Wingate gets high with Caribbean culture

Trinidad and Tobago’s Cultural Group and Something Positive.
Photo by Nelson A. King

George Wingate High School in Brooklyn came alive last Friday with a grand celebration of Caribbean culture.

The New York Police Department’s (NYPD) Community Affairs Bureau and New Immigrant Outreach Unit partnered with the New York Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Consular Corps and the Brooklyn-based West Indian American Day Carnival Association (WIADCA) in staging a spectacular show in commemorating Caribbean American Heritage Month.

In addition to various booths, displaying Caribbean arts and crafts and tourism products, patrons reveled in the regions’ culture, as a host of artistes, representing the region, displayed their skills and talents amid the effervescent crowd in the school’s large auditorium.

The NYPD’s Auxiliary Brass Band was on hand in electrifying the atmosphere, as well as folk-singing and cultural masterpieces from the United Vincie Cultural Group of Brooklyn, Trinidad and Tobago’s Cultural Group and Something Positive Dance Troupe, Jamaica’s Braata Folk Singers and Brooklyn’s Sesame Flyers’ Limbo Dancers.

In addition, there were stellar performances from Dominica’s first calypso queen, Jolly; St. Lucia’s gospel singer Emrand Henry; Barbadian poet and short story teller Deborah Carrington; Grenada’s New York Independence Calypso Monarch Val Adams; Haiti’s balladeers Fefe and China Black; and Antigua and Barbuda’s Calypso Queen Claudette “CP” Peters.

While Peters brought the house down with a party-charged, flag-waving entourage, Trinidad and Tobago’s Cultural Group and Something Positive Dance Troupe, as well as Sesame Flyers’ Limbo Dancers, from Tobago and Haiti, left the audience in awe. They were, doubtlessly, out of this world!

Jolly’s “Beautiful” and “Let’s Party” were crowd pleasers, as well as Adams’ signature “Rise Up”, United Vincie Cultural Group of Brooklyn’s “Wuk De Land” and Braata Folk Singers’ “One Hand Can’t Clap” and “Breadfruit Sweet.”

It was a show worth quite a few bucks, but was given free to an exhilarating audience.

Certainly, the rich Caribbean culture and heritage were on wide display, through the collaboration of the organizers, who brought the event to Brooklyn – instead of being held in Manhattan – for the first time.

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