The Minister of Local Government and Culture Fortuna Belrose has said she is heartened by the response to the start of the inaugural St Lucia Summer festival.
The St Lucia Jazz festival – the first of six events planned under the banner – ended with a major concert at the Pigeon Island National Landmark on Sunday.
Belrose said despite some challenges, St Lucians responded in a very positive way to the event.
Amid reports of poor attendance, Belrose said four of the five major jazz events were well patronized based on preliminary figures, with the exception being the Saturday show.
“We trust that we did a good job of providing an event that St Lucians can go off now and indicate to their friends, relatives abroad that they had a very good experience at this year’s Jazz and they’ll be here for the next event which is next month,” Belrose said.
Belrose added that St Lucians demonstrated the festival is still in its budding stages.
She commended the organizing committee for being able to deliver a “quality event” which she said was produced entirely by St Lucians.
St Lucian Musician Ronald “Boo” Hinkson is optimistic that the re-branded festival will prove to be a success.
“It’s a thought process that has to be developed and I would hope that over the next few years the restructuring is going to be successful,” he said.
The Tourism Minister Dominic Fedee revealed the budget for this year’s Jazz Festival was $4 million; compared to the $14 million spent to host the event last year.
The next event planned on the St Lucia Summer Festival calendar is the Roots and Soul Festival scheduled for June 16-18.