The first and second dry run/ dress rehearsal for the 2019 Calabar Carnival, scheduled for 20th October and 17th November 2019, has ended. The streets are breathing with life, old and young are loaded with expectations, anticipating the commencement of the carnival itself. The 3rd and final dry run will begin in earnest. 15th of December 2019 has been booked off the calendar for it with preparation on top gear.
Calabar carnival is a peak season in Cross River. You can tell the difference when you visit Cross River during this season. The feeling you get from the atmosphere can be compared to none. Tourists troupe to Cross River from all over the world to watch all dry runs and the main carnival that displays the rich heritage of African culture. No wonder it is tagged Africa’s Biggest Street Party”, birthed to make the Cross River state in Nigeria a center of tourist attraction.
You must have the timetable for the 2019 Calabar Carnival as a guide. Although the main carnival happens in the last two weeks of the event, other events are already lined up for the month and have commenced. Let’s look at the calendar.
Day 1 – Day 10 of December is the Millennium Week
Day 12 – Day 17 of December is for Sports Week
Day 19 – Day 24 of December is the TINAPA Family Festival
Day 25 – Day 31 of December is Carnival Week
What to expect in the first three weeks of the carnival are musical performances, African food competitions, a solidarity march, street parties, fashion shows, a prestigious essay writing competition, art shows, traditional dances, and masque events. The main carnival week is the last week of the 2019 Calabar Carnival. It attracts more tourists than in other weeks. The popular activities for the main carnival week include:
The Bikers parade/procession occurs on the morning of 27th December, while Miss Africa beauty pageant occurs in the dusk of the same.
Calabar Street Parade & Band of the Year Competition is for 28th of December
Wonders on Wheels occurs on 29th evening in Calabar Stadium, featuring vintage cars
Green Carnival occurs on the morning of 30th and displays actions favorable for the environment. The event culminates in a street party held in the evening
The grand finale is the New Year’s Eve Fire Works display on 31st of December 2019. This ushers the state, guests, indigenes, and Africans in totality into the new year.