Happy Three Kings Day!
If you have not yet registered to become a member of Parranda — the doors to the network are now open — please do so before Sunday January 6, El Dia de Los Reyes. Starting Saturday night, January 5th, we will be hosting a virtual parranda on our site to celebrate this special day with conversation, photos, and information about how Puerto Ricans everywhere are celebrating this year. To register at Parranda, go to parranda.org.
For many years in Puerto Rico there was no “Santa Clos” – the ones who came bearing gifts – as they did in folklore – were “Los Reyes”. Puerto Ricans have a long-standing tradition which they have held close to their hearts since Spanish times. The Spaniards brought with them the custom of celebrating January 6th – the day in the Catholic calendar when the Three Kings from the Orient visited the baby Jesus in Bethlehem and brought the gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. In Puerto Rico the celebration has been part of our Christmas Season for generations, so much so that it has also become an integral part of our artisan culture.
The kids would search for an empty shoebox, fill it with grass, and leave it by their beds. The grass was to “feed” the camels / horses carrying the “Reyes” and then, in return, they would leave a gift for the sleeping kids.
Los Reyes Magos, for centuries, have been part of the Puerto Rico culture in so many ways, but it is sad to see that a lot of Puerto Ricans in diaspora are slowly losing the practice to celebrate it. We want to bring that feeling back at Parranda!
When you receive this email:
- Take a picture of either an artwork you have of the Three Kings, or have your children draw one
- Bring it to our virtual Parranda – if you haven’t registered yet this is a great time to join and
- Place the picture in your Parranda activity and let us know where it was taken!
We will make a collage of all pictures and place it on La Placita for everyone to see! We also have started an Instagram account at ParrandaPR – where you can place the picture of the Three Kings with hashtags #ParrandaPR #TresReyesMagos #ThreeKingsDay #(yourcity)
We will be planning a Twitter chat for Saturday January 12th at 6 pm – so our Parranderos can join in conversation about the customs they still celebrate! So mark your calendars and we will see you soon!
This post is also available in: Spanish