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Fresh changes to Crop Over

New producers for Cohobblopot, an extended route for Foreday Morning, and new plans for Soca Royale.

These were just some of the preliminary plans for Crop Over 2015 announced by Minister of Culture Stephen Lashley at the Crop Over Press Briefing at his office in Sky Mall at Haggatt Hall in St Michael earlier today.

The minister announced that Volume Entertainment would be the new producer of Cohobblopot this year.

Minister of Culture Stephen Lashley

Minister of Culture Stephen Lashley

“Volume Entertainment . . . will be launching in social media tonight. Cohobblopot this year, I believe, will be something that everyone will want to attend. I cannot go much more into detail, but suffice to say the NCF is at a very advanced stage with its negotiations with Volume Entertainment . . . .

“Based on the preliminary details that I have, when we announce the details of it after those negotiations are completed, I believe everyone РР both in Barbados and outside РР will want to ensure they get their tickets early this year. When you see what they have in store for Cohobblopot, then you will be as excited as I am,” Lashley stated.

Last year, there were issues with having the main promoter of Cohobblopot dropping out and the National Cultural Foundation having, in a last-ditch effort, to save it. Lashley noted the NCF had put some rules in place that would prevent any promoter from doing that in future.

“I have asked the NCF to put into the contract a penalty that should deter [such],” he said.

With regard to Foreday Morning, revellers will now be able to enjoy a longer route after complaining last year of its being too short and their not having enough time to jump.

NCF chief executive officer Cranston Browne said there would be an earlier starting time for the Foreday Morning jump.

“There will be an additional assembly point which would create a slightly longer route. Some of the bands will be leaving from Queen’s Park now, and the cut-off time stays. But they will be starting at 10 p.m,” he announced.

Lashley expressed his delight in how much Foreday Morning had grown this year, even though there had been increased costs.

“What that means is that the interest is there. Persons gravitate towards the ambiance and the coolness of the night, and that translates itself in a significant amount of interest.

“This year there has been an increase in the registration fee from $500 to $750 for bands between 50 and 500 in number; $1,000 for bands over 500. Fifty-four bands will be expected on the road.

“Last year, we had approximately 44 bands parading РР thousands of revellers down Spring Garden,” he said.

And those who would have called for both Soca Royale events Sweet Soca and Party Monarch to be hosted at night, have got their wish. The competition will now start at 6:30 p.m.

And those who usually use the day as a picnic event, will still have the opportunity to do so, because gates will still open at noon. The minister said that in making those changes, the overall ambiance of the even had been considered.

He also announced new changes to the heritage aspect of Crop Over.

“We are going to have a new cultural heritage product by means of the Crop Over Heritage Bus Tour. We have always stressed the importance of heritage within the context of Crop Over, and we celebrate the importance of our UNESCO World Heritage organization.

“And I must say that I have experienced the Heritage Walk in Bridgetown. It feels like Crop Over because of the number of people coming down. It shows me that people are still interested.”

The Crop Over Heritage Bus Tour will replace that particular walk and it will bring that history to life in theatrical presentations of word, song and dance on a journey in air-conditioned buses РР moving from Cavan’s Lane moving to different plantations,” the minister announced.

Further, Lashley announced that the NCF would be producing over 30 events this season, and should be commended.

“Over 30 events to be executed over a ten-week period РР inclusive of one Mega Cavalcade, one Pan Weekend, a full visual arts festival complete with a competition. We also have a number of heritage events . . . .

“All of these events are designed to make it interesting and diverse,” he said.

6 Responses to Fresh changes to Crop Over

  1. Pamela Bowen
    Pamela Bowen May 28, 2015 at 7:20 am


  2. seagul May 28, 2015 at 8:32 am

    Do not buy where you will not be hired–One love

  3. Thomas Katt
    Thomas Katt May 28, 2015 at 12:32 pm

    What’s with all the PP throughout the article?

  4. Patrick Blackman May 28, 2015 at 3:18 pm

    Every year it is major change and its natural confusion with cropover. For once can we have a consistent approach to this valued festival? First thing , take a trip to Brasil and see how they organize their carnival (there is nothing wrong with learning from others), develop a governance policy for cropover and a rational costing model with and without event sponsorship.

    Clearly articulate the fees that will be paid to the tents and their members so we don’t have this annual confusion.

    Develop your cropover fliers and brochures at least 6 months in advance so we can have them distributed world wide in advance. When foreign visitors have information they can plan their activities in advance. Just a start , stop the constant crap every year.

  5. Tony Waterman May 28, 2015 at 10:17 pm

    @Patrick Blackman !!!!! “take a trip to Brasil and see how they organize their carnival (there is nothing wrong with learning from others)” I agree totally, there is Nothing wrong with learning from others, EXCEPT in this case, we have NOTHING to learn from Brazil or T&T, as ours is NOT a Carnival and should never should be referred to as that, because it is and always has been. A FESTIVAL, A CULTURAL FESTIVAL, and should be organised on that basis, as it was ORIGINALLY, we are copying from Apples when ours is Oranges, and that is why there is so much confusion, and so many regular Changes, we don’t seem to realise yet where we should be.
    You don’t see T&T changing their Carnival rules every, year, and Cropover were around since 1688, T&T Carnival did not start until the 1880’s.
    what we need for Cropover to advance, is to have people involved who #1 are Patriotic enough to want to put their energy into it, #2 People who have proper Marketing , Management, organisational skills, those i don’t see in ANYONE associated with Cropover Today.
    if they keep increasing Foreday Morning Bands, they will at some point have a collision with Kadooment Day. Bigger is not necessarily Better.

  6. Patrick Blackman May 29, 2015 at 9:05 am

    Tony Waterman: Agreed. What I was really gettting at was the management of the festival, its very poor. If we had a national/regional tourism policy, cropover should have been included. When it comes to tourism and cultural development we are all over the place. Everything historical has been destroyed in this country, there is nothing here for the tourist experience besides drinking rum. Every other country has sea and sun so Barbados is not unique, what make a destination unique is its culture. We have not gotten to that point of understanding yet.

    No one has been able to clearly identify what is Barbados tourism product. We constantly talk about arrivals and hotel accomodation but never about the product. Just look around the country, IT IS VERY NASTY. I came home last year and was so ashame of how the place looked, it is a concrete jungle, there are very very few places where you can get real bajan food as visitor, going to Oistins is like a fire hazzard waiting to erupt.

    If tourism is our business, we need to develop the basic infrastructure to support the industry. Develop bilingual capabilities
    in our schools. Enforce aour garbage disposal laws, provide proper signage and for godsake get thos minibuses & ZR etc off the road.


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