The Crop Over Festival is the most adored summer festival in Barbados. It dates back to the 1780’s when the island was the world’s biggest producer of sugar. The Crop Over celebration commences in May- the end of the sugar cane season. The season spans twelve weeks and culminates the first Monday in August with the Grand Kadooment celebration. It’s a great time to spend summer at Plombagine Cottage!
Crop Over marks the end of a successful sugar cane harvest. The festival was shut down from the 1940s until 1974 because of the declining of the sugar industry. When the festival was revived, it was enriched with many other elements of the Barbadian culture. This festival now attracts thousands of people from around the world.
Crop Over Highlights
The Crop Over festival begins with the Opening Gala and Ceremonial Delivery of the Last Canes and the Crowning of the King and Queen of the Festival. The King and Queen are the most productive male and female cane cutters in a given year.
The Bridgetown Market features an array of food and beverage stands with endless culinary delights. If you’re considering investing in the food & beverage sector in Barbados, you can use the Crop Over events as a jump start to promote your new business. Besides the food and beverage stands, there are also local arts and craft stands, so it is a great time to shop for souvenirs.
Another major attraction is the Cohobblopot show. It resembles a pageant where bands display their stunning costumes on stage while calypsonians perform for the audience.
Children can take part in the Kiddies Kadooment and show off their costumes before the judges.
The Crop Over festival further highlights Barbadian history and culture through folk concerts, art exhibitions, photo exhibitions, and music. Not surprisingly, one of the main features of the festival is Calypso music. Calypsonians compete for exceptional prizes and titles such as Party Monarch, Sweet Soca Monarch, Road March Monarch, and Pic-O-De-Crop Monarch. The final calypso competition, Pic-O-De-Crop, is followed by the Fore-Day Morning Jam. These are just a few of the many events that kick off during the Crop Over season.
The Crop Over finale is the Grand Kadooment. It is a big carnival parade that features bands with revelers wearing elaborate, and in some cases, very skimpy, costumes. Bands depict various themes and compete for the coveted Band of the Year prize. Others are just there to feel their magnificent energy and enjoy the good vibes. The street parade commences at the National Stadium and concludes several miles away at Spring Garden. When the revelers arrive at Spring Garden, the party continues with fantastic music, food and drinks, and maybe a quick swim at the beach. This is definitely an event that you should capture if you are in Barbados for the summer.
Visit the National Cultural Foundation website to learn more about Crop Over and find out about upcoming events.