Colombians are no strangers to a good party, and July 20 should be no exception when the country will gear up for its 202nd Independence Day.
While celebrations are expected around Colombia, the major festivities planned for this Friday include a massive music festival featuring over 300 artists in Popayan, the historic capital of the southwestern Cauca department and a military parade on the scenic island of San Andres in the Caribbean Sea.
This year’s music festival will focus on the works of the country’s late, iconic composer Lucho Bermudez, who was considered instrumental in spreading traditional Colombian music like cumbia, bolero and porro, throughout Latin America and the world beginning in the 1950s, up until his death in 1994. The event will also feature the stylings of Colombia’s most talented young artists, with youth salsa groups and orchestras set to take the stage.
A military parade originally scheduled to take place in Popayan along with the rest of the festivities is now planned for San Andres, located 750km off the Colombian mainland.
“Let’s see how we can organize logistically to march here again on San Andres, making it a tribute to its hundred years of being [a naval base,]” said President Juan Manuel Santos.
The department of Cauca, already a traditional FARC stronghold, has experienced an increase in fighting between military and guerrilla forces in recent weeks, although the government has not said this is the reason for the parade’s move to San Andres.