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Streets of Freedom: all you need to know

Published on 7 July 2016

The National Arts Festival’s annual street parade is the event that signals the closing of one Festival and the possibilities that will inspire the next.

With the theme Streets of Freedom, this year’s parade – the seventh annual parade – honours the 40th anniversary of the 1976 student uprising, the day on which South Africa’s youth took to the streets and brought the country to the world’s attention.

Celebrating the commitment of the 1976 generation, Grahamstown’s streets will be filled with vibrant colours, entrancing sounds, captivating sights and moving textures. Now in its seventh year, the parade is a broad-based community celebration which will see giant puppets, stilt-walkers, marching bands and street dancers form a long and colourful procession through the streets of Grahamstown – giving the youth of 2016 a platform to celebrate the freedom that is now enshrined in South Africa’s Constitution.

Streets of Freedom draws on the participation and contribution of community groups, schools and locals as well as visiting artists. So join the crowds lining the streets of Grahamstown on Saturday and Sunday – and celebrate the gifts of creativity.

  • Streets of Freedom is presented with the support of the Sarah Baartman District Municipality and the Eastern Cape Department of Sport, Recreation, Arts and Culture

Saturday’s parade

The parade will begin at 11am at the Khutliso Daniels Secondary School in Joza. It will proceed towards Maweti, turning left into Nompondo Street. It will turn left into Vellem Street, until it reaches Sani Street. It will turn into Makana Way in front of PA, proceeding up Mbongela Street, and back to the finish at Khutliso Daniels Secondary School in Ncame Street.

Sunday’s parade

The parade will begin at 12 noon at the Link Street taxi rank. It will proceed down Beaufort Street, turn right into Bathurst Street up to Commemoration Church. It will then turn left, passing the Cathedral. It will travel up High Street and finish on the Drostdy lawns.