Belize group participates in Nigeria’s Calabar Carnival
Saturday, January 16th, 2016
Belizeans countrywide are big fans of traditional celebrations, especially if it entails colorful costumes and lots of music. Top on the list is the ever-popular Carnival. During the month December, 2015, a Belizean delegation traveled to Nigeria to participate in their 2015 ‘Calabar’. The Nigerian carnival lasts the entire month of December, and showcases the cultural mosaic of Nigerian people while providing great entertainment to millions of spectators within Nigeria and from abroad.
Calabar Carnival is one of Nigeria’s premier international cultural events held annually in the municipality of Cross River State in southern Nigeria. The event is considered ‘Africa’s Biggest Street Party,’ and was created in 2004 as part of the vision of developing Cross River State in Nigeria. This area is the number one tourist destination for locals and visitors from all over the world.
The Belize delegation arrived in Lagos, Nigeria on Christmas Day on December 25th and quickly began witnessing one of the best organized and culturally-rich festivals. The Belizean contingent consisted of six members of the TITANS Carnival Group, D.J Richie Galvez and University of Belize Student Government member, Melody Wagner.
The Belize group participated in the road march on December 28th, displaying the Jewel’s colorful and majestic costumes alongside many other carnival groups from around the world. They really enjoyed their experience in the African country, where they were accompanied by an official host team.
The Honorable Chairman of the Cross River State Carnival Commission Gabe Onah was in constant correspondence with the Belizean delegation prior to their trip, ensuring that everything went well. While in Nigeria, the Belizean team was treated to some sight-seeing, visiting landmark locations before returning to Belize on January 1st. The delegation thanks everyone who supported them and allowed them to represent their country proudly.
And while the Belizean carnival representation has gone beyond our borders, the Carnival fever in Belize is about to begin. San Pedro Town prepares to celebrate ‘El Gran Carnival de San Pedro from February 7th to the 10th. It’s one of the first grand events of the island which brings lots of fun activities to the town. Some of the activities include the selection of a carnival queen at the Reina del Carnival Pageant, a fun Carnival Fiesta Block Party, and live musical dances and entertainment. Also part of the Carnival is the Carnival Masquerade Ball, the popular ‘comparsas’ (dances) and paintings in the downtown area. The events culminate with the traditional burning of Don Juan Carnaval on the night of Ash Wednesday. The burning starts right after mass at the Central Park, and it is always fun, especially with the annual reading of Don Juan Carnaval’s will.
Everyone, visitors and locals alike, is encouraged to come out and be part of this fun event.
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