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Sep 3, 2014

Mas Camps In Full Swing for Carnival 2014

The spectacular carnival road march is set for September thirteenth and from a look at the mas camps at this early stage, the event promises to exceed expectations. First, there is a record number of bands this year, the costumes are even more elaborate and while the themes are varied, the bands are injecting our cultural diversity. Duane Moody was out in the city on Tuesday night for the first round of judging of the bands.


Duane Moody, Reporting

It’s that time of the year again…it’s Carnival 2014! The road march is about a week and a half away and will be held on September thirteenth. That means that the King and Queen Competition and mas camps are here and all fourteen junior and senior bands in Belize City are putting their final touches to their costumes for the revelers and their respective kings and queens. On Tuesday night, scores of children between the ages of eight and seventeen gathered at strategic spots within the city gyrating to soca music, embodying the fun spirit of carnival. The preliminaries for the 2014 Carnival Road March was on its way.


Five of the seven junior bands participating in the competition were judged: Rampage Carnival Band, Dynamic Dancers, Sunshine Masqueraders, Trench Town Masqueraders and Jump Street Posse. Our first stop was Sunshine Masqueraders with their theme, “Invasion to Nation.”


Ian Young, Designer, Sunshine Masqueraders

Ian Young

“Whenever carnival, people might represent these different cultures but individual basis. So we decided why not put everything together and portray the actual history within our very own country hence the theme from Invasion to Nation. Over this side, we look at the Indians, the first settlers, but we put a twist to it. Instead of using the Maya Indians, we used the Native American Indians…hence the reason for the color, the pink and the blue. Behind me, we have the pirates and the buccaneers. The British Pirates where here around the sixteen and seventeenth century; they were sailing the coasts and robbing the Spanish ships of their treasures. So the purple that we have here represents the lost souls and the black represents the dark age of the piracy. The last group, which was my design is the multi-culture, which is the nation. We decide to focus on four cultures: Chinese, Garifuna, Maya and Creole. So for the Maya we have and white, Chinese which is read and gold, Garifuna yellow, black and while and for the Creole we decided to use the color of the flag which is red, white and blue. If you look at the costumes, you would see that each one of them have on something that represents that culture. But for this year we do think that we will take the title again for King and Queen Competition, definitely.”


Less than a block away is where Trench Town Masqueraders Band was located. Last year the band competed in the senior category and this year, turned its focus to the youths bring the sun, rain and sky in its designs.


Patricia Flowers

Patricia Flowers, Organizer, Trench Town Masqueraders

“Last year neva so, but carnival day, we mash it up still. But this year, we come out junior and we are looking towards the sky…meaning the universe: the rain, the sun, the stars, the rainbow. That dah weh di pickney dehn di look pan this time dah trench town.”


Duane Moody

“Tell us about what we can see here with your designs and ensuring that it is fitting the criteria of the junior groups, the junior part of the competition?”


Patricia Flowers

“Right yah we have the rain, the blue over there. The sun, orange and yellow because sometime when you look at the sun it has two colors. And the black and white, we portray day and night…the darkness and the light. And we have the stars, blue of course, silver sometimes at the night and rainbow with all the pretty colors.”


Duane Moody

“Tell us about how many revelers you have in the band and the preparation leading up to this month.”


Patricia Flowers

“Well right now Duane, we have seventy-one, but we need seventy-five fi hit the road march, but four we wah make that before the end of the week.”


And last, but not least for the night is Marina Welcome and the Jump Street Posse. Their theme…Mystical Warriors of the Amazon.


Marina Welcome

Marina Welcome, Organizer, Jump Street Posse

“The first theme is Princess Mia and the Amazon Warriors. You know when you go into the rainforest you gotta fantasize a little bit in Belize rainforest and stepping into the rainforest, you will meet Princess Mia and the warriors. They become the Amazon warriors because in their time, the females were separated from the males; they only meet when they are mating and that’s why they are the warriors. When you go deeper into the rainforest, it won’t be a rainforest without any beautiful flowers and stuff like that right. So that’s how we come up with the black orchid, the butterflies, the lilies, the red bells….that’s what you gonna meet in the rain forest. And when go a little bit deeper now, a rainforest cannot be a rainforest without Zulus. So that is when you gonna meet Kamandela the King and his warriors, the Zulus.”


Duane Moody

“Tell us about going into the competition this year, how secure you feel with regards to making sure you are sticking to the criteria while still being creative with it.”


Marina Welcome

“I mean to say you can see what I got and I am very confident in what I do. My costumes are unique; they are original. As you see it, you know exactly what you are watching. So have a lot of confidence in that.”


All that energy and fun…and that’s only day one of the mas camps for Carnival 2014. Stay tune for day two as the remaining two junior teams as well as two of the senior bands are featured. Reporting for News Five, I am Duane Moody.


Tonight Duane Moody will catch up with four bands, two juniors and two senior bands.

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