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Monday, July 23, 2012

Don't give up on Caribfest so fast.

You all know we are big supporters of Barrie's Caribfest, and you may have heard that the city of Barrie did not come through with the permit necessary to hold Caribfest at its usual location on the waterfront. I don't know why they have taken this position, but the organizers are determined to deal with the situation and move on.

They are looking at alternative venues and plan on making an announcement soon.

Whatever the new plan is, I really hope it includes some form of street parade. I think this is what draws most of the crowd. Without that, your carnival becomes a concert.


The organizers assure that whatever changes are made, they will have Rupee, Benjai and other performers, so don't make alternate plans for that weekend just  yet.We wish them the best of luck.


Times are tough this year for the regional carnivals. All I'm hearing about Hamilton is, its not happening.

CariVaughn has had its share of setbacks also, I hear due to funding issues, the TMBA bands which had been listed to attend the carnival, will no longer be taking part. However, all masqueraders are invited to bring your costume and join the parade without your band. There will also be an option to purchase Baby Ts or tanks for the men.

People might think that this has nothing to do with Caribana, but this is a danger to the festival. A large part of the draw for masqueraders is that you get the option to jump up 3 times. We overlook a lot of the issues and challenges that Toronto masqueraders face because firstly, we love the festival and mas, but a close second is, there are two more chances to get the experience right.
Bandleaders, its a lot easier sell to convince guys to pay $200 plus for a costume when you can point to regional carnivals as being included.
I'm not saying that we expect you to incur expenses and don't get paid. I want you to make money, because if you don't make money, there is no carnival. And, I understand its a tough sell for government to support the arts right now. There is an opportunity here for collaboration. Maybe we don't need every band to send a truck to these smaller carnivals. Perhaps a communal 2 or 3 trucks is enough. As masqueraders, we appreciate the extra beverages that might flow, but we only really need ice and water from the band. I think it's in everyone's interest if these small carnivals succeed.
I know I'm just looking from the outside and you still need to rent a truck to transport your big mas and countless other expenses that I don't know about.
I don't have any easy answers. When I heard about Barrie being in jeopardy, this sadness came over me. I felt like when they cancelled battle of the planets (G-Force) when I was a kid. It was a REAL sad feeling. We can't let this thing die.

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

This may not solve the immediate problem of funding - but a possibility to look at the future options. I write this to create a discussion, as I think new ideas are required with the changing times... the corporate world calls it INNOVATION – staying ahead of the curve, we need to think broader! Maybe your blog can through this idea to the bands and TMBA – you have the outreach then my one little voice!

We are aware of rising cost as a consumer and as a mas producer , yet the City of Toronto, Federal and Provincial Governments do contribute MINIMAL funding for the festival and benefit the most from our spectacular parade. Think about it – approximately 1 million dollars in funding- generates 450 million dollars in economic stimulation...3 days. (noting the festival cost more than 2 million dollars to organize) and that DOES NOT include ANY of band costs to participate, rent facilities and produce costumes.

Maybe its time the people who produce the main attraction of the parade - the bands -unify with an initiative that will help them with funding, and assist smaller organizers such as Barrie, Hamilton and Vaughan throw successful events that everyone can enjoy. Maybe its time to shift power and think outside the box.... I am going to call it pull a “Wallenda”.... Niagara Falls ON and NY are sooooo desperate to generate attraction to the Niagara Falls area, they were willing to cover costs to fund the Wallenda Walk. Don’t you think the bands have power to say for $500K to 1 Million dollars PER band (15 bands)( $7.5 million to $15 million investment) we can guarantee an economic infusion of up to 300-450 million into your Niagara falls community. Now Im no mathematician, but I do understand investment and profit!

Think how pretty that would be..... costumes cascading down the falls avenue, park lands and trees to set up shop – and at the end -a large venue a large park land to lime. Plus many hotels in walking distance of parade, restaurants, liquor stores... for those who are thirsty...lol
Now in all seriousness – each band could have more than enough funding to run all year through – actually employee youth and people in the community “which is desperately needed (taking note most bands are located in Scarborough) – don’t they say Jobs are required for our youth in light of recent events! What better then within our own culture! Whats the worse that can happen.... You all know the City of Toronto would tremble in their boots if they knew there was a potential to loose their cash cow – LARGEST generating event for Canada - Lets negotiate with the City of Toronto!

Put this into perspective (AGO, ROM, Ontario Place and Ontario Science Centre) combined – DO NOT generate 450 million dollars in revenue in a year.... can we say hmmmm?? Never mind 3 days!

Soooo all I am saying.... TMBA... the bands unite and pull your own Wallenda! and carve a lil bit of that Wallenda funding to the smaller Barrie, Hamilton and Vaughan Carnivals!

So back Wuk!...My 2014 Innovation project that is generating a few billion dollars for the corporate world... We need to think like a Corporation rather then a small festival with roots from 1967!
WALLENDA!

Anonymous said...

VAUGHAN'S CARIBBEAN STREET FESTIVAL - CARIVAUGHAN is still happening on Saturday, Aug. 11th, 2012. From Maple GO Station (On Keele) to Vaughan City Hall. Street Parade from 10am-3pm and Park Festival from 12pm-8pm.

www.carivaughan.com

SEE YOU ALL THERE!!!

Anonymous said...

Miss Karabana.
No make-up tips this year. No boot decoration ideas. What's up?
You're not playing mas this year?

Anonymous said...

Ok on a totally random note. Another event!

FAY ANN LYONS will be performing on August 3 @ Natham Phillips Square as part of the TD Irie Festival. Her stage time is 9pm

I thought you could spread the word to your readers!



Cheers!

Trini-in-Toronto said...

Thanks for the heads up, we did mention Fay Ann was coming when we did a post on Bungi for the part one of Irie music fest in Mississauga. We'll definitely do a post with all the details a little closer to the event. We are also working on a post for all of the free performances you can take in at harborfront centre. But before we get there, we have to talk again about the Calypso completion this weekend and the King and queen show next Thursday.

Anonymous said...

Hey they canceled the event. Fayann will not be performing. I think its due to violence in the past week. I read they will move it in november.

Trini-in-Toronto said...

Actually, Fay Ann's performance is not affected. Only the performances that were scheduled for Yonge and Dundas square have been moved to the urban music thing in November. Fay ann will be at Nathan Phillips and those shows are still on.(maybe city hall has better security?)

Karabana said...

Miss Anon, lol the post was in the works, & it's done. lol

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