|Full house at the Media Launch of this year's Scotiabank Caribbean Carnival Toronto festival. Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto|
New events. New locations. New supporters.
Three weeks of reasons to Jump Up
May 29, 2012 (Toronto) –In Toronto the carnival season has just begun. At a Tuesday morning press conference at the Royal Ontario Museum, the media was briefed on what is in store for Canada’s biggest annual outdoor event. This is the 45th year for the festival and the Festival Management Committee is preparing for a huge summer in the streets and parks of Toronto.
“This year we have moved a couple of the events – the children’s parade and the international Rugby Match – to new locations to answer the demands of a growing audience,” explained co-CEO Denise Herrera-Jackson. “And, this year we making sure that each and ever event that we manage donates to a different community charity, most noteably Sickle Cell Anemia.”
The Scotiabank Toronto Caribbean Carnival is already getting ready for the big parade is August 4th. This is the 45th year for the festival formally known as Caribana, and not only is going to be bigger; it has new events, new locations and additional corporate sponsors.
It all starts July 17th at Toronto’s Nathan Phillip’s Square. The City Hall square is jammed to see the Official Public Launch for the festival. Dancers, musician, calypso singers come out and perform to get the city and this always-huge crowd in the mood for Carnival.
|MPP Michael Couteau opens presser|
On July 21st the first BIG event takes place at Downsview Park when the Junior Carnival Parade takes place. Think of it as a Kiddie’s version of the big parade. Last year over 2,000 children performed for the judges and played Mas along the streets of the Jane Finch corridor. Downsview Park, better suited to handle the growing number of children taking part is the new location of the parade.
Sport fans will want to take in the Canada versus the best of the Jamaica Rugby League in a Festival Cup Match that will be held downtown at the Lamport Stadium on the 21st of July. Last year Canada won the match at a field in north Markham.
Dress for most Festival goings on is casual. However, there is one event where formal wear is the rule of the evening. The Annual Gala is a dress up affair to honour the rich history of the festival and to sample the Caribbean arts. This year it all happens on July 27th at the Liberty Grande Ballroom inside the CNE grounds.
Many of the world’s best Calypso performers live in Toronto. They will be showing their stuff in the annual Monarch Contest on July 28th and then again on the 31st at the All-Star Showcase at Harbourfront.
Jason Woodman (l), El Dorado Rum, the official rum of Festival.
And the events keep coming. There is a huge outdoor Pan Alive battle of the steel pan orchestras planned for August 3rd at Lamport Stadium. The King and Queen contest, the day before on August 2nd is always a sell-out, so this year Lamport Stadium has been reconfigured to allow for almost 20,000 spectators – up from 11,000.
The August 4th Parade along Toronto’s waterfront is still the largest outdoor event in Canada! And this year people are invited to stay up all night. After the parade has ended people are invited into Ontario Place to take part in the all-new night all night Fish Fry (10 pm – 4 am), and stay for daytime Sunday food festival. The festival includes a lime and breakfast on Ontario Place’s South Beach followed by a retro J’ouvert. This is Caribbean style parade party with Bahamian Jankanoo, French Creole Kompas and Zouk, and Grenadian ShortKnee performers. As the day progresses, people will enjoy the live performers and steelpan music. Take an island hop to tasty morsels such as jerk cuisine and rum cocktails. Then everyone will wind-down at sunset with an exciting closing concert.
“We have expanded our programming in part because of we have expanded our corporate sponsorship base,” continued Denise Herrera Jackson. “ Scotibank is of course our keynote sponsor. CTV, CP-24, the Toronto Star and Sway Magazine continue to be our very generous and supportive media partners. We have added El Dorado Rum as the official sponsor of our Gala; FLOW radio is back and is taking a bigger role with the festival. We have just added WIN TV and WIN Radio --a popular Caribbean radio and television station based in Trinidad -- as our Caribbean media sponsor and will be live streaming the parade back to Trinidad. “
|CP-24's Stephen Ledrew interviews ROM curator live at even|
About Scotiabank Toronto Caribbean Carnival
The Scotiabank Toronto Caribbean Carnival is an exciting three-week cultural explosion of Caribbean music, cuisine, revelry as well as visual and performing arts. Now in its 45th year, it has become a major international event and the largest cultural festival of its kind in North America. As Carnival is an international cultural phenomenon, the great metropolis of Toronto and its environs will come alive as the city explodes with the pulsating rhythms and melodies of Calypso, Soca, Reggae, Chutney, Steel Pan and Brass Bands. The Festival Management Committee oversees the running of North America’s largest outdoor festival.
Corporate sponsors of this year’s festival include: Scotiabank, The Toronto Star, Sway Magazine, CTV, CP-24, FLOW fm, WinTV, WinRadio, El Dorado Rum, The Canadian Federal Government, The Province of Ontario, City of Toronto, Tourism Toronto, The Greater Toronto Airports Authority, Ontario Place, Royal Ontario Museum, Ontario Science Centre, Toronto Public Library, Yorkgate Mall, Liberty Grand, and Grace Kennedy Foods.
For more information about the programmes and events, please visit the festival’s official website at www.torontocaribbeancarnival.com. The Festival Office is NOW located at 19 Waterman Avenue. Contact info: Tel: 416-391-5608; Fax: 416-391-5693; Email: info@ torontocaribbeancarnival.com.
Stephen Weir Festival Publicist. Phone 416-489-5868 Cell: 416-801-3101 Email: Stephen@stephenweir.com