David is Panama’s third-largest city and a departure point to head for other sightseeing spots in the lovely province of Chiriqui. This province is nestled in the southwestern portion of the country, approximately a six-hour drive from Panama City or just a 50minute hop, skip and jump from the nation’s capital.
The place is blessed with tourist spots, from paradisiacal location on higher grounds to gorgeous beaches outfitted with state-of-the-art and snug facilities. It’s one of the provinces that bears watching in terms of tourism development, featuring a number of sites with abundant flora and wildlife such as Boquete, Volcan and Cerro Punta.
But Chiriqui is a whole lot more than nature. The province is packed with history, a blooming economy, social and cultural values, and an amazing heritage. Inhabited by illustrious men and women who have helped whip the Republic of Panama into shape, the place shows off advances in a number of sectors like stockbreeding, farming and the industries. And with this positive background, the San Jose de David International Fair comes around every year to promote national and international tourism.
Every March, the province of Chiriqui, in the city of David, swings its gates wide open for that traditional event. But, why in the month of March?
The history of the fair goes a long way back to 1926 when the first exposition of arts and industries was planned. Sponsored by the Minerva Society, the event used the David College as its main venue until 1932, according to the region’s cultural chief Jose Montenegro.
As time went by, the event was coordinated by the Caballeros de Baru, and later on by the Club de Leones, the Stockbreeders Association (ANAGAN) and the fair’s Organizing Committee. This outline remained unchanged between 1961 and 1966. A year later, the event moved to its current venue under the name of Commercial Farming and Stockbreeding Fair, only to become an international conclave through the enactment of Act 11 dated March 15, 1977.
The David Fair –as it’s commonly known- is the largest exhibition of the province’s manufacturing sectors. Its foodstuff industry, for instance, supplies to the whole country. During 10 or 11 days, as many as 300,000 people come for a firsthand glimpse at the territory’s finest industrial, trade and tourism achievements.
Panama’s cultural values also run high during the fair’s span of time. Stage presentations vary from folkloric shows with a Panamanian touch in each and every province to modern choreographies sprinkled with local and foreign rhythms.
Each year, some 500 exhibitors from Central America, South America, the U.S. and Europe attend this comprehensive tradeshow. Diplomatic, cultural and folkloric delegations also show up for the major commercial event, thus making it easier for all participants to get in touch with one another, share ideas and experiences, and promote businesses and products.
The fair churns out as many as $30 million worth of earnings every year for the province’s coffers, a figure that certainly makes the fair one of the most important commercial, agricultural, cultural and entertainment events.
The city of David turns inside out and the event energizes the economy in a province where both tourism and investments are virtually everywhere
The place shows off advances in a number of sectors like stockbreeding, farming and the industries.
Panama’s cultural values also run high during the fair’s span of time