For the first time in the event’s 44 year history, a Gospel Fest has been added to the list of pre-concerts for the annual Labor Day weekend festivities that’s become a calendar item for many.
Gospel Fest 2011 is set for Sunday September 4 from 2-5 p.m. at the ground of the Brooklyn Museums and organizers say the aim is to build “spiritual alliances to create One Caribbean family.” The event will be coordinated by Dr. Oscar Lane and will feature local gospel artist and choirs from various churches.
“During this 2011 summer, we have heard and have been affected by many murders of our youth, especially the gruesome murder of Leiby Kletzky. These fatal occurrences appealed to WIADCA’s consciences and we are joining the fight to help by any means necessary,” organizers said in a statement.
But while tribute will be paid to a higher power this Labor Day Weekend, there will be no shortage of parties. On Thursday, September 1st, the annual carnival kicks off with a Welcome To New York party with several deejays spinning music from 7 p.m. for fans shelling out $25 for the open air party on the museum grounds.
On Friday, September 2nd, the official Stay in School concert returns from 2 p.m., then it’s all about Brassfest 2K11 from 7 p.m., as the soca king, Machel Montano takes to the stage along with Kes and the Band and Patrice Roberts among others.
Younger mas fans will get their chance in the spotlight from 8 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 3rd while fans of steel pan groups like Sesame Flyers and CASYM, will have their moment at 8 p.m. to savour this year’s performances at the annual Steel Band Panorama competition.
After celebrating the spiritual side of Caribbean music on Sunday afternoon, September 4th, carnival fans can get ready for the annual Dimanche Gras competition, featuring the legendary King of Calypso, The Mighty Sparrow, David Rudder, Swallow and Red Plastic Bag among others.
The event concludes with the spectacular finale on Monday, September 5th as skimpily clad, colorful costumed revellers and mas bands will gyrate their way from 11 a.m. down Eastern Parkway as millions line the route.
For a full line-up of this year’s events and more information, log on to www.wiadca.com.