Caguas | Puerto Rico

Caguas (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈkaɣwas]), founded in 1775, is a city and municipality of Puerto Rico (U.S.) located in the Central Mountain Range of Puerto Rico, south of San Juan and Trujillo Alto, west of Gurabo and San Lorenzo, east of Aguas Buenas, Cidra, and Cayey.

Caguas is located 20 miles (32 km) (twenty minutes to an hour by car) from San Juan and 40 miles (64 km) (an hour and a half by car; it may take longer because of mountainous area in between the two cities) from Ponce. It is known as El Valle del Turabo (Turabo Valley) or La Ciudad Criolla (The Creole City) and its name originates from the Taíno cacique Caguax. Caguas is both a principal city of the San Juan-Caguas-Guaynabo Metropolitan Statistical Area and the San Juan-Caguas-Fajardo Combined Statistical Area

Caguas is located in the largest valley in Puerto Rico, the "Valle de Caguas" (or "Valle del Turabo-Turabo Valley") which it shares with Gurabo and part of Aguas Buenas. It is located approximately 30 minutes from the coastline both on the east (Humacao) and the north (San Juan), and is divided from the Gurabo portion of the valley by the river of the same name. It is east of Aguas Buenas and Cidra, north of Cayey, south of San Juan, and west of Gurabo and Trujillo Alto. It also shares borders with Guayama and Patillas via a five-point border, with Cayey and San Lorenzo. At this point there are two tall antennas which provide signal to Puerto Rico's principal TV stations such as WKAQ-TV and WAPA-TV. No road passes exactly at this point, and it can be approached nearby through Puerto Rico Highway 184. Being a valley, Caguas has the distinction of being relatively flat except near the borders with all the mentioned municipalities except Gurabo.

The Criollos de Caguas baseball team is considered one of the greatest of all-time in all of Latin America, having won 16 national Puerto Rico titles and 3 Caribbean World Series titles The team is a member of the Liga de Béisbol Profesional de Puerto Rico (LBPPR). Three of the first five Puerto Ricans that played Major League Baseball in the U.S. mainland, at one point in their careers played for the Criollos de Caguas (Luis Rodríguez Olmo, Victor Pellot Power, Roberto Clemente).

The Criollos de Caguas basketball team, founded in 1968 by Dr. Héctor "Tato" Dávila and Lcdo. Libertario Pérez Rodríguez, hasn't enjoyed as much success as their baseball counterparts. However in the early 2000s, they showed a lot of progress by reaching the national playoffs various times. The team is a member of the BSN. In 2006, the team won its first BSN national basketball championship, defeating Flor Melendez and his Santurce Crabbers in five games.

Caguas is home to the Bairoa Gym, one of the most important boxing gyms in all Puerto Rico and a place where many visiting champions have trained at; such as boxing Welterweight Champion Miguel Cotto, his brother Jose Miguel, Alberto Mercado, Juan Carazo, Alfredo Escalera and others.

The Criollas de Caguas women's volleyball team has won 9 national Puerto Rico titles and has made it to the finals more than 15 times. The team is a member of the Liga de Voleibol Superior Femenino (LVSF).

The Criollos de Caguas FC soccer team is considered one of the most successful clubs in the island winning multiple tournaments and cups in Puerto Rican soccer including the National League Title in 2015.
Puerto Rico[a] (Spanish for "Rich Port"), officially the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico (Spanish: Estado Libre Asociado de Puerto Rico, lit. "Free Associated State of Puerto Rico")[b] and briefly called Porto Rico,[c] is an unincorporated territory of the United States located in the northeast Caribbean Sea.

An archipelago among the Greater Antilles, Puerto Rico includes the main island of Puerto Rico and a number of smaller ones, such as Mona, Culebra, and Vieques. The capital and most populous city is San Juan. Its official languages are Spanish and English, though Spanish predominates. The island's population is approximately 3.4 million. Puerto Rico's history, tropical climate, natural scenery, traditional cuisine, and tax incentives make it a destination for travelers from around the world.

Originally populated by the indigenous Taíno people, the island was claimed in 1493 by Christopher Columbus for Spain during his second voyage. Later it endured invasion attempts from the French, Dutch, and British. Four centuries of Spanish colonial government influenced the island's cultural landscapes with waves of African slaves, Canarian, and Andalusian settlers. In the Spanish Empire, Puerto Rico played a secondary, but strategic role when compared to wealthier colonies like Peru and the mainland parts of New Spain. Spain's distant administrative control continued up to the end of the 19th century, helping to produce a distinctive creole Hispanic culture and language that combined elements from the Native Americans, Africans, and Iberians. In 1898, following the Spanish–American War, the United States acquired Puerto Rico under the terms of the Treaty of Paris. The treaty took effect on April 11, 1899.

Puerto Rico is subject to the Commerce and Territorial Clause of the Constitution of the United States and, therefore, is restricted on how it can engage with other nations, sharing the opportunities and limitations that state governments have albeit not being one. As is the case with state governments, regardless, it has established several trade agreements with other nations, particularly with Hispanic American countries such as Colombia and Panamá.

It has also established trade promotion offices in many foreign countries, all Spanish-speaking, and within the United States itself, which now include Spain, the Dominican Republic, Panama, Colombia, Washington, D.C., New York City and Florida, and has included in the past offices in Chile, Costa Rica, and Mexico. Such agreements require permission from the U.S. Department of State; most, are simply allowed by existing laws or trade treaties between the United States and other nations which supersede trade agreements pursued by Puerto Rico and different U.S. states.

At the local level, Puerto Rico established by law that the international relations which states and territories are allowed to engage must be handled by the Department of State of Puerto Rico, an executive department, headed by the Secretary of State of Puerto Rico, who also serves as the territory's lieutenant governor. It is also charged to liaise with general consuls and honorary consuls based in Puerto Rico. The Puerto Rico Federal Affairs Administration, along with the Office of the Resident Commissioner, manage all its intergovernmental affairs before entities of or in the United States (including the federal government of the United States, local and state governments of the United States, and public or private entities in the United States).

Both entities frequently assist the Department of State of Puerto Rico in engaging with Washington, D.C.-based ambassadors and federal agencies that handle Puerto Rico's foreign affairs, such as the U.S. Department of State, the Agency for International Development, and others. The current Secretary of State is Víctor Suárez Meléndez from the Popular Democratic Party and member of the Democratic Party of the United States, while the current Director of the Puerto Rico Federal Affairs Administration is Juan Eugenio Hernández Mayoral also from the Popular Democratic and member of the Democratic Party.

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