Caribfest set to launch Thursday

Nia White, political science junior, Barbara McGuire, criminal justice junior, and Kim Gundu, respiratory care junior, dance and sing behind a big truck blasting festive Caribbean music down Council Drive, turning onto Comanche Trail, Sept. 25, 2015. Photo by Rachel Johnson

Nia White, political science junior, Barbara McGuire, criminal justice junior, and Kim Gundu, respiratory care junior, dance and sing behind a big truck blasting festive Caribbean music down Council Drive, turning onto Comanche Trail, Sept. 25, 2015. Photo by Rachel Johnson

Caribfest 2016, one of the biggest events on campus, begins Sept. 29 with a series of events. The annual event, arranged by the Caribbean Student Organization, is entering its 16th anniversary on this campus.

Head organizer and economics senior Andre Tyrell said he believes this year will be the best yet. 

“The difference this year is the massive outreach we have done both in the community and neighboring universities and how much more excited the community is this year about Caribfest. I’m most looking forward to parade day and the culture show that follows,” Tyrell said. 

The three- day event is a mixture of music, bright costumes and Caribbean cuisine, ending with a parade and glow fete. Although the event primarily consists of people from the Caribbean, participation from those not of caribbean descent is highly encouraged.

“We expect a big turn out. This year we have nine different nations taking part so far and we always encourage those not from the Caribbean to join in and learn about our culture,” Tyrell said. 

The event is the largest fundraising event coordinated by the Caribbean Student Organization. It is funded by selling official Caribfest T-shirts, Caribbean food sales and donations from businesses in the area. The funds gained will be donated to the Disabled American Veterans and the Wichita Falls Independent School District.

Member of the CSO and mechanical engineering junior Calvert Aaron said he believes Caribfest not only provides an opportunity for non-Caribbean students to get a taste of the Caribbean, but it also provides an opportunity for Caribbean students who never took part in a parade before. 

“The parade is an opportunity for Caribbean students to enjoy carnival festivities in situations where some of us missed the festivities at home due to school. There will be some awesome food!”

The main message of the event is about “giving back,” according to co-organizer and sports and leisure junior Timon Thomas. He also said he believes there is much more to it than meets the eye. 

“Caribfest is truly the largest fundraising event we do for the entire year and it’s primarily for charity’s sake; however, it is also carried out as a means of sharing our culture with the wider community. What we hope to do as Caribbean students is not just keep our culture, food, language and music to ourselves – but instead to really share it with other people that are in the community and other students in the university of different ethnicity. All these are things that Caribfest hopes to do when we establish these events.” 

Below is the full schedule of events :

  • Sept.29 – Soca Show (Wichita Falls Museum of Arts, Pavilion – 7:30 p.m)
  • Sept.30 – Queen Show (Akin Auditorium, MSU Campus – 7:00 p.m )
  • Oct. 1 – Parade Day ( MSU Campus 3:00 p.m), Glow Fete ( Comanche Suites, MSU Campus – 10:00 p.m)