San Lawrenz Pageant Group
This group was founded in 1969 on the initiative of Mr Gorg Borg. Before, plays and sketches were presented, but there was no group responsible for their smooth staging and running. Most plays were under the direction of Dun Joseph Piscopo. Along the years, this association has assumed the responsibility for the annual presentation of the Christmas ageant. It is also responsible for Carnival and other plays which are presented during the year. Besides, this group also organizes the Festival which is held each year in the week preceeding the parish feast. This festival was first organized in 1983.
Each year on Christmas Eve, the village of San Lawrenz organizes a spectacular pageant, in which for two hours the bible comes to life. Nearly half the population of this small rural community takes part in this Christmas pageant. It presents scenes and biblical costumes from the times of the Prohets to the arrival of the wise Kings. Saints, Kings, soldiers and despots of the Old and New Testaments alk through the main streets accompanied by two little orchestras playing traditional instruments. The pageant ends with the main characters forming a live crib while a small boy delivers the Christmas sermon.
This pageant has a long tradition. A couple of years immediately after the Second World War, the parish priest Dun George Debrincat succeeded into putting up a musical nativity play. The participants were all males escept for a few girls under twelve years who had a minor role. There were many hurdles to be surmounted. Costumes had to be sewn, scenes had to be painted, and so on, and all in a very difficult time. The efforts were rewarded because the event wwas well attended. In the journal Ghawdex we read that the play It-Twelid ta' Gesu Bambin was a great success and about 3000 people attended.
However the first real pageant was performed in 1969. George Borg discovered that the costumes of those productions had survived. With just twelve days to go before Christmas Eve, he announced that they were to be put into use again for the first pageant. In this first pageant forty characters took part. As time went by more and more people participated and nowadays over hundred and fifty take part in this pageant.
St. Laurence Spurs FC
The football club was founded in 1968 by a number of keen football supporters led by Mr Toni Formosa. Originally the team was called St Laurence Football Club.
The team participated in the championships of 1968-1969, 1969-1970 and 1970-1971. Unfortunatley the team had to be wind down in the middle of the 1971 championship, as many of the best players emigrated.
Between 1971 and 1983, the villages of Gharb and San Lawrenz made a combined effort and decided to form an under-16s team. As both villages are situated in the west of the island of Gozo and Mr Mercieca, one of the founders was a keen supporter of the English team Tottenham Hotspurs, it was decided to name the team Western Spurs. The team was formed with players recruited from both villages. Two years later the team had to be closed down, as both villages decided to have a village team of their own. Western Spurs stopped competing in 1985.
That same year saw the formation of yet another team from the same villages. The team, under the name Gharb-St Laurence FC competed in the FIFA tournament, but only in the edition for 1985-86.
A year later San Lawrenz formed its own team which still participates in today's Gozo championships. The team is called St Laurence Spurs FC.
Ta' Ciangura Folkgroup
Another initiative created by the council is the setting up of a Folkgroup which consists of twenty women, including both teenagers and mothers. This group started their first rehearsals on 26 August, 2003 and launched their first performance in public on 3 June 2004. On 13 January 2004 the Folkgroup Committee was established and has continued to meet once a month. This Committee consists of twelve members with Annie Formosa as president, Lawrence Cauchi as Secretary and Carmen Cilia as Treasurer.
The Folkgroup’s first performance was in one of the activities commemorating the 10th Anniversary of the San Lawrenz Local Council. The group has performed folk dancing shows both locally and internationally. Besides keeping folklore active in San Lawrenz, this initiative provides an alternative activity for women, especially housewives. The folk group teacher is Mrs Simone Grech and the person responsible for the group is Miss Annie Formosa.
This year the ‘Ta Ciangura’ Folkgroup participated in the Gozo Carnival with a dance titled ‘ In the past and the present we celebrate Carnival’.