Portuguese American Journal

May 29th: Azorean people celebrate pride and self-rule – Azores

On May 29th, the people of the Azores celebrate “Azores Day” or “Dia da Região Autónoma dos Açores” (Day of the Autonomous Region of the Azores).

This public holiday, observed throughout the archipelago, is a commemoration of self-rule, identity, and pride, symbolizing the affirmation of the Azorean people’s unique culture, way of life, and regional unity.

The date of the celebration is movable and typically falls on the first Monday following the Sunday of Pentecost, coinciding with the beginning of the  Azorean traditional Holy Ghost festival cycle.

The 2023 official celebrations will be held in the Municipality of Lajes do Pico. The day will open with an official Solemn Session and a Commemorative Lunch, both open to the public.

José Manuel Bolieiro, President of the Government of the Azores 

The Solemn Session will begin at 10:30 am with speeches from representatives of the Parliamentary Groups seated in the Legislative Assembly of the Autonomous Region of the Azores (ALRAA), followed by addresses from the President of the Regional Government of the Azores, José Manuel Bolieiro, and the President of the Legislative Assembly of the Autonomous Region of the Azores, Luís Garcia.

Following the speeches, the Azorean Honorary Insignia will be bestowed upon individuals and institutions that have distinguished themselves through notable personal or institutional merits, acts of civic deeds, or services rendered to the Region.

A total of 27 insignias will be awarded, including an Autonomous Badge of Valor, three Autonomous Badges of Recognition, six of Professional Merit, and 17 of Civic Merit.

The ceremony will conclude with performances of the Anthems of the Azores and Portugal by the Grupo Coral das Lajes do Pico.

Following the Solemn Session, the Day of the Region celebrations will continue with a traditional lunch of Soups in Honor of the Divine Holy Spirit, served at the Headquarters of the Filarmónica Liberdade Lajense.

The Day of the Autonomous Region of the Azores is jointly deliberation by the Legislative Assembly and the Regional Government of the Azores. It was established by the Azorean Parliament on August 21st, 1980, through Regional Decree n.º 13/80/A, with the aim of honoring Azorean identity and autonomy.

The entire sequence of events will be broadcast live worldwide on RTP Açores/RTP Play.


The Azores (population 250,000) is a region of Portugal composed of nine islands. The archipelago discovered by Portuguese explorers in the 15th century, became an Autonomous Region of Portugal in 1976. The government of the Autonomous Region of the Azores includes the Legislative Assembly, composed of 57 elected deputies, elected by universal suffrage for a four-year term; the Regional Government and Presidency, with parliamentary legitimacy, composed of a President, a Vice-President and seven Regional Secretaries responsible for the Regional Government executive operations. The Autonomous Region of the Azores is represented in the Council of Ministers of the Central Government by a representative appointed by the President of Portugal. According to the latest US census over 1.3 million individuals of Portuguese descent live in the United States, the majority with roots in the Azores. It is estimated that over 20,000 US citizens live in Portugal.


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