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The locos are coming to San Miguel de Allende

Last post 06-19-2008 10:54 AM by mike. 1 replies.
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  • 06-19-2008 2:04 AM

    The locos are coming to San Miguel de Allende





     On Sunday, June 15, at 11:30 am the Locos (Crazy People) departed from the center of San Miguel de Allende , monsters, clowns, men dressed as grotesque women, Mexican politicians and popular entertainers are among the varied and original costumes that could  be seen, accompanied by colorfully decorated floats.


    This carnival, celebrated the Sunday after San  Antonio’s day on June 13, was originally an act of faith and devotion that began in the nineteenth century, when orchard workers danced to give thanks and ask San Pascual Bailón for a prosperous year. This Fransciscan saint, who is celebrated on May 17, was in charge of the kitchen and the orchards of his monastery. Today, some of the Locos participate in the parade not only for fun, but also to show their great devotion to San Pascual Bailón.


    During colonial times, San Miguel was surrounded by large orchards, from north to east lay the Sautto family orchard, which was irrigated with water from Presa del Obraje. To the west lay the orchards of the neighborhood of San Juan de Dios. They were all irrigated with natural springs and the water was carried through channels all around the city. The Franciscan friars at the Tercera Orden (Third Order) monastery, next to San Francisco church, held a celebration outside the church for the orchard workers to honor San Pascual Bailón on his day. In the afternoon, the friars went to the orchards to bless the crops. The Spanish landowners let their workers eat all they wanted from the orchard that day. The Locos parade derives from the orchard workers’ dance on San Pascual Bailón’s day. As onlookers increasingly crowded the dancers, some of the older celebrants began to disguise themselves as scarecrows to keep the crowd at a distance so the children would have room to dance. They also brought small wild animals such as raccoons, skunks or possums to scare the crowd away. The people began to call them “locos” the name is still the same today.


    During the nineteenth century, the Locos began to dress not only as scarecrows but also as clowns with colorful costumes and cardboard masks. The orchard laborers were divided into workgroups called cuadrillas, and each cuadrilla performed its own dance. This is how the current groups, called cuadros, began; the groups take San Pascual Bailón as their patron.


    The modern Locos parade actually condenses several celebrations into one event: San Pascual Bailón’s day on May 17, Corpus Christi, and San Antonio’s day on June 1. the Locos although crazy, are well organized into four groups: Cuadro del Parque, Cuadro Antiguo, Cuadro Nuevo and Cuadro del Tecolote. Each cuadro is subdivided into several smaller groups. Colorful costumes, music, dance and candy are the main ingredients of this unique carnival. 




  • 06-19-2008 10:54 AM In reply to

    • mike
    • Top 10 Contributor
    • Joined on 01-23-2008
    • Posts 960

    Re: The locos are coming to San Miguel de Allende

    That looks like quite a lively festival. It's interesting how a small event far in the past can grow into such a huge tradition. I love the costumes too. It's really interesting how that part of the tradition arose as well.

    Every man dies, but few truly live. Live your life to its fullest, every day as if it were your last.
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