Panama – with a total land area of 29,450 sq. miles – is bordered on the east by Colombia and on the west by Costa Rica. Two mountain chains run along the country’s center (one in the east and one in the west) and the 50-mile long Panama Canal divides the country into an eastern and a western region. The country has 500 rivers and over 1,600 offshore islands. Of particular interest to the BLAC FOUNDATION is the famous Congo Ritual of Panama’s Costa Arriba , a patrimony of runaway slaves who established palenques in the forests just as runaway Blacks in Brazil founded quilombos. For more information about Panama see Dr. E. L. Powe’s Capoeira & Congo .