Lucian Carnival 2024 to be one of the largest ever with raised prize money: Minister Hilaire

Dr Ernest Hilaire- Minister of Tourism of Saint Lucia anticipated that 2024 Carnival season will be one of the largest ever, with additional activities and prize money raised for national competitions

Lucian Carnival 2024 to be one of the largest ever with raised prize money: Minister Hilaire
Lucian Carnival 2024 to be one of the largest ever with raised prize money: Minister Hilaire

Castries, Saint Lucia: Dr Ernest Hilaire- Minister of Tourism of Saint Lucia anticipated that 2024 Carnival season will be one of the largest ever, with additional activities and prize money raised for national competitions. He said that the festival is the part of the culture which defines who they are as people.

Carnival 2024 is all set to hit the roads of Saint Lucia in July 2024 which has created excitement waves among the patrons with the announcement of Carnival Queens, the welcoming of new events and news of more investments.

Speaking at this year’s Carnival launch, Dr Ernest Hilaire lauded the preparation and said that the Carnival is more than just a mass, more than just what happens on the road for a couple of days; it is a celebration of the self-recognition of who they are as a people.

He said, ”It plays a very powerful part in unlocking and unleashing the creativity of our people, the musicians, the artistes and the costume markers. All of that is a reflection of creativity of our people, it is more than just days on the roads.”

Dr Hilaire said that Carnival is a powerful economic agent, drawing over 18000 visitors to the island in the first two weeks of July in 2023.

“Making July the month of the most stay over visitors for the year and it tells you the important that Carnival has for our growth and our economic development. It brings in substantial income to this country, think of all the various sectors that benefit from the cosmetologist, from the stylists, the fashion designer, the person who runs the Airbnb, the resturant onwers, the car rental companies. I can go down the line and tell you of the economic impact of Carnival in our country, therefore it is something we need to protect.”

He further mentioned that the intention is to make Carnival 2024 even bigger than 2019, but there needs to be collaboration on the national level. Here, the decision to incorporate the interests of several factions of society, including the Christian Council, is needed.

“I give them assurance that we will support them with their own campaign on how to enjoy Carnival with a moral responsibility as well, we will undertake a responsible campaign and extend it also to the churches to be part of the Carnival to endorse it, to support it, and to say it to revellers that you can enjoy it in a very responsible way and I think all those elements are necessary for the sustainability of the festival,”Dr Hilaire added.

To materialize plans and to extend the calendar of activities, jazz in the city will now be a five-day event, which, according to Dr Hilaire, is an opportunity for Castries to explore as a centre of creativity.