Community Festival brings out Penal's Finest 'Curry Duck' Cooks

Caption: Presentation by one of the teams at the St Patrick District Office's Community Festival. (Photo courtesy the Ministry of Community Development, Culture and the Arts)

July 5, 2017: The Bunsee Trace community came alive on Saturday 1st July, 2017 as the St Patrick District Office, Ministry of Community Development, Culture and the Arts hosted its Community Festival with a “Curry Duck, Dhal and Murtani Competition” 2017 at the Bunsee Trace Activity Centre, Penal.

Themed, Community Festival: A Family Affair, this was the second of six community festivals to take place across Trinidad as part of the in commemoration of Community Development Day which will be celebrated on July 5.

The competition began at 2:00 p.m. where 10 groups fired up their chulhas (firesides) to see who would win the first prize of $1,500. While the groups used their puknies (long steel pipes to blow into the fires) to keep the fires going, patrons of the Community Festival were invited to visit one of Trinidad’s lesser-known mud volcanoes – the Bunsee Trace Mud Volcano. This natural attraction is made up of 3 different volcanoes surrounded by soft, grey mud.

According to Basdeo Mootilal, Community Development Officer II (Ag.), “The St Patrick Community Development District office believes that we should really have more people know about this area, so we decided to upgrade this area. The beautification project upgrade was done by Mohan Bachoo - a Landscaping and Ornamental Plants Tutor of the Community Education Programme,”   After the visit, one participant from Arima said that “I had never even heard of this Mud Volcano before. I am really glad I had the chance to come and experience this. ”

The Curry Duck, Dhal and Murtani Competitors then lined up their dishes for the judges to assess based on Taste; Presentation; Explanation of Ingredients Used and Originality. The competition was a close one with many of the entrants taking the presentation aspect of the competition very seriously. At the end the winners were:

  • Best Dhal: Penal Rock/Bunsee Trace Village Council
  • Best Murtani (roasted melongene, tomato, ochro, pepper, onion and garlic):  Bunsee Trace Youth Group
  • Best Curry Duck/Overall Winner: Bunsee Trace Youth Group

Ms Susan Corbett, Director - Community Development Division was high in praise praised the activity, “Today has been quite an enjoyable event. It has truly achieved our objective of bringing the people together to be part of community activities and projects. This Community Festival has brought youth, older persons, men and women to participate in the competitions and I thank you all for your involvement.”

The Ministry of Community Development, Culture and the Arts’ Community Festivals, dubbed “A Family Affair” and will continue with:


Nariva/Mayaro Community Festival 2017

Guayaguayare Festival of the Heart

Saturday 8th July
10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

Guayaguayare Community Centre

Art Exhibition, Pictorial Exhibition, Capoeira Demonstration, Pan Shoot Out (Solo)   

Contact: 644-0849


St George West Community Festival 2017
Saturday 22nd July
10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Beausejour, Blue Basin Waterfall, Diego Martin
Tour and Mini Hike to Waterfall, Cook Out, Moko Jumbies, Bamboo Bursting, Craft Exhibits and more
Contact: 623-6929


St George East Community Festival 2017
Sunday 6th August
10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

Talparo Recreation Grounds

Sporting Competitions, Cultural Showcase, Cuisine Corner, Community Artifacts and Craft Display

Contact: 662-4241


Victoria Community Festival 2017
Sugar Cane Festival - Sweet and Sombre
Saturday 15th July
2:00pm to 10:00pm
Lower Barrackpore Recreational Ground
Re-enactment of "A Day in the Life of a Sugar Cane Worker's Family,” Talent Competition, Cultural Programme, Live Band, Children's Corner, Local Cuisine

Contact: 657-7075/652-5203


Getting Ready: A member of one of the competing groups for the “Curry Duck, Dhal and Murtani Competition” uses a puknie to blow the chulha (fireside) while his team mate stands ready to start the meal. The Competition was the second of six Community Festivals hosted by the Ministry of Community Development, Culture and the Arts. 


Bunsee Trace Mud Volcano: Patrons at the St. Patrick Community Festival has the chance to visit the Bunsee Trace Mud Volcano in Penal.


Susan Corbett, Director – Community Development Division presents the Best Curry Duck/Overall Winner: Bunsee Trace Youth Group with a cheque. 




For further information please contact:

The Communications Unit

Ministry of Community Development, Culture and the Arts

868-624-5004 Ext. 5140/5147



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