At the end of the 15th century, Ivan III ordered houses in front of the Kremlin cleared to make way for what is now known as Red Square. Originally it was a market filled with wooden stalls called the torg. The stalls burned down so frequently that for about tow hundred years it was known as Fire Square. The current name dates from the 17th century and is unrelated to Communism. Before the revolution, Red Square was the site for religious processions and celebrations revolving around the church calendar for example the Patriarch would ride an ass from Savior’s gate to St. Basils. Under the Communist Era military parades were staged here on May Day and on the anniversary of the Revolution. Today the square is used for concerts, fire works displays and other public occassions.