Celebrate the rich culture at the Vancouver festival
By Margaret Matthews, Columnist
Want to get away on a vacation to the Caribbean? Then come get a taste of the culture, people, and cuisine at the annual Caribbean Days Festival held at the Waterfront Park in North Vancouver on July 26 and 27. The festival features traditional Caribbean music and dance, fun activities for all ages, and lots of opportunities to learn more about this exotic culture.
One of the highlights of the festival is the steel band performances, which feature delightful, lilting music ranging from Latin, jazz, and calypso to theme songs from Hollywood movies, Top 40 tunes, and classical pieces played with a calypso tempo.
Another fun part of the festival is the limbo performances, where a performer attempts to lean backwards and dance underneath a long stick that two assistants hold horizontally and lower with each round. By the final round, the limbo dancer has to inch their way under a stick that is just a few inches off the ground without touching the stick.
There are several competitions held at the festival among the various bands, singers, dancers, entertainers, and children. If you want to show off your own dance skills, there is also a dance floor for attendees who want to learn groovy Caribbean dance steps and moves while the band plays.
Street vendors will have on display their Caribbean art, colourful summer dresses and shirts, Carnival costumes, homemade jewelry, handbags, canned goods, and other interesting folklore. Authentic Caribbean cuisine like Jamaican patties, rotis, curries, and other foods are also available. The Beer Garden features both Caribbean drinks and Canadian beer. For more information on the festival’s food, dance, and vendors, check out www.caribbeandays.ca.
The event is organized by the non-profit organization Trinidad and Tobago Cultural Society, which uses the net proceeds from these festivals and other events for their scholarship program which awards incoming post-secondary students.
Join the party, support a good cause, and get cultured this summer at the Caribbean Days Festival!