Happy Mother’s Day Panama

In Panama, Mother’s Day is a national holiday celebrated on December 8th each year.  Expect traffic in Panama on the 7th and 8th as people travel all over the country to see their mothers to celebrate.

Many offer their mothers a day off from activities like cooking or other household chores, give them gifts and enjoy a family meal to celebrate  the women in the family. Grandmothers, aunts, and godmothers are included in the celebration.

Mother’s Day as a holiday spread worldwide, usually being marked on a day significant to the local culture. 
Panama’s Mother’s Day was started by the Rotary Clubs of Panama, first falling on May 11th, 1924. The celebration was changed to December 8 in 1930, to be celebrated on the day of the Catholic celebration of the Immaculate Conception. The change of date was to make the holiday more relevant to the local culture and to cement it as a national holiday.

Alonso Roy, a Panamanian historian, recalls the first celebration as a huge success. Roy says that stores were full of people buying gifts, and so were the cemeteries with people carrying flowers. Hundreds of Mother’s Day telegrams were sent when the holiday first began and today the tradition continues, but now with emails, phone calls, and personal visits.  

Since Mother’s Day coincides with a Catholic celebration many communities hold mass and a procession through the streets.

Happy Mother’s Day to all the mothers in Panama!