Colourful sights, sounds and smells will bring a flavour of the Caribbean to Manchester this weekend.
The Lord Mayor of Manchester, Councillor Mavis Smitheman, will open the Caribbean Carnival of Manchester 2008 at 12.45pm.
A parade of more than 20 troupes of elaborately-costumed dancers, carnival queens, princesses and folklore characters accompanied by six steel bands on floats will leave Alexandra Park in Moss Side at 1pm on Saturday (16 August) and follow a route back to the park by 4pm.
The FREE celebrations continue throughout the weekend in the park with great calypso, reggae, soca and R'n'B, plus young people from the Zion Centre in Hulme showing off their talents. There will also be an array of stalls offering delicious Caribbean food plus clothes, accessories, make-up and more.
The theme of this year's carnival is 'One World, One Carnival' incorporating Pan Fever, celebrating bringing communities together and the development of steel bands from discarded oil barrels in Trinidad.
Organisers of the Caribbean Carnival are also celebrating winning an award in the Heritage Group section of the Nationwide Community and Heritage Awards run by the Nationwide Building Society in partnership with the Heritage Lottery Fund.
The group also won a place in the national finals of the awards, to be decided in November, earning it prizes including £500 to donate to a charity or cause of their choice.
The group was nominated for the award for its work on last year's carnival, which was on the theme of Echoes of Freedom, commemorating the 200th anniversary of the abolition of transatlantic slavery.
Three of the group - event manager and chair of the organising committee Sonia Stewart, production manager Mike Bisson and chair of the advisory group Wallace Patrick, attended the prize-giving event at The Lowry, Salford Quays.
Councillor Rosa Battle, Manchester City Council's Assistant Executive Member for Culture and Leisure, said: "The Caribbean Carnival is a brilliant and colourful spectacle with something to attract all the family. I'm very pleased that the carnival group's hard work has been recognised with an award and I wish them the best of luck in the national finals."
Martin Hellewell, Press Office, tel: 0161 234 3729