San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Organizers Gear Up for July 4 Picnic

Free food, free beer and patriotism will draw thousands of U.S. citizens and their families to the state brewery Cervecería Costa Rica grounds on Tuesday, July 4, for the American Colony Committee’s annual Independence Day Picnic.

Hot dogs, bagels, coffee and beer will fill guests’ stomachs as they enjoy activities such as sack races, square dancing, volleyball and a water-balloon toss.

The 46th annual July 4 picnic is open to all U.S. citizens with valid identification, such as a passport, a passport photocopy or birth certificate, and their immediate families.

The free event will begin at 8 a.m. at the Cervecería in Alajuela, northwest of San José, and end at noon, in an effort to avoid afternoon rain. At 10 a.m., all games and consumption will stop for a flag ceremony.

Chairs will be provided on the grounds of the Cervecería, and parking is available along the road near the Intel building. Organizers have arranged to have four buses shuttle guests between the parking area and the front gate of the Cervecería.

Some parking is available inside the grounds, but is reserved for volunteers, patrons and the handicapped.

The University of Costa Rica (UCR) concert band and cheerleaders from Universidad Latina will provide entertainment at the picnic, and guests who want help with voter registration or residency issues can find it at an expanded community service fair, according to Susan Tessem, president of the American Colony Committee.

In past years, the fair has included political groups, embassy officials and representatives from the American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars.

New groups this year will include: the Costa Rican-North American Cultural Center, which will provide information on scholarships and SAT testing for U.S. universities; the Costa Rica-United States Foundation (CRUSA), which provides technical support to promote sustainable development in the country; the Little Theatre Group, a mainstay of English-language community theater in Costa Rica since 1949; and the Costa Rican-American Chamber of Commerce (AMCHAM), a business organization advocating trade and investment between the United States and Costa Rica.

The picnic is supported primarily by donations from U.S. companies with Costa Rican branches, though volunteers will be collecting donations as guests leave the picnic.

For more information, call Susan Tessem at 228-9167.


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