Moriah’s ole time wedding draws large crowd

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The bride and groom leads the wedding processing through the streets of Moriah, Tobago on Saturday. – David Reid

A large crowd showed up in Moriah on Saturday to witness its ole time wedding, a prominent feature of the Tobago Heritage Festival.

As usual, the wedding took place at the Moriah Moravian Church shortly after 1pm. Afterwards, the participants, decked in their traditional wedding attire, held a procession through the village, delighting spectators with their signature brush back dance.

Scenes from the re-enactment of the ole time wedding in Moriah, Tobago on Saturday. – David Reid

A large number of young children were also included in the wedding party.

Mason Hall/Moriah assemblyman Ian Pollard, who attended the wedding, told Sunday Newsday he was pleased that many young children are becoming involved in the event.

“I know that the Moriah ole time wedding is in good hands,” Pollard said, adding he was also pleased with the work of the organisers.

Pollard, who is also the THA Secretary of Settlements, Public utilities and Rural Development, joked that he would like to see some controversy in the wedding in the coming years.

“I would like to see some changes where the groom does not show up. You must put a little spin on it. Long ago, you had guys who never used to show up at weddings so a little twist would be nice. But all in all, I am glad to see so many people coming out and participating.”

Wedding guests in the procession during the re-enactment of the ole time wedding at Moriah, Tobago on Saturday. – David Reid

Former area representative Kwesi Des Vignes also participated in the wedding.

Dressed as a massa, Des Vignes said he is maintaining a family tradition.

“My grandfather was the first massa in the early 1960’s so it is really a family tradition,” he said.

Like Pollard, Des Vignes said he was also heartened by the turnout.

“It is good to see everyone back out, post covid19, with the village buzzing with excitement. I am seeing a lot of tourists here which is good for the people of Moriah and Tobago.”

Des Vignes said the ole time wedding predates the heritage festival and was a gift from the people of Moriah to Trinidad and Tobago when the country achieved independence in 1962.

He described it as the linchpin of the festival.

The bride and groom in all their splendour during the re-enactment of the ole time wedding in Moriah, Tobago on Saturday. – David Reid

“It is usually the first celebration of the festival and the people of Moriah are always very proud to re-enact their ole time wedding.”

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