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Emancipation Day

Kambulé: The Great Commemoration

The culmination of Emancipation celebration, August 1, begins in the early morning, when people are called to assemble to begin the commemoration of that historic event that would forever transform the lives and destinies of Africans in the Caribbean. The Kambulé, as it is called, begins at the Treasury Building with a libation (prayer) and the reading of the Emancipation proclamation, after which the procession wends its way through the streets of Port-of-Spain stopping at historically significant sites along the way; at Piccadilly Street, the site of the Yoruba village, to Hell Yard, site of the Kambule riots of 1881 then onto the centre of festival activities, the Lidj Yasu Omowale Emancipation Village for a full day of live entertainment, food and other activities. At day’s end, mirroring the ancestors who would hold a similar procession in observance of the end of slavery, a flambeaux procession leaves the Emancipation Village and heads back to the All Star’s Pan Yard – the final event of the historic day.


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