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Costa Rica Olympians will light independence cauldron

Costa Rican Olympians will light the independence cauldron on Tuesday night in Cartago to commemorate the country’s bicentennial, the Presidency announced.

Gold medalist Sherman Guity, taekwondo athlete Neshy Lee Lindo and swimmer Camila Hasse will be led by BMX rider Kenneth Tencio at the ceremony, scheduled for about 8 p.m. Tuesday.

The torch, which began its journey in Guatemala, arrived in Costa Rica on Monday morning.

It will be delivered to downtown Cartago by students of the Carlos Luis Valle Masís Special Education Center. President Carlos Alvarado will then pass it to Tencio, who will light the cauldron.

At the reception, the President Alvarado and the Olympians will be accompanied by First Lady Claudia Dobles; the Minister of Public Education, Giselle Cruz; the Minister of Culture and Youth, Sylvie Durán; the mayor of Cartago, Mario Redondo; and deputies from the province, among others.

Tencio, from Guadalupe de Cartago, earned fourth place in BMX Freestyle at Tokyo 2020. Guity earned gold at the Tokyo Paralympics, the best men’s result in Costa Rica’s history.

The torch is a national symbol representing Central America’s independence.  

On September 15, 1821, the Act of Independence of Central America gave the region its freedom from the Spanish empire. The torch symbolizes the journey of the messengers who delivered the news of independence from Guatemala all the way down to Cartago, Costa Rica’s colonial capital.

The establishment of an collaborative independence torch was first suggested in 1964 at a meeting between the education ministers of Central American nations.

You can follow the independence torch’s path and see the location of other commemorative celebrations at:

The featured photo shows the Santiago Apóstol Parish Ruins in Cartago, where Tuesday’s ceremony will occur.

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