Childrens Christmas in Costa Rica
My favorite time of the year in Costa Rica is Christmas! It is a very humbling experience to say the least. After 50 some odd years in the U.S. celebrating Christmas and all of the commercial madness that goes with it, we have been blessed to spend the last 2 years here on the beach. The rain season is coming to an end and every house has a small tree and most will put up a few colorful lights. The children get excited and there are firework displays and parades, families spend the holiday time together on the beach and everyone seems to be happy. But the best thing about a Costa Rica Christmas in my opinion is, we Ex-Pat gringos have an opportunity to give back to these wonderful people who embrace us and welcome us in their country. Our little group of Ex-pats here on the Central Pacific Coast have banded together with the help of a local hotel and we have a Christmas Party for the local children. We have a benefit Horseshoe Tournament and Beach Golf Tournament to raise money to purchase food, drinks, and gifts. Donations of school supplies, coloring books, toys, soccer balls, and stuffed animals come pouring in from all over the United States as our friends come down to visit. I know of several awesome folks who have paid extra baggage fees for a suitcase full of toys to bring down! We get envelopes of cash from friends who have visited in the past but aren’t able to be here for the party.
I smile more while watching these kids have a good time playing games, eating and opening their gifts than I do any other time of the year! For some of these beautiful children, this is about all they will get for Christmas. To see their eyes light up when Santa shows up and gives them a gift is enough to make this old Texas Redneck choke up. If you want to really experience Christmas joy, plan to be here through Christmas (and bring a suitcase of toys)!