By: Chaïra Flanders
All pageants, the extremely popular J’ouvert street jam, grand parade and las lap celebrations have been cancelled for this year’s Sugar Mas 49 festivities.
This was announced by Minister of Culture, Hon. Jonel Powell who was at the time delivering an address to the nation via the St. Kitts-Nevis National Carnival Committee (SKNNCC) Facebook page on the morning of Friday October 2 2020.
He said both Cabinet and the committee approved the decision to cancel all traditional Carnival events ahead of Sugar Mas 49 celebrations in December 2020.
Minister Powell said the decision was made in consideration of the health and safety of the people of St. Kitts and Nevis as the federation grapples with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Powell said in order to accommodate patrons during this challenging time, creative virtual events will be held to highlight and celebrate the culture of our people.
“Our National Carnival was established with the aim of highlighting our arts, music and folklore and in so doing, uniting our people. As such, the committee along with its partners, intends to create virtual events that are new and creative as well as scale back activities for the end of year celebration”, Powell explained.
“This new virtual format will allow the St. Kitts-Nevis National Carnival Committee to showcase our unique Carnival product to our citizens and residents and a more diverse and wide-ranging global audience”, he said.
He added that a Sugar Mas 49 Calendar of events will be released shortly.
The Minister said the committee is pledging its fullest support to the national COVID-19 Taskforce, the police and healthcare workers who have established protocols to protect residents and citizens from the Novel Coronavirus.
He said the Ministry of Culture and the National Carnival Committee look forward to presenting Sugar Mas 49 in its new format to Carnival lovers, locally, regionally and internationally.