The Fair flourishes with your help to the Silleteros de Santa Elena
It is tradition that closing the month of July and during the first weeks of August Medellín dresses in flowers to commemorate the most important event for Medellinians: The Flower Fair, which is celebrated among trovas, classic cars, inns, artistic settings. and cultural, and of course, flowers and silleteros.
Silleteros that with their multicolored flowers on their backs are the representation of a cultural tradition that makes Antioqueños proud and that has its peak, every year, in the Silleteros Parade, the culmination of the Flower Fair.
However, due to COVID-19 and prioritizing the health of citizens, artists and production teams, the traditional festival of Antioqueños for the first time in 62 years will take place in the month of November virtually. However, the gardens in Santa Elena are full of flowers and silleteros need to sell them to keep the tradition alive.
How to help the Silleteros de Santa Elena?
Through Visit Medellín it is possible to buy virtual experiences or future bonds that will bring you closer to the Silletera Culture of Santa Elena.
Experiences such as assembling a traditional flower chair with a saddle kit that will arrive at your home and that contains all the necessary elements to assemble it, enjoy a virtual tour of the silletera farm of the Londoño García family to appreciate the richness of the Antioquia cultural landscape or From the hand of a traditional silletero, learn through a talk about the Silletera Culture, while you enjoy from home three products grown and made by people from the Corregimiento of Santa Elena that will be sent to you previously.
Likewise, through the Local Purchase initiative of the Mayor’s Office of Medellín, it is possible to order different bouquets and flower arrangements at home to support flower growers and peasants in the townships of Medellín.
We will bloom again
Despite not being able to count on the presence of national and foreign visitors who arrive in Medellín every year to enjoy the Flower Fair, with the #VolveremosAFlorecer strategy, the Colombian cities of Tunja, Manizales, Ocaña, Cúcuta, Bogotá, Risaralda, among others, will receive a flower chair with which it is expected to bring a message of strength, support and solidarity to different regions of the country.
The silletas, made in the town of Santa Elena, will arrive this time as a message of hope in the midst of the pandemic, isolation and the measures adopted against the coronavirus. The peasants took advantage of the production they had ready for the Fair, which will be in November, and they will receive a fair payment for their work; In addition, each chair will carry a message specially made for each city.
Thanks to this strategy, 460 families will be benefited, this includes 40 flower-growing households, from whom the crops were bought. 7,000 stems produced in Santa Elena will be used in the creation of the 98 silletas.
In Medellín culture moves us
Different virtual activities around the silletera culture can be enjoyed through the social networks of Nos Mueve la Cultura, photographic galleries about the pioneers in the silleteros territories, talks on the Silletera Culture Safeguarding Plan, native seeds and flowers, and the Silletas to vindicate the lives of women free from violence will be some of the virtual activities that will take place during the month of August.
This gesture is a gift and tribute to the heroes of the health contingency: doctors, journalists, firefighters, teachers, caregivers, nurses, policemen, among others, who will receive these works of art made with flowers from Medellín, which will contribute to the same time, to the economic relief of the floriculture and silletero sector.
Tribute to a tradition
Although the Parade and the days leading up to it make the silletero and his artistic talent visible, the silletera identity is much deeper and has its roots in the ancestors, in the gardens of the village of Santa Elena, in the family and in a way to live and conceive the world that since 2014 is considered Intangible Cultural Heritage of the Nation.
It is estimated that each edition of the Silleteros Parade brings together more than 500 thousand people, spectators who enjoy the multicolored spectacle formed by the silletas and the figure of the silletero himself and that is why we are convinced that in Medellín we will flourish again with the strength of our entrepreneurial, vigorous and enthusiastic spirit and that we will walk again through the streets that always wait for the art, tradition and color of Santa Elena.