In Panama, many celebrate the Christmas season by making a life-size muñeca, or doll, and leaving it in front of their homes. Panamanians start making their papier-mâché muñecos in early December, modeling them in the likeness of celebrities, public figures, and politicians they don’t want to see again in the new year.
From December 16th to December 24th, Panamanian communities across Panama will hold so-called “Posada“.
Mother’s Day is celebrated annually in Panama on December 8th. The day is a national holiday and is celebrated across the country.
In Panama, Santa Claus is not the one who brings the presents. In most households, Baby Jesus himself brings the presents, and the presents appear under the Christmas tree on December 25th. A typical Panamanian Christmas dish is “tamales”, which are made from corn dough and typically filled with meat.
Turkey is a staple on the Christmas table in Panama, although it’s prepared a little differently here. Locals forgo the filling and sauce, replacing those flavors with their own Latin American spices.
In Panama they say Merry Christmas, but it’s pronounced “Feliz Navidad”. Santa Claus is usually referred to as Papa Noel.
It is decorated with traditional lights, angel tree crowns, icicles and other Christmas decorations. Christmas music includes songs called “gaitas” or “villancicos”. Christmas in Panama is surrounded by lots of singing, eating, drinking and fun.
1. May – Labor Day 3. November – Separation Day from Colombia (start of ̈Fiestas Patrias, ̈ term for the patriotic celebrations of the month of November) 4 November – Flag Day. November 5 – Columbus Day.
10. November “Los Santos Villa’s First Independence Cry” to celebrate Rufina Alfaro’s gesture and the Los Santos Villa Uprising against Spain.
Nacimientos, or nativity scenes, are placed in many homes and Christmas trees are very popular – typically adorned with giant bows, flowers and lots of tinsel.
An interesting Panamanian tradition is the burning of “Judas Dolls” at midnight on New Year’s Eve. Judas dolls are life-size likenesses that can be a celebrity, someone you know, or even a representation of yourself.
Día De Los Reyes Mago (Epiphany Day) concludes the first holiday season of the year. The night before, children leave their shoes (or shoeboxes) to be filled with small gifts by the Magi, and ‘rosca de reyes’ (king cake) is a traditional dessert eaten in honor of this day. p>
The flag is divided into four quarters and has three colors (blue, red and white). The first flag of Panama was made by María Ossa de Amador.