(By Rhondor Dowlat)
AWESTRUCK spectators thronged the courtyard of Brooklyn Borough Hall last week as dozens of costumed masqueraders in a hue of colors paraded on the plaza to the sweet rhythm of steel pan music.
The show was staged by West Indian Day American Carnival Committee (WIADCA) to launch the 46th production of the annual 5-day cultural Festival.
Government officials and business persons were present to endorse the event, which was hosted by popular personality Ian ‘D Goose’ Eligon.
Borough President, Marty Markowitz, elected officials Jumaani Williams, Letitia James, Frank Seddio, Chair of the Brooklyn Democrats were among those who offered kudos to WIADCA. Deputy Consul General of Antigua & Barbuda, Omyma David represented the diplomatic corps at the speakers’ podium. She was joined by Brooklyn business-woman Dolly Williams and Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce’s President & CEO, Carlo Scissura, who pledged the Chamber’s support to WIADCA.
Thomas Bailey, President of WIADCA announced the theme of the Carnival “Celebrating Caribbean Pride and Culture” and encouraged the New York business and general community to get involved in sponsorships, or volunteering time and resources. He listed the impressive line-up of events for 2013 all of which will be held at the Brooklyn Museum, 200 Eastern Parkway, Brooklyn NY.
The Carnival calendar comprises:
1. Caribbean Woodstock & Costume Competition – Thursday Aug 29th at 8pm
2. Stay In School Youth Talent Show – Friday Aug 30th – Daytime
3. Brass Fest – Friday 30th Aug 2013 at 8pm
4. Kiddies Carnival – Aug 31st – Daytime
5. Steelband Panorama – Aug 31st at 8pm
6. Dimanche Gras – Sep’t 1st at 7pm
Bailey concluded with “On Labour Day, Monday 2nd September, Eastern Parkway is ours!” as he described the street parade of thousands of costumed masqueraders and dancing spectators, which met with resounding cheers from the audience.
Later that evening, a networking event for sponsors was held at St. Francis’ College (SFC) Remsen St. Brooklyn, who has recently partnered with WIADCA.
Paulette Gonzalez, Dir of Individual Giving at SFC, Melissa Chapman, VP, Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce and Ralph D’nofrio, VP at Caribbean Life expressed their pleasure in working with WIADCA .
Thomas Bailey, President of WIADCA addressed the audience and detailed Carnival plans. WIADCA Advisor, Delicia Hallman and Kenson Clark, web developer introduced the new home page for WIADCA’s website, which is soon expected to go live. Mas’ camps, artistes and purveyors of all things Caribbean/cultural were invited to link to the site.
Guests were treated to Caribbean fare donated in part by Wayne Cox of Gloria’s Restaurant, Wendy’s Catering and Tower Isle Patties. CASYM Steel Orchestra entertained the audience at SFC and Borough Hall along with DJ Godfrey Jack. Four groups – New Generation, Freaks NY, Ramajay and Sesame Flyers showed off their Carnival costumes available for sale to the public for the Parade on Labor Day on lively models, delighting the guests at the event.
Tickets for Carnival 2013 events are available on sale at www.wiadcacarnival.org. For further information, and to sponsor and partner with WIADCA, please contact Jean Alexander, Marketing – WIADCA at: wiadcainc.gmail.com or 718-467-1797.
WIADCA is a not-for-profit organisation devoted to promoting Caribbean culture to enrich our communities. The organisation engages in year-round educational, social and cultural activities in the United States, one of the most popular being the week-long annual Carnival events leading up to the Labour Day Parade in Brooklyn, New York.