My hope for 2019 is to try some NEW carnivals, with their own flair. Immediately, Bahamas Carnival came to mind. Junkanoo [Junkanoo is a street parade with music, dance, and costumes of Akan origin] inspired costumes, on an island known for their gorgeous beaches and even nicer people is a great reason to visit. If you are a foodie, I promise you will love all the different conch dishes, as I did when I visited Bahamas in September.
Update 5/19/2019: I played mas with Bahamas Masqueraders in 2019. Check out my review
That said, I needed more information. What band is amazing? What parties take place? Why even bother go? I had the chance to speak with a representative from Bahamas Masqueraders, so I could get a better understanding, of what to look forward to in 2019.
Dates: May 3 – 6, 2019
Parade Date: May 4, 2019
Founded in 2013, Bahamas Masqueraders is the largest band in Bahamas and also regarded as the “people’s band”. Representatives treat each masquerader like family and go above and beyond to ensure masqueraders have an amazing time. In the past they have hosted several Soca artists such as Patrice Roberts, MX Prime and Ultimate Rejects. Lyrikal, Fadda Fox, Peter Ram and more.
As masqueraders themselves, they know how to execute the experience, Bahamian style. In addition to Bahamas, they also had sections in Miami for Carnival as well as Xaymaca’s 2019 presentation for Jamaica Carnival.
During our interview, here is what they had to say.
What makes Bahamas Masqueraders stand out ?
I think we offer an intimate experience, where we make each person feel like they are the reason why we fete. We do not compromise on the quality of our experience and excellence is the only standard. We are culturally influenced and a logistically affordable option in a beautiful country, not to mention, it would be very inexpensive to experience both carnival and vacation in one.
What kind of masquerader would Bahamas Masqueraders appeal to?
I think Bahamas Masqueraders will appeal to everyone. We are purposely not discriminatory, so anyone that wants to have fun will enjoy themselves. Costumes appeal to everyone and every body type; All colors and creeds, the drinkers, the eaters, even the people interested in glam costumes, but in a relaxed and structured environment. This year we plan to have smoother processes, the flow of drinks is one of them. We will have an expedited drink refilling station and cold frozen drinks; masqueraders can look forward to that.
How many masqueraders are you expecting or hoping to play in Bahamas Masqueraders?
We expect to have about 1300. We are prepared for 1600 as far as materials are concerned. Bahamas Masqueraders is always prepared for last minute registrations, costume hiccups etc.
What type of music is played on the road?
All types of soca is played on the road, so rest assured, DJs will play music from just about every island for masqueraders to enjoy
Do you all usually have international DJs on the road?
We try to have an inclusive experience, so yes we do have international DJs on the road. In previous years, we’ve had Giselle the Wassi One (Trinidad) hosting and Freeze International (NYC), DJ Majestic (DC), Lord Hype (TT), Trevlyn the Voice (TT), DJ Smalls (TT) and DJ Stephen. For 2019, we hope to bring in some amazing DJs and artists again.
Does Bahamas Masqueraders have a stage crossing point?
For 2019, there will be a stage. Masqueraders will cross the stage toward the latter end of the parade. It will be near the Cable beach strip. The carnival association is also hoping to create a VIP area for spectators.
What are you looking forward to for Bahamas Carnival 2019?
We look forward to the great time that will be had by all. It’s always an amazing time, that gets better year after year. Note: Bahamas Masqueraders will launch their 2019 Bahamas Carnival presentation on February 2nd, 2019.
In addition to mas, there are the parties. I’ve seen several jouvert type events including After Glow and Colourgazm. One of the more notable events taking place on that weekend, is Suits Bahamas. Which is a floating jouvert. The event takes places on a barge out in the water. If you remember, in 2018, DJ Khaled, bounced up on the barge via jetski.
Where should you stay?
There are so many options for lodging in the Bahamas. Baha Mar Resorts (Grand Hyatt, Rosewood, SLS Baha Mar) and Breezes are some to name a few. I stayed at Breezes resort in 2012, and the Grand Hyatt in 2018 and I LOVED the Grand Hyatt! So book your stay early before prices increase!
It’s a short weekend, affordable and a reason to visit Bahamas. Save the date and see you on the road.
Yours in Mas,
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