Monday, May 27, 2019

Día de Canarias - Canary Islands Day

Feria de Artesanía de Alcalá

May 30th is Día de Canarias, (Canaries Day), a Canaries-wide public holiday in celebration of the anniversary of the first official Parliamentary session of the islands on 30 May 1983, some 10 months after the Canaries became an autonomous region of Spain in August 1982. The day is celebrated on all the islands with a wide range of cultural events and festivities, though shops and offices are generally closed. 

Read more about the history of Canaries Day

Although the main event is the official ceremony organized by the Government of the Canary Islands each year, Canary Islands Day is celebrated in almost every corner of the archipelago with numerous cultural and leisure activities, in which people participate in traditional costumes, with folk music and exhibitions of local customs and sports such as Lucha Canaria (Canarian Wrestling), Juego del Palo (Stick Fighting), Salto de Pastor (Shepherd's Leap), or Bola Canaria (Boules/Pétanque) in many locations. There is also no lack of demonstrations of the rich, local cuisine.

For 2019, the Canary Islands Government has presented an enormous list of activities for the commemoration of Día de CanariasAmong the folk music concerts on offer on Thursday 30 May are those by some of the 'big names' in this genreLos Gofiones (Plaza de la Candelaria, Santa Cruz at 5:30 pm) and  Los Sabandeños (Plaza de la Candelaria, Santa Cruz at 8:00 pm). While in La Laguna, in the Plaza del Cristo from 12:30pm another edition of the festival Canto Común (Common Song) will take place, bringing together 25 folk groups, soloists, dancers, etc. from the municipality in a demonstration of the island's heritage. 

Canaries Day Crafts Fairs

Meanwhile, in Santa Úrsula and in Alcalá on Thursday 30 May there are Ferias de Artesanía (Crafts Fairs). 

In Santa Úrsula, in the Espacio Cultural La Casona de San Luis, from 20 to 31 May there is an exhibition of Canarian clothing, entitled “ATAVÍOS IV”, organised by the Agrupación Folclórica Chimaque with the Santa Úrsula Town Hall, which this year is dedicated to the undergarments used in the past. Petticoats, bloomers and other pieces can be seen along with shoes and hats that complement the traditional outfits.

The exhibition can be visited until May 31, from Monday to Friday from 4:00 pm to 8:00 pm and on weekends 10:00 am to 1:00 pm and 4:00 pm to 8:00 pm.

At 11am on 30 May, is the XII Campeonato Nacional de Artes Marciales Canarias (12th National Championship of Canary Martial Arts), in the Plaza de Santa Úrsula.

On Thursday 30 May, coinciding with Día de las Islas Canarias, Alcalá celebrates their annual Feria de Artesanía de Alcalá in the Plaza del Llano, with stalls demonstrating all manner of local crafts and produce, with lots of foodstuffs to try.

Día de Canarias Alcalá