Papa Watay is a traditional ritual
for the beginning of the harvest, which consists in tying the spirit of the
potato to Pachamama (Mother Earth). It can be done individually (in
families), or collectively (whole communities at the first harvest). The Potato
Park celebrates this ritual collectively on the 30 of May, so that it coincides
with the National Day of the Potato and highlights the importance of this day
for Andean farmers.
The ritual involves all communities
of the Potato Park meeting in one of the communities (designated at the event
the previous year), with each community bringing a quantity of potatoes to show
all the diversity they are cultivating. Collecting the potatoes from all the
communities, they make an offering of thanks to Pachamama for her generosity.