Carnival Cruise Line celebrated the Bahamas’ 50th anniversary of independence in grand style aboard the fleet’s flagship, Carnival Celebration, with a special event on Sunday, October 1.
The event took place in Miami, Florida, in honor of the connections between the Bahamas and Carnival Cruise Line, and is one of several Bahamian independence celebratory events this year.
While Carnival Celebration was docked in Miami on Sunday, October 1, 2023, Bahamas Prime Minister Philip Davis and US Representative Federica Wilson, the founder of the Florida Ports Caucus and honorary co-host for the event, joined Carnival Corporation President, CEO, and Chief Climate Officer Josh Weinstein for a special anniversary event.
The event commemorates the anniversary of the Bahamas’ national independence, as well as marks the launch of the 5,000 Role Models of Excellence Project, a mentoring program founded by Wilson that has had a dramatic impact on South Florida young men and will now be expanded to Bahamian youth as well.
“It was an honor to stand alongside [Carnival Cruise Line] as we celebrated this historic occasion and announced the launch of the first international chapter of the 5,000 Role Models of Excellence Project in the Bahamas—this is truly a dream come true,” said Wilson. “Together, we celebrate the spirit of excellence and unity that defines our communities and look forward to a brighter future ahead.”
The 5,000 Role Models of Excellence Project began in 1993 in Miami-Dade County with the goal of working with at-risk boys to help them choose a better path than crime and violence through supportive, positive relationships with adult male role models. Now, several other Florida counties also use the program, and the Bahamas will have the first international chapter.
Carnival Cruise Line has long supported initiatives in the Bahamas, ever since the cruise line first began sailing to the diverse island nation 51 years ago.
“We are so grateful for our partnership with this remarkable nation, which goes back to the very beginning of our company and has only strengthened over the last 50 years,” said Weinstein. “The Bahamas has always been one of the most popular destinations among our guests, thanks to the hospitality of the Bahamian people, the natural beauty of the islands, and the nation’s rich culture.”
Today, the cruise line visits five ports of call in the island nation: the capital, Nassau, as well as Freeport and Bimini, along with two private island destinations – Half Moon Cay and Princess Cay.
Carnival Cruise Line is also developing Celebration Key on Grand Bahama Island, a $200 million (USD) project that will become an exclusive Carnival Cruise Line destination with a strong focus on Bahamian culture and local natural beauty. The new port of call is expected to open to guests in July 2025, and the cruise line has already released itineraries featuring the new destination.
The weekend event aboard the 183,521-gross-ton, Excel-class Carnival Celebration is only the most recent of several celebrations the cruise line has hosted in recognition of the Bahamas 50th Anniversary of Independence.
In June, the cruise line hosted a Golden Jubilee breakfast aboard Carnival Legend while the ship was docked in Freeport, with community members and local officials onboard for the occasion, which included recognizing parliamentarians for their service to their nation and communities.
Likewise, in early September, guests and local leaders aboard Mardi Gras enjoyed a special Junkanoo experience, luncheon, and other activities while the ship was docked in Nassau.
For the island nation, celebrations will continue throughout the year to mark the grand occasion, with parades, performances, and many other special events to enjoy.
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