It's March, which means it's time once again for one of the Mother City's biggest parties - the Cape Town Carnival, which will be held on Saturday, 24 March 2012.
The carnival is establishing itself as one of Cape Town's most popular events. This year’s theme is ‘Cape to Cairo,’ in celebration of the rich history and diversity of the city, country and continent.
For the first time, the carnival will be held along the Fan Walk, ensuring that many more people will be able to watch as Green Point explodes in colour and festivity.
"Due to the support the carnival garnered last year, we had no choice but to move to a larger space to accommodate the continually growing audience," said Jay Douwes, CEO of the Cape Town Carnival.
The City of Cape Town has partnered with the Cape Town Carnival to deliver a successful event.
The parade will feature 2 000 dazzling costumed performers in 11 themed pods, nine richly decorated giant floats and 11 academies with 150 community dancers. These come from 45 community performance groups from 23 different areas of Cape Town.
All of the performers will be wearing newly created costumes, and multiple teams, from costume designers, choreographers, float builders and many volunteers, have been hard at work for the last few months to organise the event.
In order to raise the stakes, the three best lead dancers on the night will be selected to travel to Brazil to perform at the famous Rio Carnival in 2013.
The carnival will be preceded by a concert on the Cape Town Stadium forecourt from 17:00, which will feature artists such as Chad Simon, Lloyd Jansen and the Signatures. A giant screen will also be erected to show the Stormers’/Lions’ rugby match. Entrance to all carnival events is FREE.
Organisers are encouraging people to come early to secure their viewing spot on the Fan Walk. The MyCiTi Stadium bus station will be in operation and Metrorail will have extra trains available from midnight.
The carnival parade will start at the corner of Dixon and Somerset Streets at 20:00, and end at York Street where a street after-party will take place featuring DJ Dino Bravo until midnight.
Vendors will set up food and drinks stalls along Somerset Road, and there will be a bar at the stadium forecourt and at the parking lot near the finish.
The organisers consulted with the Green Point, Mouille Point and Sea Point Ratepayers Associations to discuss the road closures.
Organisers say it is difficult to estimate exactly how many people will attend, but last year's Carnival in Long Street attracted up to 60 000 revellers, and this part of town will not be feasible in terms of risk assessment.