BRT Weekend postponed: Carnival bands consulting with Jamaican government

The popular BRT Weekend that was scheduled to be held in Ocho Rios, Jamaica, this weekend has been postponed until July.

The BRT Weekend will be held from July 31 to August 2.

The organisers made the announcement on Wednesday, a day after the Ministry of Health and Wellness in Jamaica announced that the country had confirmed its first case of the coronavirus.

And it seems the BRT organisers are not taking any chances. In a press release posted on their website and social media pages, the team expressed concerns over the safety of patrons.

“The unfortunate spread of the coronavirus has affected all parts of the globe. This disease has now been detected in more than 100 locations internationally,” the release said.

“At this time, we continue to consult with the Government about precautions.”

— Carnival in Jamaica statement

“The CEOs of BRT Weekend are very concerned about the impact and risk factors COVID-19 poses on thousands of committed tourist attendees expected for this weekend.”

So, instead of being held from March 13 to 15, the event will now be held from July 31 to August 2 on Jamaica’s Emancipation Weekend.

Meanwhile, Carnival in Jamaica, which was scheduled to end with road marches on April 19, has not been postponed or cancelled. The organisers of the three carnival bands – Xaymaca, Xodus and Bacchanal – in a joint statement, said they are now consulting with the government before making a decision.

“At this time, we continue to consult with the Government about precautions to be adopted over the next few months and the implications for the entire entertainment and tourism industries,” the statement said.

“We assure our masqueraders that we remain in full execution mode and are optimistic that Jamaica will be able to minimise the effects on our people and visitors in the near term.”