Well, what a year that was, we lost nearly half a dozen carnivals, including Newport Main which was a massive blow for us as we had so much planned.
Shanklin Carnival was the worst hit, their Children’s, Main and Illuminated Carnivals were all cancelled due to the weather. One of our Car Boot sales was split with them this year to help recuperate some lost funds.
Ryde Main was cancelled, also.
Despite that, the carnivals we did attend, we had a great time.
The first carnival we were able to attend was Sandown Main Carnival which kicked off the Carnival season with a bang!
With a short break due to the cancelation of Shanklin’s Carnival week, we moved onto Ventnor Main & Illuminated in which they were blessed with some great weather.
The following week we attended Cowes Memorial Carnival in Memory of the Late Bob Hammond who sadly passed away earlier in 2023.
Newport Illuminated carnival was next up, with one of our best Illuminated processions to date, the streets were busier than any of us could ever remember before, even the quieter areas were packed.
We had our first disability raised viewing platform in Orchard Street car park which was a success, along with a Quiet Zone in which carnival floats and bands lowered the tone of their music for those who struggle with the noise.
We also had the first appearance of Shademakers at night.
The next carnival we attended was St Helens, always a small carnival on a whole, however, it is always a special one and lovely to see its community come out and support by lining the streets.
Moving onto Sandown Illuminated, one of only two carnivals this year able to hold both their Main and Illuminated carnivals, with crowds several rows deep. the entire high street was rammed packed with spectators and we had a great time.
Sadly, Ryde Main was cancelled due to adverse weather, however, conditions improved for the last carnival of the year, Ryde Illuminated Carnival which saw carnival groups come over from the mainland, as well.
We now look forward to travelling down to Littlehampton on Saturday 28th October, thanks to Wightlink Ferries for sponsoring our ferry travel on this one. Last year was the first time in a long time we have attended, and with many new committee members since then, everyone had a great time.
There is just a couple of Island carnivals left for 2023, with Newport Carnival’s Christmas Parade taking place on Saturday 2nd November 2023 at 5pm. Details of that can be found here.
Ventnor and Ryde are also holding Christmas events and parades which we will be attending (if the weather is kind on us all!)
Now for the thank yous… We would like to say a massive thank you to NDLe – Events Power Solutions, Wight Event Power & Caffé Isola for allowing us space to keep our floats and allowing us to build at their premises.
Stubbings Bros for the use of their pickup truck again this year, it has been a godsend as per usual.
Also, Red Funnel, Wightlink, Cherry Godfrey, Newport & Carisbrooke Community Council, Jewson Sandown, The White Horse Inn, Isleofwight.com, Domino’s Newport, Town Choice Cafe, The Isle of Wight County Show Ground, NDLe, Wight Event Power, Caffé Isola, Funky Pineapple Events, Paul Bird Photography, Ford Farm House B&B, Ace Waste, The Plaza Ices, While-u-Wait Services, Scarrots Lane Bakery, Harwoods Garage, Biltmore Signs, Farnsworth’s Newsagents, Morrisons, Asda, Community Action Isle of Wight, Riverside Centre, Central Stores, Godshill Village Store and everyone else who we haven’t mentioned who have done their part.
Finally, each and everyone of you who donate money to keep us going, you are all awesome! Thank you and see you soon…