Carnival brightens Far Rockaway for second year

Showstoppers: Young women in carnival costumes and headdresses at the second annual “Carnival in the Rockaways” in Far Rockway on Aug. 18.
Photo by Stefano Giovannini

The second annual “Carnival in the Rockaways” brought out hundreds of Queens denizens to Far Rockaway to enjoy a day of celebrating Caribbean culture on Aug. 18. As one of the few organized public events in Queens that honors island culture, for many attendees, witnessing the multi-cultural turnout was a sight to see, said one local mother.

“I think it was amazing, and it showed me that we can all come together whether we’re from different cultures and countries, and dance to music,” said Theodora Harrison of Rosedale. “I saw people of all ages and just about everyone there for the love of music — and it was beautiful.”

Harrison, who is of Jamaican descent came to the festivity with her children and her Barbadian husband, who provided some musical entertainment for guests at Bayswater Park, where the eight-hour carnival concluded.

She said she loved the energy of one particular reveler, who entertained her and many others.

“There was one guy there who I’ll remember because he distinctly had the crowd going the whole time — he was there dancing until the end of the night,” she said.

But one of the standout moments for her was being able to enjoy a vibrant and relaxed community event with her family and enjoy that with other people.

“I feel like what made this very memorable for me was bringing my children and everyone having a good time even if they didn’t know each other.”

The carnival, organized by state Sen. James Sanders, is an opportunity for residents to enjoy a carnival in their own backyard.

For other attendees, sporting colorful and traditional carnival attire turned all the right heads and even earned some a random opportunity to dance, said a woman who only went by the name Kyra.

“It was fun and a great experience,” she said. “A lot of people were walking and asking to take pictures of us, and one guy even asked us to be background dancers on stage so he could perform his song.”

Reach reporter Alexandra Simon at (718) 260–8310 or e-mail her at asimo[email protected] Follow her on Twitter @AS1mon.

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