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    Culture Announces the Celebration of the National Carnival Parade Santo Domingo 2016
    Santo Domingo, March 4, 2016

    The Ministry of Culture (MINC), through the Vice Ministry of Cultural Identity and Citizenship and the Division of Management and Carnival, informed that everything is ready for the celebration of the traditional National Carnival Parade Santo Domingo 2016.

    Over 200 carnival troupes from 31 provinces and 357 municipalities in the country will participate in the event. The children's parade will encompass more than 92 troupes, divided in a variety of carnival categories.

    The event, scheduled for Sunday, March 6, at the Malecón, will begin at 10:00 am with the National Exhibition of the Children’s Carnival that is dedicated to the family and will take place under the slogan "Por el derecho a sonreír" (For the right to smile). It will be headed by the children's King and Queen, clowns Pablo de Jesús Herrera Espinal (Saltarín) and Maritza Silverio Pozo (Cheverina).

    Meanwhile, the National Parade will start at 2:00 pm at the Malecón of Santo Domingo, and it will be headed by King Michael Miguel and Queen Fefita "La Grande."

    Both parades will be chaired by the Minister of Culture, singer and songwriter José Antonio Rodríguez, accompanied by the Deputy Minister of Cultural Identity and Citizenship, Ediltrudis Pichardo, and cultural manager Ramón Lachapelle, Director of Management and Carnival, as well as by a number of directors and coordinators from the MINC.

    "People will enjoy the presentation of an interesting and colorful carnival parade that identifies and symbolizes the folklore of each region, and which will be highlighted during the parade," said Lachapelle.

    Lachapelle explained that the 2016 carnival will be especially aimed at rescuing the indigenous values of the provinces of the border region.

    International Participation

    One of the event’s attractions will be the international participation through international delegations that will showcase their cultural identity inspired by color.

    During the parade, which will take place on George Washington Avenue, the troupes will provide joy and entertainment to Dominican families and tourists of various nationalities, who day after day arrive in the country.

    The adult and children's troupes, which represent the cultural heritage and the traditions of the various regions of the country, will be classified into the following categories: Devils, Historical, Ali Baba, Individual Characters, Masks, Popular Creativity, Fantasy and Traditional.

    As in previous editions of the Carnival, a fence system will be installed in order to protect the thousands of people who will enjoy the parade, which will depart from the Malecon Center Shopping Mall and will proceed until it reaches the Hembra Obelisk.

    Security Measures

    As part of the organizational logistics of the National Carnival Parade and the National Festival of Children's Carnivals, the MINC has ordered strict security measures aimed at safeguarding the public, which is usually made of national and foreign attendees.

    More than 1,500 security guards will protect the entire parade itinerary to maintain order along the route and its surrounding areas. The coordination of such security measures is the responsibility of retired Gen. Luis E. Duluc Pumarol, head of security at the MINC.

    The institutions that will be in charge of protecting the physical integrity of the population are: the National Police, the Specialized Corps of Tourism Security (CESTUR), the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (AMET), the Ministry of Defense, the Dominican Red Cross, Civil Defense and the 911 System, among other government agencies.

    As in previous editions of the Carnival, a fence system will be installed to protect the thousands of people who will enjoy the parade, which will depart from the Malecon Center Shopping Mall and will proceed until it reaches the Hembra Obelisk.

    History of the Carnival in the Dominican Republic

    According to the information that appears in Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia, carnival celebrations were held in the city of Santo Domingo before 1520, although for some researchers the first carnivals in the island, and in the Americas, took place in what is known today as the Ruins of Vega Vieja, in February of 1520, to mark the visit of Fray Bartolomé de las Casas.

    The people of the Old Vega disguised themselves as Moors and Christians and carried out festivities that evolved into the current celebrations.

    In 1795, carnivals were held to mark the festivities in honor of Santiago Apostle, during Corpus Christi and for the feast of Carnestolendas, in the city of Santiago de los Caballeros. These cultural expressions date back to the times of the Spanish colony.

    This colonial tradition increased after the independence movements, acquiring great significance to mark the date of our Independence, registered on February 27, 1844, and the Restoration on August 16, 1865.

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