From left: TelEm CEO Kendall Dupersoy, ECYS Minister Rodolphe Samuel, Junior Carnival Queen Arienna Dupont, SCDF President Edward Radjouki and MotorWorld representative Nympha Richardson officially opening Carnival Village.
PHILIPSBURG–Feteing season is officially in swing. Friday marked the official opening of the 2023 Carnival season.
The festivities got off to a late start with the opening jump-up which ran from St. John’s Estate to Jocelyn Arndell Festival Village. A delay in the start of the jump-up left many wondering whether it would even take place.
A meeting held between police officers and their representing labour unions ran over into the intended start of the event. However, St. Maarten Carnival Development Foundation (SCDF) assured on Friday that it was in constant communication with the police force and dispelled rumours of the event being cancelled.
Revellers and spectators alike came out in large numbers filling the roads as they made their way along the route. Skillful Band and O-Ezy and TG Band brought high energy and kept the crowd going right up to the village.
SCDF Vice-President Alston Lourens welcomed patrons to the opening, followed by a rendition of the St. Maarten song by Sweet Pan Entertainment. Sponsor representatives from TelEm and Motorworld welcomed everyone to have a happy and safe Carnival this season. Similar wishes were also extended by the French Carnival Committee FCDSM representatives.
Minister of Education, Culture, Youth and Sport (ECYS) Rodolphe Samuel welcomed patrons and wished them a safe Carnival free of all incidents.
SCDF President Edward Radjouki in his remarks spoke on the importance of highlighting St. Maarten’s culture and heritage during Carnival. “I would like to bring it back for us here in St. Maarten to enjoy. At the end of the day it all belongs to us, Carnival belongs to you, the people,” he said. He thanked the police force for “a job well done” even throughout the times they have been facing.
“After two years of not having Carnival, this is going to be an official and a great Carnival for me and you to enjoy. Please, let’s do this Carnival as safely as possible,” he concluded.
Source: The Daily Herald