Coamo, Puerto Rico
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|Coamo, Puerto Rico|
|— Municipality —|
|Nickname(s): La Villa de San Blás de Illescas", "Los Maratonistas", "La Villa Añeja", "Ciudad de las Aguas Termales"|
|Anthem: "Allá muy cerca del pueblo"|
|• Mayor||Hon Juan Carlos García Padilla (PPD)|
|• Senatorial dist.||Guayama|
|• Representative dist.||27|
|• Total||78.05 sq mi (202.15 km2)|
|• Land||78.04 sq mi (202.13 km2)|
|• Water||7 sq mi (0,017 km2)|
|Elevation||486 ft (148 m)|
|• Density||520/sq mi ( 200/km2)|
|Time zone||AST (UTC-4)|
Coamo (Spanish pronunciation: [koˈamo]) is a municipality in Puerto Rico located in the southern region, north of Santa Isabel; south of Orocovis and Barranquitas; east of Villalba and Juana Díaz; and west of Aibonito and Salinas. Coamo is spread over 10 wards and Coamo Pueblo (The downtown area and the administrative center of the city). It is both a principal city of the Coamo Micropolitan Statistical Area and the Ponce-Yauco-Coamo Combined Statistical Area.
Coamo is a small town nestled in a valley about 10 miles (16 km) east of Ponce (about 30 minutes by car). It was named San Blas Illescas de Coamo by its first settlers. San Blas was the Catholic saint who remains the town's patron. Illescas is the Spanish town the original founders came from (nowadays in Toledo province, Castile-La Mancha, Spain). There are a couple of theories regarding the origin of the word Coamo. Some think it comes from an indigenous word that means "valley" but it's also plausible that Coamo derives its name from Coamex (or Coamey), who was a celebrated local cacique (or "chieftain" in the Taino language). Archeological digs near the region have produced some of the best examples of the island's pre-Columbian cultural artifacts.
Founded July 15, 1579, Coamo is the third oldest settlement of the island's post Columbian period (after San Juan in the north and San Germán in the west). By 1582, there were twenty families living in Coamo, in the same area where the Tainos had had their village of Guayama. Coamo officially became a town in 1616, and was given the title of "Villa" by Spanish Royal Decree in 1778.
Coamo was the administrative center that encompassed most of the southern half of the island during the early colonial period. As the agricultural and sugar industries, which became the mainstays of the colony's economy, grew, the province would eventually subdivide into several distinct municipalities and the administrative center of the region would later shift west to the coastal town of Ponce.
Coamo boasts a picturesque downtown plaza area, and is the home of a series of natural hot springs, Los Baños de Coamo, which has attracted visitors to its medicinal waters since before the Spaniards landed. These very springs were once rumored to have been Juan Ponce de León's legendary "fountain of youth". In the early nineteenth century, a system of pools of varying depths and sizes and temperatures was constructed at the site of these springs to serve as a spa for the colonials. During the North American invasion in the Spanish American War (1898), this site was the scene of one of the decisive battles of that conflict (the Battle of Coamo). The American troops took possession of the island and the spa was subsequently abandoned. Though the site lay in ruins for most of the twentieth century, it continued to be a landmark to the Coameños, who would often go to bathe in its healing thermal waters. The pools remain, but the buildings which once hosted the island's affluent and colonial soldiers are gone, except for the remains of one central wall structure which has been preserved and incorporated into a fountain courtyard on the grounds of a popular tourist hotel and rest stop which has replaced the ancient Spanish ruins.
- Cerro Pulguitas, Cuchillas de Coamo, Presidio and Santa Ana.
- Rivers are: Río Coamo, Río Descalabrado, Río Lapa and Río de la Mina.
- Los Baños de Coamo (Coamo Thermal Baths), nourished by the Coamo river.
Felipe Rivera-Ortiz (artist)
Lely Burgos (winning gold at the Pan American Games Guadalajara Mexico 2011) and Olimpic Athlete.
Bobby Capo (musician)
Rafael Rivera Zayas
Juan Velez (Program Objective Fame Winner 4)
Carlos Luis Torres Santiago (Ex-Representative Former Mayor 1968-88 & 1988-96)
Jose I. Quinton (musician)
Margarita Nolasco (Senator and Vice-President of the Senate of Puerto Rico)
Alejandro J. García Padilla (Senator)(Governor of Puerto Rico)
Antonio García Padilla (Former President of the University of Puerto Rico)
Enrique "Quique" Meléndez (Former Senator District of Guayama)
Jose Garriga Pico (Former Senator)
Juan Rivera Ortiz (Former Senator District of Guayama)
Francisco "Pancho" Coimbre (Pelotero)
Tony "Dize" Feliciano Rivera (Musician)
Luis A. "Wito" Santiago (Musician, Composer, Music Teacher)
Eric Joel "Lobo" Rodriguez (Musician, Composer)
- Coamo Arriba
- Coamo Pueblo
- Los Llanos
- Pedro Garcia
- San Idelfonso
- Santa Catalina1
Coamo is an agricultural center where mangoes, corn, guanabanas, tamarindo, quenepas, avocados, oranges and plantains are grown, and where poultry and cattle are raised.
Coamo is a trading center for machinery, aircraft radio components, and clothing.
- Los Baños de Coamo (Coamo Thermal Baths)- near the Santa Isabel border.
- Historic Museum (Pico Pomar Residence)
- Church San Blas de Illescas of Coamo, construction on the church began in 1661 and is one of the oldest parish on the island.
Mr. Andrew G. Luhring not have enough capital to sustain and improve their business going to hand it over and equally powerful entrepreneurs to get Mr. José Usera, a coameño, who built, there by the year 1857, the building that has lasted until today and was recently destroyed. Don Julio Vizcarrondo, referring to the newly built resort, said in 1863: "... this source of mineral water was used for the establishment of a bathhouse such wonderful effects that go there constantly sick inside and outside Island to get healthy. Their current owner, Don José Usera, just mount it in a way that puts you at the height of the top of his class. " His life is already a legend. For nearly a century after its construction the hotel maintained a reputation Coamo summit in the country for its excellence as a place to spend time. Nothing more inviting to romance or rest your peaceful and quiet atmosphere, the beauty of its lush vegetation and varied fauna and ever-present, all of which were, and remain, a balm for the spirit tense and tired. Its healing waters, superb international cuisine, its sober and elegant and recreational facilities will become the preferred hotel of old, young and old, including many foreigners. It was, incidentally, the idyllic choice for newlyweds to spend their honeymoon. For all that, the Baths of Coamo spa became the rendezvous of the smart people of Puerto Rico, having no rivals for that long period of time. Where hot sulphurous waters emanating spa? Studies by different geologists conclude that in the area where lies this resort was once a volcano, to die, left in the depths of the earth hot rocks (Magma) to a high temperature. For cracks or flaws that exist in the skirt Coamo River, which passes through there, filtered water up and down the rocks. There undergoes certain physical and chemical reactions and then returns to the surface as hot sulfur springs. But back to the newly renovated spa. This building is completely modern and consists of four buildings for guests, one for dining and one for administration. They are located around the famous old Saman tree, now more beautiful than ever, that old hotel guests knew and admired for 50 or 60 years ago. The guest buildings are unusual in that its architecture, although modern style resembling "ranch" of old coffee plantations in Puerto Rico. There also have been built two modern swimming pools one of which is fed by hot mineral springs. The hostel has a capacity of 48 rooms, almost double the old hotel. By building it sought preserve, as much as possible, while the typical exotic vegetation that was one of its main attractions. The San Blas Marathon held annually in our city of Coamo, Puerto Rico, is considered one of the background events in the world. The race began in 1963 as a cutting-edge event, but not until the 1970s when the United States and the world begins fever-road events. To be undertaken at an intermediate distance between the longest track and field (10,000 meters) and the classic marathon (42.195 km), can compete with the best riders if the world in both categories. Since its inception managed to invite a large number of the best runners from as far afield as Australia, Ethiopia, Japan, Soviet Union, Nationalist China, etc.. Similarly brokers attending the U.S., Mexico, Colombia, Brazil, Tanzania, Costa Rica, Kenya, Belgium, Venezuela, Canada and others. The mobilization of thousands of people who stay from days earlier campaign booths, those who witness the race, creating an excellent environment for the presentation of promotions, advertising messages. For its competitive quality and its world famous television producers "Elite Racing", selected the San Blas Half Marathon to appear on the program "Road Race of the Month" by ESPN. This program is seen in the United States, Puerto Rico and other countries in tens of millions of homes.
- Patron Festivities - February
- San Blas Half Marathon - February
- Flower Carnival - May
- Yuca (cassava) Carnival - August
- Juey (crab) Carnival - October
- Bomba & Plena Festival - November
Coamo is famous for being the host of the San Blas Half-Marathon, a yearly world-class professional marathon that attracts the best competitive runners in the world. It was inaugurated in 1963 by Delta Phi Delta Fraternity in honor to the founder of the town. World-class international and local runners compete in a 21.0975-kilometre (13.1094 mi) half marathon. It's Puerto Rico's biggest race, and the crowds are always large.
|Race - Coamo, Puerto Rico - 2000 Census2|
|Race||Population||% of Total|
|American Indian and Alaska Native||101||0.3%|
|Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander||6||0.0%|
|Some other race||3,799||10.1%|
|Two or more races||1,237||3.3%|
All municipalities in Puerto Rico are administered by a mayor, elected every four years. The current mayor of Coamo is Juan Carlos García Padilla, of the Popular Democratic Party (PPD). He was elected at the 2000 general elections.
The flag of Coamo derives its colors from the Coat of Arms. Its colors are red, yellow, and black.
The top left and the lower right have a red background with a gold Episcopal hat each. These parts of the Coat of Arms represent the old seat of San Blas de Illescas. The horse and the bull represent the cattle wealth of the population. The gold color that serves as background in contrast with the black color, recalls the yellowish reddish tone of the fields of Coamo during the droughts. The heavy border of the Coat Of Arms contains the following figures: two flames; three bell towers with gold bells outlined in red; two red crosses with arms ending in three petals; and a circle with a surface divided by horizontal blue and silver-plated stripes.
Historia de Coamo " La Villa Añeja", Ramon Rivera Bermúdez, 1980
- Coamo and its barrios, United States Census Bureau
- Historic Places in Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, a National Park Service Discover Our Shared Heritage Travel Itinerary
- "Coamo, Puerto Rico". Geographic Names Information System. USGS. Retrieved 2008-05-06.