West Indian Parade Draws More than 20,000 to Downtown Hartford
Indian Parade and Carnival drew more than 20,000 people to Hartford’s downtown. Local residents, businesses, and community groups joined together to celebrate West Indian Independence with cultural artistry.
The event included a carnival held in Bushnell Park featuring colorful floats, traditional costumes and music, as well as Caribbean cuisine from local vendors. Musical performers from the West Indies performed reggae, calypso and Soca arrangements.
The event marks a change in the parade course which traditionally started in downtown Hartford and ended in the city’s north end neighborhood on Main Street. The route was reversed to provide parade goers access to Bushnell Park’s family-friendly atmosphere.
“Greater Hartford’s West Indian population hails more than 80,000 residents from countries such as Jamaica, Barbados, and St. Lucia. We are proud to celebrate our heritage in Connecticut, the place we now call home” said Ainsworth Thompson, Public Relations Director of the West Indian Independence Celebration Committee.
This year’s event welcomed special guests Dr. Neil Parsan, Ambassador of Trinidad and Tobago, Mayor of Hartford, Pedro Segarra, and former Hartford Mayor Thurman Milner.
The West Indian Celebration was a joint effort supported by the City of Hartford, The Dwight Freeney Foundation, NBC Connecticut, 93.7 FM, C.H.S., and The West Indian Foundation.