Why does Puerto Rico have the longest Christmas in the world?

Why does Puerto Rico have the longest Christmas in the world?

That's right, the longest Christmases are celebrated in Puerto Rico, with an average duration of 45 days. Unlike other countries, Puerto Ricans begin their festivities in November, on Thanksgiving Day, and culminate in mid-January with the St. Sebastian Street festivities.
  • The celebrations begin, as we mentioned, in November with the Thanksgiving day. For this day they cook together, thank each other and eat in the evening, watching the Christmas parades, American football or talking and singing with family and friends. The next day some go shopping on Black Friday, looking for Christmas decorations and gifts.
  • The houses and the Christmas tree come to life these days with decorations and the partying begins.  Parrandas are made up of a group of people who go from house to house playing music, singing and dancing. The house that receives the parranda offers food and drinks to the guests and they continue to the other house.  For this season, pasteles, pavochón, rice with pigeon peas, party sandwiches, pastelillos, cheeses, sorullitos, empanadillas, coquito, a drink and dessert at the same time made of coconut cream, rum and cinnamon, and many other delicious dishes are prepared.
  • From December 16 to 24, nine days before Christmas Eve, the Misas de Aguinaldos are held, Catholic masses sung early in the morning, which usually culminate with breakfast and typical sweets.
  • Christmas Eve, also known as Nochebuena, is celebrated on the 24th, where family and friends gather to dine, exchange gifts and party. In recent years, decorations for houses and squares have become very popular, so people go for a walk to see the Christmas decorations. Some go to the Misa de Gallo, a mass at midnight that welcomes Christmas in commemoration of the birth of the baby Jesus.
  • On December 25, Christmas Day, the birth of the baby Jesus is celebrated and also the arrival of Santa Claus. This day is epic for children who wake up excited to see what gifts Santa Claus left them on the Christmas tree. The family also gathers to share the gifts and celebrate, they go on a chinchorreo along the coast or on a jangueo around the island.
  • The day of the Holy Innocents is celebrated on December 28 in Hatillo with the Festival of the Masks. This carnival-like festival is held to commemorate the children who died when King Herod gave the order to kill the children upon learning that the new messiah had been born. People dress in masks and go from house to house "kidnapping" the firstborn of each family, who offers them candies and gifts to make them give up. There you can also enjoy handicrafts, machinas, typical food and parades that end up being rewarded for their originality.
  • The farewell of the year or New Year's Eve, is celebrated on December 31. Families and friends gather at night to say goodbye to the year that is about to end and welcome the new year. There they eat, drink, sing, play music, explode firecrackers and have fun until dawn. When midnight arrives, a countdown is made from 10 to 1 and when the clock strikes twelve people shout, clap, kiss, hug, jump and even cry. Some hide to avoid stray bullets, others throw water into the street to "throw away all the bad things" and others continue to form the bembé.
  • The first day of the year is to rest and congratulate relatives. Some had sleepover the night before and usually have big breakfasts. On this day people also make new resolutions and organize themselves for this new year.
  • On January 5, Three Kings eve is celebrated. On this day masses are celebrated to honor the three Wise Men, Melchior, Caspar and Balthazar. At night the children collect grass or hay and water for the camels and leave it under or next to the bed, so that they can recover from the long journey they have made.
  • Three Kings Day, like Christmas Day, is epic for children. The grass is scattered on the floor and the kings have left the gifts in the morning. And it is that according to the Bible, when the three Wise Men visited the manger of the baby Jesus after his birth, they brought incense, gold and myrrh. This is one of the favorite festivities of the boricuas and like all festivities, it is shared with family and friends, they sing, dance, play games, drink and eat well. There are also parades with men or women dressed as wise men, music and candies. This is usually the last day of Christmas decorations as everyone gets back to work and school.
  • The octavites are the eight days following Three Kings Day, from January 7 to 14, in which people continue to party and party. At first the eighth was a religious event to glorify Jesus and the Magi.
  • Christmas culminates with the festivities on St. Sebastian street or SanSeb'. A festival in Old San Juan attended by thousands of Puerto Ricans and tourists to be part of the bembé that takes place on the third weekend of January.  The residents of St. Sebastian street decorate the balconies and businesses. The parades of vejigantes, cabezudos and stilt walkers, people dancing the bomba, the plena, the salsa and the reggaeton are part of the cultural spectacle that ends the longest Christmas in the world.

Yes, we like to party a lot but I think it's because of all the influence we have from our Taíno, African and Spanish ancestors and now with American culture being part of us, any time is an excuse to celebrate.

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