November 10th Parade at Juan Diaz, with the participation of Melo
Since the morning, all oxen-pulled carts, including Melo's, were being prepared for the parade.
The parade was opened by the Union of Santenos living in Juan Diaz, the entity that organizes the event every year.
Folk dances such as the Great Devil of the Corpus Christi Festivity, participate in the celebration.
A great draw to the parade are the oxen-pulled carts. This year, there were more than twenty. This one is from a hospice for AIDS patients.
As in many celebrations in Panama, there were many marching school bands.
Under a light rain, the Melo group began its participation in the parade.
The rain was not an obstacle for these Panamanian workers of Melo, who marched and danced with joy and patriotism.
The Melo entourage included a cart featuring traditional music instruments of Panama and the importance that raising poultry has in our countryside.
Being a celebration in honor of Los Santos and its role on Panama's independence, the tamborito could not be absent.
Some Melo workers took advantage of the cheerful music to dance.
The whole Melo Group family joined the parade, from top managers...
...to young people who are beginning their working life in the company...
...to kids who are sons and daughters of the company workers.
Accordion music was also present in the Melo entourage.
A group of students from a local highschool joined the Melo entourage. Their school is sponsored by Melo as part of a social responsability program.
A murga band paraded with Melo, completing one of the largest marching groups of the entire parade.
The parade ended in the main square of Juan Diaz, where local authorities welcomed participants.
Every year, on November 10th, Panamanians celebrate the first yell of independence from Spain, a historical event that took place in 1821, at the town of La Villa de Los Santos.
Nobody celebrates it more than Santenos, the people from the province where the yell took place. Due to internal migration, there are Santenos all over Panama, and they have carried their traditions with them. So, it is very common to have November 10th celebrations in many places in Panama.
One such a place is Juan Diaz, in the eastern edge of Panama City. There, local Santenos have organized this parade for several decades. In addition to community groups, authorities and schools, companies with links to the area march. Most of the groups bring oxen-pulled carts decorated in traditional motives. Also, folk music of different genres is never too far away in this parade.
As in previous years, Melo Group participated in the parede with a big entourage of its workers, from managers to entry-level positions, all together as a big family. With them, marched a group of highschool students from the local Elena Chavez de Pinate, a school sponsored by Melo.
We congratulate all organizers, participants, people from Los Santos and Juan Diaz for this great display of patriotism.