The harvesting of Barbados' sugar crop usually finishes by the end of July. Traditionally, local communities have celebrated this occasion by arranging fairs, dances and musical performances. Nowadays, Crop Over has developed into the island's major festival. The feature events include the Ceremonial Delivery of the Last Canes as an opening ceremony; a Steel Pan show on the beach "Pan Pun De Sand"; Bridgetown Market; a Calypso competition and a spectacular Cohobblopot variety show. Recently, there have also been "Fore-Day Morning Jump-Ups" - an extravaganza of paint and mud with revellers in costumes "jumping up" to the pulsating sounds of soca and calypso music in the wee morning hours.
The whole festival reaches its grand finale, Kadooment Day, on the first Monday in August which is also a national holiday and the biggest party day of the year. Every component of Crop Over and all the communities come together for a huge carnival parade. Groups of revellers form a "band", dress up in spectacular costumes and "jump up" along the streets to the pulsating sounds of the most popular calypso and soca music. You can either watch the bands when they pass through the stadium for judging, or else go to the Spring Garden Highway and be there as the bands arrive.This is the end of the route and therefore the venue for the biggest, brightest, liveliest "fete" imaginable.
With all of its life, colour, music, food and fun, Kadooment is definitely not to be missed. Visitors to the island are an important part of the Crop Over festival and are welcome to participate in every aspect of the celebrations. You can even join a costume "band" if you really want to enjoy Kadooment to the full. Contact the National Cultural Foundation +1 (246) 424 0909 for further information www.barbadoscropoverfestival.com