Archive for June 3rd, 2014
Wave Of Youthful Laughter And Colour In Arona

Hitting me with their rhythm sticks and their dainty red caps, the mass of harmonious voices stopped me in my tracks just outside Tenerife Sur at the bottom of Funchal. Fiestas are many and often in Tenerife but I was sure there were none today so I asked one of the grown ups in charge of the musical youngsters what was occurring.

A multi regional gathering was the answer with the party I had seen coming from Barcelona, a few yards further on I found another group with different but co-coordinated outfits in a flamenco style and complimented by little baskets of flowers. They were all heading for the Los Cristianos cultural centre, a bit of research told me it was an Encuentro featuring eight colleges and 300 pupils from across Spain, three from Barcelona, two from Leganes, Madrid, and others from Cadiz, Valladolid, and the hosts from Santa Cruz.

Later I found an even bigger gathering at the old beach with team games breaking out all over the sand under close supervision. One of the organizers told me it was called Jugar & Convivir (play and live) and set up by Ofra Bella Vista college in Santa Cruz with help and support from the culture and sports departments of Arona council. It looked brilliant, the sea was a little choppier then usual on the more sheltered beach but teams were venturing into the water to play between inflatable goals, over inflatable nets, and into inflatable basketball hoops. Others were indulging in tug of war with one side trying to pull the others into the sea.

The groups are here for five days and the purpose is to share culture, music, and sport, sounds like a very worthwhile aim to me. As I left the beach the speakers were being cranked up in Plaza del Pescadora with some reggae themed dance music. Let’s hope they enjoy all that the fine facilities of Arona have to offer and make lots of new friends along the way.