Los Aguizotes, the Masaya halloween from hell
Quite possibly one of the most frightening things you will ever see is the Los Aguizotes festival in Masaya.
It is celebrated in the night on the last Friday in October and brings out the best of the worst costumes that can be imagined. The history boils down to Catholics trying to convince the local indigenous population to convert by mixing their traditions with Roman ones, so believe it or not, there is a saint involved. You won’t find this Halloween party watered down with people dressed up as a Coca-Cola can or the president. This is when the demons are let out. The hordes come about 9pm and march to the park, by the THOUSANDS, then from there they make their way through the old downtown howling, screaming, shaking chains, shooting fire and scaring all the little kids they can find.
The next day they celebrate Toro Venado, or Bull Deer. Imagine a family-friendly version of the previous night…but with cows.
And that saint I mentioned? They put him up on a pedestal, a very, very heavy pedestal, and carry him around town.