Carnaval de Ponce

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Carnaval de Ponce
Afiche del Carnaval Ponceño 2011, in Ponce, Puerto Rico.jpg
Poster bill of the 2011 Carnaval de Ponce, celebrated March 2–8, 2011, in Ponce, Puerto Rico.
Official nameCarnaval Ponceño
Also calledCarnaval de Ponce
TypeLocal, cultural
CelebrationsParades, parties
DateWeek before Ash Wednesday
2018 dateFebruary 7 –
February 13
2019 dateFebruary 27 –
March 5
2020 dateFebruary 19 –
February 25
2021 dateFebruary 10 –
February 16
FrequencyAnnual
First time1858
Related toLent

The Carnaval de Ponce (English: Ponce Carnival), officially Carnaval Ponceño, is an annual celebration held in Ponce, Puerto Rico. The celebration lasts one week and it ends on the day before Ash Wednesday. Thus, it is generally held in February and sometimes in March. It is one of the oldest carnivals of the Western Hemisphere, dating back to 1858.[1] Some authorities, such as the Smithsonian Institution, believe the Ponce Carnaval can be traced to as far back as 250 years ago.[2] The Carnaval coincides with the Mardi Gras of New Orleans, the Carnival of Venice, and Rio de Janeiro's Carnival. The estimated attendance is 100,000.[3] Scenes of the 2011 Carnaval Ponceño were featured in the Travel Channel on 7 August 2011.[4]

History[edit]

There are no documents stating the official origin of the Carnaval, but there are documents mentioning the celebration as early as 1858.[5][6][7] The Carnaval de Ponce thus began in 1858 and was started as a mask dance by a Spaniard by the name of José de la Guardia.[8][9] The masquerade dance continued as a tradition through the years, but it was not until the 1950s that the municipal government added the parade to the Carnaval.[10] In the early 1960s, the Carnaval began to integrate floats that represented civic and cultural institutions, public and private residential communities, schools, colleges and universities, banking, industry and commerce.[11] The Office of Cultural Development of the Municipality of Ponce explains that “it is believed that the influence of the Nice Carnival extended to Barcelona and that immigrants from Barcelona brought it to Ponce. With the passing of time Poceans have added their own touches with Afro-Antillean music that fills the celebrations with percussion, rhythm and happiness."[12]

In June 1995, Carnaval de Ponce was taken to New York City where, during the Puerto Rican Day Parade, over 200 entertainers, folk artists and musicians from Ponce, in addition to the Banda Municipal de Ponce and the Carnival's Queen and Child Queen, marched down New York's Fifth Avenue as part of that City's Puerto Rican Day Celebration. During the week leading to the Parade, folk artists from the Carnaval de Ponce, toured the City teaching children to make the traditional Ponce carnival's masks.[13] In 2012, a local news weekly called Carnaval de Ponce "Puerto Rico's National Carnival".[14]

Costumes and masks[edit]

Illustration of a vejigante mask

One of the traditions of the Carnaval is the appearance of the "vejigantes", which is a colorful costume traditionally representing the devil or evil. Vejigantes carry blown cow bladders with which they make sounds and hit carnival attendees throughout the processions.

The traditional vejigante masks of the Ponce carnival are made of paper mache and are characterized by the presence of multiple horns. The mask was developed by Ponce artisans in the early part of the 20th century. They are made from newsprint paper mixed with homemade glue and paint. Sophisticated Ponce carnival masks are sought after by mask collectors and masks from Ponce have become a symbol of Puerto Rico at large.[15]

The Carnaval ends with the Burial of the Sardine, at which point everyone sings a song in Spanish that translates into:[16] The burial of the Sardine event started in 1967.[17] (The Ball Dance was also started in 1967.The burial of the Sardine event started in 1967.[18]

The Carnival is dead now
They are burying him;
Throw just a little dirt in
So he can rise again.

Economics[edit]

The municipal government invests close to $100,000 in the Carnival and the event infuses some $500,000 into the city's economy.[19]

List of events[edit]

The Carnaval starts on the Wednesday before Ash Wednesday, and the events are as follows.[20][21]

Wednesday: Vejigantes Party
Thursday: King Momo Entrance Parade
Friday: Crowning of the Child Queen
Saturday: Crowning of the Carnival Adult Queen
Sunday: Main Parade
Monday: Carnival's Ball Dance
Tuesday: Burial of the Sardine

Carnaval queens and child queens[edit]

2011 Sand Sculpture by the Sand Masters on Plaza Degetau, Ponce

In 1959, the Carnaval introduced the crowning of a Carnaval queen. This was followed, in 1973, with the crowning of a Carnaval child queen. The following are the Carnaval queens and child queens.[22]

Carnaval Queens[edit]

Carnaval Child queens[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Ponce Carnival Goes International In its 150th Anniversary Edition. Let's Go To Ponce. Ponce Carnival. Retrieved 12 April 2010.
  2. ^ A Puerto Rican Carnival: How to Dress for the Ponce Carnival; Introduction: What is a Carnival? The Smithsonian Institution. 1993 and 2002. Accessed 1 February 2019.
  3. ^ Attendance Retrieved April 12, 2010.
  4. ^ Carnaval Ponceño y escultura de arena por Travel Channel. El Sur a la Vista. Ponce, Puerto Rico. 5 August 2011. Retrieved 27 August 2011.
  5. ^ Activan plan de seguridad para Carnaval. La Perla del Sur. Ponce, Puerto Rico. 15 February 2012. Retrieved 1 February 2018.
  6. ^ Activan plan de seguridad para Carnaval. La Perla del Sur. Ponce, Puerto Rico. 15 February 2012. Retrieved 21 February 2012.
  7. ^ Carnaval, Carnval, Llego el Carnaval! El Señorial. Ponce Municipal Government. "Anuario: Carnaval Ponceño 2013." February–March 2013. Page 18. Retrieved 30 September 2013.
  8. ^ Tradiciones de la Perla del Sur: Fiestas del Carnaval de Ponce. Government of the Autonomous Municipality of Ponce. Retrieved 7 July 2012.
  9. ^ Mantienen viva la tradición carnavalesca. Reinaldo Millán La Perla del Sur. Ponce, Puerto Rico. 6 February 2013. Year 31. Issue 1523. Page 24. Retrieved 6 February 2013.
  10. ^ Tradiciones de la Perla del Sur: Fiestas del Carnaval de Ponce. Government of the Autonomous Municipality of Ponce. Retrieved 7 July 2012.
  11. ^ Carmelo Rosario Natal. Ponce En Su Historia Moderna: 1945-2002. Published by Secretaría de Cultura y Turismo of the Government of the Autonomous Municipality of Ponce. Ponce, Puerto Rico. 2003. p. 91.
  12. ^ Celebran 160 años del carnaval en Ponce: Pese a los azotes y las vicisitudes por culpa del huracán María, los ponceños festejarán en grande. Josefina Barceló Jiménez. El Nuevo Dia. Guaynabo, Puerto Rico. 4 February 2018. Accessed 15 February 2018.
  13. ^ Antonio R. Gomez and Margarita Diaz. Unmasking the Ponce Carnival. Daily News. New York, New York. Puerto Rican Day parade Special. 8 June 1995.
  14. ^ Activan plan de seguridad para Carnaval. La Perla del Sur. Ponce, Puerto Rico. 15 February 2012. Retrieved 21 February 2012.
  15. ^ Antonio R. Gomez and Margarita Diaz. Unmasking the Ponce Carnival. Daily News. New York, New York. Puerto Rican Day Parade Special Supplement. 8 June 1995.
  16. ^ The Smithsonian Institution. A Puerto Rican Carnival: How to Dress for the Ponce Carnival. Retrieved April 12, 2010.
  17. ^ Carmelo Rosario Natal. Ponce En Su Historia Moderna: 1945-2002. Published by Secretaría de Cultura y Turismo of the Government of the Autonomous Municipality of Ponce. Ponce, Puerto Rico. 2003. p. 91.
  18. ^ Carmelo Rosario Natal. Ponce En Su Historia Moderna: 1945-2002. Published by Secretaría de Cultura y Turismo of the Government of the Autonomous Municipality of Ponce. Ponce, Puerto Rico. 2003. p. 91.
  19. ^ Cierra La Sonora el Carnaval Ponceño . La Perla del Sur. Ponce, Puerto Rico. 6 February 2013. Year 31. Issue 1523. Page 28. Retrieved 7 February 2013.
  20. ^ Carnival Program Retrieved April 12, 2010.
  21. ^ Travel Ponce Retrieved April 12, 2010.
  22. ^ Unless otherwise indicated, this information is taken from Carnaval Ponceños 2012: Dedicado a los "Ponceños y Ponceñistas destacados en los Medios de Comunicación". Page 34. Municipio Autónomo de Ponce. Oficina de Desarrollo Cultural. February 2012.
  23. ^ Carnaval Ponceño 2012: Dedicado a 'Los Ponceños y Ponceñistas destacados en los Medios de Comunicacion' (Municipio Autonomo de Ponce, 2012; CEE-SA-12-3910), page <no page number; not numbered>.
  24. ^ Ponce celebra su tradicional Carnaval.
  25. ^ Cierra La Sonora el Carnaval Ponceño . La Perla del Sur. Ponce, Puerto Rico. 6 February 2013. Year 31. Issue 1523. Page 28. Retrieved 7 February 2013.
  26. ^ Todo listo para la celebración del Carnaval Ponceño 2014. RadioIsla. 25 February 2014. Retrieved 6 March 2014.
  27. ^ Listo Ponce para los 156 años de su carnaval. Darisabel Texidor Guadalupe. Primera Hora. 25 February 2014. Retrieved 27 February 2014.
  28. ^ Este viernes inicia la edición 159 del Carnaval Ponceño. WIPR TV. San Juan, PuertO Rico. 22 February 2017. Accessed 15 February 2018.
  29. ^ Celebran 160 años del carnaval en Ponce: Pese a los azotes y las vicisitudes por culpa del huracán María, los ponceños festejarán en grande. Josefina Barceló Jiménez. El Nuevo Dia. Guaynabo, Puerto Rico. 4 February 2018. Accessed 15 February 2018.
  30. ^ Carnaval Ponceño 2012: Dedicado a 'Los Ponceños y Ponceñistas destacados en los Medios de Comunicacion' (Municipio Autonomo de Ponce, 2012; CEE-SA-12-3910), page <no page number; not numbered>.
  31. ^ Ponce celebra su tradicional Carnaval.
  32. ^ Cierra La Sonora el Carnaval Ponceño. La Perla del Sur. Ponce, Puerto Rico. 6 February 2013. Year 31. Issue 1523. Page 28. Retrieved 7 February 2013.
  33. ^ Todo listo para la celebración del Carnaval Ponceño 2014. RadioIsla. 25 February 2014. Retrieved 6 March 2014.
  34. ^ Listo Ponce para los 156 años de su carnaval. Darisabel Texidor Guadalupe. Primera Hora. 25 February 2014. Retrieved 27 February 2014.
  35. ^ Este viernes inicia la edición 159 del Carnaval Ponceño. WIPR TV. San Juan, PuertO Rico. 22 February 2017. Accessed 15 February 2018.
  36. ^ Celebran 160 años del carnaval en Ponce: Pese a los azotes y las vicisitudes por culpa del huracán María, los ponceños festejarán en grande. Josefina Barceló Jiménez. El Nuevo Dia. Guaynabo, Puerto Rico. 4 February 2018. Accessed 15 February 2018.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 18°0′00″N 66°37′00″W / 18.00000°N 66.61667°W / 18.00000; -66.61667