I’m a bit late with my word prompt entry sponsored by Eugenia’s Brew n’ Spew Cafe, but this week’s celebrations in San Miguel seemed to fit the topic: Festive. See more entries for the prompt at https://amanpan.com/2019/09/25/brewnspewcafe-september-23-2019-2/#comments
Mexicans do know how to party, and they are eager to take to the streets, parks, and neighborhoods to share their enthusiasm for any and every historical occurrence.
Last week San Miguel residents pulled out all the holiday stops for the annual St. Michael’s Feast, celebrating the city’s own archangel.
And what a party it was!
For eight days the city enjoyed fireworks, parades, displays, conchero dancers, the larger-than-life
puppets known as mojigangas,
the Xúchiles—huge floral arrangements made of cactus fronds and marigolds mounted on bamboo frames, and of course food and drinks to aid the legacy of St. Michael to live on.
I would like to say there were highlights, but I would be minimizing some of the events, and that would not be fair. But I will share some of the festivities I personally observed.
Friday night the ‘serious’ partying kicked off with fireworks at the Parroquia and didn’t stop until after 6 a.m. Saturday with more fireworks. Thinking it would be fun to see the 4 a.m. light displays, I was up and joining hundreds (perhaps thousands, who can count the number in the dark?) of folks jostling for optimum visual positions around the central Jardin.
Crowds filled the streets around the Jardin and Parroquia in downtown San Miguel de Allende as citizens celebrated the city’s archangel St. Michael’s Feast. Fireworks were a nightly event, casting a reddish light over the face of the historic church.
Two hours of booming and constant pyrotechnics including pinwheels, sparklers, bangers, and Roman candles, the finale brought on spinning wheels shooting sparks over, through, and around the masses, covering us with whatever residue is left when tons of firecrackers are exploded.
Luckily, I failed to insert my hearing aids, saving what little hearing I have. Thinking we had seen the last of the show, we trudged back down the hill and suddenly the sky again lighted with yet another round of spectacular displays.
How many pesos does this show cost? I have no idea, but the city must think the influx of money from tourists refills the municipality’s coffers, with cash to spare.
On Saturday more massive parades were held beginning with the Blessing of the Horses mass. Estimates say more than 500 horses and riders made their way to the Parroquia for this annual blessing.
Perhaps my favorite event was the performance of the famous Voladores de Papantla.
As described in DiscoverSMA.com, “the Papantla Flyers set up their pole in the esplanade in front of the church and performed their gut-wrenching feat. This involves five men climbing to the top of the pole. Four of them attach themselves to ropes while the fifth stands on a tiny (like 12” square tiny!) platform at the very top and plays a flute. The other four fall off the top and slowly spin on the ends of their ropes until they reach the ground. It is graceful and lovely to watch and the voladores’ performances are always among the most popular of all September events in San Miguel de Allende.”
Hundreds of costumed Indian dancers from across Mexico performed in a parade to the central square, bringing the festival to a close.
San Miguelians believe this is the happiest party of the year, and I agree.
11 thoughts on “St. Michael’s Feast is SMA’s Home Grown Festival”
You entice me. If budget permitted, I would come to see SMA.
I have a spare bedroom you would love. Come on for a visit.
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Oh, you tempt me. I have a trip scheduled for next week and another in February, and the budget says that’s all it’ll do. Maybe another year. Thank you.
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The invitation remains open.
Reblogged this on BrewNSpew and commented:
Sharing Margo’s take on Sept. 23 prompt –
So colourful, as everything seems to be in SMA.
It does indeed.
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Thanks for sharing your photos! I didn’t get to see as much as I would like to have as you can imagine. But I did get to see you and that was at least a special!
It was wonderful to spend some time with you. Hopefully we will have another opportunity to do it again.
Stay well. Mj