Carnivals have a long history on the Isle of Wight and in 2019 Cowes Carnival will have been going 123 years.
However, it was almost only 122 years. A lack of sponsors coming forward this year meant the committee were almost at the point of folding.
Committee: “Jodie was like a gift from God”
That was until Jodie Seager came along. The Carnival Committee say “Jodie was like a gift from God”.
They say they’ve found it hard to bounce back since the catastrophic fire in 2016 and have struggled from one year to the next, covering most of the costs out of their own pockets.
Committee: “Jodie has given us the will to carry on”
A spokesperson for Cowes Carnival told OnTheWight,
“We are overwhelmed by what Jodie has done. To be honest we have never recovered from the fire. We have just struggled from one year to the next covering most of the costs out of our own pockets.
“As nearly all of us are pensioners this has had an impact on our lives and we realise we cannot carry on the way things are. We were so determined that Cowes would not lose its carnival.
“Then along came Jodie, who was like a gift from God. She has given us the will to carry on.”
Donate items for the summer fete
Jodie is appealing for donations for a big summer fete that she is organising.
She’s been rallying support on Facebook and says,
“123 years it has been going and at this rate we may not have Santa going around this Christmas. Over 350 children gave him a letter last year, and every single one got a reply! Please, please let’s save our traditions.”
She’s hoping residents will be generous in their donations of unwanted teddies, toys, tins, wine, and any typical tombola prizes.
Big Summer Fete
The Big Summer Fete (which takes place on 8th June in the Community Club, Park Road) will include; tug of war, cake sale, arts & crafts, live music, tombola, fancy dress competition, traditional fete games, bake-off competition, wellie wanging and more.
Jodie, who says she’s watched Santa’s float go through the streets of Cowes for 28 years, explains her motivation for getting involved.
“My daughter was crowned Senior Queen this year. I have never had any involvement in the Cowes Carnival before this, and it was only due to her getting a spot on the float that drew my attention to the struggles the committee are facing.
“Six beautiful little girls are to be on the Queen’s float this year and without sponsors or fundraising they might not be one.
“They would be totally let down and it would break my heart, for all of them and Cowes if we lose it.
“I couldn’t imagine not having a Santa float this Christmas.”
If you’d like to make a donation of something for the fete, get in contact with Jodie via Facebook.