Welcome to the annual St. Thomas Carnival Food Fair! This is one of the most sought after events, in which hundreds of people from near and far look forward to truly indulging and tantalizing their taste buds with some of the most delectable dishes prepared and sold in St. Thomas, United States Virgin Islands.
I arrived at the Emancipation Garden Park in Downtown Charlotte Amalie around 7:00 am. The aroma of the food had already filled the air. Popular Calypso music was playing lightly in the background. The park was decorated with colorful streamers that swayed in the wind and there were banners that hung high; welcoming carnival revelers to this festive event. There were 150 vendors who had already began selling to their customers.
Event goers had their own reasons for attending the St. Thomas Carnival Food Fair that early in the morning. Some stated that they wanted to purchase cooked foods and home grown produce prior to going to work. While others wanted to make sure that they had first dibs on all of their favorite arts and crafts before they were sold out. Naturally, there were those who preferred to do all of their shopping early before the blazing hot sun was set high in the sky. With the exception of the latter, my reasons were the same.
What will you find at The St. Thomas Carnival Food Fair? There are popular dishes such as whelks and rice, a variety of well-seasoned fish, stew beef, curried, oxtails and BBQ, fried or baked chicken. The meals are coupled with three sides; such as bake macaroni and cheese, potato salad, cole slaw, stuffing, plantains, or peas and rice.
This can be washed down with locally made drinks such as peanut punch, sea moss, mauby or passion fruit juice, just to name a few. Afterwards, satisfy your sweet tooth with a slice of moist, fluffy and delicious chocolate, strawberry or carrot cake. Coconut, guava or pineapple tarts are among other pastries and jams that are popular among fair goers.
At 12:00pm the St. Thomas Food Fair Ceremony had officially begun. The event was called the Alvin’s Cultural Workshop in honor of Alvin Turnbull. Officials from both the Government of the United States Virgin Islands and V.I. Carnival Committee recognized Turnbull for his years of contributions to the community and for his original wooden plaques and other pieces that he created himself.
Their remarks were followed by performances by Yvonne Bowsky Elementary School, Uller F. Miller Bamboula Dancers, Bertha C. Boschulte Blazing Dancers and the St. Thomas Heritage Dancers. Musical entertainment was provided by Flambo Combo, Milo’s Kings, Superior Court Rising Stars Steel Orchestra and the St. Thomas All Stars Steel Orchestra.
After the ceremony, the crowd resumed to their prior activities of browsing, shopping and chomping down on a delicious plate of food.
Overall, I had a great time at this carnival event! The St. Thomas Food Fair was loads of fun, entertainment, laughter and above all delectable foods! The fair will be open until 7:00pm today.
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