The Bahamas Ministry of Tourism’s annual Goombay Summer Festival – a celebration of Bahamian food, music and culture -which began in Harbour Island on July 2nd, after a two-year hiatus – wrapped up on Saturday, August 27th, 2022 in James’ Cistern, Central Eleuthera with its final showing on the island for this year’s summer season.
Residents were out in droves on Saturday evening, as the energetic Sky Juice band lit up the stage, with the appreciative audience lining the seafront street adjacent to the fishermen’s dock hub in the township – and dancing to the music. Vendors’ stalls were perched along the waterfront, offering delicious eats, treats, games and refreshment.
“Today and tonight have gone extremely well and we had a really great day of entertainment,” said Ministry of Tourism Acting Manager, Mrs. Glenda Johnson-Ingraham. The cultural celebration began around noon on the Saturday, and despite threats of precipitation, nature acquiesced to long-laid plans. “It rained earlier this morning… but, it did not last very long and the weather then cleared up nicely, and it has been going really well.
“A number of people passed through the Goombay Festival throughout the day today – including people commuting between the north and the south. When they saw what was happening, they stopped in and patronized the vendors. So, it has been really, really good, and people have been very supportive,” she added.
The final Goombay Summer Festival 2022 event in Eleuthera had something for every one, from the youngest to the older, with a variety of children’s games – like the egg and spoon race, a sack race, street games, and pole plaiting. A fishing tournament was also in the day’s lineup of activities. On stage, during the afternoon going into the evening, audiences saw a local comedian act by ‘Francois’, fire dancing, enjoyed sounds of the Sky Juice band – described by Mrs. Johnson-Ingraham as “one of the most popular bands in the country”, followed by well-known Bahamian vocalist entertainer, Blaudy – backed up by Sky Juice.
The New Vision band – a young, up and coming band on Eleuthera – with former members of the Eleuthera Marching band – which came out of the Central Eleuthera High School, said Mrs. Johnson-Ingraham, also performed – showcasing local talent and the grand finale on Saturday was a junkanoo rushout, enjoyed by all.
Expressing her thanks to the townspeople who embraced the event being held in their community, Mrs. Johnson Ingraham shared, “The people here were excited about the Festival coming to James’ Cistern, and they were so helpful in assisting the Ministry of Tourism with the planning. Hats off to the local government township committee and to the homecoming committee – who were really helpful in partnering with the Ministry of Tourism and instrumental in the success of tonight’s Goombay Summer Festival.”