By Orville Williams
With just a few weeks to go until the much-anticipated first entertainment event since the start of the pandemic, it appears plans are coming together for the Antigua and Barbuda Promoters Association.
The group – which comprises several local event promoters – decided late last month that they would all collaborate to host the first event, so that all the promoters would become aware of the necessary requirements and protocols that will be expected in the planning and execution.
The tentative date remains July 16, and the initial event will only cater to 300 fully-vaccinated people.
Speaking to Observer yesterday, Jime Hunte who sits on the interim board of the Promoters Association, confirmed that plans are indeed moving ahead, with an early announcement set to be made this week.
“We did a site visit at the venue last week [and] we are currently looking to announce the venue. We’re trying to make sure that all the venues fit the Covid requirements, so maybe on Thursday we’ll make a venue announcement,” Hunte said.
As part of the agreement to restart the entertainment sector, all events in the ‘first stage’ must be outdoors, to reduce the level of risk that an indoor, enclosed space could pose.
Additionally, the anti-Covid-19 measures still being encouraged across the island must also be a staple at these events, i.e., handwashing and temperature checking stations.
Hunte also explained that the relevant authorities have already assessed and approved a handful of venues that can be used to host the events, in a bid to perhaps make the planning and execution a bit more seamless.
“There are pre-approved venues that the task force went out and [selected]. They have gone out and looked at several popular venues and tried to ascertain if they make sense… [given the 300-person capacity limit].
“So, there are a couple of pre-approved venues like Coolidge Cricket Grounds, the Botanical Gardens and a few more that have been pre-approved for events. [These] are already retrofitted with handwashing stations and they’re spacious enough to accommodate 300 people.”
The group is hopeful that the first event will be incident-free, as they look forward to the ‘future of feting’ and making up all the time that has been lost over the past year.