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    Américo Mejía to Hold a Conference on Merengue during Cultural Week in Miami.
    Fundación Sabores Dominicanos en el Taste Santo Domingo 2017

    Ministry of Culture Begins 13th Azua Regional Book Fair
    Azua de Compostela, October 26, 2017

    The 13th Regional Book Fair was inaugurated this Wednesday in a ceremony headed by Minister of Culture Pedro Vergés and authorities from the Dominican Republic’s 10 southern provinces in the Assembly Hall at the Azua de Compostela City Hall.

    The cultural event will continue until Sunday, October 29 in Azua’s Parque Duarte and Héctor J. Díaz Cultural Center.

    In his address, Minister Vergés said that this regional fair is yet another demonstration of the strong determination from President Danilo Medina and his government to support editors and writers as well as cultural affairs directors and institutions no matter the location of their operations.

    He added that in celebrating this regional fair, the Ministry of Culture has shown its continuous support for literature and the arts, and has centered the fair on building interest in books and the fostering of reading, like it was originally conceived.

    Vergés thanked various sectors from Azua Province as well as other southern provinces for the support that they have offered in coordinating this year’s edition of the Regional Book Fair. He also encouraged those present to attend the wide variety of activities that will be carried out during the festival and to take advantage of great offers on new books.

    In closing, Minister Vergés emphasized some of the new initiatives in this year’s Regional Book Fair, such as the decision to allocate a portion of its budget to the complete renovation of the Héctor J. Díaz Cultural Center, the launching of a network of kiosks for publications from the National Publishing House, and the integration of two new publications into the National Publishing House’s Tribute Collection to the southern region: Escritores del Sur 1836-1935 and Miradas del Sur.

    For the latter of these books, the Minister advised that it will include the Crónica del Sur, written by the late Dominican writer and poet Lupo Hernández Rueda, who he described as one of the country’s greatest writers.

    Prior to the Minister’s words, Azua Governor Walkiria Feliz, Senator Rafael Calderón, and Mayor Rafael Hidalgo gave keynote addresses. All agreed that the Regional Book Fair is an event of great importance for Azua which should be valued accordingly.

    Before Mayor Hidalgo spoke, a resolution dated October 23, 2017 from the City Council was read aloud to the attendees. Though it mandated no change in working hours, the resolution declared the period from October 25 to 29 as a cultural holiday.

    During the event, the Ministry of Culture recognized institutions that provide support for books and reading throughout the region, such as: The “Lend Me a Book” program of Jimaní; the Neiba Book Fair in Bahoruco; the Loyola Polytechnic in San Cristóbal; and the Universidad Tecnológica del Sur (UTESUR) in Azua. To close the opening ceremony, an artistic exhibition performed by the UTESUR youth choir and an ensemble playing the traditional music of Elías Piña was staged in Parque Duarte.

    The head table at the ceremony was presided over by Minister Vergés; Ruth Herrera, director of the Regional Book Fair; Walkiria Félix, Governor of Azua Province; Rafael Calderón, Azua Province Senator; and Rafael Antonio Hidalgo Fernández, Mayor of Azua de Compostela, among others.

    The ceremony was attended by civil and military authorities, as well as writers and VIPs from Azua and the other provinces participating in the fair: Bahoruco, Barahona, Elías Piña, Independencia, Pedernales, Peravia, San Cristóbal, San José de Ocoa y San Juan.

    Information on the 2017 Regional Book Fair in Azua

    Under the theme “Books Open Pathways!”, the fair agenda will feature the releases of more than 35 books authored by southern Dominican writers. The fair will also designate a well-earned tribute to writer, linguist and literary critic Manuel Matos Moquete for his contributions to literature, education, the dissemination of recent literary history, and the bibliographic repertoire of the Dominican Republic.

    Among the activities to be held during the fair are exhibitions and sales of books, 11 conferences, 19 lectures, 20 seminars, panels, workshops, and artistic presentations from local groups at the closing of each day’s festivities.

    In addition, the fair will present important works from southern Dominican writers which have been selected by the National Publishing House as a tribute to the region. Among these are: Poesia completa by Zacarías Espinal; Miradas del sur by Lupo Hernández Rueda, Freddy Gastón Arce, and Héctor Incháustegui Cabral; and Escritores del Sur 1882-1935, from Diógenes Céspedes and Gerardo Castillo.

    During the book fair, the following books will also be put into circulation: La domadora by Rodolfo Báez (San José de Ocoa); Sueños tras la lluvia by Otto Oscar Milanese (Azua province); and Las últimas palabras by Pircilio Díaz (Peravia). These books were selected from a call for unpublished works by southern Dominican authors.

    The presentations of these books and others as well as conferences, literary workshops, and seminars will be open to the public in various rooms of the Héctor J. Días Cultural Center, such as the “Letras del Sur” room, the “Invitación a la Lectura” room, the Galería del Sur, the Literary Café, and the Conference Hall.

    The fairgrounds, which have been set up in Parque Duarte and its surrounding areas, hold a Children’s Tent for youth-centered activities, a Literary Café, and an open-air theater and event stage which will host a series of artistic activities at the end of each day. These activities will be performed by groups hailing from the 10 different provinces to which the fair is dedicated.

    Under the framework of the event, a special ‘Cultural Award Store’ will be opened in order to distribute a total of RD$700,000.00 in bonds so that scholars, teachers, and members of literary workshops can acquire the books they need to continue their valuable literary efforts.

    The organizing committee of the book fair is headed by Minister Vergés; Vice Ministers Cayo Claudio Espinal and Edilí Pichardo; Director of the Regional Book Fair Ruth Herrera; Managing Director of Books and Reading Alexis Gómez Rosa; Director of the Ministerial Cabinet Ellen Martínez; and writers Valentín Amaro and Pedro Antonio Valdez.


    The Ministry of Culture announced that the fairgrounds will be protected by rigorous security protocols in order to guarantee visitors’ safety and to control vehicular traffic in the areas adjacent to Parque Duarte. The National Police and the Metropolitan Transport Authority (AMET) will be deployed to assure these services’ completion.

    Fundación Sabores Dominicanos en el Taste Santo Domingo 2017
    Fundación Sabores Dominicanos en el Taste Santo Domingo 2017

    Fundación Sabores Dominicanos en el Taste Santo Domingo 2017

    Fundación Sabores Dominicanos en el Taste Santo Domingo 2017

    Fundación Sabores Dominicanos en el Taste Santo Domingo 2017

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