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BTO Carnival to celebrate city heritage

Publishing Date : 05 December, 2017


As a way of celebrating the heritage of the capital city- Gaborone, Botswana Tourism Organisation will be hosting the inaugural Heart of the City carnival on December 16 at Main Mall.

The Carnival is an annual event that happens at the end of the year staged to herald the Christmas Season. It will be hosted in and around the Main Mall area under the theme ‘Heart of the City’. The carnival is aimed at reviving and celebrating the history of the Main Mall as well as showcasing the diverse cultures of the people of Botswana.

In an interview with WeekendLife, BTO Public Relations and Communications Officer Keitumetse Setlang explained that the event seeks to mobilize Batswana to celebrate the heritage of their own city “Heart of the city carnival is a carnival that celebrates the history of the main mall.  The event is open to everyone who lives in the city, outside the city and from across borders. It is not necessarily about culture in Botswana but in Gaborone,” Setlang highlighted.

She further said that the event is also part of the BTO’s diversification drive. “The carnival is part of BTO’s diversification drive to keep growing events and to also look at the events that have not been staged before. We want to set a tone for festive season, to close the year in style as well as to close the calendar of events of Botswana,” she said. Setlang explained that the event will feature activities such as a parade carnival which will entail a walk from the national stadium to the main mall.

“The walk is open to different nationalities and groups and the map will be shared,” she explained. The carnival will also cater for the arts and craft exhibition stage and fashion show, culinary and a festival stage and these are some of the main ideas of the event and the idea is to add colour to the event. “The event will showcase a variety of culinary offerings - celebrity chefs’ demonstrations, and a carnival parade of different types of cultures and dances, fashion displays from Botswana, as well as local and international music artists,” she said.

In as much as main mall has hawkers, the BTO, she said, has seen to it that traders are allowed to trade on the day. “We are still in negotiations with the council that hawkers may be allocated around the mall. Traders will be allowed to trade and they are invited to be part of the event. They should expect more people and should prepare to sell to a lot more people. They will be inconveniences to people in the mall, therefore we plead for cooperation and support,” Setlang highlighted.

As for parking lots, she made it clear that patrons’ parking will be designated and other parking will be around the mall and also maps will be shared concerning parking. “As for the fashion show, we will be having local designers, who are students, amateurs and professionals to come and showcase their work. As well as arts and crafts,” she said. The BTO Event Coordinator, Dawson Ramsden also highlighted that as people will be moving around they will be spending money around thus contributing to the economic sector and they will be promoting tourism.

“People will be coming from different places; they will be spending on shops and hotels. People who will be participating from outside the country, will come to the knowledge of the country and they will market it in their countries,” Ramsden added. One of the best Djs Botswana has ever produced, DJ Choto will grace the inaugural Heart of the City Carnival, and Mpho Sebina will serenade the audience with her soulful sounds. The Carnival will host Top Chef presenter, Celebrity Cook & food enthusiast, Lorna Maseko and many more others. Tickets are sold at P250.



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