Spring arrives early here in the central mountains of Mexico. Now that the daytime temperatures are averaging around 75 F. and the skies are consistently clear-cobalt-blue and sunny, and San Miguel de Allende’s elegant old Parque Juarez is bursting with colorful flowering plants for sale, you know it’s Candelaria-time – Springtime! Despite what the calendar says.

Celebrating its sixty-eighth anniversary this year, the Candelaria Fair (Feria de la Candelaria), SMA’s annual rite of spring, opened on February 1st and will run until the 14th, from 9 am until 9 pm every day. This delightful event gives garden lovers — and who isn’t a garden lover? — an endless array of choices: flowering and ornamental plants, fruit trees, fresh herbs, succulents, terracotta pots, rich potting soil, and much, much more.

Throughout the day there is music in the air and refreshments available. Then at 6:30 every evening there is free entertainment for the whole family, on the large stage set up in the park’s center basketball courts.

Beyond its religious significance in the Christian tradition (Candelaria is the Spanish word for Candlemass), la Candelaria marks the mid-point between the winter solstice and the spring equinox, which is the basis for various ancient European celebrations that commemorate the annual start of the agricultural season. It’s also the beginning of the solar calendar used by Mesoamerican cultures, a time to honor the earth and bless the seeds that will give new life.

So if you’re in SMA and haven’t yet been to the fair, do go as soon as you can. But if you’re too far away to attend SMA’s Candelaria this year, I hope these photos will take you there and help you dream of the Spring that’s around the corner where you live.











9 thoughts on “Spring!”

  1. Great post! And I did not know that Candelaria marks the mid-point between the winter solstice and the spring equinox. Good to know! Love the photos and not happy that I am missing this great and beautiful event….but I have to say the beaches, the mountains, and the flowers of Khanom Thailand are keeping me very warm and very satisfied. But soon I will return to SMA – to friendships and more beauty!

    1. Oh, Barb, so happy to hear from you way out there in Thailand, and I’m delighted to know that you’re happy. Glad you were able to leave a comment here, too, because others have reported to me that they’ve not been able to. I’ve been experiencing technical difficulties with WordPress. 🙁 See you soon back in SMA! — xx

  2. A truly beautiful event. A coming together of beauty for the senses and the soul. I love how you also inform us of the origins of Candelaria and the significance of its date. You are so full of interesting and beautiful knowledge. Thanks for sharing Bonnie. Hugs! PS Hope your WordPress behaves!

  3. Arrgh! Another year, another missed Candelaria! Thank you for always reminding me that spring actually will come—even here in Taos!

  4. Those planters! I want to go and smell all the flores lindas. In Cuba, it is customary to cut one’s hair on Día de la Candelaria so it grows longer and healthier the rest of the year.

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