The media gets an advance look at the costumes kids will be wearing in the Junior Parade
By Stephen Weir, photographs by Dan Moreland
Wave after wave of junior masqueraders showed off their moves and their wildly colourful mas costumes to an audience of parents, friends and members of the press. The Toronto Caribbean Carnival’s Junior Parade media launch was held indoors at the Malvern Town Centre mall over the lunch hour on Tuesday.
Ahead the July 21st Junior Carnival, a preview of costumes and performances was put on display for the cameras. The hour and half launch was a mixture of entertainment by young costumed revelers and speeches by adult politicians, sponsors and organizers giving the media information about four coming events for children taking part in the 2018 carnival.
“ This year we really want to bring it back to the kids and to the families,” said Kevin Carrington, the MC for the media launch. “We have the Junior Carnival King and Queen Showcase taking place on stage at the Woodbine Centre in Etobicoke on July 15th (2:00 pm – 8:00 pm) and of course the Junior Carnival Parade right behind us at Neilson Park. “ That is also where the Festival will stage the post parade Junior Carnival Calypso Monarch Challenge and the Grace Foods annual Junior Chef Culinary Competition.
The Junior Parade and Family Day brings together the Toronto Mas Bands Association, Organization of Calypso Performing Artists, and the Ontario Steelpan Association. The Junior Carnival Showcase, which begins after the parade ends, presents the young performers of steelpan, calypso, and dance on stage at Neilson Park.
This year over 2,000 children in costume are expected at the parade. All eleven Mas Camps currently competing in the festival are taking part in this year’s Toronto Caribbean Carnival.
The Kiddies Parade will kick-off at 11am Saturday morning July 21st with an official opening ceremony at the McLevin Road entranc to the Malvern Community Centre. The parade travels west on McLevin Avenue, north on Neilson Road to Neilson Park..
“ It is really fitting that the Junior Carnival Parade and Family Day event is once again in Malvern,” Ward 42 City Councilor Neethan Shan told the dozen or so journalists covering the launch. “ Malvern has one of the highest concentration of children of any community in Canada, and there are people from every Caribbean island living right here in Malvern.”
The day-long event is free, spectators are welcome to watch and cheer on the children in their creative mas costumes This year marks 51 years of Carnival in Toronto.
SIDEBARJunior Carnival King & Queen ShowcaseWhen: July 15, 2018 Location: Woodbine Centre, 500 Rexdale Boulevard, Etobicoke. Time: 2:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Junior Carnival Parade & Family Day
When: July 21, 2018 Location: Malvern and Neilson Parks, Scarborough When: 11:00 am – 8:00 pmThe Parade, Family Day, Junior Carnival Calypso Monarch Challenge and Grace Foods Cook-Off takes place rain or shine, at the Neilson Park in Malvern, Scarborough.