With children dressed as Three Kings and as an Angel with a Star, a crowd gathered at the Three Crowns Fountain in Memorial Park in Kingsburg on Saturday, Jan. 6 to remember the "Name Day" of Kingsburg and to pray for God's blessing over the community at the beginning of the New Year.
"Kingsburg" derives its name from the Kings River, which was named in honor of the Magi, also known as the "Wisemen" or the "Three Kings" who followed a star from the East to Bethlehem to present gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh to the child Jesus, whom they honored as the King of Kings and worshiped as the Lord.
Kingsburg was named by Corporal Gabriel Moraga who had been sent to explore California's Central Valley in 1806. He arrived at the banks of the Kings River on Jan. 5, during the vigil of the Feast of the Epiphany, and to honor this he bestowed the name "Rio de Los Santos Reyes" which translates to the "River of the Holy Kings." Kings County, Kings Canyon National Park, and Kingsburg all derive their names from the "Holy Kings" River.
The "Three Crowns Fountain" in Memorial Park, which is shaped like a map of the United States, serves a dual purpose. It honors the presence of Swedish immigrants in Kingsburg and in the United States and also honors the Three Kings.
The Feast of the Epiphany also brings the Christmas Season to a close, as Jan. 6 is the "twelfth day" of Christmas. After sharing Scripture, prayers, and songs, the last Christmas candies and cookies of the season were enjoyed by all.