One of the things I love the most about beautiful Tobago is The Tobago Heritage Festival. This festival starts from the middle of July to early August and it is a means by which Tobagonians preserve their culture by dressing up and depicting the different traditions and early life on the island. What this really is about is that every village perform a unique element which represents the history of the area. The performance is filled with rhythm from the beating of drums and entertainment with dancing and singing. Just as carnival in Trinidad, it is considered to be the main event in Tobago.
Some of the stories depicted in the Tobago Heritage Festival are The Tobago Ole Time Wedding, Natural Festivals Day, Superstitions and Folklore, Wake and Bongo, Sea Festival and Boat Christening. I have chosen to give you a brief overview of two that I found fascinated and that have encouraged me to do deeper research.
1) The Tobago Ole Time Wedding showcases the traditional wedding. It starts with the
Bachelor Night which includes lots of music and runs into the Bridal Affair on the morning of the wedding. This shows how the bride gets ready for her big day. After the wedding there is also the reception and the wedding concludes with food and speeches from various people. What makes this so unique from weddings today is the way in which people dressed. Not only the males in their black three piece suits, white gloves and umbrellas to shade their ladies but the women in their elegant gowns and beautiful jewelry pieces.
2) Tobago is filled with stories of mythical beings. Some of these include the stories of the Soucouyant, La Diablesse, Lugarhoo and Douens. At the Tobago Heritage Festival there is a special performace called Superstitions and Folklore where these creatures are portrayed since they play a major role in shaping the culture and history of Tobago. These myths are mainly based on devil and hunting stories.
The Tobago Heritage Festival is a great means of showing the younger generation life on the island in previous years. Although I have never experienced this festival it grabbed my attention while doing research. I believe that this is a great incentive by the various communities and a great way to preserve the rich culture and history of the island. I am most definitely looking forward to being apart of this event in the near future.