A debate over gay marriage has upturned Costa Rica's presidential race, giving ammunition to conservative frontrunners ahead of Sunday's vote and challenging the Central American country's image as a progressive bastion. Evangelical Christian singer and congressman Fabricio Alvarado, who leads recent polls, has pitted himself against a January ruling from the Inter-American Court of Human Rights that urges Costa Rica to legalize same-sex marriage. Alvarado, 43, has said the Costa Rica-based court is violating the country's sovereignty and jeopardizing its "traditional family" values. He has threatened to withdraw Costa Rica from the court system, as Venezuela did.
Costa Rica will host the first lesbian event in the Central American region, the Ella International Lesbian Festival, an event that will put Costa Rica on the map as a tourism destination for the lesbian and LGBTQ population. The activity which this year celebrates its 6th edition in Mallorca, Spain, is a culture, music, art and sports Festival “thought for the modern lesbian woman” where more than two thousand women from different countries in the world gather. The Ella Intl. Lesbian Festival will take place in Costa Rica in 2019 with a date still to be determined; this will be the first time the Festival will be held outside of Europe. Participants take part in motivational speeches, tours, gastronomy festivals, night parties and beach activities.