The Tobago Heritage Festival returns to the island from July 13th to August 1st 2017 under the theme Bring Back de Ole Time Days – Len’ Hand. The dates and theme were announced by Councillor Nadine Stewart-Phillips, Secretary of Tourism, Culture and Transportation at the Post Executive Council media briefing on Wednesday 10th May, 2017.
This year, the event reverts to its two-week long schedule and it promises to deliver engaging and enlightening cultural events produced by the Committee, as well as the various host villages.
Councillor Stewart-Phillips noted that the change in the duration of the festival was made in response to budgetary concerns. It is expected that the condensed programme will allow all participating bodies to deliver a cohesive and rich series of events geared toward preserving unique cultural traditions, while simultaneously educating visitors and locals about the island’s societal roots.
The Festival has grown from year to year, attracting thousands to community celebrations such as “Moriah Ole Time Wedding”, “Charlotteville National Treasure’s Day” and “Plymouth J’Ouvert”. In addition to these and other festival favourites, 2017 will see the “Junior Heritage” and “Bele Fest” added to the calendar of events, as well as the return of the unique “Living Museum” in Scarborough.
Additionally, the consistently expanding “Heritage Tours” will directly target adventure seekers and nature lovers for a unique experience that combines historical tours of the island with the added outdoor element of hiking and camping.
The Heritage Festival remains a much anticipated annual celebration of Tobago’s cultural tapestry, where traditional art forms, such as music, dance, and theatrical reenactments are showcased. This year’s theme, encapsulates the spirit of cooperation and selflessness nurtured in a mutually beneficial system used by our ancestors, whereby people would “lend a hand” without the expectation of financial gain. This year, the hope is that, in the spirit of Len’ Hand, individuals, groups and organizations across the island will come together to share in the preparation and execution of the festival’s many events.
The Tobago Heritage Festival will officially launch on Friday 16th June, 2017. Details on this event will soon be forthcoming.