet were piled twigs and sticks and a piece of dry resin for tinder. The leader of the group who had prepared the effigy of Judas approached and set it on fire, holding in his hand the lighted candle of the Resurrection. The flames slowly spread to the horrible face, of which nothing remained but ashes. The custom slowly faded away and stopped. Its revival began in 1971 and was first performed at sea by the late Kosmas Kottaras, Noulis Giannakos and Aslanis Michalis. After the post-independence period it was continued by the cultural association “LASO” in cooperation with the community authority.