One of Mexico’s most celebrated sports takes center stage as the Octavo Campeonato Internacional Charro Puerto Vallarta (Eighth Puerto Vallarta International Charro Championship) rides into town January 30 – February 3, 2019. A significant part of the state’s heritage, the Charro Championship is a celebration of the traditional Mexican Charro lifestyle. This year, 18 of the best Charro teams in Mexico and 12 from the United States will compete in this championship tournament that will crown the best Charro team in the world.
The International Charro Championship festivities begin January 30 at 8:30pm with the traditional Verbena de Tradiciones Mexicanas at Los Arcos del Malecón. Visitors will enjoy dance performances, live music, lasso demonstrations, and many other family-friendly activities.
The Charro competitions commence January 31st at Arena Vallarta. Each Charro team features a team of men dressed in traditional clothing, competing in nine different challenges to demonstrate their aptitude in roping horses and livestock, training and commands, bull riding, bulldogging, forefooting, bareback bronc riding, as well as speed challenges. The competition also features teams comprised of eight to 12 women dressed in ornate, authentic Adelita or Ranchera dresses, who ride sidesaddle and perform a variety of precision horseback riding techniques. The event also showcases children’s Charro team exhibitions.
Beyond the competitions, attendees will enjoy the event’s fanfare with Mariachi performances, Folkloric ballet, Charro parades, traditional food and drinks, and more. For a full schedule of events, visit: https://arenavallarta.com/8o-campeonato-internacional-charro-2019/. Entrance fees are $100 pesos a day on January 31 and February 1. On February 2 and 3, the entrance cost is $200 and includes musical performances. Children under 12 are free.
Charro most directly translates to “cowboy;” however, the legendary Mexican fixture differs from the traditional American cowboy in their mannerisms, clothing style, etiquette and cultural role. In the 1930s, Charrería was popularized by the charros of Jalisco, and ultimately grew to become Mexico’s national sport. In 2016, UNESCO designated Charrería as an Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.