Continuing to fulfill the promise to treat the Island and its visitors to a ‘Year-Round Tobago Heritage Experience,’ the Staff of the Division of Community Development and Culture, led by an energetic and motivated Secretary Dr Denise Tsoiafatt-Angus and her Assistant Secretary Mr Ancil Dennis, along with Food and Craft Artisans and Cultural Artistes, descended on beautiful Fort Granby, in East Tobago.
Members of the public having been invited to ‘Turn Down D Pot,’ turned down the pot indeed, as the pungent smell of Bhadgi Rice and Coconut Stewed Pigtail, Stewed Pork and Chicken, Cuccoo with Callaloo, Fish Broth, Steamed Breadfruit, Fried Fish, Curry Crab and Dumplin, Cuccoo and Conconteh, Susumber Punch and Dirt Oven Baked Bread and Pone, filled the air.
Add a star-studded evening of live entertainment, to include the young drummers of the Mason Hall Folk Performers, Royal Sweet Fingers, Pleasure Pirates, 2013 & 2014 Calypso Heritage Monarch, Caston Cupid, Ole Time Jammers, Gerald Balfour & Cadence, among others…..and you had all the ingredients for a tremendously enjoyable and relaxing Sunday afternoon in Tobago.
Joined by several visitors from Trinidad, some seven (7) villages across Tobago including:
- Black Rock Village Council
- Castara Fisher Folk Association
- Golden Lane Village Council
- Golden Lane Fisher Folk Association
- Mt St George Village Council,
as well as Family First Foundation and Bago House of Kulture Stars, captivated the crowd, with finger-licking traditional Tobago food.
Three esteemed Judges from the Tobago Hospitality and Tourism Institute, (THTI) had the unenviable task of judging 1st, 2nd and 3rd Place Winners, in various food categories. The Judges were Chef Lecturer Ms Sonia Phillip, Chef Lecturer Mr Hugh Patrong and Food & Beverage Lecturer Ms Deborah Joseph.
According to the Judges, this year saw a noticeable improvement in presentation of food, as well as a growing awareness of a food -safe environment.
Chairman of the Tobago Heritage Festival Committee, Mr Wendell Berkley, welcomed all to an afternoon of sumptuous delights and entertainment and Assistant Secretary with responsibility for Community Development, Mr Ancil Dennis shared his enthusiasm and best wishes for a successful endeavour.
Another highlight of the afternoon was a keen Conch Shell- Blowing Competition, which had the audience screaming in delight, as competitors vied for winners circle.
Sharing all the excitement was none other than Chief Secretary Orville London, who himself could not resist samples of the food on display.
It was an enthusiastic Secretary of Community Development and Culture, Dr Denise Tsoiafatt-Angus, in expressing her pleasure with the activities, noted the steady flow of persons coming to the fore, in respect of keeping the unique traditions of Tobago alive, where the indigenous food is concerned.
The Secretary also recognized the Craft Artisans, many of whom she observed graduated from on-going Vocational Skills Training Programmes, being conducted by the Division, across Tobago.