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Wednesday, December 19, 2007

São Jorge - The Joy of the Festivals

Living wrapped up in the green countryside as they do, the inhabitants of São Jorge hold a colourful and joyful series of events every year.
These are the famous Holy Ghost Festivals, which date back to the time of the settlers and join the inhabitants together in a fraternal spirit.

The festival begins with the crowning of the "emperor", It continues with the displaying of the crown for 8 days in the house of the managers, and it ends on the feast day of the "empire", when a copious meal is served while the "jesters" sing old tunes accompanied by drum and cymbols; in the afternoon, bands liven things up with their music.
Sometimes "bullfighting on a rope", brought from neighbouring Terceira island, stimulates the bravest lads to challenge the animal, not always successfully but in a way that is always lively and marry. All over the island, starting on Whitsun and continuing until the summer months.

Santo Cristo folk pilgrimage
The surprise of finding the happy atmosphere of a rustic festival in the middle of the Atlantic ocean. Fireworks, colourful arches and music provide the frame for the religious ceremony on Fajã of Santo Cristo in First Sunday in September.

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