ST. EUSTATIUS--The Public Entity St. Eustatius met recently with key stakeholders and has decided that Carnival 2021 will be organised by the St. Eustatius Carnival Committee under strict conditions and guidelines. One of the main conditions is that Carnival will be a local affair showcasing local artistes. Parties further agreed that instead of the traditional ten days, Carinal 2021 will be reduced to seven days, from Monday, July 26, until August 1.
The planning and execution of the island’s largest annual cultural event is contingent on the COVID-19 situation, but Statia is currently free of COVID-19.
The Task Force has advised that no permits for large super-spreader events should be issued in the month leading up to the start of Carnival.
“2020 has been a challenging year. We have had to cancel Carnival and several other major cultural events. One year later, we know more about the COVID-19 virus. We must, however, bear in mind that the virus is still around, with different variants popping up. As a small community we must, therefore, remain vigilant in order to protect the most vulnerable among us. As we attempt to gradually restore normal life, we must do this in a responsible manner,” said Deputy Government Commissioner Alida Francis.
Stakeholders will work on a strategy to ensure that all safety procedures are in place at Mike van Putten Youth Centre, the Carnival venue. In addition to safety regulations, focus will be placed on implementing strict hygiene measures and protocols. Hand-sanitising stations and additional toilet facilities will be put in place. There will also be extra strict controls on all quarantine locations.
Statians living abroad and friends of Statia in high-risk countries are advised that if they do plan to visit the island for the summer holidays, they should send their exact travel dates to the public entity via email
Visiting Statia only for Carnival will not be possible. Vaccinated persons from abroad will have a five-day waiting period during which they are not allowed to attend events. More details will follow later.
“The success of Carnival 2021 depends on how well we as a Statian community work together to maintain our island COVID-free. It has been a long year, and together let us share this responsibility in order to restore normal life. As a Carnival Committee, in close collaboration with our key partners, we are up to the task,” said Carnival Committee president Marlon Hook.
Stakeholders involved in preparing for the 2021 Carnival include the Carnival Committee, St. Eustatius Lions Club, St. Eustatius Musical Foundation and the Task Force, in which are represented the Public Health Department, Caribbean Netherlands Fire Brigade, Caribbean Netherlands Police Force and the deputy government commissioner with responsibility for Culture.