The tradition consists of thousands of people dancing through the streets in time to the music and waving branches in the air until they arrive at the shrine of the Virgin. A common sight is for the participants to beat the sea with the branches. This is done as a reminder of the native rite in which the original inhabitants of the Canaries prayed to the gods for rain. The branches are finally given in offering to the religious image. These dances take place every year on 4 August. The next day the festivities continue with a pilgrimage in which the Virgin of Las Nieves is taken from her shrine to the parish church of Nuestra Señora de la Concepción in Agaete. There she stays for about two weeks before being returned to her shrine.