This message is being issued to advise American citizens of possible disruptions related to the celebration of the Festival of Santo Domingo, a Catholic tradition celebrating the patron Saint of Managua, which takes place August 1 - 10 in Managua. The principal activities during this ten-day event will be a procession and horse parade on the first and last day of the festival: August 1 and 10.

The U.S. Embassy has encouraged its employees to avoid using the streets of Managua's Santo Domingo neighborhood from 6:00 AM to 10:00 PM on August 1 and 10. In previous years, large crowds have remained in the Santo Domingo neighborhood, particularly in the vicinity of the Iglesia Las Sierritas , throughout the night of these events, continuing their activities into the early morning. Heavy alcohol consumption is expected. Traffic jams and other disturbances around Managua can also be expected. American citizens should be aware of the possible presence of youth gangs who specialize in pick-pocketing and other crimes of opportunity.

Americans traveling abroad should regularly monitor the U.S. Embassy's website <http://nicaragua.usembassy.gov/> and the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Consular Affairs' website <http://www.travel.state.gov/> , where the current Worldwide Caution, Travel Warnings, Travel Alerts, and Country Specific Information can be found. The U.S. Embassy also encourages U.S. citizens to review to "A Safe Trip Abroad <http://travel.state.gov/travel/tips/...fety_1747.html> ", which includes valuable security information for those both living and traveling abroad. In addition to information on the Internet, travelers may obtain up-to-date information on security conditions by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the U.S. and Canada, or outside the U.S. and Canada on a regular toll line at 1-202-501-4444.

The U.S. Embassy in Managua is located at Km 5 ½ C. Sur Managua, Nicaragua. The U.S. Embassy in Managua can be reached 24/7 at 011-505-2252-7100. For emergencies (deaths, arrests, etc.) after hours, U.S. citizens can call this phone number and ask for the Embassy Duty Officer. The ACS unit is also available by email at ACS.Managua@state.gov.

General information regarding consular services is available by calling 011-505-2252-7888. Non-emergency services for U.S. citizens are available Monday through Friday, 1:00 to 3:00 PM, except on Nicaraguan and U.S. holidays.