In an effort to give back to the community Darius Avila of Beya Suites conceptualized the Battle of the Drums Initiative. The Battle of the Drums is a drumming competition and show that allows groups from Belize, Guatemala and Honduras to compete and display their musical artistry in playing five (5) different categories of Garifuna drumming.
The first Battle of the Drums was held in Punta Gorda Town on November 17, 2006 and was well received by spectators from home and abroad. The Battle of the Drums will be held each year in Punta Gorda Town on the Saturday before the 19th day of November (Garifuna Settlement Day). This competition and show has the potential of becoming a major tourist attraction and a catalyst for significant economic activity in the Punta Gorda Area during the period when it is hosted.
The proceeds from the show are used to invest in various Garifuna cultural retrieval projects in Punta Gorda Town and eventually in other Garifuna communities. Cultural retrieval projects include financing of Re-enactment ceremonies, financing of the revival of Wanaragua (John Canoe) drumming, singing and dancing, implementing Garifuna drumming in schools programs, and Garifuna oral history projects among others.
If you would like to contribute or hear more about the Battle of the Drums Initiative please contact us.