It was in February of 1974 at a general meeting of the Nevis Dramatic and Cultural Society that the previous Christmas festival was part of the discussion. It was felt that much of the old familiar troupes were missing and that some of the activities indigenous to Nevis at Christmas time were lacking.
Lengthy discussions as to what improvements could be made and suggestions of another festival at Easter time was looked at. At that time the suggestions of another was not given serious consideration, but it was at the next general meeting of the group that Calvin “Cabo” Howell, the Vice President stressed the need and urgency to start to preserve our customs and folk art, as these were rapidly declining in our community.
Having secured a name, the time of the year was the next step. The people of Nevis are mainly of African descent and since we celebrate the freedom of slaves (Emancipation) on Nevis the first day in August, it was decided that there was no better time than the August weekend for the event. The first programme included Dancing, Drama, Display, Old Fashion Troupes (i.e Johnny Walkers, Giant and Spear, Bulls, Red Cross, Blue Ribbon etc.) Folk Singing and Arts and Crafts. A local recipe competition and the Miss Culture Show and Calypso Competition.
The Nevis Dramatic and Cultural Society’s main purposes for this Cultural Festival are:
- To give a vital thrust to our dying traditional customs.
- To stimulate an interest in the wealth of our cultural heritage (local folk art).
- To receive and create a climate in which indigenous folklore can reassert itself and flourish. And of course a secondary purpose was to raise funds to build a Community Center to serve as a necessary base for the projection of Cultural Awareness Programmes.