Cali loves Christmas. Celebrating the season for just one day (or twelve if you're fan of partridges, pear trees, and maids a' milking) is not enough; Cali has designated the entire month of December to revel in the Christmas spirit.
To ring in the month, the entire Rio Cali is illuminated with a plethora of lights. All along, as well as over, are strung millions of lights creating characters to brighten the night scape. This year's theme was centered on the music of Cali throughout it's history, beginning with the indigenous peoples who called this area home all the way through to the present.
On Monday, the night before the day where Catholics honor the Virgin Mary, families were found out in the streets lighting candles. The tradition is supposed to "light the way" for Mary. This is the day I went to see the lights along the river, however, upon returning home to my barrio, there were still many candles burning in solitude on sidewalks and front steps.
The lights of the Rio Cali will remain on every night until after the new year. To add to the dramatics of the lighted waterway, Cali doesn't slow down in it's celebrating. In the later part of the month, between Christmas day and New Years, the Feria de Cali, a huge week-long party, will be held in various parts of the city featuring dance exhibitions, beauty pageants, and just general revelry.