Photos by Margaret Lampert.

We see so much joy and power in events that bring our whole Cambridge community together, and one incredible example is Cambridge Carnival.

Organized by our nonprofit partner Cambridge Carnival International, this parade and festival through the heart of our city has elevated the sights, tastes, and sounds of local Caribbean culture for nearly 30 years.

“Carnival is about expression of freedom,” said Nicola Williams, organizer and long-time leader of the festival. “Whoever you are, wherever you come from, you’re welcome! Carnival belongs to all of us.”

Cambridge Carnival is entirely volunteer run, leveraging the talents of local artists and artisans of all ages and capabilities and a host of partners. Sunday’s event filled the streets of Central Square and University Park with hundreds of people gathered for music, dancing, and joy. We were delighted to see our grant recipients—the youth- and family-led Cambridge Steel Pan Orchestra and Imagined in Cambridge! Award winner Soca Fusion performing for the community. As Nicola says, “it takes a village”—so many partners had a hand in the event—which is part of the magic of our community.