Features

Festivals in the Islands

Image: Flower Festival, Saint Lucia.

MANY Caribbean destinations have embraced certain cultural celebrations in order to highlight notable aspects of their culture. These festivities are also being used to socialize the youth into what is hailed as a dying Caribbean culture. In many of the Island Neighbours, these cultural events are being employed as a means of cultural celebration and transmission.

Image: Flower Festival, Saint Lucia.
Flower Festival, Saint Lucia.

In Saint Lucia, the La Rose Festival and the La Marguerite Festivals are known as the flower festivals. These festivals appear in the form of duels which are seemingly representative of the war between the French and the British. Like Saint Lucia, Dominica celebrates Creole Day; an observation geared towards the uplifting of the Creole language and associated customs and traditions. This event is celebrated annually in October.

One of the biggest events for Martinique is the celebration of Vaval annually. During this time, people loosen up, enjoy themselves, “wine up on a ting” and drink rum in anticipation of the forgiveness which will be received during Lent. Elsewhere, Guadeloupe is known for initiating festivals with a difference. One of its most popular festivals is FEMI – the regional and international film festival which is celebrated in the first quarter of every year. This event allows for the discovery of new talent and the celebration of film veterans. Other unique festivals from Guadeloupe include La Desirade Goat Festival, Creole Blues Festivals and the Festival of Women Cooks. Have you attended any of these festivals?

Happenings
The Nature isle is heating up its cultural campaign during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Division of Culture is hosting several training sessions this summer. If you wish to catch the virtual sessions, check out their Facebook page. This endeavour includes Art Classes, Head-tying Classes and Hand Craft. Most sessions are free.

Neighbourly GetAways
A must see … this encapsulates the many reviews of Victoria Falls in Dominica. Stemming from the White River, this waterfall can be accessed through the village of Delices in the South East of Dominica. The journey to this waterfall involves a hiking expedition up the White River where a scenic picture of Dominica awaits. Pack your hiking shoes … be ready for your date with nature.

Let’s Go Shopping!
Calling all shopaholics! School is out for summer and that means it’s time to start shopping for school. Rue Victor Hugo is the place to be in Martinique if you desire convenience – all your heart’s desires located in one spot. Shop ‘til you drop, but be sure to take enough school supplies for the upcoming year.
Live a little … Shop a little!

History
Historical note! Did you know that Creole Festivals are being celebrated in all the Island Neighbours? Get to know your neighbours!

A bit of the French for the Visitor

Festivals

Festivals – festivité, fête
Flower festivals – Festival des fleurs
Goat Festival – Festival chèvre
Music Festival – festival de musique
Traditions – tradition
Customs – habitude

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