San José, Costa Rica, since 1956
Costa Rica

PHOTOS: The beauty of Independence Day in Costa Rica

Photographer Priscilla Mora trained her lens on the Independence Day traditions she knows best: those of her hometown, Santo Domingo de Heredia.

From the first farol, or traditional paper lantern, of Independence Eve; to the “Diana” that wakes up community members at dawn on Sept. 15; to the final smile from a parade-goer at the colorful festivities in honor of el quince, here’s a glimpse of how one Costa Rican town joins in the country’s biggest and brightest annual celebration.

On the eve of Independence Day, Sept. 14, families and children gather for traditional dance and other celebrations.

Priscilla Mora/Colectivo Nómada for The Tico Times

Students from the Centro Educativo Nuestra Señora de Lourdes, Quebradas de Santo Domingo de Heredia, wait nervously before their first dance on Sept. 14. They had been practicing for six months.

Priscilla Mora/Colectivo Nómada for The Tico Times

Priscilla Mora/Colectivo Nómada for The Tico Times

Priscilla Mora/Colectivo Nómada for The Tico Times

The “Diana” is a tradition where a “cimarrona” travels the town at 5 am with traditional and joyful music that wakes up the citizens. La Cimarrona Original La Domingueña has been ringing in Independence Day in Santo Domingo for 13 years now.

Priscilla Mora/Colectivo Nómada for The Tico Times

Priscilla Mora/Colectivo Nómada for The Tico Times

Kids carry signs with popular Costa Rican phrases, or dichos.

Priscilla Mora/Colectivo Nómada for The Tico Times

Priscilla Mora/Colectivo Nómada for The Tico Times

Diego Hidalgo, 35 years old, from Albergue San Isidro de Heredia, is a student from ANAMPE, a social center that teaches independent life skills for people with disabilities.

Priscilla Mora/Colectivo Nómada for The Tico Times

Alexander Granados Araya, six years old.

Priscilla Mora/Colectivo Nómada for The Tico Times

Three generations watch the parade in Santo Domingo: (from right) grandmother Elisa Ramirez Sanchez, mother Cinthya Gonzales Ramirez and daughter María Paz Mora.

Priscilla Mora/Colectivo Nómada for The Tico Times

María Isabel Mora Alvarado comes every year to the Independence Parade in Santo Domingo de Heredia. She says “I am a Tica, 100%.” She is 74 years old and believes she lives in the most beautiful country in the world.

Priscilla Mora/Colectivo Nómada for The Tico Times

To see more of Priscilla Mora’s work or learn more about Colectivo Nómada, visit www.colectivonomada.com.

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