It’s Carnival time again! An exciting time of year with soca blaring 24/7, fetes almost every night and scores of cultural activities, many free, for all to enjoy. There is much for both the young and mature, so parents take a read as we explore the “Greatest Show on Earth”, catered for the little ones in mind.
Junior Kings, Queens & Individuals Prelims (FREE)
The artistry of our people is evident especially in this youth division, as mas makers bring to life local folklore, children’s fairy tales and characters from their deepest imagination. Starting Feb 3rd 9am, Adam Smith Square, POS, prepare for a long day ahead with a portable cooler of drinks and food on-the-go. The crowd may get big, so ensure that your kids know identifying information about themselves and home, like their address and contact numbers for both parents. If your little one is too young, consider letting them wear a lanyard containing this information in the event you become separated.
National Jr. Panorama Finals (FREE)
On the same day, Feb 3rd, the sweet sounds and songs of our people will resonate through Queen Park’s Savannah. What makes it a touch sweeter is there are master musicians who are barely double digits in age. It will surely inspire your young one to pick up an instrument, even if it’s not the pan sticks. You’ll be out with them all morning into the afternoon, so make sure they’re protected from the Caribbean sun with child-approved sunblock.
Traditional Carnival Characters Festival
Bring the kids out on Feb 8th to make their own memories of blue devils, drunken sailors and Midnight Robbers, chasing them through the streets. Take them to your favourite spot on the streets of Port-of-Spain, allowing yourself to reminisce, when you too were caught up by the sounds, sights and soca of Carnival. Like the fabled Pied Piper, children can wander off with moving bands, so make sure to establish a meeting point should they get lost. Make sure they remember the name of the street where you’ll be waiting and have them equipped with your telephone number so they may politely ask for a call.
Junior Parade of the Bands (Children $20)
On Feb 9th, Carnival Saturday, full bands of masquerading children will take to St. Vincent Street for their own “jump up”. An experience every child should have at least once, if you can afford to sign your child up, do it! Be on hand with a camera/camcorder and an extra set of batteries, to record this special time in your child’s life. The memories captured will surely become family favourites as they recall what it meant to be a part of Carnival, at the height of the season.
Undoubtedly, Carnival is a central thread to the cultural history of our people. While adults today may shun the “bikini and beads” show of adult Carnival, much of our culture remains in the easy innocence of children masqueraders, gearing up to have their own version of fun. Keep our culture alive by creating Carnival memories with your own children, allowing them the opportunity to be a part of this cultural masterpiece. We’ll be open both Carnival Monday and Tuesday, so bring them in for a “last lap” treat before heading home.
For more Carnival information, log on to www.ncctt.org.