There is a need for more merchants to come on board in support of City Fest.

Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the National Cultural Foundation (NCF), Cranston Browne, made the appeal yesterday as he delivered an address at the launch of the Crop Over City Fest & Ceremonial Delivery of the Last Canes in Broad Street, The City.

According to the CEO, many businesses remain slow in taking advantage of the opportunity to be a part of the festivities in The City.

One of the objectives of this event he said included its ability to attract a large audience that could in turn allow the merchants in the area to generate revenue from targeting this captive market.

The CEO called for those merchants, small and large, who had not already come on board, to consider the benefits of doing so through their own promotions to attract persons into their stores and restaurants during this year???s First Citizens Crop Over City Fest and Ceremonial Delivery of the Last Canes.

The NCF CEO noted that those who ventured into the historic city space for City Fest last year could attest to its success, with unprecedented numbers converging on this UNESCO World Heritage Property Historic Bridgetown and its Garrison.

He went on to say that few events hosted in The City and its environs could boast of this achievement. He alluded to the fact that the wheels were already in motion to ensure that this year???s City Fest would surpass that of the first year.

Additionally, he stated that with a heavy focus on the development of the cultural industries and on the cultivation of cultural tourism products as emerging economic alternatives, many developing nations like Barbados had been centering their attentions on the significant contribution of Festivals to the cultural and economic growth of their local communities.

The CEO mentioned that tying the Festival and its related events to historical and cultural themes, such as this year???s City Fest tagged, ???Sugar then; Sweetness Now!??????, created an opportunity for the Foundation to attract locals and visitors alike who were in the market for these types of cultural/heritage tourism packages.

In closing, Mr. Browne recognised the contribution of the Foundation???s committed sponsors without whom efforts to sustain this successful Festival package as a viable cultural tourism offering would not be possible.??City Fest will take place on Saturday, June 27, from 12:00 p.m. in The City. All are invited.

Author: National Cultural Foundation/BGIS

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