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Celebration of the Second Aquatic Carnival in Rio San Juan | Nov 15, 2010

Local kids watch the aquatic parade.
Cinthia Membreño

On Friday, November 12 and Sunday 13, the city of San Carlos (Río San Juan) was the headquarters of the Second Aquatic Carnival, event that includes diverse cultural activities such as dance and music performances, environmental and handicrafts festivals, popular parties, presentations about tourism destinations of the area, as well as aquatic and street parades.

Mario Salinas, president of the Nicaraguan Institute of Tourism (INTUR), informed during the official inauguration of the event that with the carnival and the First Tourism Fair of the South Atlantic Autonomous Region (RAAS) - both events were held simultaneously - the institute is about to finish the six regional fairs that were scheduled for 2010. "We are celebrating and San Carlos is a joyful city with this cultural activities. The carnival is becoming a tradition," he assured.

During the inauguration, Salinas also explained that the carnival is part of the efforts of the government, national tourism chambers and Nicaraguan companies to increase the tourism promotion of the department. All the activities are part of the Ruta del Agua project, a governmental plan that started in 2007 with architectural improvements, trainings for service providers and credit plans to diversify the tourism services of the area between the Solentiname archipelago (Lake Nicaragua) and San Juan del Norte (Mouth of the San Juan River in the Caribbean).

Cultural activities

The cultural activities began at 10:00 am on Friday, November 12 with a handicrafts fair by artisans from the Solentiname archipelago, Chontales and different zones from the South Atlantic Coast Autonomous Region. After that, there were dance and music performances given by local groups, in addition to a clown show, an environmental festival promoted by the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (MARENA) and a concert by a local group named "Machuca".

On Saturday, November 13, the group "Bluefields Caribbean Star" began at 10:30 am with its dance show and had all the eyes of attendees on them. Minutes later, the group "Las Américas" from Managua, gave its show by walking from the central park to the main stage of San Carlos' waterfront. After the official inauguration, the carnival parade took place with 15 boats. At night, a popular party and concert was held.

According to the president of INTUR, organizers expected more attendees with the second edition of the carnival than last year. "We expect more than 5, 000 people," he stated. Among the international guests, there were several Central American journalists and 23 Costa Rican touroperators.