Garifuna Council announces activities for Garifuna Settlement Day
Thursday, November 3rd, 2016
Garifuna Settlement Day falls on Saturday, November 19th this year, and the National Garifuna Council (NGC) San Pedro Branch has launched several events that will be held to commemorate their culture and heritage. With the assistance of Foreva Fancy Boutique and the San Pedro Roman Catholic Church, the events will serve to promote and raise awareness on the rich Garifuna culture. This year’s celebrations are being held countrywide under the theme “Rísiti, Pántati, Gabafuti, Iúnrahowa meme la Rich, Proud, and Powerful, let us continue to preserve it.”
Foreva Fancy will host the first event via a ‘Cultural meets Modern’ fashion show on Saturday, November 5th. With free admission, you don’t want to miss this opportunity that will take place at the Central Park starting from 8PM.
Have you ever wanted to indulge in cultural cuisine like boil up or hudut, or even delicious sweet potato pound? Your opportunity is here, as the NGC San Pedro Branch will be hosting a food expo on Saturday, November 12th at the Central Park. All are invited to come out and support the council by purchasing these staple Garifuna meals and desserts.
On Sunday, November 13th, the council will partake in their spiritual devotion by hosting a Garifuna Mass at the San Pedro Roman Catholic Church (SPRCC). The Garifuna Choir will be present to help praise and worship at this event.
Another cultural show is scheduled to take place on November 18th, at a location yet to be determined. Following this show, there will be a dance to set the tone for Garifuna Settlement Day with Punta Boys and the Caribbean Kings.
A reenactment of the first Garifuna settling in Belize will take place on Saturday, November 19th at the Central Park. Afterwards, the council will parade around the town’s core, with live cultural music with the dominate sound of drums, and punta dancing.
Newly elected president for the NGC San Pedro Branch, Alex Noralez, is enthusiastic and looking forward to having all Garifuna people unified as one family. “I am looking forward to unite our people, we are so divided due to many reasons. So I hope I can bring that unity about and make us contribute more to our community. I am hoping to help my people understand where they came from and who we are as a people,” said Noralez.
As diverse as Belize is, Noralez also explains what makes his Garifuna culture stand out. “I believe that the fact that we have maintained true to the customs passed down from generation to generation, that makes us rich and unique. Our music, dance, clothing, food and our faith makes us stand out. I will do what I can bring about awareness about our culture and to promote it proudly,” said Noralez.
This year will mark the 73rd year of Garifuna Settlement Day being observed as a public holiday, as well as the 184th anniversary of the Garinagu’s arrival to Belize.
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