On January 14 of each year, the canton of Santa Cruz, in the province of Guanacaste, is filled with joy, music, culture, maroons, dances and traditional foods, with the aim of celebrating the Saint’s Festivities in the best way Christ of Esquipulas.
This is a characteristic festival of the canton, which is based on the devotion of its inhabitants to the Black Christ of Esquipulas. The tradition accumulates a history that is preceded by several centuries, which has several versions about its origin.
The festival is made up of six main activities, which, according to the Heritage Magazine 2 (1995), of the Center for Research and Conservation of Cultural Heritage (CICPC) of the Ministry of Culture and Youth, are: La Vela; The demand; Shift to Esquipulas; The Butlers; and, finally, the Entrance, Eve and Festivity.
Apart from the traditions in the religious sphere, the National Festivities of Santa Cruz, the official name by which they are known, are characterized by having cultural activities such as bullfights, traditional food stalls and masquerades.
To learn more about this heritage practice, information regarding the origin of this centuries-old tradition, the activities that make it up, and how it has evolved since the appearance of the image of Santo Cristo de Esquipulas in the region will be presented below.
The information included contributions from the historian and writer of several documentary works of the same nature, Raymundo Brenes Rosales; In addition, it includes data from documentary information published by the CICPC and the State Distance University.