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November 29, 2011
  • Long weekends in 2012 in the Dominican Republic
  • Museum Day on 10 December
  • Britney Spears at the Olympic Stadium
  • Christmas begins at Altos de Chavon
Long weekends in 2012 in the Dominican Republic
In the Dominican Republic, as well as official holidays, there are many cultural holidays. It's important to know these dates and the long weekends they create, especially when planning vacation time. Dominicans will stay at local resorts for the long weekends, filling up many a hotel. These long weekends are a good time to do the opposite: head from the resort areas to the city for shopping or just enjoying the city without traffic jams.
The long weekends in 2012 are (with Mondays falling on a holiday):
- 6, 7, 8, 9 January: Three Kings Day Long Weekend. Dominicans may take time off from Thursday, 6 January, extending the holidays for a weekend dedicated to the family. This traditionally marks the end of the Christmas holidays.
- 27, 28, 29, 30 January: Duarte Day. Actually celebrated on 26 January, but it is moved to Monday, creating the long weekend.
- 5, 6, 7, 8 April: Dominicans will take off from Thursday, 5 April. This is a peak vacation time for domestic travelers. Good Friday falls on 6 April in 2012.
- 27, 28, 29 30 April: Labor Day is celebrated on Monday, 30 April making for a long weekend.
- 7, 8, 9 June: Thursday, 7 June celebrates Corpus Christi Day, a religious holiday, and many will make it the first summer vacation, converting it into a long weekend.
- 16, 17, 18, 19 August: This marks the Restoration Day holiday and this year a new President will be sworn in. The 16th falls on a Thursday, so for many people Restoration Day will create a very long weekend, especially since this is August, near the end of school vacation period.
- 21, 22, 23, 24 September: Mercedes Day long weekend. Mercedes Day falls on a Monday creating the long weekend.
- 2, 3, 4, 5 November: Constitution Day long weekend.
Museum Day on 10 December
Also known as The Long Night of the Museums, this year 10 December falls on a Saturday and a long list of popular Dominican museums will be open until late in the evening and admission will be free. Put the date on your calendar to visit several museums hosting a range of activities to welcome night-time visitors.
The event is sponsored by the Ministry of Culture (MINC) and is now in its fourth year.
Ana Maria Conde of the Department of Museums of the Ministry of Culture says the event is held to educate Dominicans on the important collections at the museums so they can learn to care and value them. She announced there would be many artistic and cultural presentations at the participating museums. These are:
Museo de la Familia Dominicana del Siglo XIX, Casa de Teatro, Quinta Dominica, Fortaleza de Santo Domingo (Fortaleza Ozama), Museo Trampolin, Museo de Las Casas Reales, Museo Naval de Rescate Subacuatico de las Atarazanas Reales, Museo Alcazar de Don Diego Colon, Centro de Inventarios de Bienes e inmuebles, Palacio Consistorial del Ayuntamiento del Distrito Nacional and El Centro de la Imagen. Also at Plaza de la Cultura: Museo de la Musica at the Teatro Nacional, Museo de Arte Moderno, Museo del Hombre Dominicano, Museo de Historia Natural y Teatro Nacional, el Museo Bellapart, at Av. John F. Kennedy and the Instituto Duartiano in the Colonial City. Faro a Colon in eastern Santo Domingo will also stay open late.
Britney Spears at the Olympic Stadium
Pop songstress Britney Spears is including the Dominican Republic in her Femme Fatale Tour 2011. Spears is booked for a performance at Santo Domingo's Felix Sanchez Olympic Stadium on Thursday, 8 December, where promoters say she will sing 21 of her biggest hits. Tickets cost from RD$1,000-RD$10,000.
Christmas begins at Altos de Chavon
On Saturday, 10 December, a Christmas arts and crafts bazaar will be held at Altos de Chavon from 12 noon to 11pm. Santa will be on the premises from 4 to 6pm and there will be live entertainment. At 5pm, mass will be celebrated at the Iglesia San Estanislao, and then at 7pm, a ceremony will be held for turning on the Christmas lights of Chavon at 7pm. The National Ballet will dance the Nutcracker at the Amphitheater of Altos de Chavon by the, sponsored by the Ministry of Culture. That same evening at 9pm, very talented pianist Maria de Fatima Giraldez will accompany lyric singers, including soprano Antonia Maria Chabebe, for a Christmas carol concert.
On Sunday, the bazaar continues from noon to 11pm, Santa will be back from 4 to 6pm, and mass at 6pm at the San Estanislao Church.

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