EL SOLAR NEIGHBORHOOD (INSULA OF TRADITION IN THE HISTORICAL CENTER)
The foreigner is struck by the presence of a neighborhood that, from the urban and social point of view, constitutes a kind of island in the middle of the framework that represents the historic center of the city.
Certainly, the Barrio del Solar, a neighborhood that was the residence of the saddlery workers, especially of the renowned tannery of Pedro P. Díaz, with its narrow and winding streets is configured as a small citadel within the city, represents in terms of its neighbors , a particular situation, due to the fact of having known how to preserve some traditions that have fallen into disuse in other urban spaces, mainly around what could be considered its main religious festival, which takes place around the veneration of the Virgin of the Rosary, more known in this case as the “Virgen del Solar”, whose image occupies the main altar of the Chapel of the same name (del Solar), its festival being the central axis of neighborhood life in the neighborhood and which takes place between the last days of November and the first of December.
As part of this celebration, it is possible to still witness the traditional Syrian procession, the treat offered by the butler of the party, which consists of offering food and drink to all those attending the party, a position that represents for whoever holds it. a high honor and that it is rotating, changing every year.
There are numerous processional routes that are carried out carrying the venerated image through the different streets of the neighborhood and also outside it, alternating in an already established order who will carry the anda, sometimes being women, in others, men and they are even commissioned the children to accompany the tour carrying a large rosary, each one holding a mystery represented in a wooden sphere.
Particularly striking is the culminating moment of one of those tours, prior to the entry of the image into the interior of its chapel, in which the young singles of the neighborhood and eventually some guests, carrying the anda, make curious movements in order to “make people dance ”To the Virgin, a fact that is assumed as a manifestation of excitement for being satisfied by the tributes received, to the sound of a band of caperos who execute, among other pieces, an infallible sailor with a pampeña escape.
According to tradition, the fact that the chapel, whose official name is Capilla de San Pedro del Barrio del Solar, owes its curious location with the opposite façade to that of the Cathedral Basilica, unique among the religious buildings of the historic center, obeys to the fact that the Virgin arranged on her altar must “observe” the river to avoid its overflows, since, on repeated occasions and due to its proximity, they have flooded the neighborhood causing large losses.
Other traditions told by the inhabitants of this unique neighborhood are also interesting, such as the one that accounts for the existence of a ring for the practice of amateur boxing, which was the scene of crowded boxing matches, this space was in one of the courtyards of the so-called Tambo de Bronce, which together with El Matadero are linked to the neighborhood as part of it.
The neighborhood has undergone a process of restoration and enhancement, so it shows, at least in its external appearance, a uniformity due to the treatment of its facades, which have been whitewashed, giving the neighborhood a harmony extremely interesting . All this has determined that a walk through its narrow streets results in a truly pleasant experience.