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Smooth flow at Socadrome
Despite threats from Woodbrook residents to protest against Socadrome, the venue for the country’s newest Carnival Parade of the Bands on Carnival Tuesday, there were no objections yesterday, as 15,000 plus masqueraders paraded in a kaleidoscope of colours. Except for a two-hour late start, a poor spectator turnout, bandleaders from non competing bands-Tribe, Bliss, Harts, Yuma and Passion all agreed that Socadrome was a big success.
Edmund Seow, bandleader of Yuma, the first to cross the stage at 10 a.m. with Machel Montano’s Ministry of Road, stated that masqueraders were pleased with the new route, which had no bottlenecks. Seow said he would use the route again for Carnival 2015, if approval is given. Manager of Bliss, Denny Attai said there were no hiccups for his band, which took less than 90 minutes from St Clair Avenue to the complex. He too said he was willing to use the route next year.
One of Tribe’s designers Valmiki Maharaj also expressed similar sentiments. “Socadrome is it, if you ask me,” Maharaj said. Many of the masqueraders the T&T Guardian spoke to said they took less time getting to Socadrome, when compared to the congested traditional route to the Queen’s Park Savannah. Among them was Yuma masquerader Kavell Keir, who said, at no time she became frustrated because the parade flowed smoothly.
British national Patrick Nichols, an annual visitor for Carnival, gave the organisers of Socadrome a thumbs up. “It was fantastic even though some of the masqueraders did not wear their entire costumes.” Patron Roslyn Antoine said Socadrome was an excellent alternative venue for the parade, which the National Carnival Commission should consider next year.
Many of the residents on Hamilton Holder Street, where the bands turned into after exiting the stage could not been seen in their garages or patios, as their doors and windows were shut tight. However, one resident, Che Pegus was seen standing in his premises enjoying the revelry. Pegus said as promised, the music on the trucks were lowered.
“The Monday night and J’Ouvert bands made a lot more noise than these five bands. They did not create much disruption. However, some of the masqueraders were depositing litter in front of our gates.” Media liaison officer of Socadrome Danielle Jones-Hunte said they were happy with the way things had turned out. Hunte said they have no regrets despite spectator turn out was not the best. She said the bandleaders would have to decide if they want to make Socadrome an annual event.
“It is too early to tell.” Hunte said bandleader Roslyn Gabriel had promised to join the five bands “but that was still up in the air.”
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