Radishes night in oaxaca city
From the Earth to the tradition
If someone was to question the artistic creativity of the magic hands of artisans in Oaxaca, you would have to shop around the capital city on December 23, that night is celebrated what we call “Radishes Night”. Central Valley Gardeners carve long radishes, not the small radishes that we know and eat with tacos and Mexican food, this are radishes that are more than 20 inches long, used as decorations for Christmas dinner.
The birth of a tradition
The tradition of Radishes Night was born on the Christmas Eve Market where they use to sell salt fish outlets for food of this important day in the Catholic faith. Traders and growers in Trinidad de las Huertas, now a neighborhood within the city of Oaxaca, used sink and adorn these radishes with flowers which were displayed on the market stalls. People started buying them as decorations for their Christmas dinner and due to the ingenuity and beauty of these creations came the long tradition to carve these radishes in endless shapes and forms.
The market for The Vigil
According to the records of floriculture and horticulture exhibits at Market Vigil in the center of the city, the first Radishes Night contest took place in 1897. For over a century, gardeners have preserved, cultivated and improved this tradition were you can admire carved radishes representing many themes and forms for example virgins, carnival games, rodeos, churches, day of the dead altars, the Guelaguetza, faces of famous characters, the calendas, the Nativity Scene, the wise men, and many sculptures, made by the artisans hands using their creativity.
Exhibition at the Zocalo (Main Square)
The main square is wrapped in a holiday like the the market of the vigil use to more than a century ago, people from Mexico and foreigners line up to start the tour around the Zocalo where the posts are installed with the unique creations. The faces of the visitors denote admiration when they observe the details of the majestic radishes creations.