By Jáedee S.K. Caines
Although the Caribbean island of St. Thomas has not yet fully recovered from the effects of
Hurricanes Irma and Maria, which hit the American tropical paradise in September 2017, the
island is hosting its annual month-long carnival.
This year’s carnival, which started on April 6, is organized under the theme “Culture, Fun and Flair! It’s a Carnival 2019 Affair.” Its activities – which range from pageants and singing contests to street jamming and food fair – are scattered around the island.
The earlier events, such as the April 6 Calypso Elimination Tent and the April 14 Prince and Princess Show, were attended mainly by locals as the majority of fete-seeking foreign tourists usually don’t arrive on island until near the end of April, just in time for the opening of “The Village”.
Other events on this year’s calendar are the Queen Selection Show on April 20, Easter Sunday Fun Day on April 21 and Carnival at the lone hospital – Schneider Regional Medical Center – on April 22.
Then, between April 24 to 29, patrons will be treated to A Cultural Affair (Cultural Day) – April 24, the Junior Calypso Competition – April 25, the opening of Coggie’s Musical Ville – April 26, Calypso Finals – April 27, Motor Sports Sunday – April 28, Steel Band Jamboree – April 28 and the Soca Monarch Competition – April 29. The nightly shows which are slated to be held at “The Village”, between April 26 to May 4, as well as the Cultural Fair, J’Ouvert and Wet Fete, Children’s Parade and Adult Parade/Last Lap/Carnival Fireworks display on May 1, 2, 3 and 4 respectively are likely to attract the festival’s biggest crowds. But why, you wonder?
St. Thomas, or Rock City as it is sometimes called, represents a great mix of the Caribbean and the United States. Vistors get the best of both worlds: rich Caribbean accents and breathtaking Caribbean beaches coupled with American trendy fashion and somewhat fast-paced lifestyle.
But that’s not all. Visitors just can’t seem to get enough of the vibrant colours and designs on display during the Children and Adult Parades as well as the action-packed nightly lineup at “The Village”.
Of course, St. Thomas is a great place to visit any time of year but, for the ultimate Thomian/Virgin Island experience, you should make it a priority to be “on the rock” during Rock City’s Carnival.