Las Posadas 2016

by Kevin McGarry

Photo by Dr. Paul Mori.
El Coro walks down State Street. Photo by Dr. Paul Mori.

Las Posadas, a traditional reenactment of Joseph and Mary’s search for lodging in Bethlehem, is a holiday tradition that occurs all over Latin America each December. The Santa Barbara Trust for Historic Preservation  (SBTHP) hosts this program at El Presidio de Santa Barbara State Historic Park and Casa de la Guerra every year.  This year, the program was scheduled on the traditional date that Posadas begins throughout Mexico, December 16.

Photo by Dr. Paul Mori.
Children represent Mary Joseph and the Angel. Photo by Dr. Paul Mori.

SBTHP’s annual Posadas reflects what this tradition might have looked like in the Presidio neighborhood in the early 1800s. The singing procession begins at the Presidio Chapel, goes up and down State Street stopping outside participating businesses and then ends with a performance and reception at Casa de la Guerra. By coming together to sing and walk together in unity, Una Noche de Las Posadas is a special annual tribute to Santa Barbara’s people, traditions and history.

Photo by Dr. Paul Mori.
Rocky and Suzi Bellman represent Jose and Maria de la Guerra. Photo by Dr. Paul Mori.

This is the second year that the Los Agaves restaurant donated their delicious food for the reception. SBTHP thanks Carlos Luna (owner of Los Agaves) for his continued generosity. The El Coro de Real leader, musician Luis Moreno, did a wonderful job again this year, adding two new songs to the choir’s repertoire and leading the singing peregrinos (pilgrims) in their procession to Casa de la Guerra. Thank you to him and to the other members of El Coro. The 2016 Posadas would not have happened without SBTHP’s committed volunteers: Judy Pearce, Suzi and Rocky Bellman, Jim Garcia, Dr. Paul Mori, Paul McGarry, Christina and Arlene Miguel and the Goodfield family. SBTHP also thanks The Towbes Foundation, Debby and Roger Aceves, David and Louise Borgatello, and Keith J. Mautino for sponsoring Una Noche de Las Posadas.

Photo by Dr. Paul Mori.
The procession is granted admittance at Casa de la Guerra. Photo by Dr. Paul Mori.

For more photos from this year’s Las Posadas by Dr. Paul Mori visit our Flickr album here.

Kevin McGarry is the Director of Programs at the Santa Barbara Trust for Historic Preservation. 

One thought on “Las Posadas 2016”

  1. Great! I always thought (so long ago, and now once again today) that Los Posadas was a great way to link the community, the Trust, and especially the Casa de la Guerra, in unity at Christmas. Wonderful to see Luis Mureno and especially that alter like niche in the Casa Salon!
    Patrick O’Dowd
    Former Casa de la Guerra Project manager, Associate Director, and Chief Curator.

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