Griga (Dang), The Culture Capital
|• Mayor||Francis Humphreys (UDP)|
|Elevation||sea level m (0 ft)|
|Time zone||UTC-6 (Central)|
Dangriga, formerly known as Stann Creek Town, is a town in southern Belize, located on the Caribbean coast at the mouth of the North Stann Creek River. It is the capital of Belize's Stann Creek District. Dangriga is served by the Dangriga Airport. Commonly known as the "culture capital of Belize" due to its influence on punta music and other forms of Garifuna culture, Dangriga is the largest settlement in southern Belize.
Dangriga was settled before 1832 by Garinagu (Black Caribs, as they were known to the British) from Honduras. For years it was the second largest population centre in the country behind Belize City, but in recent years has been surpassed by San Ignacio, Belmopan and Orange Walk Town. Since the early 1980s Garífuna culture has undergone a revival, as part of which the town's name of Dangriga, a Garífuna word meaning "standing waters", became more widely used (but was initially adopted around 1975).
The population is mostly a mixture of Garinagu, Kriols and Mestizos. According to the Statistical Institute of Belize, Dangriga's population in 2010 was 8,767 – 4,302 males and 4,465 females.
Dangriga is home to the Garifuna, a cultural and ethnic group, descendants of shipwrecked slaves and native Caribs. The Garifuna have adopted the Carib language but kept their African musical and religious traditions, while holding a central place in the history of the Catholic church and Catholic education in Belize. Dangriga is also where the Caribbean music, Punta Rock, originated and where some of Belize's folk bands can be found.
In November each year there is a week-long festivity leading up to Garifuna Settlement Day, attended by Garifuna people from around the region. It includes a torchlit parade and wreath-laying ceremony at the monument of the patriot and social activist Thomas Vincent Ramos, selection of Miss Garifuna, parades and special church services, and The T.V. Ramos Classic Bike Race.
The 19 November is Garifuna Settlement Day.
The city is served by Southern Regional Hospital.
Punta Gorda, known locally as P.G., is the capital and largest town of Toledo District in southern Belize. Punta Gorda is the southernmost sizable town in the nation, with a population of about 5,000 people. Although the town bears a Spanish name, its inhabitants are mostly Kriol/English-speaking, and are primarily of Garifuna, East Indian, Kriol, and Maya descent.
Stann Creek District is a district in the south east region of Belize. According to the 2010 census, the district had a population of 32,166 people. Its capital is the town of Dangriga, formerly known as "Stann Creek Town." Stann comes from "stanns," or safe havens used by colonialists coming from the "old world" to the "new world."
Mullins River is the name of both a river and of a village on that river in the Stann Creek District of Belize.
The Garifuna people are a mixed African and indigenous people originally from the Caribbean island of Saint Vincent who speak Garifuna, an Arawakan language.
Punta rock or Belizean punta is a form of the traditional punta rhythm of the Garifuna people of Belize, Guatemala, Honduras. Although most artists and bands are exclusively Garifuna, songs are usually in Kriol or Garifuna and rarely in Spanish, or English.
Punta is an Afro Indigenous dance and music originated by the Garifuna people with African and Arawak elements.
Paul Nabor, born Alfonso Palacio, was a Garifuna singer and musician from Punta Gorda, Belize. He is often credited with popularizing paranda, a style of traditional Garifuna music, and is considered to have been one of the most talented musicians of the genre.
Delvin "Pen" Cayetano MBE is a Belizean artist and musician.
Belizeans are people associated with the country of Belize through citizenship or descent. Belize is a multiethnic country with residents of African, Amerindian, European and Asian descent or any combination of those groups.
The Lebeha Drumming Center was established in 2002 by Jabbar Lambey and Dorothy Pettersen, in Hopkins, Belize. Hopkins is a small coastal Garifuna community in the Stann Creek District of southern Belize. The center exists with the goals of keeping Garifuna music alive, passing traditional music along to young people in the community, and sharing music with visitors to Hopkins. The center’s focus is on traditional percussion music, though guitars have been donated and are also played.
Thomas Vincent Ramos, commonly known as T. V. Ramos, was a Belizean civil rights activist who promoted the interests of the Garifuna people, and is now considered a national hero.
Garifuna Settlement Day is a public holiday in Belize, celebrated each year on November 19. The holiday was created by Belizean civil rights activist, Thomas Vincent Ramos, in 1941. It was recognized as a public holiday in the southern districts of Belize in 1943, and declared a national holiday in 1977. The holiday celebrates the settlement of the Garifuna people in Belize after being exiled from the Grenadines by the British army. The major festivities for the holiday occur in the town of Dangriga, including parades, street music, and traditional dancing.
Salvatore di Pietro, was an Italian Bishop in the Catholic Church. He served as the first Vicar Apostolic of Belize from 1893-1898. He is widely regarded as the most important figure in consolidating the Catholic presence in Belize in the second half of the 19th century.
This history of the Catholic church in Belize has three parts: the historical periods of the Catholic presence in Belize, religious congregations laboring in Belize, and apostolic works undertaken.
Sacred Heart Church, in Dangriga, Belize, is a Roman Catholic parish.
St. Peter Claver Catholic parish is located in Punta Gorda, Toledo District, Belize.
The Drums of Our Fathers Monument, located at the entrance of Dangriga, Stann Creek, Belize, is a monument designed by the Nigerian sculptor Stephen Okeke, honoring the Garifuna history, culture and its beliefs.
Iris Myrtle Palaciao is an educator and social planner from Belize. She is an advocate for Garifuna culture, and good governance in the public sector.