Carnival – Just a Little Taste

11013328_1200776619947824_8204410507621356044_n11265207_1200782626613890_8159414359170699519_nI’m hoping this falls under fair use (if it doesn’t I’ll take them down) because I really just wanted to share a little bit of Antigua’s Carnival with site regulars and visitors alike. From the time I’ve known myself we’ve boasted that it’s the Caribbean’s Greatest Summer Festival. It’s the kind of boast you take on faith kind of like our claim to 365 beaches. But I grew up on Antigua’s Carnival – it was where I first saw creative expression come to life in the visual art of the mas designers and builders, in the lyricism and musicianship of the calypso creators and performers, in the unbridled expression of all that it was to be us, our essential selves, expressive and creative – so it’s not much of a leap of faith for me. Carnival will always be my favourite season (it’s still a helluva party) but I’m of that age I guess where it feels like its lost that certain magic, like the creative spark is being sucked out of it … but maybe that’s just me…the lens of nostalgia tends to have a soft, romantic tinge.

Anyway, that’s not the point of this post. I was flipping through some images from Children’s Carnival (yes, we reserve a portion of Carnival specifically for the kids) and remembering being a little girl watching her mother jump in the parade, then only a few years later begging to be a majorette, the first year of Flames jamming left to right and every jam ponds and Lions and J’ouvert of my teens and then the mas playing from mid-teens to as recently as (well, this year if we’re counting t-shirt mas…which I don’t really) …and the way I remain enamored with the music and magic of the season even as I mourn all of the changes just for so and the death of the mas (RIP Revellers and Dynamics) …put me in the mood to share some images of what remains one of the creative aspects of mas, the Children’s Carnival (2015 edition). So, and here’s where the fair use comes in, are just a handful of images from the hundreds on the Government social media site. Just to give you a taste of how the young ones do it in Antigua …


11169962_1200781069947379_699924067999680539_n11781885_1200778396614313_873707789310809013_n11796309_1200778953280924_4647097785095911975_n11800243_1200777249947761_5548355659885213882_n11828547_1200779863280833_1550374845543786610_n11141212_1200777949947691_1467754886406973016_n11828643_1200777956614357_2894097543776938220_n11817248_1200769929948493_4505917347234033077_nChildren’s Carnival still has some of that magic, yes?

As with all content (words, images, other) on, except otherwise noted (and note well, these pictures do not belong to me but are shared from the Government Antigua and Barbuda public facebook page), this is written by Joanne C. Hillhouse (author of The Boy from Willow Bend, Dancing Nude in the Moonlight, Fish Outta Water, Musical Youth, and Oh Gad!).  All Rights Reserved. If you enjoyed it, check out my page on Amazon, WordPress, and/or Facebook, and help spread the word about WadadliPen and my books. You can also subscribe to the site to keep up with future updates. Thanks. And remember while linking and sharing the links, referencing and excerpting, are okay, lifting content (words, images, other) from the site without asking or crediting is not cool. Respect copyright. (As for the pictures, ABS, Government, I credited, I’m essentially excerpting some of the images from among the hundreds with a link back, and I’m not profiting from their use, but if you want me to take them down, I will, no hard feelings)


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