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People & Culture of Rincon, Puerto Rico
A rich heritage that endures modern developments
Puerto Rico is a Commonwealth of the United States, which means its residents are considered U.S. citizens. Although the people of Rincon are technically Americans, most of them refer to themselves as "Puertorriqueños," which is Spanish for "Puerto Ricans." In spite of their respect and gratitude for America and its associated freedoms, Rincon's natives are fiercely proud of their local heritage and work to shelter it from the influences of U.S. media and development.
The first inhabitants of Puerto Rico were the peaceful Taíno tribes, who were overtaken by the Spaniards who occupied the island in the 1500s. Later, African slaves were brought to Rincon to farm the fertile land for its rich sugar cane deposits. The 18th century saw frequent bouts of violence by English and French pirates. The Spaniards continued to rule Puerto Rico until the end of the Spanish-American War, when the region was officially declared a U.S. Territory. The town of Rincon saw a significant decrease in population during World War II, when a majority of the male citizens were drafted for combat or forced to take jobs overseas. After the much-publicized World Surfing Championship of 1968, Rincon saw an influx of surfers, many of whom established permanent residence there.
With a current population of 17,000 residents, the town of Rincon reflects Puerto Rico's rich diversity, influenced by a blend of Spanish, African, and Caribbean groups. The United States has also played a significant role in impacting the present-day social and governmental structure of the island. Today, a small sub-set of U.S. Americans have made the town their permanent home, purchasing houses and doing business there.
Like most Puerto Rican cities, Rincon has a reputation for welcoming visitors with warmth and hospitality. There is a general aura of respect and politeness, most notably among young people when addressing their elders. Friends and family members usually greet one another with handshakes, hugs, or kisses on the cheek. The primary language in Rincon is Spanish, although most citizens understand English and approximately half of them speak it fairly fluently. Most citizens are of a Catholic denomination, although other religious beliefs are accepted without discrimination.
Although many native Puerto Ricans are hovering at or below the official poverty level, the region's strong family ties, accessible federal assistance, and low cost of living help to mitigate financial struggles.
Rincon's atmosphere is based largely on its zealous surfing culture. Numerous surfing hostels, beach-themed bars and restaurants, and surf stores dot the coastlines of the town, which sees thousands of surfing participants and spectators each year.
With an air of friendliness, a relaxed lifestyle, and an open-minded tolerance, Rincon provides a pleasant, comfortable island venue for those who are seeking a temporary escape or a permanent place in paradise.
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