September celebrations theme competition officially opened
Preparations for the 2017 September celebrations have begun, and the National Institute of Culture and History (NICH), is announcing the official opening of the September celebrations theme competition.
The theme should not be more than 10 words, and individuals are allowed to submit multiple entries. The submissions should be in commemoration of the 219th anniversary of the Battle of St George’s Caye and the 36th anniversary of Belize’s Independence.
The winner will receive a cash prize of a $1,000 and an invitation to the official ceremonies during September.
Belizeans living at home and abroad are invited to submit their ideas for the theme. Deadline for submissions is Friday June 23.
Submissions can be emailed to email@example.com, or can be dropped off at the NICH office on Regent Street, or at the Bliss Center for the Performing Arts, or at any town council office in any of the districts.
Lookout for this great opportunity to put your creativity into practice. National Song Competition 2017!
Each year, the National Celebrations Commission strives to highlight Belize's rich and unique cultural heritage through the numerous events held to commemorate our national celebrations. One such event is the National Song Competition which was created to provide professional and amateur musicians with the opportunity to create and showcase their original pieces. The goal of the competition is to promote artistic expression, national pride and Belize's diverse culture.
The competition was created to give both professionals and amateur song-writers and performing artists an opportunity to showcase their original pieces on a grand stage. It comprises of two categories:
A Belize Song Competition which should be an original song reflecting a strong Belizean identity, flavor and rhythm and should inspire a sense of national pride and unity. It should evoke a blessing or celebrate the history, traditions and diversity of the Belizean Culture.
The Carnival Song Competition should be an original song which will be used for celebratory purposes during the September Celebrations and throughout the year.
It is open to all Belizeans both juniors and seniors. Groups of persons or individuals may enter but will be treated as one entity. Entries will be judged based on: Audience Appeal, Musical Arrangement, Vocal Quality, Lyrical Content and Stage Performance.
WINNERS will receive cash prizes as follows:
Senior Division 1st Place - $10,000 and a trophy (this includes a music video and an opportunity to represent Belize in the Region) 2nd Place - $3,000 and a trophy
Junior Division 1st Place - $4,500and a trophy (this includes a music video) 2. Place - $1,000 and a trophy
We will also award the following:
People's Choice for the most popular song
Breakout Artist of the Year
This year the National Celebrations Commission will include a Youth Music Development Program that will feature vocal training, song writing assistance and production development for the Junior Section of the National Song Competition.
The National Celebrations Commission is sending out a call to musicians, performing artists and songwriters (juniors and seniors) to submit their songs in the National Song Competition 2017.
Song writers and Performing Artists are invited to register for the competition by downloading the registration form at www.nichbelize.org or contacting their House of Culture Coordinators or email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 227-2110/2458 Bliss Centre for more information.
DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSION:
FRIDAY, JULY 21st, 2017 AT 5:00PM
FINALS: SATURDAY, AUGUST 12., 2017 TO BE DETERMINED
BZ SONG/CARNIVALSONG. JUNIORS & SENIORS
For more information contact: National Song Competition. Bliss Centre. Southern Foreshore. email@example.com Telephone: 227 2458/2110
The September Celebrations, in 10 Words or Less
The September Celebrations Committee is also calling for submissions for the theme for this year’s festivities which include the Battle of Saint George’s Caye as well as Independence Day. Entries are invited from persons living here in the jewel or overseas. But there are only two weeks left to present your entry so if you are interested get your creative juices flowing and your pen and paper ready.
Neil Hall, Communications & Marketing Officer, NICH
“This is a contest that is going out not only locally, but internationally. We are asking for every and anyone, if you have an idea as to what you would like to be the theme for the two hundred and nineteenth anniversary of the battle of Saint George’s Caye and the thirty-sixth anniversary of Belize’s Independence to send it in. The only stipulation is ten words or less and your submission deadline for that one is Friday, June twenty-third.”
For either submissions, entries can be emailed at September Celebrations at Gmail dot com or you can deliver them to NICH office on Rectory Lane in Belize City or any of the Houses of Culture across the country.
Can Your Belize or Carnival Song Win National Competition?
It is that time of the year to spring into action for the September celebrations. A highlight of the month-long activities is the song competition which seeks to promote artistic expression, national pride and our rich ethnicity. NICH has issued a call for submissions to artists, rookies as well as professionals to enter their original work. There are two categories: The Belize song competition which focuses on the Belizean identity and a message of patriotism and the other on carnival, which is a more upbeat piece to be featured during the celebrations as well as the rest of the year. Deadline for submissions is weeks away in July. Neil Hall of NICH explains.
Neil Hall, Communications & Marketing Officer, NICH
“We are looking for two songs this year. We are looking for a Belize song as well as a celebration song, a carnival song. We are asking for every and anyone who has interest to please submit their entries as quickly as possible simply because the deadline for submissions for the songs are the twenty-first of July. Remember after they are submitted we need to go through a selection process to ensure that they have the right sound and they are conveying the right message. We are asking for seniors and juniors as there are two different categories. We are asking for if you are a master performer or a novice; someone who simply has a great idea, great voice and has put together something that you think would be suitable to make a submission so that we can go through it. You never know, you might be the winner.”
For the seniors, the first place is ten thousand dollars and second place is three thousand dollars with trophies. For the juniors, it is four thousand five hundred dollars and a thousand dollars, respectively for first and second place. Both first place winners get a music video directed and produced by NICH.
The National Celebrations Commission is pleased to announce the winner and theme for the upcoming September Celebrations. After careful deliberation by the Commission, the submission made by Ms. Janine Sosa was selected.
The theme focusses on our unified Belizean people, cultures, and country. This year’s theme calls on us to recognize the often difficult decisions that must be made to ensure our nation’s progress. It acknowledges the moment in which we take pleasure in the victories of our past and present, and uses these accomplishments to strengthen our advancement into the future.
Over 250 entries were submitted for this year’s Theme Competition. A panel appointed by the National Celebrations Commission then narrowed the field to the top 58 entries. Each entry was scored and Ms. Sosa’s entry attained the highest score, claiming the grand prize of this year’s National Celebration Theme Contest 2017. The theme for this year’s Celebrations will be:
September is, without a doubt, the most exciting time to visit Belize, and be a part of our rich cultural history and festivities. There are many enjoyable activities throughout the month that culminate in the celebration of our Independence day on September 21.
Belize's history dates back to the Maya Civilization, over three thousand years ago followed by the Europeans settlement of Belize in the 16th -17th century. A few years after a military engagement between the Spaniards and the British settlers, which lasted from the 3 to the 10 September 1798, we became a British colony named British Honduras. On the 10 of September each year, the Battle of St Georges Caye day is celebrated in honor of this event.
On September 21, 1981, Belize, the only British colony in Central America, became an Independent Nation.
Each year, Belizeans at home and abroad celebrate this month with much national pride, excitement and vibrant traditions Days of fanfare leading up to Independence Day include colourful Road marches, formal parades, September Expo, Concerts, Queen of the Bay pageant, and Music and Food Festivals. Of course, the highlight of the festivities is our Annual September Carnival marked with beautiful colorful costumes and parade floats.
The September Celebrations is here and the month long festivities kicked off a few days ago – but it was officially launched in Orange Walk Town over the weekend. A host of dignitaries gathered to formally declare the celebrations open to observe the anniversaries for the Battle of Saint George’s Caye and Independence Day. News Five’s Andrea Polanco has more on the event that happened in Orange Walk on Sunday.
Andrea Polanco, Reporting
The National Celebrations Commission kicked off the September Celebrations on Orange Walk Town on Sunday. The launch of the celebrations to observe the two hundred and nineteenth anniversary of the battle of Saint George’s Caye and the thirty-sixth anniversary of Independence was attended by the Governor General of Belize Sir Colville Young, Deputy Prime Minister Patrick Faber, and several members of parliament and the diplomatic and consular corps. Mayor of Orange Walk Town Kevin Bernard addressed the gathering, highlighting the theme of this year’s celebrations: Belize, Confronting Challenges, Celebrating Triumphs; Renewing our Resolve.
Kevin Bernard, Mayor, Orange Walk Town
“It is a fitting message as we proudly celebrate thirty six years of nationhood. It reminds us that there are challenges which face us on every level, some global, others internal. We are a people very divided on many levels; politically, religiously, socially. Sometimes I despair when I see friends and family actually divided along these lines. So, yes, there are many challenges which face us individually and as a nation but as the theme reminds us, we need to renew our resolve, to face these challenges as one people and to overcome the,. My message here is one which I send out on a daily basis and it is as pertinent today as always, and it is a message of unity and tolerance. As a young nation, we can no longer afford division along any lines.”
In his capacity as Chairman of National Celebrations Commission, Minister of Education, Youth, Sports and Culture Patrick Faber reflected on Belize’s ability to adapt that comes with thirty six years of independence.
Patrick Faber, Chairman, National Celebrations Commission
“One of the lessons of this intricate development process is that the challenges we face all bring new opportunities. That is one of the positive aspects of being a young nation. We are adaptable, we are creative, and we are energetic and ready to accrue benefits in areas of which we have a comparative advantage; our natural and cultural resources, including our people, of which a majority is under the age of thirty.”
But even as young and growing nation while the opportunities are numerous, so are the threats and Mayor Kevin Bernard took time to highlight the Belize-Guatemala territorial dispute – calling for Belizeans to unite on this critical issue.
“Today, as a people, we also face threats from our neighbor Guatemala. We have always known about the unfound claim to our territory, but now it is even more real than it has ever been before. It is also a fact that Belizeans who go to the Sarstoon River are aggressed and have been turned back by the Guatemalan military. We are now closer, than ever before, going to a referendum which will decide if we go to the ICJ for decision. These are issues which should unite us in one course of action. Instead, we are more divided than ever over the wisdom of the ICJ to determine our territorial integrity or not.”
At Sunday’s event, San Ignacio and Santa Elena towns were selected through a lotto pick to host the 2018 September Celebrations opening.
With the Carnival King and Queen 2017 determined on Saturday night, the mas camps got underway on Monday night in the north and south sides of the city. The bands are getting ready for this weekend’s road march and gave us a peak look at what can be expected. While judging is on originality and creativity, one band is throwing in the famous conch soup. News Five’s Duane Moody reports.
Duane Moody, Reporting
The competition to determine the 2017 Carnival Road March champions began on Monday night as two of the fourteen competing mas bands gave the judges a preview of what’s to come on September ninth when they take to the streets of Belize City. Day one of the mas camp took us to Trenchtown Masqueraders junior band and one of the highly anticipated senior bands, Mother Nature’s Creation. There are a total of two hundred points split between mas camp and the road march and the camp visits account for eighty of those points.
Sandra Mahler, President, Carnival Association
“We are starting the mas camps today; we have juniors and seniors that we are going to. The judges will be judging them based on their artistic quality, the appearance, the durability of the costume, color coordination, appearance, and originality. We have four days of mas camps; from today until Thursday. We start at seven everyday and these judges are going to see much better creativity and originality in these costumes this year. Every year we try to encourage the band leaders to do better than what they did before and this year they have certainly done that, so that is what we are going to see on mas camps this week.”
While the two bands we visited had several revelers dressed in their respective costumes, it is not mandatory. Carnival Association President Sandra Mahler says that there is no need for a human prop or a mannequin, but the bands must demonstrate the pieces from start to finish.
Our first stop for the night was over on Amara Avenue where juniors, Trenchtown Masqueraders were energized and ready for the road march. Their theme this year was inspired by the tragedy that struck their band leader, Patricia Flowers earlier this year. She explains how she converted her reality into fantasy.
Patricia Flowers, Band Leader, Trenchtown Masqueraders
“My story had to be removed from fantasy to when reality kicks in. My theme is when reality hits unexpectedly being that I went through a disaster on July eighth so I based my story on myself and what I’ve been going through, which is me being a princess, enjoying music when I was called home to fire. And my last section is just based on trying to get back on my feet, color, happiness. Our first section is the princess…that’s me Patricia Flowers – crazy as ever, looking crazy always on camp night. I mean everybody know I like music, everybody know I peaceful until yeah yo push me up there. But that’s me the first section. It is followed by the music that I was enjoying…to the third section, the fire that called me home that left me with the skeleton, being the frame of my house. And then I have the color to the back which is yellow and green given to me by one of my next band leaders. And I have to say big thank you to Miss Marina Welcome.”
Over on Saint Thomas Street, Mother Nature’s Creation is cooking up a storm with his theme, “A Belizean Delicacy: Conch Soup.” And yes, with all the trappings, including conch, okra and the other vegetables are in the mix up. Creative Director for the band, Leroy Green explains:
“I always keep in mind that the theme of Mother Nature is history, culture and fantasy through carnival; so we always try to bring something to the streets that the Belizean public can relate to them because I don’t see any sense in bringing out anything to do with Rome or another place when Belizeans don’t know where Rome is. So we always try to bring out something that has to do with Belize. So that as soon as they hear it, they can say, yes that’s a part of us. The queen conch which was worn by Whitney is Queen Crustasea and in the story she was brought up from the waters around the barrier reef by prayers from the high priestess; you have to understand that this is a myth with elements of the fable. Whitney came from beneath the sea and she brought hundreds of conch along with her so that the fishermen did not have to dive. The king he was sent from the skies; the high priest of the skies prayed to the heavens to send them something to give them back their strength. He answered by sending rain, but not water rain – hundred and thousands of little black seeds which are the okra seeds and those became the okra plant which when they were ripened were used to make the conch soup. The third group will be led by another queen; I cannot remember the name right now, but each and every single dancer in that group will be wearing a different color with a backpack. They will be representing the pepper, the tomato, the potato, the onion that all goes together to make this conch soup.”
September Celebrations! How To Celebrate in 2017, SanPedroScoop It’s the most wonderful month of the year. Sure it’s hot and generally humid. Mosquito spray is a must at dawn and dusk and the stream of tourists has slowed to a trickle. BUT…it’s Independence Month!
IT’S PARTY TIME!
Belize celebrates two major holidays in September and for many, it can feel like the time between Sept 10th and 21st makes for one big HOLIDAY!
Time to decorate your home and your cart and your person and get out your calendar. Though I’ve missed a few events – like the Miss San Pedro pageant – here are my favorite things to do in September.
September Celebrations Calendar of Events 2017, Tacogirl Our young ( 36 years) and vibrant country is gearing up for September Celebrations with this years theme being, Belize – confronting challenges, celebrating triumphs and renewing our resolve.
Countrywide, numerous cultural, religious, and sporting events are being held from the beginning of September up to the big finale on Independence Day, Sept 21st. This is a very patriotic month and many people show their pride decorating homes and businesses in the country’s colors; white, blue and red.
September Celebrations Calendar
Here are some of the many events going on this month that are worth the traveling around the country to see:
This year's Carnival Road March 2017 line up will be as follows: Grand Marshall – Stanley Lizama Caribbean Treasures - Non competitive band Junior Bands (7) Sunshine Masqueraders Mahogany Masqueraders Collect Royal Revelers Black Pearl Trenchtown Masqueraders Soca Massive Jump Street Posse Ambulance PanTempters Steel Band Floats Presidente Belikin Senior Bands (6) Belizean United Mother Nature’s Creation Fantasy Karnival Belize Titans Mas Band Soca Moca Carnival Band Belizean Jewels Ambulance Tumblers Party Truck
Judging Points Junior – Round about (Corner CA Blvd & Cemetery Rd) Senior – Youth Apprenticeship Program, Youth for the Future Drive (in front of Youth Department)
The Carnival Road March is set for September 9th, 2017 and will be commencing at 1:00 PM. The route for the road march is as follows: Central American Blvd/Faber’s Road Right onto Vernon Street Left onto Youth for the Future Drive Across BelChina Bridge Douglas Jones Street into Cinderella Plaza Left onto Kelly Street Right onto Baymen Avenue Left onto Princess Margaret Drive End in front of Marion Jones Sports Complex
JUDGING POINTS Junior – CA Blvd & Cemetery Rd Senior – Youth for the Future Drive, in front of Youth Apprenticeship
The Carnival Jouvert is set for September 9th, 2017 and will be commencing at 4:00 AM.
There will be a Ceremony for the souls that have gone ahead in the name of Carnival in honor of Jermaine Madrill at 3:45 AM followed by a moment of silence and laying of wreaths.
The route for the Jouvert will be as follows:
• Start from Belcan Bridge • To Central American Boulevard • Left, on to Cemetery Road • Left, on to East Collet Canal • Left on to Vernon St. • Right, Youth for the Future over BelChina Bridge • Right on to North Front Street • Left on Queen Street • Left on Daly Street • Right on Craig Street • Left on Marine Parade • End at Dock
Public Mud – Belcan Bridge Madd Squad – beside Pallotti SOS – coming from MJSC Coco Devils - Courts
CAYE CAULKER PARADE Only pictures take from our parade last night if you have any please feel free to add in comments. Thank you to Atlantic Bank, Ocean Academy, C.C.R.C. School, La Isla Carinosa Academy, St Francis Xavier Credit Union for participating.