St John's Festival and Carnival season consists of celebrations which showcase the best of the caribbean culture. While each year has a different theme and somewhat different schedule, Carnival's month long activities always culminate on the 4th of July with a parade and evening fireworks. There are activities for all including the very young and very senior. Music is always a constant throughout the month. The mocko jumbie, a shape-changing ghost-like figure, whose origins are traced to West Africa is ever present during Carnival season. The lore is that jumbies traditionally appear in the dark of night and are known for terrifying those who have misbehaved. At carnival, the jumbie customarily appears on stilts dressed in elaborate pants and jacket made of colorful silks and satins and is one of the most popular part of Carnival.
The following schedule is a general schedule for the St John Carnival (aka St John Festival) for 2014 -- the 2015 schedule 'soon come', but this will give you an idea of the type of events that happen every year:
Schedule of Events
MAY 31, 4:00 PM Pan-o-RamaWinston Wells Ball Field, Cruz Bay, St. JohnHear Carribbean native steel-pan music live.
JUNE 6, 7:00 PM Festival Beach Jam Waterfront, Cruz Bay, St. John Live music on the beach.
JUNE 13, 7:00 PM Senior Variety Show Winston Wells Ball Field, Cruz Bay, St. JohnLocal seniors prove they’ve still got what it takes in this fun and entertaining talent and fashion show.
JUNE 14, 8:00 AM Festival Bike Race St. John National Park, Cruz Bay, St. JohnPedal your bike fast for prizes and trophies offered in male, female and children’s categories.
JUNE 15, 6:00 PM Festival Princess Selection Pageant Winston Wells Ball Field, Cruz Bay, St. JohnPre-teens strut their stuff from talent to fashion and wit to see who will reign supreme.
JUNE 20, 9:00 PM Festival Music Mix Winston Wells Ball Field, Cruz Bay, St. JohnLive music in the school ball field.
JUNE 21, 8:00 PM Festival Queen Selection Pageant Winston Wells Ball Field, Cruz Bay, St. John Beautiful and talented young ladies vie for this prestigious title with their wit, talent and costuming.
JUNE 22, 1:00 PM Food Fair & Coronation Franklin A. Powell, Sr. Park, Cruz Bay, St. JohnThe Carnival Queen and Fair Honoree join to kick-off the Food Fair, where there is a buffet of local goodies from fried fish and Johnny cakes to fresh fruit juices and local sweets like tart.
JUNE 22, 3:00 PM Boat Races Cruz Bay Harbor, St. John Watch some of the speediest boats in the islands compete on the seas.
JUNE 22, 6:00 PM Children's Festival Village OpensSt. John National Park Field, St. John Bounce houses and games galore for young children.
JUNE 27, 7:00 PM Adult's Festival Village OpensCruz Bay Parking Lot, St. JohnWatch some of the speediest boats in the islands compete on the seas.
JULY 4, 4:00 AM Jouvert St. John National Park, Cruz Bay, St. John Dance until the sun comes up!
JULY 4, 11:00 AM Festival Parade St. John National Park, Cruz Bay, St. John Watch troupes, floupes, baton twirlers, steel bands and stilt-walking Mocko Jumbees parade in downtown Cruz Bay.
JULY 4, 9:00 PM Festival Fireworks Display Cruz Bay Harbor, Cruz Bay, St. John Watch fireworks explode over the harbor.