If you have ever been to St. John over the Fourth of July, you know what a grand celebration it is! In a normal year, St.John Carnival is the week leading up to, not only the US Independence Day holiday, but also the Virgin Islands Emancipation Day on July 3. A week filled with late night music and exhausted residents 🙂 begins with the much anticipated food fair and culminates on the morning of July 3 with an early morning/late night Jouvert celebration and a mid-day, very St. John style, parade on the fourth. Generally, there are also fireworks that evening.
Last year, everything was absolutely canceled. COVID stopped the carnival in 2020 and we have all been holding our breath to see what type of celebration may be permitted this year. Well, I’m happy to say that there WILL be a food fair this year. And there WILL be one night of music and celebration as well! However, the capacity for both will be limited and visitors and residents alike will need to provide proof of vaccination to participate.
In April, St. Thomas would have hosted their annual week long carnival celebration. With COVID still a threat in the territory and the Governor urging residents to take advantage of the opportunity to get vaccinated, the Division of Festivals and the Department of Tourism hosted a one-day soca-night concert for 200 vaccinated individuals. The event was a huge success and with the St. John Fourth of July celebration on the horizon, organizers are moving the direction of a similar fete in Love City.
“St. John Festival 2021 will follow a similar them,” said Festival Division Director, Ian Turnbull.
On July 3, a mini food fair will take place in the gravel lot at the Enighed Pond barge dock parking facility. This year, the Love City Food Fair expects 25-30 food vendors and will allow up to 200 people into the venue. As food fair patrons enter and leave, more expectant Caribbean cuisine lovers may enter through the gate. Everyone,vendors and patrons, must provide proof of vaccination to official greeters at the entrance to the fairgrounds. There will be live music provided by Verctyle Band and the Love City Pan Dragons and entertainment from costumed dancers and Moko Jumbies!
On the evening of July 4, between 200-400 ticketed and vaccinated guests are expected in the same location for a night of music provided by Spectrum Band, Rudi Live from St. Croix, Cool Session Brass, Vercytle Band and a yet to be announced international soca artist!
Ticket information for the July Fourth mini-fete is available on St. Thomas at Mtoc at Market Square, 340-690-777 and on St. John at Nella’s Lounge, 340-690-1258.
I have not seen any mention of fireworks yet. But I will keep you updated as to any additional Fourth of July announcements I come across! I don’t know about you, but I , personally, am over the moon excited about stocking upon my favorite local cuisine at the Food Fair AND celebrating Independence and Emancipation on the Fourth of July!