Centennial College students getting into the Caribana spirit

TORONTO, July 27 /CNW/ - This year's Scotiabank Caribana Festival will feature an unusual costume showpiece that stands two-stories high, built primarily by students from Centennial College's School of Hospitality, Tourism and Culture, under the continuous guidance and support of Tribal Knights Mas Camp, Caribana costume designers.

This will mark the first time an Ontario college has participated in the King and Queen Show and the Scotiabank Caribana Parade. Scotiabank Caribana Festival is an exciting two-week cultural explosion of Caribbean music, cuisine and performing arts. On the night before the Scotiabank Caribana Parade, The King and Queen Show will reveal two band members who will be named king or queen of their band. This project is unique because it is a student-led initiative.

The School of Hospitality, Tourism and Culture's dean Shyam Ranganathan and Tribal Knights' costume designer Dexter Seusahai met and collectively discussed the idea of a project. Volunteers were sought and the team assembled came up with a theme.

"It is a rain-forest theme," said Norine Bedminster, one of the Centennial student volunteers. The chosen theme and design aligns with the School of Hospitality, Tourism and Culture's mission to promote responsible and sustainable cultural heritage tourism.

The costume weighs a whopping 200 pounds. "I am working out just to be able to carry this costume around at the parade," says Salome Odeny, the student masquerader who will be wearing the costume at the July 31st Parade. Odeny, who is from Kenya, is a third-year Hospitality and Tourism Administration student at Centennial College.

Canadian and international students at Centennial College are working together on this project. With initiatives such as this one, students learn how to work in teams towards common goals. It is also giving Centennial College's international students the opportunity to practice their English language skills outside an academic setting.

The King and Queen Show will take place on July 29, at Lamport Stadium, 1151 King St. West. Tickets are $30 per person. The show begins at 7 p.m.

The Scotiabank Caribana Parade will take place on July 31 from 10 a.m to 6 p.m. starting at Exhibition Place & Lakeshore Boulevard located at 200 Princes' Blvd. Admission is free. Visit caribanafestival.com for more information.

About the School of Hospitality, Tourism and Culture

The School of Hospitality, Tourism and Culture is part of Centennial College and prepares students for careers in Food and Beverage Management, Tourism and Travel, Hotel and Resort Management, Hospitality and Tourism Administration and Cultural and Heritage Tourism.

The School of Hospitality, Tourism and Culture is located at 941 Progress Ave., Toronto, Ont., M1G 3T8.

For further information: Stephanie Carillo, School of Hospitality, Tourism and Culture, 416-289-5000 ext. 3360; Media contact: Bruce Williams, Advertising Manager, Centennial College, 416-289-5000, ext. 7144, brucewilliams@centennialcollege.ca