|Toronto Carnival’s offical media launch attendees - photo and story by Stephen Weir|
(May 30, 2012) ... The stage is all set for the Scotiabank Toronto Caribbean Carnival’s big parade on August 4th. As the 45th year for the festival formerly known as Caribana, 2012 promises to be much bigger with new events, new locations and additional corporate sponsors. It all starts July 17th at Toronto’s Nathan Phillip’s Square, home of Toronto’s City Hall, That’s the date and venue for the Festival’s Official Public Launch.
On July 21st, Downsview Park will host the Junior Carnival Parade, 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.
Sports 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.
The Festival’s Annual Gala is a dress up affair which honours its rich history. July 27th is the date and the CNE’s Liberty Grande Ballroom will be the venue.
Some of the world’s best Calypsonians now live in Toronto. They will be showing their stuff in the annual Monarch Contest on July 28th and again on the 31st at the All-Star Showcase at Harbourfront.
The August 2 King and Quuen competition is always a crowd favorite. This year Lamport Stadium has been reconfigured to allow for almost 20,000 spectators – up from 11,000. Pan Alive the battle of the steel pan orchestras will take place the following evening on August 3rd at Lamport Stadium. 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 attendees will be invited into Ontario Place to take part in the allnew night all night Fish Fry (10 pm – 4 am), and stay on for the 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.
The 2012 Festival has added El Dorado Rum as the official sponsor of the Gala; while FLOW Radio
returns for an even bigger role this year. WIN TV and WIN Radio --a popular Caribbean radio and
television station based in Trinidad – have also come on board as the Festival’s Caribbean media sponsor and will be live streaming the parade back to Trinidad. “