Ministry looking to change Mash route for grander 2015 parade

The Mash Committee is considering a change of route to accommodate the increasing number of spectators and revellers participating in the annual float parade celebrating the Republic Day anniversary, Culture Minister Dr Frank Anthony said at the annual Mashramani Awards Ceremony held at the Umana Yana on Friday evening.

“The crowd did not disappoint us this year, some would say it was over 9,000 people, and we need to seriously contemplate to change the route of the parade,” Anthony said, according to a report the Government Information Agency (GINA). The ceremony closed the month

Junior Calypso Monarch, Shontelle Gittens (right) receiving her prize
Junior Calypso Monarch, Shontelle Gittens (right) receiving her prize

of activities held under the theme ‘Cultural Folklore; Celebrating 44’ in honour of Guyana’s 44th Republic anniversary.

The Mashramani parade usually starts at Camp and Church streets and heads East into Irving Street then into Dr JB Latchmansingh Road, West into Thomas Lands and culminates at the National Park.

Anthony said it was clear that a lot of effort had been put into the celebration, noting that the Calypso, Soca and Chutney Monarch, and the Steel Band competitions would have created an opportunity for persons to experience the creativity of Guyanese music. The children’s programme was also a resounding success. The minister said he was very impressed with the level of creativity and colour shown at the children’s parade as it is now rivalling the adult parade.

The street fair was also appreciated. This aspect of the celebrations introduced the public to Guyana’s publishing history and included child art and essay competitions at the National Museum and Castellani House. The minister extended gratitude to all the participants, performers and sponsors and revealed that organisers are looking at ways to make the 45th anniversary celebrations even grander and will be hosting a stakeholders’ consultation and engaging the public on the issue.

Those awarded at the prize-giving ceremony, included Shontelle Gittens, Junior Calypso Monarch, and Lester “De Professor” Charles, Calypso Monarch with Roger ‘Young Bill Rogers’ Hinds in second place and Kenroy “Mighty Believer” Fraser, in the third spot.

Pooran Seeraj, Fiona Singh and Hinds received awards for securing first, second and third respectively in the Chutney Soca Monarch. Kwasi ‘Ace’ Edmonson Carib Soca Monarch, Jumo Primo second, Orlando Johashen third, and Jonathan King, fourth were also awarded.

Pooran Seeraj (left), receiving his prize for topping the Chutney competition
Pooran Seeraj (left), receiving his prize for topping the Chutney competition
Designer of Digicel’s costume, Olympia Small-Sonoram (right) receiving her prize from Permanent Secretary, Alfred King for Designer of the year
Designer of Digicel’s costume, Olympia Small-Sonoram (right) receiving her prize from Permanent Secretary, Alfred King for Designer of the year

Digicel Guyana and the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sport were awarded the first and second prize in the large band, full costume category. The Ministry of Tourism, the Ministry of Labour and the Ministry of Amerindian Affairs were awarded in that order in the medium category. The Ministry of Education, GT Recyclers and the Ministry of Local Government and Regional Development secured the top three awards in the small full costume category. In the semi costume category the Progressive Youth Organisation (PYO) took the top prize, followed by FITUG in second while in the medium category Digicel copped the top award with Region Five and the Health Ministry tied in second.

The Ministry of Amerindian Affairs was awarded for the King and Queen Costumes, while Digicel Guyana won for the male individual costume and the Ministry of Tourism the female individual costume. The Culture Ministry also copped the top prize in the Non-Commercial Float grouping.

Designer of the Year Olympia Small-Sonaram received the trophy for the fifth consecutive time, while Melissa “Vanilla” Roberts was awarded for winning the Road March.

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