Costa Ricans don’t celebrate Halloween as Familiar but we adopted this day almost exclusively in communities with expats , this is a great opportutity for Local bars and Hotel to attract customers during the low tourism season with costumed parties.
This is Capitalist Celebreation…I invite you to Celebrate with your family and friends a very nice Tico tradition : Mascaradas Puppets Day on October 31 st.
La Mascarada is a parade of giant masked figures. This tradition is originated as an adaption of Carnival. The Spaniards brought their costumed holiday, Carnival, and its masquerade dances to Central America. This cultural traditions had begun to fade away until 1996 when the Ministry of culture decided to establish an annual parade called the Dia de la Mascarada Tradicional Costarricense.
Parades celebrating this day are held throughout the country with many people wearing their large masks and dancing. Everyone danced with the puppets joining in. Kids enjoy it more than anybody.The music is provided by groups of musicians called Cimarronas-band of traditional Costa Rica Music. These bands have been an important part of all Costa Rican celebrations for years. The name comes from the Spanish word for wild, cimarrón, and was originally used to refer to the band made up of self-taught musicians.
Heads are made with craft paper and newspapers with glue and Skilled by local artisans that spend weeks preparing the masquerade costumes. They are shaped and painted to look like characters from stories told long ago in the Costa Rican tradition or some funny character like El Diablo, la Muerte, la Segua, la Llorona, la Giganta, el Polizonte, la Chingoleta, el Padre sin Cabeza and others.
The clebration hels in the cities of Cartago, Escazu, Aserri and Barva . Escazu has a long tradition to manufacture Mascarada for festivals. The traditional Mascarada Festival in Escazu will be set from Octuber 29th to 31st. Here is the Scheduleof Activities
October 12th Costa Rica celebrated el Dia del Encuentro de Las Culturas, otherwise known as Colombus Day in the United States, “Dia de la Raza” in many American countries, Discovery Day in the Bahamas, and “Dia de las Americas” in Uruguay. This holiday marks the anniversary of Christopher Colombus’s first journey to the Americas, and the merging of different cultures between Europe and the Americas.
He put his foot on America land that day in the year 1492, on an island in the Bahamas, which he called San Salvador. He came to America with his three “Carabelas” ( Boats): La pinta, La Niña y La Santa Maria.
The existence of the American continent was ignored (by Europeans) for long time. But an expedition by Columbus allowed its “discovery”, conquest and colonization by Europeans. The discovery was made on October 12, 1492. However, Columbus thought that came to Asia coast, in India that’s why our native people were called “Indians”. In the moment that all the explorers penetrated in our coasts, rivers, lands, they realized that it was actually a New World.
Cristóbal Colón (Christopher Columbus) landed on the Atlantic coast of a wild land, what is now the port city of Limón, on September 25, 1502 during his fourth voyage to the new world.
September 25, 1502 : Columbus arrived to Costa Rica:
The fourth and last voyage of Columbus was ten years after the first and it iss more important to Costa Ricans, as they came to the land of our country.
On this trip came 140 men in four ships called The Captain, Vizcaya, Santiago and Galicia. Columbus landed on the Caribbean coast of Costa Rica on September 25, 1502 and rested on Cariay, now known as Puerto Limón. He visited the island called Quiribrí and gave it the name of La Huerta, now known as Uvita island.
He remained in Costa Rican territory 17 days during which enjoyed of the natural beauty of our land being impressed by it and by the gold ornaments worn by the natives.
The approvation of Cultures Day confirmed that the roots of Costa Rica and all Latin American countries come from three interacting cultures since 1492: Spanish, native indigenous and African-Caribbean, who made us in a multicultural and multiethnic nation. The establishment of this celebration also help to recognize that, since the middle of last century, our country has benefited from European immigration, American, Asian, Hebrew and Arabic, and others.
Legacy of the Conquest:
In our timeline, this historic event has helped us to create a unique cultural identity and freedom as American. Let’s not forget that despite being discovered by a “civilized” culture , our colonization was bloody where our ancestors were underwent a marginal slavery, violently, and cruel bondage.
The contact between Europeans and native indigenous had enormous impact in both cultures, such as:
New Diseases: Epidemics brought by the Conquerors caused the large Aboriginal population decline since the discovery and conquest.
The spread of plant and animal species: The Spanish brought from the Old World to America some native products for commercialization and to guarantee their usual food . Some of them were the sugarcane, who was brought by Cristóbal Colón in his second Journey, wheat, grapes, citrus and rice ( Originally of Asia). At the same time they had brought to the Old World the native products such as corn, potatoes, cocoa, tomatoes and several varieties of chili and beans. Potato was very important, because it helped to alleviate the famines that periodically occurred in Europe and theTabacco that expanded rapidly in Europe (used by Indigenous for ritual purposes).
Many different species of animals were introduced by Europeans, right in the third journey, Christopher Columbus brought cattle, pigs, horses, cows, sheep and chickens. Indigenous quickly learned to use animals for transportation as the horse which became a prized possession the Indians who lived in prairies of North America.
The environmental impact: It is not doubt that there was an impact on forests due to de-forestation to make room for the large plantations of snuff, sugar cane, grazing and uncontrolled agricultural techniques. The exploitation and plunder of our GOLD bringing it almost the extinction of it caused also the extermination of whole tribes ” in the Middle Ages, the price of A single bag of pepper was more than the life of a man, but gold and silver were the keys of the Renaissance and they were used to open the gates of paradise in heaven and the gates of the capitalist mercantilism in Earth “(E. Galeno).
Culture shock and Military: It was made thank to the Military victory of Europeans on American civilizations subjecting them to slavery and evangelism, economic exploitation of the vanquished and the introduction of European cultural patterns: language, customs, food, religion, etc.
The Indigenous lost a great deal of their knowledge when the Spanish Conquistadors ravaged the native nations.
The Conquest of Costa Rica:
The conquest of the present territory of Costa Rica, with exeption of Nicoya, was obtained too late, because it was not until the 1560s when the Spanish were able to penetrate into the interior of the country, after repeated failures.
By the mid-sixteenth century, the indigenous population of Nicaragua was decimated , due to the export of slaves, epidemics and overwork. The need for new Indigenous labor and to find more riches (Gold and silver) were the motives of Spanish that were living in nicaragua that led to plan the conquest of Costa Rica. Juan de Cavallon expeditions to Costa Rica finally succeeded in 1569.
Whether for good or bad, we were conquered and my blood is indigenous and Spanish. Because of this I am the best of both worlds. I consist of both cultures, enjoyable and attractive and if up to me if I want to keep the bad parts.
“When you have to choose between two paths, ask yourself which of them has heart. Whoever chooses the path of the heart is never wrong.” (The Popol Vuh)
In September 28, 1709, an uprising of indigenous groups led by Pablo Presbere known as “Pa Blu” or “Rey Lapa” killed a number of Spanish in the mountains of the Talamanca region of Southern Costa Rica. Including also f the friars Pablo de Rebullida and Antonio de Andrade . This group of indigenous with 10 soldiers and one women burned 14 Catholic churches and forced to the Spanish people moved out from the area.
This rebellion effectively put an end to Spanish efforts to control this area during the colonial period.
Talamanca is one of the few Village who could not be conquered by the European invasion. Since the first Spanish arriving in 1540 , the warrior and the libertarian spirit manifested itself inhabitants of the region. To understand Indigenous act , we need to know why the constant and determinate resistance of the indigenous:
The Encomenderos(Those with the right to receive Indigen tribute) found it profitable to use Indian labor to farm and raise livestock. But from the Spanish point of View, the small dispersed Indian Villages made it difficult to efficiently exploit indigenous labor. Thus,Indias were concentrated were they could more easily be evangelized by Franciscan friars and made to work. At least, until 1610, Indians owed tribute in good as well as in service. They provided agricultural and household labor as well as products like cotton blankets, honey, wax, and ceramics. The sort of abuses to which the Indians were subject becomes clear in records of complaints they made to Spanish authorities. The Indians of Garabito, for instance, complained in 1590 that the Spanish governor had taken and sold corn that belonged to their village, and the Indians of Pacaca complained that the friar there forced them to spend all day long weaving mats and baskets, among other items, and the result was that the town went hungry because no men were available to work the cornfields (Solorzano Fonseca 2002)
Thus it was indigenous labor and the goods collected as tribute that constituted the first sustained economic activity in colonial Costa Rica. Later, markets for wheat, corn, and pack mules and other livestock opened up in the growing settlements of Panama to the south and Nicaragua to the north and the encomenderos took advantage of these. In the arly years of the 17th century, the Spanish looked to the southeast, to the conquest of the Talamanca region, to gain new lands and more Indian labor. An Indian uprising of 1610, however, destroyed the new town of Santiago and forced the Spanish to flee back to Cartago. The southern region was to remain unconquered, but the violence there gave the Spanish the excuse that needed to declare the Indians in open rebellion and to send military expeditions to forcibly capture Indians slave. Even with this, the encomienda as a source of labor was doomed. The population available to be distributed in encomienda rapidly dismissed.
On July 1, 1710 Pablo Presbere was sentenced to die arcabuceado, since Costa Rica had no executioner to apply the cruel death.
At the begging of the 1700s, a final effort was made to subdue and evangelized the indigenous people of the Talamanca. By 1709, the Franciscan friars had established 14 missions in the region. However, the Bribri, Cabecarand Terbis Indians overcame their traditional rivalries to unite in a surprise attack under the leadership of Pablo Presbere in September 28, 1709. Almost immediately, the Spanish authorities in Cartago organized in expedition of 200 soldiers to punish the rebellious Indians. The Spanish captured Presbere and marched him and 700 of his followers back to the capital. Two hundred Indians died of fled along the way, and the remains 500 were divided up among the Spaniards who had participated in the expeditions.
Presbere was tried, condemned for treason, and executed in July 4th, 1710.Despite not knowing much about the life of Cacique Pablo Presbere or Suinsi, it is important to rescue his role in the Indian rebellion . He is a national hero by opposing the submission and destruction of indigenous culture by the Spanish . The goverment of Costa Rica, declared Paul Presbere “Defender of Indigenous People” Day on July 4th.
The memory of Pablo Presbere Lives on this monument to him in the city of Limon
Costa Rica: A Global Studies Handbook By Scott Pentzer
The Latern parade ( Faroles) recalls the historic moment happened 1821, when the news of the country’s independence. It is mentioned that it was Maria Dolores Bedoya who bravely walked through the streets of Guatemala on the night of September 14th, 1821 with a lantern in her hand inviting people to meet at the plaza opposite to the town hall, where the provincial councils of Guatemala gathered including Chiapas, Honduras and El Salvador.
Their goal was to put pressure on politicians in order to sign the Declaration of Independence “Viva la Patria”, “Viva la Libertad”. This tradition continued by decorating the houses with patriotic colors and making parades with faroles on every 14th of September at six in the evening in remembrance of the heroic act of Maria Dolores Bedoya. The night lights up with the remembrance of the news of freedom.
Here is a simple guide of how make a lantern with reusable materials.
Sepamos ser libres no siervos menguados, derechos sagrados la Patria nos da.
Costa Rica is a nation governed in peace with a solid long-standing democracy from 1821 when we granted our independence from Spain, on the 15th of September in 1821.
Guatemala proclaimed independence from Spain for all Central American provinces on September 15, 1821. Costa Rica learned the news a month later. The first constitution, the Pacto de Concordia, was soon adopted. This led to the celebration of the first elections in December of 1821.
Independence Day, a day of celebration in our country,our heritage, our history, and patriotism. This day is the day of our release from Spanish rule and the beginning of re-finding our own national identity.
The Independence Day of Costa Rica is celebrated with much fun and merriment. The national holiday is marked by hoisting of the National flag, patriotic parades and performances by students in the community. The National anthem is also sung on the Independence Day of Costa Rica.
Celebration in whole the country will be placed in RED and BLUE colors. You will see “mascaradas” or clowns, cimarronas with loud music, Children and teenager dancing in lines with bands of drummers in typical outfits.
Costa Rica gave the responsibility in organization of the most important activities of the Celebration to the Students of School and High School of our Country, to teach them honor, values, patriotism, and respect to our land. To Learn the history, tradition and how be a good citizens.It will be a great day for the school because they will show their best performing.
We feel the spirit of the Independence from the moment that we decorate our homes with Patriotic Colors and we sing the National Hymne at 6:00 pm. when we walk with our kids in the night parade called Desfile de Faroles(The Lantern Parade) in remembrance of the actual eve of our independence when delegates arrived in Guatemala, sang of the freedom , lit lanterns and received the Independence Torch.
Also the students will have the honor to carry and run the lit Torch that is coming from Guatemala. The ‘Independence Torch’, a national symbol of freedom in Costa Rica, accompanied the delivery of the new of independence to the countries of Central American back in 1821. The Torch Run, a highlighted event throughout Central America, emulates this original historical event beginning with the lighting of the torch on the 9th of September in Guatemala and then making its way through Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica by foot and through the passing of hands as it did nearly two centuries ago. On the eve of Independence Day, the Independence Torch reaches its final destination in Cartago, Costa Rica, the capital of Costa Rica at the time of independence.The torch will arrive in Costa Rica september 15 and will be carried by the best honored school/high school students.
Very important to notice is government offices, banks and most businesses will be closed for the holiday, and some roads will be closed in major cities to accommodate the parades.