Thursday, April 02, 2009
The Enchanted Island Says 'Bienvenidos' to New Commemorative Quarter
United States Mint Releases Second Coin in District of Columbia & U.S. Territories Quarters Program Honoring the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico
WASHINGTON, April 2 /PRNewswire/ -- Cheers rang out today in Old San Juan's La Arcada in Paseo La Princesa as United States Mint Director Ed Moy and Governor Luis Fortuno placed a mockup of the Puerto Rico commemorative quarter on a giant map, signaling the ceremonial launch of the United States Mint's latest coin release.
"Puerto Rico's striking quarter design evokes its tropical beauty, rich history and culture," Moy said. "With San Juan Bay as the background of the coin, the hibiscus flower and 16th century sentry box remind us that Puerto Rico stands for 'rich port.'"
Joining in the celebration of Puerto Rico's quarter-dollar were Puerto Rico's first lady Luce Vela and Secretary of State Kenneth McClintock who, along with Director Moy and Governor Fortuno, handed out the shiny new coins to children 18 years and younger. Adults exchanged their currency for $10 rolls of the new coin, which was released into circulation on March 30.
Puerto Rico officially became a United States commonwealth on July 25, 1952. The quarter struck in its honor is the second of six new coins in the 2009 District of Columbia and U.S. Territories Quarters Program, and the public can expect to see quarters bearing a new design in their change approximately every two months.
The Puerto Rico quarter reverse (tails side) design features a sentry box in Old San Juan overlooking the sea and a hibiscus, Puerto Rico's official flower. The design, by United States Mint Sculptor-Engraver Joseph Menna, includes the inscriptions Isla del Encanto (Island of Enchantment), E PLURIBUS UNUM and 2009.
On the eve of the launch ceremony, Director Moy hosted a Coin Forum at the Universidad del Este (UNE) -- Carolina Campus, Library Atrium, where the public had the chance to share their ideas about future U.S. coin designs.
Collectors can purchase two-roll sets (40 coins per roll), one roll each from the United States Mint at Philadelphia and Denver, and 100- and 1,000-coin bags at the United States Mint's Web site, www.usmint.gov or at 1-800-USA-MINT (872-6468). The two-roll sets are $32.95, the bags of 100 coins are $32.95, and the bags of 1,000 coins are $309.95.
Free United States Mint lesson plans about the Puerto Rico quarter are available for download at www.usmint.gov/kids.