Maun carnival; a game changer in tourism destinations

Young artists excited about the carnival

Local Artists and small businesses are expected to reap rewarding benefits from the Maun Carnival, an annual showcase of culture, creative arts and music scheduled to take place during the Independence holidays in the tourist town of Maun.

Over 250 local artists and SMMEs are expected to directly benefit from the inaugural three-day festivities that starts on September 29th and ends on October 1st, 2022.

Speaking at a media briefing at Maun Lodge,the event coordinator, Emang Mutapati said that the Maun Carnival has been marked on the Botswana Tourism Organisation’s (BTO) annual calendar of events, which is a great development because the event, which is expected to attract at least 10,000 revellers to the music festival on the 30th will further enhance the status of the tourist town of Maun as a sought after destination in Botswana.

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“Maun needs this. We all know that Ngamiland’s economy is dependent on tourism and in 2020 the sector was brought to its knees by covid-19, hence the need to revive it. This event will definitely create employment for locals, both young and old,” said Mutapati.

It was against this background that Mutapati and her team approached BTO with the carnival idea.

“You all know that Maun used to have its own popular carnival which used to attract artists and tourists from as far as CapeTown, South Africa, but that was a long time ago and we want to bring it back because it is important for the economy of this town,” Mutapati further noted.

Describing Maun as a melting pot of different tribes , ethnic and cultural groups, Mutapati expressed excitement of what lays ahead with a colourful street parades and a display of different cultures and subcultures on September 29th, culminating with a music festival and a poetry night on the 30th and fun tours on the Thamalakane River on October 1st.

The aim she further stated, is to get more local tourists to explore and experience destinations within their country and make Maun their destination of choice while locals reap directly from the economic value chain.

She further noted that Maun is the homestead of the country’s tourism with an array of interesting and beautiful features that make the place the right one for the Carnival, “Our vision is to support government and BTO in their drive to effectively promote domestic and international tourism while creating employment for the people of Maun and Botswana at large. The Carnival is a fanfare for all demographics ,” Mutapati noted.

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Meanwhile BTO’s tourism development manager, Thatayaone Mmapatsi made a call for small businesses to seize the moment to optimise benefit from this event.

Speaking at the same media briefing in Maun, Mmapatsi noted that his organisations partnership with Maun Carnival will ensure that as a collective, they contribute towards the resuscitation of tourism in Maun post the COVID 19 pandemic, “The carnival promises to create jobs for hospitality and tour operators, taxi services providers, creative and the entire informal sector .We must all embrace it and leverage from it,” he said.

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