A Bajan Christmas

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It’s that time of year again, our favourite time of year in fact. The Christmas spirit truly comes alive here in Barbados… Bajans will use this time of year as an excuse to freshen up their homes with a new coat of paint, curtains or just spruce up their gardens.

Every year Bajans look forward to the Christmas Season not only for the “belly busting” food and great parties but there are also a few events that are unique to this time of year.

The first thing that gets us in the mood is the arrival of the Christmas Trees. There is just nothing like the smell of a “real” Christmas tree after all! Homes come alive with decorations and lights inside and out and roundabouts are festively decorated.

One event that is eagerly anticipated at Christmas time is Carols by Candle Light. This event is hosted every December at Ilaro Court, the residence of the Prime Minister of Barbados. It is a special afternoon attended by thousands of Barbadian young and old. Christmas carols are sung by some of Barbados most talented musicians and candles are lit as the sun sets, making for a spectacular scene. Everyone is relaxed as they lay out on their picnic blankets and a true feeling of Christmas is captured.

Midnight mass and Christmas morning worship are a true tradition, as are the extensive meals produced. A typical Bajan Christmas feast will usually consist of: Jug Jug, Candied Sweet Potatoes, Pepperpot, Ham, Baked Pork, Turkey, Black cake, Mince Pies, and of course Sorrel!

Unique to Barbados is Christmas day at Queens Park. Hundreds of Barbadians turn out decked in their most splendid garments. The Royal Barbados Police Force Band provide Christmas tunes, while the folks stroll through the Park greeting old friends and posing for pictures. In addition, Barbados has its very own kind of snow. The flowering plant we call Snow on the Mountain, which flowers during the months when the days are shorter! Poinsettia and Christmas Candles are also well known to Barbados and Christmas just wouldn’t be Christmas without them.

Boxing Day, which is the day after Christmas, is also a very popular day amongst Barbadians. There are several parties held and all the leftovers are warmed up and served again! You will also find horse racing that day at The Garrison Savannah Racing Track.

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