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Dia de Todos los Santos (All Saints' Day) in Guatemala

Vera Melendez from El Salvador

Kite on All Saint's Day in Guatemala
Photo: drlopezfranco
On November 2nd, All Saints' Day, the town of Santiago Sacatepequez celebrates a festival with giant kites.

Santiago Sacatepequez is located just 40 minutes from Guatemala city. On November 2nd, All Saints' Day, this town celebrates a festival with giant kites.

This celebration is realized in the cemetery of the town. I always thought that the cemetery is a place where the people felt sad, but I changed my mind when I visited the cemetery of Santiago, Sacatepequez.

I had heard about this town many times, but really I never felt curious to visit it. However, when I was studying at the university and attending a photography course, for homework our teacher had us take a picture of a giant kite of Santiago Sacatepequez. Then my classmates and I decided to go to Santiago, Sacatepequez.

What an amazing festival we found. All the town was a party and hundreds of people were walking in the town. We saw vendors' stands with many thingsflowers, food, beverages, candies, and more. When we arrived at the cemetery, all the people were walking around, and we saw a lot of giants kites with beautiful designs.

According to their tradition, the kites are flown to raise the souls of the dead to Heaven and to turn away evil spirits. The inhabitants of Santiago, Sacatepequez believe that on November 2nd they can communicate with their dead and send good messages on the kites. For this reason, they design beautiful kites with many colors to communicate messages of happiness.

Also, on this day a group of people called the Jury, select the best kite design and give a prize to the winning family.

This tradition is unique and special because on this day nobody is sad. Instead, all the people are happy, and the time that they share is a good time for all the family and for visitors. 

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