Sint Maarten Day is celebrated every 11 November on the Dutch island enclave of Sint Maarten. The day is an old Catholic feast day that began in France, spread to Netherlands and much of Europe, and then was spread to the New World by Europeans.
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Since Christopher Columbus discovered the island of Sint Maarten on 11 November, it came to be named after that holiday.
The holiday originates with the life of Saint Martin of Tours, France, a Roman soldier in the fourth century AD who was converted to Christianity. He became a monk and came to be dubbed the “Friend of Children” and the “Patron Saint of the Poor”.
Later, the date of this feast coming near harvest time became very significant on the religious calendar of European Catholics, and it was a time to eat goose, kill the fatted calf, and hire harvesters.
Today in Sint Maarten, there are many festivities on Sint Maarten Day. There is much music, eating, and engagement in cultural events. And people from both the French and Dutch half of the island come together to celebrate the day.
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