Junkanoo Experience Held Aboard Mardi Gras to Commemorate the Occasion
Carnival Cruise Line and the Government of The Bahamas celebrated the country’s 50th anniversary of independence with a Junkanoo experience aboard Mardi Gras that was docked in Nassau.
A cornerstone of the nation’s culture and a signature element of its tourism sector, Junkanoo is the national cultural festival for The Bahamas featuring spectacular parades of Bahamians in vibrant costumes performing dance routines. The celebration featured an overview of the history of Junkanoo and special live performances from a local Bahamian Junkanoo troupe and the Royal Bahamas Police Force Band.
Approximately 150 government, community and business leaders from The Bahamas joined Carnival officials for the event and luncheon.
“Carnival has partnered with The Bahamas since we first started sailing more than half of a century ago, and we are honored to celebrate the country’s 50 years of independence, resilience, strength and progress,” said Christine Duffy, president of Carnival Cruise Line. “As we commemorate the anniversary, we look forward to our future together, bringing millions more visitors to experience all the beauty and culture the country offers.”
Distinguished leaders at the celebration included the Honorable John H. W. Pinder II, Parliamentary Secretary of The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism, Investments & Aviation; Her Excellency Leslia Miller-Brice, Chair of The Bahamas Independence Secretariat; and Latia Duncombe, Director General of The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism, Investments & Aviation.
“We are a paradise nation that is known for our pristine natural resources, culture, diversity and world-class hospitality,” said Parliamentary Secretary Pinder. “Partners like Carnival have helped showcase all we have to offer the world and contributed to our country’s flourishing economy over the last five decades. I thank them for their longstanding commitment now and in the future.”
The day’s festivities took place as work continues on Celebration Key, the exclusive cruise port destination on Grand Bahama. It will be the first port destination exclusively designed for Carnival Cruise Line guests. Celebration Key will offer guests a uniquely Bahamian experience with an abundance of features and amenities, including a one-mile stretch of white-sand beach, as well as Bahamian-operated retail, food and beverage options.
Later this month, Carnival will announce additional Celebration Key details, along with opening for sale the first itineraries on at least ten ships from multiple homeports that will include a visit to Celebration Key, with the first cruises calling on the destination in July 2025.
Featured in photo, from left to right: Sarah Beth Reno, Senior Vice President of Guest Operations for Carnival Cruise Line; Her Excellency Leslia Miller-Brice, Ambassador of The Bahamas and Chair of The Bahamas Independence Secretariat; Latia Duncombe, Director General of the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism, Investments and Aviation; Percy Vola Francis, King of Junkanoo; Marie McKenzie, Senior Vice President of Government and Destination Affairs for Carnival Corporation; Hon. John Pinder II, Parliamentary Secretary of the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism, Investments and Aviation; Sen. Hon. Randy Rolle, Senator and Consultant of the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism, Investments and Aviation