Categorized | National News

Int’l Cultural Festival “A Success”

The 17th annual International Cultural Festival at the Botanical Gardens has been dubbed a success by organisers despite heavy rainfall over the weekend.

Officially opening the two-day festival on Saturday was Festival Chairman and Minister of Foreign Affairs Minister Fred Mitchell, who said he was pleased that the festival continues to grow.

“It is clear that when people come together organically for a purpose, it has a better chance of succeeding,” Mr. Mitchell said during his remarks at the opening ceremonies.

“You are indeed a fine testament to this theory. It is due to the hard work and commitment of all of you that we are gathered here celebrating the 17th edition of this festival. You certainly don’t have to cast your eyes very far to recognise how cosmopolitan we’ve become as a country and how important it is to civil society here in The Bahamas that we enjoy the harmonious blend of different cultures and residents here.”

Mr. Mitchell thanked festival organiser, Janet Johnson and her advisory council for pulling the festival off yet again.

“Thank you to the bevy of corporate citizens as well who continue to support this event and who continues to grow in number, giving in kind or cash donations to undergird the festival,” he said.

“This magnificent event would not be possible without you – the country representatives and my fellow Bahamians who create authentic experiences through native cuisine, booth displays, national costuming, dance and song for patrons to enjoy. We thank you all for your enthusiastic participation and your commitment to making this unique and very popular event a sustainable fixture on the annual fall calendar.”
There were 23 countries on display and 140 booths. Officials anticipated welcoming 25,000 patrons over the two-day period.
Showing off a new main stage sponsored by South African resident, Werner Gruner of the Starlight Global Foundation, festival-goers were able to visit expanded country pavilions with multiple booths staged by China, Cuba, Mexico, Haiti, Peru and The Bahamas.
For the first time, Ethiopia put on a display. The Netherlands, Indonesia, India, Sri Lanka and Scandinavia all returned.
Host country, The Bahamas had 37 booths and showcased local brews, seafood, arts and crafts, a nursery, soft drinks and offered trip getaways to the Family Islands.
Organisers also had a dance troupe from Haiti. Chinese natives performed the lion dance and a fashion parade of regional costumes and local crowd pleaser.
The Bahamas All-Star Marching Band performed as well.
Also new to the festival this year was a free classical concert sponsored by the Starlight Global Foundation.

Written by Jones Bahamas

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