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Primer Grito de Independencia de la Villa de los Santos

November 10: Primer Grito de Independencia de la Villa de los Santos

On November 10th, Panama remembers its Primer Grito de Independencia – its first cry for independence from Spain. On November 10, 1821, preceding the formal Independence, villagers in the town of la Villa de Los Santos (a small town in the interior of Panama) wrote a letter to Simon Bolivar. The letter complained about the Spanish governor and asked Bolivar for revolutionary assistance.

Panamá Flag Day

Panamá Flag Day

You will see lots of partying around Panamá during this week.

Panamanians celebrate Flag Day every November 4th, the day after Panama declared its independence. On November 1, 1903, Maria Ossa de Amador secretly began making the first Panamanian flag. She constructed three flags based on three different designs, one of which was later adopted as the official flag of Panama. All three flags were flown on November 3, 1903, when Panama declared its independence.

The Panamanian flag symbolizes the political situation at independence – the blue represents the Conservative Party, the red represents the Liberal party, and the white represents purity and peace.

**On November 3rd and 4th there is an official parade in which government entities, public and private schools participate. The schools, the police and the firemen are accompanied by their own music bands and all wear full dress uniforms. The parade generally takes place on one of the main streets of Panama City which is closed for those two days. Celebrations start at 12 midnight with the Firemen Band playing “dianas”. “Dianas” are the typical way Panamanians receive and celebrate their national days. Bands that play “dianas” are composed of bugles, trumpets and drums. The parades in Panama City are typically held on Via España and in Casco Viejo.