Belize City, Tuesday, April 29th, 2008 – The September Celebrations Committee convened its first meeting on Monday, April 28th to plan the activities commemorating the 210th Anniversary of the Battle of St. George’s Caye and the 27th Anniversary of Belize’s independence.

The Welcome Remarks were given by the Chairman of the National September Celebrations Committee, the Minister of Tourism & Civil Aviation Honorable Manuel Heredia Jr. In his remarks, Minister Heredia commented that this year’s September Celebrations is expected to see greater participation from all communities nationwide.

The public is asked to submit any events they would like to be considered by the Committee as a part of the Calendar of Events. All events must be local and open to the public in order to be listed on the Calendar of Events. There will also be a competition where the general public will be asked to submit recommendations and suggestions for a logo and this year’s theme which should reflect Belize’s growth and development as a nation. All events and themes must be submitted by Friday, June 27th, 2008. Additionally, there will be a competition for local carnival songs and the patriotic songs. All entries must be submitted by July 15th, 2008 after which an early selection will be made in an effort to have the songs ready well in time for the start of the National Celebrations.

The dates of the main events on the Calendar were confirmed by the Committee at this meeting. The media launch of the Official Calendar of Events will be held on August 13th. The official launch of the National September Celebrations will be held on August 29th followed by the Queen of the Bay Pageant on August 30th. The Carnival Road March will be held on September 6th and on September 10th will be the Official 10th day of September Ceremonies and Parade. The Belize City Council Municipal Multicultural Fair and Battle of the Bands will be held over the weekend of September 20th and 21st while the Official Independence Day Ceremony, Uniform Parade and Street Jump Up will be held on September 22nd.

Co-chairs for the September Celebrations Committee are the President of the National Institute of Culture and History, Ms. Diane Haylock, and Her Lordship the Mayor, Ms. Zenaida Moya, of the Belize City Council. The Belize Tourism Board will continue to serve in its capacity as Secretariat to the September Celebrations Committee. Other members of the Committee includes the Association for Belizean Artist First, the Belize Carnival Association, the Belize Chamber of Commerce, the Belize Defense Force, the National Fire Service, the Independent Belize Media Association, the Belize Police Department, the Belize Press Office, the Belize Tourism Industry Association, Council of Churches, the Mayors Association of Belize, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Tourism & Civil Aviation, Ministry of Youth, Sports & Culture, the National Awards Committee, National Sports Council, Queen of the Bay Committee, St. George’s Caye Day Society, the Belize Red Cross, the National Trade Union Congress of Belize, and the UDP and PUP Secretariats.

“We look forward to working closely with the National Steering Committee as Belize proudly celebrates 27 years of independence and showcases its unique heritage & culture and the 210th anniversary of the Battle of St. George’s Caye,” comments Tourism Minister, Manuel Heredia.

For more information on the developments and events, please contact the September Celebrations Committee Secretariat at (501)-227-2485, via email: [email protected] or visit our website