by Barbara Alvarado
In the coastal cities of Colombia, one of the world’s largest spectacles of dance and cultural pageantry was in full swing this month. Carnaval! The four-day rumba, running from February 6th to the 9th, is a spectacular display of Colombian customs and colors that rivals any other festivity of its kind. During this time of the year, the city seems to stop. All anyone can talk about is what they will wear for the inaugural Lectura del Bando, how many boxes of maizena should be purchased, and (most importantly) who will be la reina and el rey momo at school this year? Carnaval is an exciting time for Colombians and foreigners alike. It’s a time when you can really experience how friendly and inviting the costeños here really are.
Now let’s see how Peace Corps Colombia celebrated South Americas ‘other’ carnaval.
PCV Jessi Atha taking the crown back for Colombia. Take that Miss Philippines.
Celebrating her coronation with RPCV Alejandra Moreno and PCV Michael Owen.
San José de Saco, Atlántico
“Saco boys going full Son de Negro”. Photo by PCV Erick Uribe.
PCV and Rey Momo Michael Owen with his primary schools queen candidates. Who will take the crown?
RPCV Jim Fisher enjoying the festivities in his pueblo.
Celebrating the Reinado de la Reina Gay 2016. Photo by PCV Sammy Quezada.
PCV Erick Uribe and Sammy Quezada enjoying the carnaval ambiance in Usiacurí.
PCV Katrina Castner enjoying her reinado as queen of Tubará.
PCV Mary (MC) Rosher representing the U.S.A as the International Queen for Manatí.
Miss U.S.A. incognito as Negrita Puloy.
Santo Tomás, Atlántico
PCV Alex Torres holding it down for the Santo Tomás cumbia comparsa. Work!
The reina saying hello to her constituents at the Batalla de Flores parade in Santo Tomás.
Making it rain espuma on PCV Kathleen Rodriguez.
Campo de la Cruz, Atlántico
PCV Jimmy Everett III hanging out with the young camperos and causing a ruckus on Día del Mojamoja.
Enjoying a fun day of parades and dancing with his community at Carnaval de los Niños.
“Perfectly-timed fireball picture”. Photo and caption by Jimmy Everett III.
Santa Lucía, Atlántico
PCV Esther Fiebig striking a pose with the ladies of Ritmo Latino at the Batalla de Flores parade in her pueblo.
Proudly representing Santa Lucía in a reinado.
PCV Derek Comba getting ready to dance some cumbia at a local parade.
RPCV’s Andy Lamb and Will Osolinsky enjoying the festivities in Suan with PCV Jordan Lidstrom and Jimmy Everett.
Kids practicing La Danza del Garabato at a local park in the city.
The reina at Colegio Mayor de Barranquilla y del Caribe taking her victory dance.
A young barranquillero getting ready to defend his honor in an all out espuma battle.
PCV Christopher Gordon enjoying a yummy vegan snack after too much fun at the Gran Parada de Tradición parade.
PCV Stacy Johnson being a good sport. Stacy Johnson loves the kids.
So remember folks, ¡Quien lo vive es quien lo goza!