Barbadian Christmas Traditions

By Angela Goring
          Queens Park Bridgetown Barbados

The Christmas season started in Barbados early in December with the staging of the Annual Agricultural Exhibition at Queens Park.
The exhibition as its name implies featured the best that Barbados had to offer in terms of agriculture, animal husbandry and the cottage industries.
The most famous land mark in Queens Park was the clock where many a date was made and broken.
The clothes that were bought for the exhibition were the ones you wore to church on Christmas morning. This is the morning that people who did not go to church any Sunday during the year, would be sure to attend. After 5 o clock church service, there was the annual stroll through Queens park. You got to wear those clothes twice to Queens Park.
Probably the most looked out for event on Christmas morning was and still is the stroll through the park; where persons are dressed to the nines; lots of colour and beautiful outfits. The Royal Barbados Police Band is in attendance as well as several local artists. Christmas in Barbados would not be Christmas without the roast pork, all types of other meats, the jug jug, which is made from green peas, all the ends of the meats being served and guinea corn flour. Green peas and rice, black cake, sorrel and turkey and ham.
The decorating aspect of Christmas meant stripping the house of every piece of wall decorations, the curtains, etc., The floors, if they were wood had to be re-varnished. Every nook and cranny in the house had to be cleaned; chairs polished; every blade of grass cut.
Come Christmas Eve night, which is when the hard work started. The new curtains will be put up and all furniture and pictures will be going back in place. The cooking also started. You could smell the ham, the puddings and the sweetbreads for miles. Did I forget to mention the fact that Barbados is a rum producing country? This beverage maintains it prominence throughout this season.

What do we do after the hustle and bustle of the Christmas season, we eat and we sleep and look forward to the next time Christmas comes to our land.
Angela Goring, is the owner of Ryannne’s Restaurant, Bridgetown Barbados. She is also the owner of AMAS Productions, a culture/entertainment promotions business
Click on the link below to listen to Barbadian Christmas songs:

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