Cape Town Carnival

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The Cape Town Carnival is an annual street festival held in in Cape Town since 2010.

NB: Not to be confused with the much older Coon Carnival (now known as the Cape Minstrel Carnival).

See also the entry on Carnival

The Carnival

Also referred to as the Cape Carnival in some sources, this is an annual event that takes place during March of every year and includes an extravagant parade of costumed performers, musicians and moving floats, organized to celebrate the Cape's African identity with its diverse array of communities and cultures.

Inspired by the success of, and the celebratory atmosphere generated by, the 2010 Soccer World Cup, the first annual Cape Town Carnival actually took place on Long Street, Cape Town, in that year, as part of the festivities surrounding the tournament, with an estimated 11 000-strong audience attending.

Since that first event, the carnival attendance figures have swelled to something in excess of 50000 people, entertained by about 2000 participants (2018 estimate). To accommodate this, the carnival venue has been moved to what is known as the Fan Walk in Green Point, which effectively turns into a pedestrian walkway filled with fun, food and offers a chance to enjoy the freedom of the city streets. The carnival also includes a "Cape Town Carnival Food Court" in what is referred to as the "Cape Town Carnival Village". In some years there have also been so-called "Mini-Carnivals" in the V&A Waterfront in the harbour.

The event is operated by a non-profit trust and - according to its website - it aims to create an environment of social cohesion where tourists and locals can experience the glamour and creativity of the Cape Town Carnival throughout the year, and to encourage creative expression, job creation, skills development, social cohesion and economic development. The carnival is thus an opportunity not only to provide opportunities for community participation in arts and culture, but also to specifically serve as a significant hub for the clothing, costume and set-building industries in the Western Cape and the creation of employment and training opportunities in costume, float design and production, as well as large event logistics.


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