The origin of the Pinata is Chinese not Hispanic. It was used to celebrate the coming of spring. As a result of Marco Polo's adventures into China, he introduced this Chinese custom which was adopted by the Spainish as well as by the French and Italians. The Spanish brought this custom to the new world when they conquered Mexico. The pinata became part of the Posada in the Catholic culture.


The original & traditional pinata has seven points symbolizing the seven deadly sins: envy, sloth, gluttony, greed, lust, anger/wrath, and pride. The ten pointed pinata symbolizes the sins that come from breaking the ten commandments.

The stick which is used to break the pinata represents and symbolizes love. It is suppose to destroy the sins by hitting and breaking the pinata into pieces. The candies and treats that come pouring out from the broken pinata symbolize the forgiveness of sins and a new beginning. Originally, the pinatas were filled with candies, apples, pears, fruits, wrapped in paper. The candies were called colacions which were a flour based, cooked candy with a seed in the middle such as from cilantro, anise, or mustard. Nowadays pinatas are filled with various types of candies not just from Mexico, but from the U.S.

Pinatas are made from various types of materials. Some are made of clay jar, paper, ribbons, paper mache, balloons, reeds, and carisso.

Before attempting to hit the pinata, the person must cover his eyes, symbolically to protect himself from being enticed by the pinata. After hitting the pinata, the person must make a resolution or resolutions. Resolutions can include:

doing good deeds

become a better person

be kinder

be more patient

get along with others

Some of the colors that are used to decorate pinatas are bright--red, white, and green. This color symbolizes the Mexican flag colors.

Ethnic representation---pink, green,white with pink being unusual and different.



Traditional pinatas should be bought to preserve traditional Hispanic celebrations, especially on Christmas and New Year's Day.

Tradition has changed--Pinatas are designed like cartoon characters to fit the child's favorite character. Adults as well use pinatas for their celebrations. Such celebrations include: birthdays, baptisms, Halloween, and Easter. Pinatas are seen at other special occasions. Different pinata designs are used for different occasions.

Celebration Pinata Designs:

New Year's Eve Star

Valentine's Day Cake

Easter Egg

Fourth of July Drum

Halloween Witch or Jack-o-lantern

Girl's Birthday Party Star, Cake, or clown

Graduation Party Drum or Star

Christmas Santa Claus or Star

Boy's Birthday Party Drum, donkey ,football ,clown





Menu Top of Page
























Big Bird

Cookie Monster

Winnie the Pooh

a Parrot