One of the largest and liveliest Venezuelan holidays is Carnaval, which is celebrated on the Monday and Tuesday before Lent. The festival was originally celebrated to get rid of excess energy before Lent, which is the period before Easter associated with fasting and penitence. Carnaval is usually celebrate with parades and street parties. People in intricate and beautiful costumes dance to a lively kind of music called calypso. 
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It is a tradition in some parts of Venezuela to steal the Christ Child from a nativity scene. When the Christ Child is found again, there is a celebration marking his return. 
During Holy Week, people perform passion plays. These plays show the suffering of Jesus in the last few days before his Crucifixion. Traditionally, the most elaborate passion plays have been held near the city of Mérida in La Parroquía. These plays involve hundreds of actors and draw thousands of spectators. On Good Friday, in many towns, people carry a large wooden cross in a procession. This ritual represents Jesus's walk to the cross on the original Good Friday.

Corpus Christi is a more light-hearted holiday on the ninth Thursday after Easter. Dancers wear devil masks and take communion outside the church. This ritual symbolizes God's victory over the devil. There is a large celebration of devil dancing in San Francisco de Yaré, south of Caracas.

The feast day of Saint John the Baptist is especially celebrated in the central coastal region where many people of African heritage live. A statue of St. John the Baptist is baptized in a river or in the ocean. Then the community dances to the music of African-style drums called tambores.

 Christmas is usually celebrated on December 24, or la noche buena. Families gather to eat a special holiday dish called hállaca. Most Venezuelans take a long holiday from mid-December to mid-January and spend time with family and close friends. There are large displays of fireworks on Christmas Eve and on New Year's Eve. 

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In December, some Venezuelans make life-sized dolls that represent the problems of the past year. They burn these dolls at midnight on New Year's Eve, to symbolize a new beginning for the next year. 
January 6 is Epiphany, the day that celebrates the three kings who came to visit the Christ Child. In some communities, people dress up in masks and costumes, and dance while they wait for the three kings to come into town on horseback.
January 1 New Year's Day, Anniversary of the Republic
January 6 Epiphany/Feast of the Three Kings
February or March Carnaval
March or April Holy Week, Good Friday and Easter
April 19 Declaration of Independence
May 1 Labour Day
June 24 Battle of Carabobo
July 5 Independence Day
July 24 Simon Bolívar's Birthday
October 12 Discovery Day and Race Day
December 25 Christmas Day