International Larimar Day Date in the current year: November 22, 2024

International Larimar Day International Larimar Day is observed annually on November 22. This annual holiday was created in 2018 to celebrate a rare mineral that can be found only in the Dominican Republic.

Larimar is a semi-precious stone that is found only around Barahona, a city in the Dominican Republic. It is a rare variety of pectolite, a silicate mineral the coloration of which normally varies from white to gray. Larimar, however, comes in multiple shades of blue and green, ranging from bluish white to deep indigo. The more intense the stone’s blue color, the higher its quality.

According to the records of the Ministry of Mining of the Dominican Republic, larimar was first discovered by Father Miguel Domingo Fuetes Loren from Barahona. On November 22, 1916, he submitted a request to explore and exploit the mine where he had found a previously unknown mineral. However, the Ministry of Mining rejected his request, and larimar was forgotten for almost six decades.

The mineral was rediscovered by Miguel Mendez and Norman Rilling, a Peace Corps volunteer, on a beach near Barahona. They thought it came from the sea, so Mendez named the stone larimar by combining the first half of his daughter’s name, Larissa, and the Spanish word for sea. It was soon discovered that the stones had been washed into the sea by the Bahoruco River, and an outcrop of larimar was found after an upstream search.

The Los Chupaderos mine is the most important outcrop of blue pectolite in the Dominican Republic. Located about 10 km southwest of Barahona, it has approximately 2,000 shafts for mining larimar. The stone is used to make jewelry, which is considered the Dominican Republic’s local specialty. Most larimar jewelry is set in silver, but gold is sometimes used to make jewelry pieces with high-grade stones. It should be noted that the mineral is photosensitive, so it is important to protect larimar jewelry from light and heat to keep its color bright.

The inaugural Larimar Day was celebrated in the Dominican Republic on November 22, 2018. The date of November 22 was chosen to commemorate the day when Father Miguel Domingo Fuetes Loren requested a permission to explore the mine where he had discovered an unusual blue rock. Although some online sources refer to the holiday as National Larimar Day, Dominicans call it International Larimar Day because one of its goals is to boost the country’s international visibility and draw tourists from around the globe.

International Larimar Day events focus on celebrating the national stone of the Dominican Republic and highlighting its importance for economic, environmental, and social sustainability. They include exhibitions, guided tours of the Larimar Museum in Santo Domingo, talks, workshops, craft fairs, and various cultural activities.

Even if you can’t visit the Dominican Republic this November, you still can celebrate International Larimar Day by learning more about this amazing stone and its history, buying authentic larimar jewelry, and spreading the word on social media with the hashtags #LarimarDay and #InternationalLarimarDay.

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