During the mid 1800’s, as the industrial revolution got into full swing, many people from Asturias migrated to North and South America to seek their fortunes in these resource rich countries. The hard working Asturians carved out a substantial life for themselves in their new homes and many returned to Asturias with their new found wealth in order to re-kindle their lives in Asturias. Evidence of this can be seen in the form of the beautifully built colonial styled houses that are dotted throughout the region.
That said, many Asturians chose to stay in the Americas and develop their careers further and raise their families. These migrants managed to integrate perfectly into their new homes and many became significant members of society…..mayors, judges, professors and entrepreneurs.
During the third week in September, the festival of San Mateo Oviedo (Asturias’ capital) and is considered one of the best and largest parties in the party calendar. The city hosts many free concerts and performances but the true highlight of the festival is the Parade of the Americas which is held to pay homage to those Asturians who left for the new world and their adopted countries that welcomed them so warmly.
In San Mateo Oviedo the parade is no small affair. The city streets become a wash with wonderful color and sound as representatives from many countries of the Americas parade through the city center generating a real festival atmosphere and entertaining the many revelers and spectators.
We caught up with José Ramón Pando, an Asturian whose family migrated to Florida and found out why the festival is so significant for the local community and also for the generations of Asturians now living abroad.
If you have a thing for the Latin cultures and like their rhythms then you are going to love this festival and parade in San Mateo Oviedo.
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