Recapping the 2022 Toronto Caribbean Carnival Grand Parade

TORONTO – The Toronto Caribbean Carnival made a comeback this year after a LONG two-year break due to the pandemic. With events throughout July including the Junior Carnival and the King & Queen Show, the city has been celebrating for weeks in the lead-up to the Grand Parade! The BG Show was on road with Hennessy and Carnival Nationz this weekend for the Grand Parade and we caught the vibes, soaked in the energy, and checked out how people were feeling about being back on road!

“I’m so excited, I’m like ecstatic, I’m like in heaven,” one woman said, adding that the energy is good.

“I’m so happy we are back after this unavoidable hiatus,” another Carnival-goer said. 

While the Toronto Caribbean Carnival, also known as Caribana, is celebrated with parties and a huge parade, the significance of the celebration is incredibly important. Carnival not only celebrates Caribbean diversity and culture but also Emancipation Day, which marks the end of slavery throughout the British Empire.

When it comes to what masqueraders and other attendees enjoy most about the Caribbean Carnival, people had a lot to share. 

“The unity between everybody. All the countries, we come together as one, I love it,” shared one woman. 

“It means freeness. It means happiness for the day. I’m so happy to be back on the road,” another woman explained. 

“For me, it’s pure joy. It’s about legacy, it’s about history, it’s about family, it’s about enjoying, it’s about just celebrating life, it’s about having fun. Can we live a little?!” exclaimed another masquerader. 

The celebration is close to many people’s hearts, not just for Canadians with Caribbean heritage, but also for people who left the Caribbean themselves and made Canada home.

“I was born in St. Vincent and the Grenadines and I moved here and it’s just a part of my culture and I love it, I just love it. If you see I’m repping both of my flags, Canada, Vincy, that’s it you know,” one masquerader told Brandon, waving both of her flags proudly. 

You can hear more about how Toronto turned out for this year’s Carnival on this episode of News You Can Use.

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