Basseterre, St. Kitts, May 22, 2023 (ZIZ Newsroom): The 27th staging of the Green Valley Festival kicked off with an opening ceremony on Sunday night in Cayon.
Addressing the gathering on behalf of Parliamentary Representative for constituency #8 Prime Minister Hon. Dr. Terrance Drew, Ambassador Larry Vaughan spoke of the resilience of the festival.
“As the years progressed, we found that the circumstances were not kind. At times the festival would go up and may go down and may rise again, but it never went out. The festival, in every form, every year, continues to happen. And here is 27 years, 27 glorious years of community development through cultural involvement. And so I want you to put your hands together for the organizers who would have worked year after year to carry this festival forward.”
Ambassador Vaughan paid tribute to the past presidents of the festival and encouraged those involved to continue to work to make the festival a success.
“You are the beneficiaries and you are the persons who will carry forward the great work that was started in 1996 and shall go into the next generation of young people in these communities. I want each and every one of us who would have seen Green Valley start to become the impetus that carries it forward. Let Green Valley go on for 27 and more years. Let the circle never be broken. Let the culture of Cayon, of Keys, of Canada, of Ottley’s be that inspiration that guides our young people. Whether they are into the culture, whether they are into singing, whether they are into pageantry whatever the form of culture is, let us encourage it.”
Chair of the Green Valley Festival Kyla Huggins encouraged persons within the communities of Canada to Ottleys and beyond to support the festival.
“27 years later and the spirit of the community still defines who we are. I challenge each of you tonight to pay respect to those whose sweat and tears created the most talked about historical community festival in our nation,” she said. “We have ensured that the event can appeal to supporters, the community and on a nation scale. All we ask for during this season of celebration our community is of unrelenting support.”
The Green Valley Festival 2023 Opening Night also saw the opening of an icons park which pays tribute to Patricia Anna Liburd and Vernon Benjamin who are being recognized for their work in Green Valley.
Events for the Green Valley Festival include the International Night concert, the Cayon Primary School Princess and Calypso show, a Glow Parade, the Green Valley Strip and the green Valley Jouvert and Parade.