Three nations, three celebrations
PANAMA. Three countries with close historical connections, celebrate national holidays this month. Canada, the United States and France ...
PANAMA. Three countries with close historical connections, celebrate national holidays this month. Canada, the United States and France each mark the most important day of their national calendar with celebratory events.
First off the mark is Canada. Today, July 1, Canadians in Panama and around the world will celebrate Canada Day, originally known as Dominion Day, the anniversary of the 1867 enactment of the British North America Act, which united Canada as a single country of four provinces.
On Wednesday, the Canadian Embassy will hold its annual Canada Day BBQ. The BBQ starts at 7:00 p.m. in the social area of PH Pradera, located in Altos Del Golf, 81st Street, San Francisco. (The condo area overlooks Parque Omar.) Members of the Canadian Association of Panama are welcome to join and interested non-members should contact Melissa E. de Bishop, HOM/Ambassador's Assistant & Office Manager at email@example.com or 294-2500 to check availability.
On July 18, the Canadian Association of Panama (Canapan) will follow up with a Canada Day and St-Jean Baptiste Day celebration, “Canada Day, with a French Accent,” just across the Bridge of the Americas at Veracruz Beach, from noon to 4:00 p.m. Membership to Canapan and dinner: $20. Children or dinner only: $10. There will be prizes, drinking, dancing, and pony rides. Canadians are invited to join their countrymen, to renew friendships or make new ones while enjoying the uniqueness of Canada’s two founding nations.
Enter the Fourth of July. In the United States, Independence Day, commonly known as the Fourth of July, commemorates the adoption of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776, marking independence from the Kingdom of Great Britain.
Both the US embassy and expats will bring some of Washington's iconic celebratory elements such as BBQs, fireworks, and concerts to Panama. The United States Embassy is hosting an invitation-only concert of Broadway Music, and Traditional July 4 music by the Symphony Orchestra of the Americas, and members of the National Symphony Orchestra of Panama. The event takes place at the National Theater on Saturday July 4. The Balboa Yacht Club, the VFW and the Ladies Auxiliary is hosting its annual BBQ on Saturday July 4 at the Balboa Yacht Club, Amador, at noon. Entrance is free, and BBQ dinner (BBQ ribs and chicken, baked beans, potato salad and dinner roll) is $8 in advance and $9 at the door. Food items (hotdogs, hamburgers, the all-American apple pie) will also be sold a la carte. All are invited to partake in the celebrations with music, fireworks, blackjack, poker, and a 50/50 raffle. For more information, contact: Richard Allar, 6672-8556 or Lyle Chatham, 269-9645.
Enter Bastille Day. The Fête Nationale ("National Celebration") in official parlance, commemorates the storming of the Paris Bastille, on July 14 1789 and marked the beginning of the French Revolution. The Bastille was a prison and a symbol of the absolute and arbitrary power of Louis the 16th's Ancient Regime. The capture of this symbol of tyranny, and the freeing of its political prisoners marked the end of the absolute monarchy, the birth of the sovereign Nation, and, eventually, the creation of the (First) Republic, in 1792.
Le quatorze de juillet (July 14) in Panama will be celebrated with a pilgrimage and flower offerings at the French Cemetery in Cardenas at 10:00 a.m. to honor the fallen French workers of the original Panama Canal construction in the 19th Century and a reception by invitation only at the French Embassy in Casco Viejo.
An historical footnote: The Panama Star, first published in 1849, later included La Estrella, as a Spanish insert and during the French attempt to construct a canal introduced in 1854 a French section, and became the only tri-lingual newspaper on the American continent.