Disney teamed up with local students in Eleuthera in the Bahamas to support the Eleuthera Junior Junkanoo Competition.
This past month, Disney Cruise Line teamed up with local students in Eleuthera in the Bahamas for a very special event. In collaboration with Junior Achievement Bahamas and The Bahamas Ministry of Youth, Sports, and Culture, Disney lent their support to celebrate the traditions of Junkanoo, a bi-annual celebration that takes place in Nassau.
What is Junkanoo?
Junkanoo is a longstanding Bahamian tradtion that celebrated Bahamian culture. The event is a bi-annual celebration that takes place in Nassau with plenty of music, dancing, a costumes. For the Junior Junkanoo competiion, students will spend several weeks working on choreographing dances, and creating parade floats to display for the community.
Disney-Hosted Virtual Events and Workshops for Junior Junkanoo Celebration
Disney Live Entertainment Cast Members met virtually with students from 10 schools across the island, collaborating to create their Junkaroo costumes and parade float design. The Cast Members all specialize in costuming, cosmetology, and entertainment, and, as part of the meetings, the students shared stories about Junkaroo traditions to inspire creativiity.
Speaking about the meetings, Disney Cruise Line Managing Producer Carlos Jimienez said, “This was a special experience for our team. It was wonderful to share our ideas with this amazing group of students to help inspire their designs, while at the same time, learn from them about Bahamian culture and the beautiful celebration of Junkanoo.”
Eleuthera Junior Junkanoo Competion
After sevearl weeks of perparation, the students performed at the ELeuthera Junior Junkanoo competion on March 4, 2023. Speaking of the collaboration with Disney, Program Manager of Junior Achievement Eleuthera, Clara Young, said, “This collaboration with Disney Cruise Line was truly incredible. After working with their Disney mentors, the students were so proud to celebrate Junkanoo and present their creative costumes to the community. It was a proud moment for all of us.”
Joey Gaskings, Public Affairs Director for Disney Cruise Line, spoke of their work with the celebration, “Junkanoo is at the heart of our Bahamian culture. Watching these young Bahamians learn about, celebrate and preserve our culture for generations to come is how we keep this tradition alive. Disney Cruise Line is proud to support programs, like Junior Junkanoo, that reflect the rich diversity of the world we live in. By pairing these students with our creative professionals, we can show them how their talents can be more than just a hobby and encourage these young people to dream big.”
This initiative was part of Disney Cruise Line’s Wishes Set Sail campaign, which was developed in an effort to support youth acitivities in key port communities — which includes the Bahamas. Currently, Disney Cruise Line is working on creating a new experience in Eleuthera with Lighthouse Point, which is set to open in summer 2024. You can read more about the upcoming Lighthouse Point in our story below!