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Caribbean Festival ends with feast of food, music 80 booths, five bands draw thousands


Eighty food and arts and crafts booths lined the main baseball field at Druid Hill Park yesterday, and music blared from a sound stage that eventually had five bands playing reggae, calypso soca-rama and steel-band music.

It was the third and concluding day of Baltimore's 12th annual Caribbean Festival -- and the event's fifth appearance in Druid Hill Park, said coordinator Mark Kendal.

Sept. 10-12 were designated "West Indian/Caribbean Days" by proclamation of Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke.

Over the three days, the festival drew thousands.

Officially named "Baltimore's Caribbean Carnival Extravaganza '93," the festival began in the park Friday with the crowning of the carnival king and queen.

Saturday morning, a parade wound its way from Festival Hall near the Inner Harbor to the festival grounds at Druid Hill Park.

Saturday night, the festival's Carnival Fete was held at Danielle's Bluecrest Ballroom in the 400 block of Reisterstown Road from 10 p.m. until the celebrators' energy gave out.

Mr. Kendal is also president of the West Indian National Association -- WIN-A -- which sponsored the carnival.

Formed in 1981 as the West Indian Association of Maryland, WIN-A's purpose is to assist in the social, economic and cultural advancement of people of West Indian or Guyanese heritage.

Mr. Kendal said one purpose of the organization's festival is "to promote a better understanding and appreciation of West Indian culture among other ethnic groups in the state of Maryland and elsewhere."

hTC He has been president of WIN-A for five years and is also a director of finance for the American Association of Adult and Continuing Education in Washington.

Mr. Kendal estimated that there are 30,000 people of Caribbean or Guyanese descent in Maryland.

Most of those are settled in the Baltimore area and come from Jamaica, Trinidad & Tobago, Grenada, Barbados, Antigua, Guyana and St. Kitts.

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