Rural tourism fair will feature marimba as Tico heritage

Some 80 tourism operators and communities will be showing off their rural tourism projects at the eighth annual fair this weekend.

Musicians demonstrate the marimba Wednesday when officials outline what will take place at the rural tourism fair. Photo: Instituto Costarricense de Turismo

The event starts at 4:30 p.m. Friday with an inauguration and a concert. There are full days of exhibit from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

The event is sponsored in part by the Instituto Costarricense de Turismo.

Rural tourism is an effort to bring visitors to non-traditional parts of the country where they may live with Costa Rican families and participate in daily life. The institute estimates that 72,000 tourists visited last year to participate in rural tourism.

The event is in the Antigua Aduana, which is now known as the Centro Nacional de la Cultura y la Tecnología on
Avenida 25 in east San José not far from the railway’s Estación al Atlántico. The location is two blocks north of Avenida Central.

One of the purposes of Rural tourism is to preserve the heritage and traditions of the Costa Rican campesino or farm worker and ranchers.

This year the focus is on the marimba, the unique Costa Rica xylophone closely associated with Guanacaste.

The event will feature marimba concerts for children and adults, said the institute.

There also will be examples of other activities which are considered intangible heritage, such as the swing criole dance.

The event closes Sunday with a marimba concert at 5 p.m. Saturday there also is a 5 p.m. concert. Both days feature traditional dance demonstrations.

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