When is Grenada Carnival 2013

Grenada Carnival 2013 - Spicemas begins on June 2nd with the Carnival Launch at the Grenada National Stadium and Pan Jamboree. It continues on into June with the Soca Quarterfinals but the main events for Grenada Carnival 2013 start Friday the 10th of August 2013 and go through Tuesday 14 August 2013.

What is Grenada Carnival 2013

Grenada explodes in colour and noise at the ebullient Grenada Carnival known as 'Spicemas'. The most beautiful women of Grenada vie for the carnival crown and soca and calypso singers compete to be 'Soca Monarch'. Multi-coloured 'devils' run wild and steel bands rock the island during "Jouvert"

Young and old come to enjoy Pan Jamboree, the Soca Quarterfinal, and Monday Night Mas in Grenada, all part of the multi day event.

The capital, St. George’s, Grenada, jumps to the sounds of steel bands and DJs as everyone enjoys a 'Last Lap' during the Parade of the Bands on the final day through the Carenage and on through Young Street and Hailfax St, the heart of downtown. A favorite part of Grenada’s Carnival isJ'Ouvert, where Grenadian party goers cover themselves in bright body paint and join the Jab Jab’s.

Grenada Carnival is a unique event spanning three days in August each year (for 2012 it starts on the the 10th of August and then ends on the 14th). Carnival comes from the Latin carne levare, which means "farewell to meat" and is held annually around the beginning of August and lasts 10 days. The tradition, some believed came from the French and Romans who pigged out on meat the day before Lent and then issuing a strict period of fasting. Between the 1st of the year and Lent, the French would celebrate by hosting magnificent balls. The slave being left out of their owners' fun and fanfare organized their own parties during the same time and because they had not the elaborate dresses of their owners, they put together costumes with what little they had. This is said to be the origin of "Ole Mas", symbolic of everything evil in society.

Grenada's Carnival has been celebrated on the island since the Europeans occupied the island. Although smaller and lesser known than its Caribbean counterparts, carnival has the same magnificence that any of the best have to offer. It is believed that the Trinidad carnival was heavily influenced by Grenada due to the Catholics that resettled in Trinidad with their slaves, who celebrated as they did while in Grenada, and thus influencing the natives.The festival is held in August one of the hottest months in the Caribbean. This in no way inhabits the revelers as programs are planned to escape the harshest heat of the day. The feeling of emancipation brings together peoples of all statuses, celebrating to the intoxicating sound of music, dance and food into a pageantry of colourful costumes, talent shows and parades that takes the breath away.Spice Mas - A celebration with the pomp and pageantry like the mother of Carnivals. Grenada's carnival is indeed a celebration of the artistry, uniqueness, and vibrancy of the nations people. Colorful costumes, competitions and an outpouring of talent go along with the celebrations. Started from the Romans and French the tradition traveled to the Caribbean in the 17th century. During the slave trade elaborate balls were hosted on the plantations, the slaves mimicked their owners and did their own celebration praying for liberation. This grew and became what it has become today. Although not as popular as the larger Caribbean carnivals, this celebration has evolved to be one of the greatest in the Caribbean.


Many revellers begin their Carnival marathon at the Dimarche Gras Show and continue straight into the J’Ouvert celebrations, where in the early hours of Monday morning,

"...The Traditional Jab-Jab Or Devil Mas Bands Emerge From The Darkness Of The Night To Parade Freely Through The Town."

Blackened with stale molasses, tar, grease, creosote or mud, and wearing little more than their horned helmets, these masqueraders in previous times set out to terrify onlookers with their grotesque appearance and repulsive dances.

In modern times, the traditional Jab-Molassi have mutated into other creatures of colour, with Blue, Yellow and Green Devils joining in the early morning parade. These colourful devils are much more playful in character, wanting only to dab a bit of their body paint onto unsuspecting bystanders, as they dance through the streets to the rhythms of the accompanying drums, steel bands and calypsos from huge DJ trucks.

The Ole Mas bands are the only other inhabitants in the early morning, bringing international and local events to the fore through their double entendre (or double talk) placards and satirical costumes.

The Jab Jab ( from "diable" the French for devil ) is one of the main characters in Grenada's traditional Carnival. The Jab is known for dance routines that mimic sexual intercourse and for the habit of threatening to press his bitumen -smeared body against well-dressed spectators, especially those who are unwilling to "pay the devil". But beyond wild pelvic thrusts ( "winding" ) and efforts to extort " small change", the Jab Jab's act is a fluent commentary on the Grenadian experience. The Jab's call-and -response refrains are often biting social criticisms of the mighty,and his " spellings"- an unrestrained spewing of cusswords- parodies a colonial education system. The Jab Jab act is a portrayal of class grievance and an important part of what can be called negre jardin (field negro) theatre.

Negre Jardin is the theatre of the subaltern groups in Grenadian society. It revels in allegories of good and evil;it stresses satire and wit over plot and structure; it reconciles actor and audience; it is powered by an artistic individualism; it is interactive; it uses improvisation as a key organizing principle; it needs no illusory space; and it has an "assemblage aesthetic".

The Negre Jardin theatre tells its stories in music, song, dance, comic inversion and pantomime. These stories tend to be written around props and in the case of the Jab these props include wooden boxes of live serpents.

The serpent is a reference to Damballah, Oshunmare, Anyiewe and the other African gods of fertility, renewal and regeneration. Serpents are venerated in West and Central Africa and this practice was brought to Grenada. The veneration of serpents/snakes, especially the Cribo (Clelia clelia) was well-known in Grenada until the 1950s. Hurricane Janet, in 1955, is alleged to have drastically reduced the Cribo population on the island and some observers say a steep decline in serpent veneration was observed in the immediate post-Janet years.

The serpent is an emblem of life and where there's life there is Gede, "the phallic and facetious lwa [god] of death". In Haiti the Gede appear on the Day of the Dead (November 1) and just like the Jab Jab, they tell dirty stories and perform lascivious and obscence dances [ that] express the art of turning death into satire" (Hurbon,1993) .The theme of death also figures in the Jab Jab's tar -or charcoal -smeared body. The practice recalls the Ekpo ancestral masquerades of the Ibibio people of southeastern Nigeria.

The Jab Jab character has survived, in spite of innumerable efforts to regulate it or to ban it outright.These many efforts, by the police, legislators and others - have all failed because the Jab Jab is organically linked to a people that yearns for authentic self-expression and cultural continuity with Africa. This yearning for continuity expresses itself in the word "Yaye", the only word the so-called Jab Jab uses to describe himself.


Pageant Mas

Each parish has its own brand of traditional mas usually represented by Short Knees, Vekou and Wild Indians.

With Arab-like head coverings, jumbo collars, batwing sleeves and three-quarter

(short knee) baggy trousers, the Short knee Bands are now the most prevalent of the traditional masqueraders. Almost identical in appearance, they dance through the roads from their respective villages, into the town of St. George’s, passionately chanting, boxing the air and scattering baby powder with abandon.

Next come the modern costumed bands of revellers, who cross the stage at the National Stadium and then parade through the streets of the capital city of St. George’s in the afternoon sun, gyrating to the beat of the year’s most popular calypsos. Listen out for the song most played throughout the day, as this is the basis for the Annual Road March King Competition. Costumed bands are often heralded by the arrival of the King and Queen of the band, the large costumes which vied for King and Queen of Carnival during the Sunday night Dimarche Gras.

Monday Night Mas

Carnival Monday Ends With The Monday Night Mas' Street Jump-Up, Where Party Goers In Brightly Coloured T-Shirt Bands, Wave Fluorescent Wands And Dance Through The Streets Into The Wee Hours Of The Tuesday Morning.

SpiceMas 2013 Schedule


















Launch of Carnival

June 2nd

National Stadium

Opening of Spicemas,  Carnival City

June 14th

Fort Matthew

Junior Panorama semis & Bomb Tune Competition

June 30th








Soca Quarterfinal

July 5th

Cuthbert Peters Park Gouyave: St. John

Soca Quarterfinal

July 6th

Victoria Hard Court: Victoria St. Mark

Soca Quarterfinal

July 7th

Fond Recreation Ground St. Patrick

Soca Quarterfinal

July 8th

La Sagesse Natural Works St. David

Spicemas Corp. &

July 14th


LIME Road Show


Calypso Tent judging

July 17 - 22

Around the Place

Groovy Semis

July 26th

Fort Matthew

LIME Soca Monarch Semis

July 27th

Victoria Park Grenville

Traditional Mas Exhibition/Competition

July 28th

Victoria : St. Mark

Melody Pappitette, Calypso Semis

July 29th

Victoria Park: Grenville







Children's Carnival Frolic

August 4th

National Stadium

National Queen Show

August 9th

National Stadium

GCC/LIME Soca Monarch

August 10th

National Stadium


August 11th

National Stadium

Dimanche Gras

August 12th

National Stadium


August 13th

Grand Anse to St. George's

Pageant Mas

August 13th

Grand Anse to St. George's

Monday Night Mas

August 13th

Grand Anse to St. George's

Parade of the Bands

August 14th

Grand Anse to  St. George's


Grenada Carnival Committee


Grenada Carnival Committee, Suite 133,

Grenada National Stadium

PO Box 724, St. George's,

Grenada, W.I.

Telephone: (473) 435-2839 or (473) 435-5869

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Website: www.spicemasgrenada.com

Grenada Board of Tourism


The Grenada Board of Tourism

Grenada Ministerial Complex, Tanteen

PO Box 293 St. George’s

Grenada, W.I.

Telephone: (473) 440-2279 | Fax: (473) 440-6637

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Website: www.grenadagrenadines.com

Carnival Management Committee

  • Colin Dowe – Chair

  • Jennifer Woodroffe – Deputy Chair

  • Hugh Dolland – Special Advisor

  • Henry Joseph – Financial Consultant

  • Dwight McIntyre

  • Adrian Francis

  • Susan Jones-Benjamin

  • Gordon Hamilton

  • Dexter Mitchell

Other Members of the GCC

  • 1 Representative from each of the six (6) parish carnival committees

  • Mr. Lenny Gittens, Representative from the Grenada Mas Band Association

  • Mr. Michael Robertson, Representative from the Grenada SteelbandAssociation

  • 1 Representative from the Calypso fraternity (Association)

  • 1 Representative from the Media Workers Association (MWAG)

  • Mr. Jude Mitchell (Ole Mas)

  • Mr. Steve Duncan (Promotions)

  • Mr. Carl Lewis (Project Management & Sponsorship Procurement)

  • Ms. Marcia Frederick (Min. of Foreign Affairs – Protocol)

  • Mr. Silvan Chang (Stage/Set Management)

  • Mr. Leon Francis

  • Royal Grenada Police Force – Edwin Martin

  • 1 Representative from the Grenada Board of Tourism – contact Mrs. Nicole Moultrie

  • 1 Representative from LIME – contact Mrs. Josephine Walters

Subcommittee Chairs


  • Calypso: Dexter Mitchell

  • Steelband: Michael Archibald

  • Mas: Adrian Francis

  • Public Relations