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Santo Domingo Celebrations Start – August 1, 2023

Santo Domingo Celebration Start takes place on August 1 to commemorate the patron saints of Nicaragua. People from across the country paint their bodies in the Church’s colors, red and black, to honor the day’s divine message and the life of Saint Dominic, the patron saint of Managua, Nicaragua’s capital. Theists and atheists mark the day in their own ways, with day-long celebrations and lighting up towns and cities with marches, musical performances, and demonstrations.

History of Santo Domingo Celebrations Start

Santo Domingo Celebration Start is a prominent religious observation in Nicaragua. The prevalence of this holiday can be traced back to 1885, when the discovery of Santo Domingo de Guzman’s statue ushered in a new era of Christian theology and religious reverberance in the nation. The statue’s discovery and journey to the Santo Domingo Church are reenacted during the celebration. The event is also commemorated with a traditional festival reflecting locals’ happiness, good fortune, and gratitude. Every year on August 1, communities gather to celebrate the auspicious occasion and mark the Patron Saint Festivities in Santo Domingo.

The statue, popularly referred to as ‘Minguito,’ is placed in a glass case over a wooden platform and decorated with distinguished flowers and colors representing the revival of the Church. On the day of the observation, the figurine is transported to the city’s center via a procession. Participants depart from Las Sierritas Church at 6:00 a.m. sharp and conclude their journey at the Santo Domingo Church in the late afternoon. The trek is accompanied by live music and cultural performances.

Locals typically showcase their culture through clothing, dressing in traditional costumes. In addition, some people cover themselves in hot oil to disguise themselves as the devil. The day bears immense significance for residents of Santo Domingo and the rest of the country. Believers fold their hands and pray for a miracle while the rest of the crowd dances to loud music and feasts on traditional food.

Santo Domingo Celebrations Start timeline

16th Century
The Evangelization of Nicaragua

The Spanish conquest of the island sows the seeds of Christianity in the country.

1838
Nicaraguan Independence

Nicaragua becomes a republic, and evangelization spreads across the country.

1885
The Mystical Discovery

A three-inch statue of Santo Domingo de Guzman is discovered by a local peasant named Vicente Aburto.

1933
The U.S. Leaves Nicaragua

United States Marines exit the country after a 21-year occupation.

Santo Domingo Celebrations Start FAQs

What is Nicaragua most known for?

The country boasts several lakes and volcanoes. In addition, many tourists visit Nicaragua for its ecotourism and surfing spots.

How did Nicaragua get its name?

One theory states that the nation was named after Nicarao, an indigenous chieftain that Spanish conquistadors met upon arriving in the region.

What is the religion of Nicaragua?

Over 50% of the nation’s citizens are Roman Catholic.

Santo Domingo Celebrations Start Activities

  1. Watch the procession

    Every year, a grand procession takes place in Nicaragua. Thousands of devotees participate in the festivities and offer their prayers to the patron saint. To get the full holiday experience, watch the live stream online or take a trip to the country.

  2. Pray for a miracle

    Santa Domingo is known to bestow miracles on the common folk. As the celebrations start, fold your hands together and pray for something meaningful.

  3. Cook arroz ancha

    Arroz ancha is a delicious red rice dish cooked with tomatoes and chilies. A hearty bowl of this meal is all you need to get into the spirit of Nicaraguan festivities.

5 Facts About Nicaraguan Festivities

  1. They are expressions of culture

    Thousands of people wear traditional attire to embrace their culture.

  2. They have horse parades

    A section of the Santo Domingo parade is taken over by horse and car drivers, creating a party atmosphere for the crowd.

  3. They are celebrations for the masses

    Men, women, kids, workers, politicians, and people across the country participate in the Santo Domingo procession.

  4. The rally of the “promisers”

    The “promisers” pray for a miracle by pledging sacrifice and good faith before the statue of Santa Ana or Saint Anne.

  5. They have firework parties

    Fireworks are released to honor Santa Ana.

Why We Love Santo Domingo Celebrations Start

  1. It reaffirms faith

    Santo Domingo Celebration Start is a critical religious observation in Nicaragua. Thousands of devotees gather to mark the auspicious occasion by participating in the procession.

  2. It’s a day of celebration

    Gatherings and parties are organized across the country to mark the day and usher in the blessed harvest season with positivity. Nicaraguans are always ready to welcome anyone wanting to join the festivities warmly.

  3. It unites families

    Santo Domingo brings distant relatives, cousins, and long-lost friends together. Everyone gathers under one roof to feast on traditional Nicaraguan food and wine and honor their patron saint.

Santo Domingo Celebrations Start dates

YearDateDay
2023August 1Tuesday
2024August 1Thursday
2025August 1Friday
2026August 1Saturday
2027August 1Sunday
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