Goodbye, Caribana; hello, Scotiabank Caribbean Carnival Toronto

Goodbye, Caribana; hello, Scotiabank Caribbean Carnival Toronto

The festival formerly known as Caribana (Image: torontocitylife)

A street festival by any other name would be as much fun? We sure hope so, because today our beloved Caribana died, and the Scotiabank Caribbean Carnival Toronto was born out of its ashes. The new name is a bit of a mouthful and kind of painful to type, but it’s the new name all the same, and that’s basically that. The back story is somewhat convoluted (read more here), but essentially, the Ontario Superior Court ordered the street festival to make the change earlier this month.

The Toronto Star has the story:

The name change, ordered earlier this month by the Ontario Superior Court, is the latest in a long-running battle over the massively popular festival.

The name “Caribana” is trademarked by the Caribana Arts Group (CAG), the successor of the Caribbean Cultural Committee (CCC), which founded the festival in 1967 but lost control in 2006.

Does this mean that absolutely no cultural event in Toronto can exist anymore without being corporate-branded? The answer is yes, although not because of today’s news. According to OpenFile, the Internet’s reaction to the name change was swift and overwhelmingly negative. But we feel a giant shrug of our shoulders is more appropriate (though we do think the new moniker is clunky, awkward and utterly boring). People still ask for directions to the SkyDome, and professors still refer to their classes at OCAD (not OCADU). We’re pretty sure that this rebrand is destined for the same fate, except for newspaper copy editors, who will likely just create a new Word macro for “the carnival formerly known as Caribana.”

It’s no longer Caribana: Festival unveils its new name [Toronto Star]