CARNIVAL-goers will on Friday be spoilt for choice on the biggest night of this year’s edition of the Harare International Carnival, with three high-profile events — Samba Night, Rhumba Night and Dancehall Night — packed into the same evening.
BY WINSTONE ANTONIO
Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA) chief executive officer Karikoga Kaseke confirmed the developments, saying they have been forced to collapse the three events into one night due to circumstances beyond their control.
He said the Samba Night, featuring Brazilian and Cuban dancers — which was initially scheduled for tonight at Private Lounge — has been pushed to Friday, as some of the participants are yet to land in the country.
“The Samba Night was supposed to be on September 6, but we have changed to Friday because of technical hitches in terms of the travellers, that is the Samba Girls from Cuba and Brazil, who are now arriving between Thursday evening and Friday morning,” he said.
Kaseke, however, said the carnival reception was still on tomorrow at the Harare International Conference Centre, where both international and local participants will showcase their diverse cultures through music and dance.
Art and culture lovers have been treated to a diversity of shows since September 1, with the Happy Week — Block Parties and Carnival Passa Passa ending today — having taken centre stage as the teaser.
Saturday’s Street Party, which will culminate in a free concert ending on Sunday afternoon, is going to be the major highlight of the carnival, as thousands will swarm the streets.
The street party starts with a march from Kwame Nkrumah Avenue to Simon Muzenda (Fourth) Street and through Jason Moyo Avenue to Rotten Row and, finally, to Robert Mugabe Way to the Civic Grounds for the concert.
The Air Force of Zimbabwe will on Saturday host the Charity Horse Race at Borrowdale Racecourse.
Meanwhile, Tourism and Hospitality Industry minister Walter Mzembi on Monday said industry playersmust give people coming to the carnival special and affordable packages to spur domestic tourism.
“We want our people coming to the carnival to have memorable experiences. Once we do that, I am sure you will be guaranteed of repeat business,” he said.
“All this is for the good of the destination. So we urge all the other sectors to work with us in our efforts to turn around the fortunes of the economy through tourism.”
The Harare International Carnival is a week-long annual festival encompassing a series of events and festivities.
It is aimed at advancing the arts, culture and heritage of Zimbabwe as well as uniting the population.