Date(s) & Time(s)::
Weekly on Sunday, Friday, Saturday from January 6, 2012 until January 13, 2012
Location: Various Events Beginning on Jan. 6th
Hispanics Set to Celebrate Three Kings Day “ Dia de los Tres Reyes Magos”
The Hispanic tradition of celebrating the Three King’s Day or El Dia De Los Tres Reyes Magos, dating back as early as the 16th century, is strongly rooted in their deep faith and religious traditions. It is celebrated twelve days after Christmas which falls on January 6th and is also referred to as “The Feast of the Epiphany.” As told in the 2nd chapter in the book of Mathew, the Three Kings, or Magi: Melchior, Gaspar, and Balthazar, visited Jesus after his birth bearing gifts of gold, frankincense, & myrrh. They were following a star that foretold the coming of a king that would save the world.
It is a custom that in some Latin American countries, on January 5th, children prepare a box filled with hay as if for baby Jesus to lie in . The box is then placed under their beds and the children go to sleep. The morning of January 6th, the children wake up to find three gifts in their boxes; symbolic of the three gifts that were given to baby Jesus in the manger. In other countries, shoes are filled with hay for the camels and left under the bed. The hay is replaced with little gifts left by the Magi. In addition, many Latino children write letters to the Three Kings with their gift requests, just as many North American children write letters to Santa.
Many Hispanic communities throughout America still cherish and continue this custom by passing it on to their children. This celebration teaches them the history and the practice of their faith. “It is a way to help youngsters stay focused on what the season really is about”, said Casimiro Rodriguez, President of the Hispanic Heritage Council of WNY Inc.
The birth of Jesus; brings us all together in celebrations and family get-togethers. It is celebrated through community gatherings that feature the arrival of the Three Kings bearing gifts for the young ones, accompanied by traditional music and dishes that help keep the heritage alive in our community. The holiday season doesn’t just end on Christmas Day, but it continues on for 12 more days and will be repeated for many years to come.
Events will be taking place around the Western New York Area to celebrate this day. More information on events can be located at the calendar : http://www.facebook.com/HispanicHeritageWNY
The Hispanic Heritage Council of Western New York Inc. invite’s everyone to celebrate this important day.