In the Puerto Rican culture, the holiday season is ingrained in the populace form the day one is born, enriching all with values, traditions and the history of the island and its people. All of the residents at Plaza Borinquen are from Puerto Rico and enjoy Christmas time, which is a nonstop celebration until mid-January.
Christmas celebrations in Puerto Rico begin very late in November and do not stop on December 25th. The biggest holiday dates are December 24—Nochebuena/Good Night-Christmas Eve; December 25—Navidad/Christmas; December 31—Despedida de Año/New Year’s Eve; and the biggest and most important of all for the children, el Día de Los Reyes Margos/Three Kings Day—Epiphany on January 6.
The pandemic has hit many of the residents hard; for some losing loved ones they couldn’t say goodbye to back home.
One resident, Pablo Diaz (right) and the Superintendent, Carlos Miranda (left) wanted to bring a piece of home and holiday cheer to the residents. After all, Puerto Ricans are known for their unforgettable get-togethers which include food and music. Everyone here has that Uncle, Grandfather, or Father on the congas, or guitar with everyone singing old Christmas songs like Feliz Navidad and Silent Night—Merry Christmas and Noche de Paz.
Pablo and Carlos brought the islands home to the community of Plaza Borinquen, for those who couldn’t travel due to pandemic restrictions. The holiday tree that Pablo bought also brought camaraderie to the residents who were able to see their neighbors and spend time with them. To the residents here at Plaza Borinquen, it is a tree of hope and new beginnings.
Where Pablo Diaz lives matters.