The celebration for Independence Day commenced this morning with the Lighting of the Torch. Runners carry torches throughout Costa Rica symbolizing how the message of liberation was announced back in 1821 when Costa Rica became independent from Spain. They will be greeted by the President when they reach Cartago which was the capital of Costa Rica at that time.
At 6:00 p.m. the entire country comes to a halt and everyone joins in to sing the national anthem. Following the anthem, sirens announce the beginning of the parade of faroles, homemade lanterns. The faroles are family projects the children carry walking through the streets. Some are constructed to look like houses, others resemble globes and lanterns. All are aglow and are carried proudly as the children parade down the street. Then the fireworks begin. This is just the pre-celebration for the big parade event tomorrow - Independence Day for Costa Rica.