Garifuna Day Celebrations Get Colourful in Dangriga

The 19th of November is celebrated as Garifuna Settlement Day, but festivities across the country have long begun before.  Our correspondent Mr. Harry Arzu was in the culture capital Dangriga and filed the following report.

Correspondent, Mr. Harry Arzu

vlcsnap-2013-11-18-20h14m15s134vlcsnap-2013-11-18-20h18m04s107The Garifuna Settlement Day was founded in 1941 by Tomas Vincent Ramos and was only celebrated in Dangriga until it became a national holiday in 1977.   Today, various schools in various municipalities participated in activities leading up the Garifuna Settlement day which will be celebrated tomorrow.   The students of the Delile Academy and Ecumenical High School with the traditional reenactment of the arrival of the Garifuna people to the shores of Belize, followed by a thanksgiving mass.   The auditorium at the Ecumenical was still in to capacity as hosted some students including some sisters enjoyed a variety of performances by a number of artists and dance groups such renown musician such as Aurelio Martinez,  Sandby dancers, Ecumenical high Schools popped up the drums, Champion and Joseph Chattoyer Garifuna Ballet, guests from New York City.  The speaker at the event was 

vlcsnap-2013-11-18-20h38m50s124vlcsnap-2013-11-18-20h28m46s217the president of the Battle of the Drums Secretariat, Darris Avila, who encouraged the audience to continue embrace and to promote the Garifuna culture.   Also at the event was the Minister of Education, Youth and Sports, who excited the crowd with his Punta skills.  In conclusion, as part of the event, was the display of the various cultures of Belize, where their food, language and among others were highlighted.   The Delile Academy and other schools held similar activities on the feast of Garifuna Settlement Day under the theme, “Let us Progress in Unity with God’s Goodness and the Protection of our Ancestors”.

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