Nicaragua, officially the Republic of Nicaragua (República de Nicaragua), is the largest country in Central America. It is is located at the center of the Central American isthmus that forms a land bridge between North and South America. Nicaragua’s Caribbean coast is part of the Western Caribbean Zone. On the Pacific side of the country are the two largest fresh water lakes in Central America—Lake Managua and Lake Nicaragua. Surrounding these lakes and extending to their northwest along the rift valley of the Gulf of Fonseca are fertile lowland plains, whose soil is highly enriched with ash from nearby volcanoes. Nicaragua’s abundance of biologically significant and unique ecosystems contribute to Mesoamerica’s designation as a biodiversity hotspot. The Central American Volcanic Arc runs through the spine of the country, earning Nicaragua its notably famous nickname: The Land of Lakes and Volcanoes.
Nicaragua is a unitary republic, and for administrative purposes, it is divided into 15 departments (departamentos) and two self-governing regions (autonomous communities) based on the Spanish model.
Región Autónoma del Atlántico Norte
Spanish for “Autonomous Region of the Northern Atlantic”, sometimes shortened to RAAN, is one of two autonomous regions in Nicaragua. The capital is Puerto Cabezas.
Región Autónoma del Atlántico Sur
Spanish for “Autonomous Region of the Southern Atlantic”, sometimes shortened to RAAS, is one of two autonomous regions in Nicaragua. The capital is Bluefields.
It was formed in 1938 out of part of Chontales. The capital is the city of Boaco. Indigenous peoples are the Nuhuas and Sumos.
The capital is Jinotepe.
The capital is the city of Chinandega. Largely agricultural, it produces rum from sugar cane; other products are bananas, peanuts, shrimps and salt.
The capital is Juigalpa.
Its capital is the city of Estelí.
The capital is the city of Granada.
Jinotega is the second largest department in Nicaragua. The capital is the city of Jinotega.
The capital is the city of León.
The capital is Somoto. Madriz was created from Nueva Segovia department in August 1936, and named after José Madriz.
The capital is the city of Managua.
It is the country’s smallest department by area. The capital is the city of Masaya.
The capital is the city of Matagalpa. Matagalpa is the most diversified province, producing coffee, cattle, milk produce, vegetables, wood, gold, flowers. Its extensive forests, rivers and geography are suited for ecotourism.
The capital is Ocotal.
The department’s capital is the city of Rivas. Rivas is known for its fertile soil and beautiful beaches. There are many sugar cane, plantain, tobacco, and other crop plantations. The department borders Lake Nicaragua to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the west.
Río San Juan
It was formed in 1957 from parts of Chontales and Zelaya departments. The capital is San Carlos. The Department also includes the Solentiname Islands archipelago and the San Juan River, after which it is named. Trinidad, in Rio San Juan, is the most southerly point in Nicaragua.
Other places and informational links for Nicaragua:
By car, there are two border crossings to Costa Rica, Penas Blancas west of Lake Nicaragua and Los Chiles east of it. You have to take a boat to cross at Los Chiles. It is not possible to cross into Nicaragua via Los Chiles by car. There are three major border crossings to Honduras. Las Manos is on the shortest route to Tegucigalpa, the others ones are on the Panamerican Highway north of Leon.
International buses are available between Managua and San Jose, Costa Rica (also stopping briefly in Rivas and Granada), San Salvador, El Salvador (stopping briefly in Leon) and Honduras.
Saint Andrew is the patron saint of Scotland, Greece, Romania, Russia, Poland, Ukraine, the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople and Saint Andrew, Barbados.
St. Andrew's Day (Scots: Saunt Andra's Day, Scottish Gaelic: Là Naomh Aindrea) is Scotland's official national day. In 2006, the Scottish Parliament designated St Andrew's Day as an official bank holiday. It is also a national holiday in Romania.
In Germany, the feast day is celebrated as Andreasnacht ("(St.) Andrew's Night"), in Austria with the custom of Andreasgebet ("(St.) Andrew's Prayer"), and in Poland as Andrzejki ("Andrew's (festivities)"), in Russia as Андреева ночь ("Andrew's night").
Today is Santa's List Day. Have you been good all year? Have you been Naughty? Or, have you been nice? Santa knows.
Santa's Elves have been everywhere, checking up on children all over the world, to see who has been naughty, and who has been nice. Thanks to the hard work of his elves, Santa now has two lists. The short list contains the names of a few children who have been naughty. A much longer list is filled with the names of children who have been good all year long.
Which list are you on?
Kids..... make sure to be especially good around the holidays. That's when parents need children to be on their best behavior, as they are busy preparing for the holidays.
St. Nicholas Day is today. Yes, there really was a christian Saint Nicholas. He lived in the country of Greece, just a couple hundred years after the birth of Christ. This day is in honor of Saint Nicholas and his life.
Saint Nicholas became a priest, and later, a Bishop of the early Catholic Church. True to the christian concept of giving up belongings and following Christ, St. Nicholas gave up all of his belongings. He was well known for giving to needy people, especially children. There are may stories and tales of him helping out children in need.
The practice of hanging up stockings originated with Saint Nicholas. As the ancient legend goes, Saint Nicholas was known to throw small bags of gold coins into the open windows of poor homes. After one bag of gold fell into the stocking of a child, news got around. Children soon began hanging their stocking by their chimneys "in hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there".
It wasn't until the 1800's that the spirit of St. Nicholas' life evolved into the creation of Santa Claus. And, this happened in America. Santa Claus emerged (or evolved) from the stories and legends of St. Nicholas. Santa Claus was kind and generous to children. Unlike "St. Nick", Santa Claus is largely a non-religious character.
International Civil Aviation Day promotes awareness of the importance of international civil aviation.
This special day was created to promote and bring awareness to the importance of civil aviation for social and economic development around the world. It is also intended to promote the safety and efficiency of air transportation.
Civil air transportation is an important part of a country's infrastructure and transportation system. Take today to appreciate the civil air system in your country.
Origin of International Civil Aviation Day:
The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) was created on December 7, 1944. In 1994, ICAO celebrated the first International Civil Aviation Day, in recognition of the organization's 50th anniversary. In 1996, The United Nations General Assembly passed a resolution recognizing December 7th as International Civil Aviation Day.
Pearl Harbor Day, commemorates the Japanese attack on the U.S. Naval base at Pearl Harbor. The attack began at dawn December 7, 1941. It crippled the U.S. Pacific Fleet, and caused the U.S. to enter World War II.
During the attack at Pearl Harbor, over 2,400 American serviceman and 68 civilians were killed. Five of the eight battleships at Pearl Harbor were sunk or sinking, and virtually all ships were damaged.
On Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day, U.S. flags are to be flown at half staff.
On December 8, 1941 President Franklin D. Roosevelt stated in a speech to Congress it was "..a day that will live in infamy". The U.S. then declared war on Japan.
Christmas Card Day, honors Sir Henry Cole (1818 - 1874) of England. Cole created the first commercial Christmas Card in 1843.
Just a few decades ago, sending Christmas cards through the mail was a holiday "must". Sending cards through the mail continues to be very popular. The cost and time for writing and sending cards has caused many people to stop sending them. Free Ecards have surged in popularity. Animated Christmas and seasonal Ecards have made sending and receiving them a lot of fun.
Today is a good day to send out your Christmas cards and holiday greetings. If you have yet to do so, use today to get a start.
These beautiful flowers are recognized as a symbol of Christmas. Poinsettia Day was pronounced as an Act of Congress. It is in honor of Joel Roberts Poinsett, who died on December 12, 1851. Poinsett was the first Ambassador to Mexico who brought the plant back to his plantation in the U.S. He grew the plants in his Greenville, S.C plantation and gave them out as gifts to friends.
In Mexican folklore, there is a story of a little poor girl who had nothing to bring to church for Christmas. On her way to church, she picked some plants by the side of the road. As she entered the church, the ends of the leaves turned into bright, brilliant red flowers. You guessed it... Poinsettias.
A solstice is an astronomical event that happens twice each year as the Sun reaches its highest or lowest excursion relative to the celestial equator on the celestial sphere. As a result, on the day of the solstice the Sun appears to have reached its highest or lowest annual altitude in the sky above the horizon at local solar noon.
Christmas (Old English: Crīstesmæsse, meaning "Christ's Mass") is an annual commemoration of the birth of Jesus Christ, celebrated generally on December 25 as a religious and cultural holiday by billions of people around the world.
Some people will celebrate it on the first weekday after Christmas. If Christmas falls on a Friday or a Saturday, Boxing Day is the following Monday.
Boxing Day is celebrated in England, Australia, Canada, New Zealand and other former British commonwealth countries. It is a legal holiday in these countries. This is also St. Stephans Day, where Boxing Day gets some of it's roots. On St. Stephans' Day, churches opened their collection boxes to the poor.
Boxing Day was an expression of appreciation and thanks, much like Christmas tips are today.
The roots of the holiday goes back to the Middle Ages . On this day, members of the merchant class would take boxes, fill them with food and fruits, and give them to servants, tradespeople and the less fortunate. In the case of servants, they would work on Christmas Day, so it was only fitting that immediately after Christmas, they would be given a day off to celebrate. Usually celebrated the day after Christmas, some would celebrate the following Monday when Christmas fell on a Friday or Saturday.
Today, the giving of boxes includes filling boxes with food and clothing for the needy and performing volunteer work. Monetary gifts to charity are also common.
New Year's Eve is a major social holiday for many people in the United States. Many people hold parties at home or attend special celebrations, where alcohol, such as wine and champagne, may be consumed to celebrate the upcoming New Year. In many cities, large scale public events are held. These often attract thousands of people.
New Year's Day marks the end of New Year’s Eve celebrations in the United States and gives many Americans a chance to remember the previous year. The main concept of New Year’s Day is a new beginning. A fresh start with new possibilities and opportunities.
The Emancipation Proclamation was a presidential proclamation and executive order issued by President Abraham Lincoln on January 1, 1863. In a single stroke, it changed the federal legal status of more than 3 million enslaved persons in the designated areas of the South from "slave" to "free". It had the practical effect that as soon as a slave escaped the control of the Confederate government, by running away or through advances of federal troops, the slave became legally free. Eventually it reached and liberated all of the designated slaves. It was issued as a war measure during the American Civil War, directed to all of the areas in rebellion and all segments of the executive branch (including the Army and Navy) of the United States.
The Proclamation was issued in two parts. The first part, issued on September 22, 1862, was a preliminary announcement outlining the intent of the second part, which officially went into effect 100 days later on January 1, 1863, during the second year of the Civil War. It was Abraham Lincoln's declaration that all slaves would be permanently freed in all areas of the Confederacy that had not already returned to federal control by January 1863. The ten affected states were individually named in the second part (South Carolina, Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Texas, Virginia, Arkansas, North Carolina). Not included were the Union slave states of Maryland, Delaware, Missouri and Kentucky. Also not named was the state of Tennessee, in which a Union-controlled military government had already been set up, based in the capital, Nashville. Specific exemptions were stated for areas also under Union control on January 1, 1863, namely 48 counties that would soon become West Virginia, seven other named counties of Virginia including Berkeley and Hampshire counties, which were soon added to West Virginia, New Orleans and 13 named parishes nearby.
Union-occupied areas of the Confederate states where the proclamation was put into immediate effect by local commanders included Winchester, Virginia, Corinth, Mississippi, the Sea Islands along the coasts of the Carolinas and Georgia, Key West, Florida, and Port Royal, South Carolina.
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