PHOTOS: American Colony celebrates US Independence Day at annual picnic

July 4, 2014

July 4th was sunny and bright – perfect for a giant, U.S.-style picnic. Hundreds of people converged on the Cervecería Nacional on the outskirts of San José to attend the 54th annual Fourth of July Picnic, a Costa Rican tradition since 1961. The crowd was a mix of U.S. citizens and Tico guests, who meandered from Pepsi kiosk to yogurt stall to the Nathan’s Famous hot dog tent, eating and chatting and savoring the perfect weather.

Established by the American Colony Committee, the picnic is an opportunity for U.S. expats to socialize and celebrate U.S. independence. The picnic is also a venue for local businesses and organizations, from Prisma Cosmetic Dentistry to the American Legion.

The activities could have been plucked from a Norman Rockwell painting: There were balloon tosses, gunny sack races, a hot dog eating contest and a petting zoo. A cheerleading squad flipped acrobats in the air while square dancers do-si-doed nearby. Cover bands played classic rock on the main stage. The Imperial beer flowed liberally.

All activity stopped so that the organizers could say a few words, including U.S. Embassy Chargé d’Affaires Gonzalo Gallegos. “It’s fun being American,” said Gallegos, who added that his family is originally from Mexico. “That’s a part of being American that I enjoy the most. We like to have fun.”

In addition to old-fashioned fun, attendants sang along to the Costa Rican and U.S. national anthems, recited the Pledge of Allegiance, and watched three U.S. Marines raise the flag. The ceremony ended with the arrival of “Uncle Sam,” who waved from the main stage, leapt into the crowd, and was swarmed with amateur photographers.

Here are some snapshots from Independence Day morning.

 

Facebook Comments

You may be interested

Nicaragua calls Carlos Alvarado’s statements “disrespectful” and “intruding”
News
411 views
News
411 views

Nicaragua calls Carlos Alvarado’s statements “disrespectful” and “intruding”

AFP / The Tico Times - October 16, 2018

The Nicaraguan government described statements by Costa Rican president Carlos Alvarado about Nicaragua's “internal affairs” as “disrespectful” and “intruding.” The…

Transformational travel in Costa Rica: Turning the flat world round
Costa Rica
503 views
Costa Rica
503 views

Transformational travel in Costa Rica: Turning the flat world round

Alissa Grosskopf - October 16, 2018

The sound of roaring water and the fear in my body drown out the encouraging shouts of my group behind…

Children: the future of shark protection
Changemakers
442 views
Changemakers
442 views

Children: the future of shark protection

Alissa Grosskopf - October 16, 2018

The nonprofit organization Misión Tiburón is strongly engaged in the protection of hammerhead sharks in Costa Rica. They hope to…