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Sep 8, 2000

Northside bands ready for carnival

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On Thursday night the carnival action moved to the northside of Belize City. News Five’s Jose Sanchez visited a number of the mas camps and found that spirits were high.

Jose Sanchez, Reporting

While the Cultural Heritage band members were sweating it out on Baymen Avenue, there was still some order inside the mas camp. We got a quick tour as the last minute touches on the costumes were still being completed.

Jacqueline Burgess, Publicity Director

“This is group three right now. We have our friend Shawn working on a piece of the wristband for the males and females, symbolic blue and silver to represent the change of the colour of the water that Sonrayah calls. Then here’s the male headpiece. So you see, we have a different look this year from the typical look we normally have. You want to try it? It needs a little bit of sponging, bit anyway.”

Jose Sanchez

“So what am I supposed to be? other than an idiot?”

Jacqueline Burgess

“You’re supposed to be the opening of the sun, the rising of the sun in the morning, when it rises on the horizon, where the water meets. This is what we are trying to capture right at this point with the males basically being one of the worshippers of Sonrayah. You are one of the persons in her court at this point.”

We thought things might be a bit more sedate at Fresh Breeze mas camp. But soon as we arrived, we realized that the junior bands are no juniors when it comes to knowing how to wine.

Molly Castillo, Fresh Breeze Band Leader

“Our group consists of 60 members, 5 boys and I have a very active group. For the king and queen competition we got 3rd place for the queen and for the king we lost very short margin for the third place. The public did not expect us to come out as bright as we did, but we did and we want the public out there to know that the Fresh Breeze Carnival Band is coming out with a big bang and we’re coming out in a lot of colors. For a junior band we’re going to give an example for the other junior bands to show them what it really is to be carnival.”

Devon Nembhard Fresh Breeze King

“It’s Kingarobo, and I am the king of this costume and our group is Fresh Breeze Carnival group.”

No one is going to dispute Nembhard’s claim, and his queen told us how she became his bride.

Ada Toro, Fresh Breeze Queen

“Well I wasn’t queen iguana first, I was an ordinary iguana. One day my sisters and I were together and I was the only one being generous to Kingarobo, so that’s why I became Queen Iguana.”

After we finished with Fresh Breeze we took a quick inspection of Gem’s mas camp. By this time of the night, we were actually one day away from carnival. The partying slowed down enough for Gem to explain their theme to us.

Laura Esquivel, Public Relations, Gem

“The story this year is going to be the love story of Mark Anthony and Cleopatra. They of course are the major king and queens, we also have two additional queens, one of which is Octavia, which is Mark Anthony’s first wife and we also have the Oracle, which in the story brings Anthony and Cleopatra together.”

“This is an Egyptian face. We have decided this year to add in a float and this will go as a piece of the float. It will be stuck onto the float.”

Jose Sanchez

“What this?”

Laura Esquivel

“That’s its chin.”

Jose Sanchez

“Oh, I thought it was a beard.”

Laura Esquivel

“Well the chin, the beard, it all comes along. Please don’t break it.”

Well I didn’t want to damage any costumes, some of which were both heavy and delicate. The costume for Gem’s queen was too unwieldy for her to try on, but she was generous enough to show off just a bit of it.

Denise Garcia, Gem

“This costume is basically a backpack. The entire thing, width wise and height is fitted on my back. Somebody lifts it up and I climb into it and slap it on my back just like somebody’s school bag. It’s very heavy, especially when the wind hits it with the mask up, it kind of catches the wind and blows my back, that’s when you see me do double steps.”

To see more of Denise–and everybody else– you’ll have to come out tomorrow. Reporting For News Five, I am Jose Sanchez.

The carnival road march gets underway from Caesar Ridge Road at 1:00 on Saturday afternoon. Channel Five’s live coverage begins at the same time. For masqueraders who want to see how they looked, the show will be repeated on tape Saturday night at 8:00. Carnival clips will eventually appear on Caribbean regional broadcasts as well as CNN World Report.

DUE TO A PUBLIC AND BANK HOLIDAY ON MONDAY, THE NEXT NEWSCAST WILL BE ON TUESDAY SEPTEMBER 12TH.


Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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