The islands of the Caribbean, known worldwide for their amazing weather, beaches and of course the food. But those that know, really know that Caribbean people love to have a good time. Every year, islands across the Caribbean celebrate the various ethnicities that embody them as a people. From French, Spanish and of course African roots comes a festival that has become a staple in Caribbean culture. Carnival, as we know it, began on the islands of Trinidad & Tobago in the 1800s and has since spread to various other islands where they are infused with the local culture of each respective island.
We Caribbeans love our culture, and are typically proud to rep our city no matter what part of the world we find ourselves. Whether it’s at a Jamaican or Haitian restaurant, or from the Caribbean tunes we play or from the many Caribbean parties, you’re bound to find where all the “island people” hang out. And don’t shy away either, we islanders are very welcoming and personable people (with some individual exceptions of course).
I’ve only lived in the heart of Philly for about a year and a half, so it was only a matter of time before I came across Philly carnival. And ya know what the funny part is, guess who was the one that informed me of all the local Carib happenings, including the parade? Wait for it………..
Still waiting……………… ok I’ll tell you. I was very amused to get all my island scoop from a girl I met at a job forum, and she was born in and lived in Philly all her life!!! And can I tell you, she had all the latest mixtapes, carnival & party info and the works. Let’s call her KD. KD told me about the carnival and of course I had to know more.
Fast forward about a month later, after dragging my feet about if I wanted to go or not – I went and I had a blast. I’d been kind of detached from the REAL Caribbean culture for a minute and it was kind of refreshing to experience the sounds, the food and the people. I teamed up with the Infusion Band, and brought them great luck because their band (costume, music etc) won 1st place!!! (yep I’ll let myself believe I had something to do with that lol). But it was a really fun event, I was really surprised to see the large turnout from Barbados, but there were island flags and symbols galore. Everyone showing their country pride and making sure their island was accounted for.
Take a peek below at some of the happenings that day, from Infusion Band, Passion Band, Majestik, Glam, Kaos and the other masqueraders.
Not even pregnancy could stop these masqueraders.