Category Archives: Fiestas

Basque Fact of the Week: The Feria of Santo Tómas

One of the biggest events to open the Christmas season in the Basque Country is the Feria of Santo Tómas, a rural market in the heart of the city. Originating in Gipuzkoa – more specifically Donostia – it has spread as a celebration throughout the Basque Country. Today, the Feria is a celebration of rural […]

Basque Fact of the Week: The Madalenas Fiesta of Bermeo, Mundaka, and Elantxobe

One of the most memorable parts of my time living in the Basque Country was the fiestas. There simply is no equivalent in the United States – throngs of people cramming the streets, drinking, eating, and singing until the wee hours of the morning. That the Basques have a phrase for spending all night out […]

Basque Fact of the Week: The Joaldunak

The Basque Country has several very distinctive festivals. I’ve written about La Tamborrada and the fiesta of San Juan, but perhaps one of the most unique fiestas involves the Joaldunak. Dressed in sheepskins and tall pointy hats with massive cowbells hung on their backs, these men, and now women, march between the towns of Zubieta […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Mari Domingi, Olentzero’s Companion

These days, Olentzero, the Basque “Santa Claus” who brings gifts to children during Christmas, is reasonably well recognized in the Basque diaspora. He not only visits children in Euskal Herria, but can often be found in Basque clubs in the United States, South America, and elsewhere. Even the New Mexico Euskal Etxea, back when it […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Jaialdi!

As you’ve probably heard by now, 2020 is a Jaialdi year! Jaialdi, which means festival in Euskara, is the biggest Basque festival in the United States, possibly the biggest outside of the Basque Country. It is held every five years at the end of July, the weekend of San Ignacio. The first Jaialdi was held […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Day of San Blas

Tomorrow, February 3, much of the Catholic world celebrates the fiestas of San Blas, or in English Saint Blaise. This festival is popular in the Basque Country, celebrated in many of the villages and cities of the country. It is noted for the unique pastries that are part of the celebration. San Blas, born in […]

Basque Fact of the Week: Oinkaris, the Basque Dancers of Boise

Dance is such a key component of Basque culture, especially for those living in the diaspora, where it is a central aspect of Basque identity. Almost all Basque kids who grow up in Basque-rich communities spend a few years in a dance group. I spent a few years in Caldwell’eko Eusko Dantzariak, started in 1980 […]

Basque Fact of the Week: On January 20, Donostia Celebrates my Birthday… I mean, La Tamborrada

La Tamborrada is a 24-hour festival taking place every January 20, the feast day of the city’s patron Saint Sebastian, in Donostia. Over 100 different bands dressed as soldiers and cooks march through the city throughout the 24 hours of the day, starting at midnight.

Basque News Roundup

Alan King continues to share some great stories. He has two new Basque stories on his website. Kidnapped by the Basajaun tells the story of a shepherd frees a young woman who had been kidnapped by a basajaun and forced to live with him. The Dog with Charcoal Eyes is about a man, about to be […]

Vince J. Juaristi: Intertwined: John Adams Encounters the Basque

As part of the buildup to the Smithsonian Folklife Festival celebrating the Basque culture, Vince Juaristi is writing a series of articles highlighting the connections between the Basques and Americans. He has graciously allowed me to repost those articles as they appear on Buber’s Basque Page. Sprawled between the Washington Monument and the U.S. Capitol, the Smithsonian hosts the […]