Independence Day Celebrations Events & Specials

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It’s always a celebration on INDEPENDENCE DAY IN BARBADOS…a national holiday filled with Bajan traditions, customs and special independence activities and events.

Independence Day in Barbados is celebrated every year on November 30th, unless the date falls on a Sunday, in which case the actual public/bank holiday is automatically transferred to the following Monday.

In 1966 Barbados achieved its Independence after over 300 years under British rule, from 1625 when the first English settlers claimed the island. Although an independent state within the Commonwealth Nations, the island still maintains its ties to the British monarch which is represented by the Governor General.

Today, Barbados' Independence celebrations are held throughout the entire month of November with many cultural events and activities. Flags and the national colours of blue yellow and black are prominently featured during this period, with decorative lighting in Bridgetown the Capital and at highway roundabouts around the island, as one of the major highlights.

Annually Barbadians start celebrating the anniversary of independence by attending the National Independence Festival of Creative Arts (NIFCA) during the months of October and November. This is also the period when all genres of bajan music is played on local radio stations, especially from folk, calypso and Spouge artistes like Sing Out Barbados, The Barbados Folk Singers, The Merrymen, The Sandpebbles, The Draytons Two, Red Plastic Bag (RPB), The Mighty Gabby, The Escorts, Lord Radio & The Bimshire Boys, The Tradewinds, Wendy Alleyne & The Dynamics, Jackie Opel, Richard Stoute and many more. 

Other community based events are organized by the Community Independence Celebrations Secretariat, and is officially kicked off with the Independence Lighting Ceremony and Bajan Folk Brew in the city of Bridgetown, followed by a number of the activities during the month of independence. These events include Parish Talent Zonal Shows, the Spirit of the Nation Show, Spirit of Independence Tour, a Mini-Parks & Gardens Competition and a variety of other activities throughout the parishes.

Parish Ambassadors are used to create a community commitment and nationalism among the youth. Each parish selects a male and female between the ages of 18 and 30 as a representative. These persons are introduced to the public at the Official Launch of Community Independence Celebrations, which takes place on the last Saturday in August.

On Independence Day an elaborate independence parade is officially used to commemorate the occasion, while other activities and events bajans traditionally use to celebrate Independence Day include fairs, concerts, sports competitions, festivals, carnivals, church services, gospel events, bus excursions, picnics and other community events. 

BARBADOS’ INDEPENDENCE DAY PARADE attracts both locals and tourist alike, with hundreds of members of service groups alongside military attachments and their armed and unarmed units, marching in keen precision and displaying their skills in various formations at the Garrison Savannah.  

The official Independence Ceremonial Parade usually starts around 8am, featuring from Boy Scouts, Girl Guides and Cadets to the Barbados Defence Force, the Royal Barbados Police Force, St. John’s Ambulance Brigade, the Barbados Red Cross and the National Conservation Commission. Other detachments include the Barbados Fire Service, the Barbados Prison Service, the Government Security Guards Service, the Barbados Landship, and the Barbados Youth Service.

The day’s programme also features a medley of marching renditions, a salute and march-past for the island’s Governor General, a gun salute to the nation, prayers, a recital of the Barbados National Pledge, the rousing of Three Cheers, and a final salute to the nation.

The parade usually culminates with the Independence Ceremonial March to the city of Bridgetown, via Bay Street and through the Independence Arch in the capital.

Independence Day Celebrations in Barbados
Celebrated November 30th...see which day Independence Day falls on this year   
Happy Independence Day from!

...Come Celebrate!
Barbados Pride & Industry 1966 - 2016

See the Scheduled/Calendar of upcoming Events & Activities for Barbados 50th Anniversary Of Independence Celebrations...
(Please keep checking back for updates)

During the year 2016 a commemorative Broken Trident will trek across the 11 parishes of Barbados, under the theme “Our Pride, The BROKEN TRIDENT”.  

The broken Trident in the National Flag represents the breaking away of its Historical and Constitutional ties as a former colony.

The new commemorative Broken Trident was conceptualised and designed by Donna Redman in 2015, and symbolises the beginning of a new era and Barbados’ 50th year of Independence. It was constructed and donated by Williams Industries.

Its journey will be in conjunction with the Community Independence Celebrations Secretariat’s parish activities for each month. A cross section of Barbadians will be selected to transport the Broken Trident to each parish during its year-long island tour.  

On November 30, 2016, the Broken Trident will end its journey and be rested at the 50th Anniversary of Independence Monument, which will be constructed on the Garrison Savannah.

Have fun at Barbados' Golden Independence Anniversary Celebrations!!! 

Here are some ways to celebrate Independence Day 
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