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SVG J'Ouvert 2011 (St. Vincent)
SVG J'Ouvert 2011

July 4th , 2011
SVG Soca Monarch 2011 (St. Vincent)
SVG Soca Monarch 2011

July 2nd, 2011
SVG Miss Carival 2011 (St. Vincent)
SVG Miss Carival 2011

July 1st, 2011
Rum Crawl Bus Ride (St. Vincent)
Rum Crawl Bus Ride

July 1st, 2011
SVG Fire Fete 2011 (St. Vincent)
SVG Fire Fete 2011

Jun 29th, 2011

TJJ's Party Guru's Guide to Vincy Mas

St. Vincent & The Grenadines, commonly referred to as SVG, is marketed as one destination, 32 gorgeous Caribbean islands! It's one of those tourist destinations that people travel halfway around the world to enjoy the white (& black) sand beaches, picturesque waterfalls, go hiking and dive or snorkel the beautiful reefs. SVG is also the filming location (Wallilabou Bay) for the multi-billion dollar Walt Disney franchise series of films 'Pirates of the Caribbean'.

Now while we weren't in SVG to explore cursed Aztec gold, undead pirates or the legendary Captain Jack Sparrow expliots, we were in fact there to conquer yet another 'Carnival of the Caribbean' - Vincy Mas! The question of "Which Carnival ranks #1? Vincy, Lucia or Grenada?" was left unanswered following Grenada Spicemas 2010. So, let's dive in...


  • Duration: A week is recommended - Wednesday to Wednesday (following Mardi Gras). Outside of the carnival events, you can spend your time discovering SVG. If you're fighting to hold onto your vacation and sick days and love carnival, then Fri/Sat to Wednesday can work.
  • Accommodations: Don't expect 5-star or big business like hotels in St. Vincent. The carnival and activities are mainly based in Kingstown (not Kingston) so the Grenadine House, a delightful and attractive old colonial building, was our base. It's 10min walk into town (uphill on the return journey) and less than 5min drive to Victoria Park (home for all official CDC events). Lovely view, great value and friendly staff.
  • Transportation: E. T. Joshua Airport (SVD) in Arnos Vale is where you will clear immigrations and customs (all within the confines of one room too). Chances are, if you're traveling from outside the Caribbean region, you will be on a LIAT flight (or two) to eventually get to St. Vincent. Be sure to keep $40EC ($15US) for Departure Tax once you've stayed over 24 hours on the island.
  • Currency: The official currency is the Eastern Caribbean Dollar (EC) but US dollar is accepted throughout their island(s). Exchange rate is fixed at US$1 = EC$2.68. And with the mom & pop shops exchanging at EC$2.60, the 8 cents lost isn't going to impact the number of Hairoun Lager Beers & Strong Rum consumed. *see Food & Beverages
  • Communications: At SVG carnival time, both Digicel and LIME are camped right outside the airport with loads of SIM cards. In less than 2 mins you will have a 784 number with EC $10 credit courtesy of Digicel. 1 day pass BlackBerry data plan runs at EC$2.88 and a 1 week plan for only EC$12.50 to get your BB Swag on!
  • Attire: The hottest and most humid months are between June and September with an average temperature of 30°C (86°F), so short pants, summer shirts and tees (please apply sufficient deorandant) are your best friends. Don't forget to pack your swimwear (at least a pair) and flip flops! Btw, Vincy Mas includes a "J'Ouvert" so be prepared to get dirty come Monday morning (t-shirt will be provided by J'Ouvert band ... for paying revellers)
  • Food & Beverages: When traveling one should always enjoy the local delicacies. SVG got lots of great local eating spots in and around town. Don't leave the island until you've had some Callaloo Soup!! And if you're serious about your franchise food, word is their KFC is on par with KFC Trinidad and Jamaica. And Subway lovers, defintely order something from the "Local Favorities" menu ... we recommend the BBQ Shrimp sub! NOW... until you consume a shot of 'Sunset Very Strong Rum' (aka jet fuel) you truly cannot say you visited SVG. It's 84.5% alc/vol and strongly advised by locals that you chase with a glass of ICE cold water.
  • Music: Hailing from Saint Vincent and the Grenadines is soca artist Kevin Lyttle, mostly known for his worldwide hit "Turn Me On". But the list does not stop there... Jamesy P, Zoelah, Bomani, Problem Child and Skinny Fabulous to name a few, all keep Vincy Mas pumping year after year with infectious soca hits. It's a guarantee that you can arrive in SVG without a clue of the current songs for the season and leave with at least 2-3 songs playing on repeat in your head ... as if you're in a soca techo/rave dance ... "This CARNIVAL.... ah turning ANIMAL!" (see what I mean). *Final Thoughts below

Major Events:

Like St. Lucia Carnival, Vincy Mas has carnival high's and low's as the main week progresses. We missed Wet Fete (June 25th) and a few Fab Fraidayz signature events, but with our hectic world carnival schedule, we can't win them all... and as the song goes, "A Wet Fete without hose.... YOU must have your HOSE!" So our action kicked off from the Carnival Wednesday.

Wednesday: SVG's "FIRE FETE" promoted by Dwight Bing Joseph is the only place to be. This event is headlined by some of the biggest international soca stars for the current season, along with top local talent. We believe this year was the 3rd installment.

Thursday: On the cultural side, the Carnival Development Corporation (CDC) hosts PANORAMA (Steel & Glitter) at concert capital Victoria Park. Party wise ... crickets chirpping!! Yes, it's a quiet night ... no joke! So link your friends and go bar hopping.

Friday: Motions Entertainment introduced a new event for some daytime liming adventures - "RUM CRAWL BUS TOUR". Kudos! If you attend this event, be warned that BBMing while on the bus will cost you a shot (bottle cork) of Sunset Very Strong Rum everytime you're caught in the act. Friday night's main event is "MISS CARIVAL" (yes spelt without the 'N') and after the show is the After Party.... all roads leads to Aquatic Club for "FAB FRIDAYZ".

Saturday: We always say, every true Carnival should have (1) a J'Ouvert and (2) a Cruise. Put two check marks for Vincy Mas! Early Saturday morning it's all about LIMERZ CRUISE "DELIRIOUS" which cruises along the coast of St. Vincent and gives you a chance to enjoy some of the nicest beaches in the world like Bequia. The cruise pretty much last all day, so the window of rest before hitting "SVG SOCA MONARCH FINALS" later on is very small. No worries... this show provides lots of energy and excitment.

Sunday: Three words .... "SLIPPERY WHEN WET"! It's an All Inclusive beach lime that's full of vibe, especially once the sun sets (no pun intended with Sunset rum smile)! It's scheduled from 1-8PM, so early risers you have time to relax and enjoy the isle. However, once this fete is over... chances are you will be going straight home. Yes, Don't Pass Go, Don't Collect $200... Go Straight HOME!!! You have J'OUVERT to deal with in a few hours.

Monday: "J'OUVERT" kicks off as early as midnight with individual band parties before they hit the streets around 5-6AM. We recommend arriving around 3-4AM to properly enjoy j'ouvert with your respective band because once the band gets on the road, forget about it. It will be you and the entire country jumping! Monday Mas is called "EVENING STREET PARTY" (and it does in fact start in the evening ... around 3-4PM), also referred to as T-Shirt Mas. And similiar to j'ouvert, it's difficult to keep out the stormers on the road.

Tuesday: It's the climaxx of Vincy Mas... "MARDI GRAS"! All of the typical Carnival Tuesday elements are present ... sexy masqueraders in full costume, free drinks (well Mirage Productions for certain) on the road and music trucks pumping sweet soca. Things get rolling around 10AM before all bands make their way to Victoria Park to be judged before starting the merry-go-round in town. It's easy for security to do their job on since revellers are in costume, differentiating them between the straglers & stormers, allowing a fun and safe carnival experience. We played mas with Mirage Productions and definitely give them two thumbs up!

Final Thoughts: Vincy Mas shares a lot of similarities as both Lucian Carnival and Grenada's Spicemas - Soca Monarch, Dimanche Gras, J'ouvert, 2-day Parade to mention a few. One will notice that after you hit a couple of events you quickly realize how small the island is, so it's easy to make friends (or enemies) fast. And surprisingly, some of the aspects we dislike - like the inability to keep paying non-paying revellers out of the bands - actually makes the carnival what it is ... a "People's Mas"!

Book your trips folks, Vincy Mas is definitely a Caribbean Carnival that needs to be on your "Carnival To Do List"!

There were a number of 2011 Vincy Soca tunes that I believe can play for the rest of the year's carnivals all the way into T&T Carnival 2011 .... Radio Stations/DJ's take note:-

Skinny Fabulous ft Busy Signal - Rave Out (Popso Riddim)
Problem Child - Waistline (Tite Choonz Riddim - Alison Hinds and Mr. Dale on it as well)
Problem Child ft Tallpree - Ah Drink Ah Rum
Shaney Hypez - Snap Shot
(*This is my SVG Road March!!*)

and here's some of the popular songs enjoyed for the season...

Fireman - Animal (2011 Soca Monarch King) | [Check YouTube Video]
Skinny Fabulous - The Cave | [Check YouTube Video]
Gao - Sheep (2011 Road March Winner)
Galanaire - Big Stick (Ice Age Riddim)
Problem Child - Stick On
Problem Child - Miserable
Jamsey P - No Prisoners
New Sensation - Mash Up Mash Up
Bornbad Riddim (Jamsey P, Problem Child ft Daria, Skinny Fabulous)

To our very special sponsors, Mirage Productions and the Grenadine House (Becky, Delroy, Brandon, Felly, Eddy .... we aren't going to call any names smile) thanks again for your hospitality. See you guys for Vincy Mas 2012!

Dre aka The Carnival Jumbie

Dre aka The Carnival Jumbie; and the 2011 TJJ Vincy Mas Team
-- Coop© and D' Young Juice

Disclaimer: Professional and experienced TJJ Fet-a-lot-athon® Party Gurus have rigorously tested these Carnival grounds and are providing said recommendations based on the fundamentals that the audience is a healthy rum drinking islander. If while performing any of these actions you begin to feel any dizziness, fatigue or pain please stop and consult your physician immediately.

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Mirage Productions
Mirage Productions

Grenadine House
Grenadine House