San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Annual Queen’s Birthday Party Gets Bigger, Better

The first Queen’s Birthday Party in 2002 marked British Queen Elizabeth II’s golden jubilee with a charity garden party held at the British Embassy Residence in the western San José suburb of Escazú. The event raised more than $10,000, which was donated to schools in need throughout the country.

Since that first celebration, the garden parties have been growing in popularity and fundraising success. Last year was a huge sellout, raising more than $18,000 in a single day and bringing the total donated over five years to $65,000.

The introduction of decorated hats in 2004 started the trend of setting a theme for the day, with 2005 playing host to “Pirates and Parrots” and last year celebrating the “Myths and Magic” of Costa Rica’s rich store of legends and Escazú’s witches.

At the sixth Queen’s Birthday Party, to be held tomorrow from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the British Embassy Residence in Los Laureles, Escazú, all are welcome to enjoy a fun-filled family day with games, stage performances, live music, imported English beers and that quintessential summer drink, Pimms No. 1, to help digest the “bangers and mash,” curries, afternoon teas and strawberries and cream, plus other “true Brit” delicacies for sale.

The theme will be “The Jungle Book,” and all are invited to dress up in their best vines and lions’ manes – especially the children, though all age groups can compete for prizes as “best in show.”More prizes can be won at the Grand Draw raffles or Silent Auction, at which participants can try their luck for an air ticket to London or a weekend in a luxury resort in the northwestern province of Guanacaste.

Other attractions include the British products stall with goodies specially brought in, such as mint sauce and baked beans; homemade jams and chutneys; zebras (disguised as ponies) to ride; games such as coconut shy, lucky dip and tombola; and Scottish dancing and bagpipes.

Tickets at the gate cost ¢2,000 ($3.85) for adults and ¢1,000 ($1.90) for kids older than 5 (under 5s free). Ample, guarded parking is available nearby. For information, call the British Embassy at 258-2025.


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