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The Santa Cruz Carnival It has already passed its meridian and is heading for the final stretch of its most atypical celebration. Yesterday, the center of the capital was a hive of activity. The assembly of scenarios such as the one in the Plaza del Príncipe, the installation of the first kiosks, the chemical toilets already in place, the electrical connections, in short, everything necessary for the Carnival to start on the street this Thursday.

Four days of practically uninterrupted festivities, in which, according to the organization’s forecasts, the figure of 800,000 people could be reached, “being optimistic”, adding the four days; while, with a more moderate forecast, “we could reach 640,000.”

These figures, as explained to DIARY OF NOTICES the Councilor for Fiestas, Alfonso Cabello, “comes out of the forecasts we have, for example, with public transport, which brings some 80,000 people a day to the city; Fred’s. Olsen and Armas, which are about 25,000 passengers, to which if we add the 12,000 people that we estimate pass through the fair, we would be around the numbers with which the organization works. Only for the Day Carnival on Saturday, which will start at 12 noon and tie with the night, until 6 in the morning, the figure of 325,000 people is considered in all that time.

With such spectacular prospects, it is not surprising that Alfonso Cabello acknowledges that he faces these four days with mixed feelings. “Many people tell me to get ready for something big, but objectively I don’t know what is going to happen, if it will be a Cavalcade Thursday, or if the Cavalcade Friday will be like a Saturday night. The numbers we have are forecasts based on transport data, hotel occupancy… but this Thursday of the Burial of the Sardine we don’t know what it will look like, nor how many people there will be”.

What seems clear is that “I do think there are going to be many people, because the indicators anticipate it, with hotel occupancy at 100% and vacation homes also at 100%, the increase in frequencies, both from Binter and from Arms and Fred. Olsen, in addition to public transport, so, a priori, all the conditions are in place for it to be a magical weekend, marked by Carnival, and to become the de facto capital of Carnival”. In addition, the councilor adds an important fact and that is that “there is nothing else with which to compete or compare ourselves. So, in principle, a frenetic Carnival starts on Thursday at nine at night and ends on Sunday at midnight.

When asked if the expectations of the June Carnival are being met, Cabello answers “yes”, since “it is developing quite successfully”. However, he clarifies that “it is true that the traditional order of the contests and galas is adapted to the needs of the Carnival, I am referring to starting with a Gala in which the times have not allowed part of the groups to collaborate. , because they are preparing their contests. We will resume the order next year, but we cannot forget that this Carnival was designed and conceived in a pandemic context, and that is what this order obeys.
The mayor of Fiestas points out that “we have crossed the equator of the Carnival with the great part of contests and galas, and, starting this Thursday, two years later we return to the streets with the Burial of the Sardine according to San Juan”.

Burial of the Sardine

And it is that, although the Sardine is pardoned, there will be fire this Thursday night, and not only because of the bonfires of San Juan. “The sardine is not going to burn, but the COVID is. After two years of social distancing, returning to Carnival, which in essence is social rapprochement, twinning, joy, as well as culture, heritage and economic impact, is great news to be able to do it again. It is a beautiful night, in which fire is called to devour the COVID and that the sardine is pardoned until next year at the Casa del Carnaval ”.

The councilor explains that the route is the same as in previous years, so the Sardine according to Saint John “will leave John Paul II’s environment, at midnight. At the end we are going to have two big concerts with Canarian orchestras until three in the morning, in the Plaza del Príncipe and in the Plaza de Candelaria, apart from the opening of the different kiosk areas”.

While Cabello speaks with DIARIO DE AVISOS, the background noise of the different montages sneaks into the conversation. “We are finishing the assemblies, the certifications of the electrical installations, security plans, meetings with Public Services, with urban furniture, with the Environment, in short, different organizational meetings of the last week. The city is a hive of activity prior to the start-up”, details the mayor.

Plus, she admits it’s one of her favorite parts, seeing the frenzy the city falls into the week before the block party.

Ride

Regarding the security of this Carnival, Cabello is forceful. “This year we have a reduced Carnival, but only on days, because the only thing that has not been reduced is the aspects that have to do with security, which are the same as for the February Carnival,” he said.

A security and organization that the mayor estimates can be evaluated more clearly with the organization of the Announcer Cavalcade this Friday, before which, he admits, he feels “excitement and nerves.”

“Organizationally, the biggest challenge is that of the Cavalcade, because we have several thousand people who go out on a great route of almost three kilometers, crossing the city with hundreds of thousands of people and trying to get to the end, and all to do it in a reasonable time, without mixing large audiences, it is complicated. Precisely today (yesterday) we started with two specific meetings about the Cavalcade”, he said.

Cabello gives what happened in 2020 as an example of what should not be done. “I think it has been the worst Cavalcade in recent years, where there was an excess of relaxation and not knowing how to do things on the part of the PSOE, with two floats crossed in the Orche, ambulances that did not arrive… and all the result of relaxation”. The tour will be the traditional one, starting at seven in the afternoon and with the forecast that it will be over by twelve at night.

Cabello ends by defending that “a great Carnival has been held so far, with contests and galas, which has allowed us to try many things and I think that the aspects that have been able to squeak have to do with the pandemic context. We have faced a Carnival between Carnivals”.

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J. A. Allen

Author, blogger, freelance writer. Hater of spiders. Drinker of wine. Mother of hellions.

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