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Facts & Figures
Ideas for a Panama Themed Party
The Republic of Panama is a Central American country bordered by Costa Rica to the west, Colombia to the southeast, the Caribbean Sea to the north and the Pacific Ocean to the south. It was inhabited by several indigenous tribes prior to settlement by the Spanish in the 16th century. Panama broke away from Spain in 1821 and joined a union with other nearby states, before eventually becoming independent in 1903. With the help of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the famous Panama Canal was built between 1904 and 1914. Revenue from canal tolls continues to represent a significant portion of Panama's GDP, although commerce, banking, and tourism are major and growing sectors.
The country has extensive coastlines - Caribbean and Pacific - but inland much of it is covered in forest.
The Panamanian Football Federation was founded in 1937, and the national team enjoyed some regional successes before finally qualifying for the World Cup Finals Tournament in 2018.
Panamanian Party DecorationsFor a Panama football party, go for the red, white and blue colour scheme of the national flag. The team's home strip is red with blue and white details, while their away kit is white with blue details.
Food for a Panama Themed PartyItís hard to be specific about Panamanian cuisine, because like the Panamanian people, it is very diverse. Panamanians trace their ancestry back to not only the local indigenous peoples, but to the Spanish (and other European) colonists and the African slaves they brought with them. There's also quite a large Asian population, and the food of Panama reflects this mix. Having said that, as a relatively small nation they don't have hundreds of "signature dishes", and many of the most popular meals are also just as popular in neighbouring Costa Rica, for example.
Along the Caribbean and Pacific coasts seafood is of course hugely popular, supplemented with coconut, root vegetables, and tropical fruits. On the Caribbean coast in particular, traditional cooking methods - e.g. barbecue or cooking over an open fire - remain popular. As a general rule, Panamanians don't have their food a spicy as the Mexicans, for example, and tend not to eat a lot of green vegetables. Many dishes from other Latin American countries are popular in Panama, such as Chilean Ceviche, Colombian stuffed potato balls served with spicy sauce (although in Panama the balls/dumplings are made using yams, sweet potatoes or mashed yucca, and are called carimañola), and arroz con pollo (chicken and rice, popular throughout central America - we have recipes from both Colombia and Costa Rica); any of these would be perfectly acceptable for your Panamanian Party.
Main Courses & Accompaniements
Drink for a Panamanian PartyCoffee is grown in some parts of Panama, and is very popular locally - hot chocolate is also enjoyed as an alternative. Fresh fruit juices and smoothies (made from a huge selection of locally available fruits, including orange, lemon, pineapple, passion fruit, papaya and banana - often with natural cane sugar added) are also extremely popular.
The local gin (seco) and rum (ron abuelo) are the most popular alcoholic drinks, often mixed with fruit juices or carbonated drinks. Local beer brands are of the lager type - the best known are probably Panama, Atlas and Balboa, but none of them are easy to track down outside the country itself.
We have not been able to find a reliable source of Panama football shirts at the moment. Their home strip is red with blue and white details, while their away kit is white with blue details