Belize Carnival Road March

Belize Carnival Road March
Although originally Carnival is a Western Christian festive season occurring before Lent, in many of the Caribbean countries the Carnival season takes place in July, August, or September. For example, the Belize Carnival is held in September in honor of the country’s National Day celebrated on September 10. The main event of the Carnival is the Belize Carnival Road March.

The first Belize Carnvial Road March was held in 1975 to spice up the National Day celebrations. Five women from the organization called the Belize Women for Cultural Preservation dressed up their kids and organized a colorful children’s parade. It was such a success that it was decided to hold the parade annually. More and more people joined every year, making the parade grow larger.

The Carnival Road March is preceded by a number of events and activities held throughout the month. They include the Carnival King and Queen Competition, the Belize National Song Competition, various pageants, etc. But the parade has always been and remains the main highlight of the Carnival season in Belize.

The Road March is usually held on the Saturday closest to the National Day of Belize. The celebration begins at dawn with J’ouvert, a massive street party involving people who are covered from head to toe in paint, powder, mud, or even chocolate. They dance through the streets of Belize City to the sound of soca music.

The Carnival Road March itself is a celebration of costume, music, dance, and street theater. It was created to celebrate Belize’s independence and rich cultural heritage. The procession includes revelers in colorful costumes, dancers, and bands that accompany them. The bands compete with one another for prizes presented by a jury.

After the parade, there’s a celebration held at one of Belize City’s public parks. It includes various activities for people of all ages, stage performances by local entertainers, an impressive selection of food and drinks, and more.

Belize Carnival Road March

Photo: Francis Canto




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