In Dominica, as in much of the rest of the Caribbean, Emancipation Day is a national holiday. Like many other former British colonies, Dominica celebrates this holiday on the first Monday of every August. Oftentimes, it’s simply referred to as “August Monday”.
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The Slavery Abolition Act of 1833 went into effect on 1 August 1834. The current date of Emancipation Day in Dominica attempts to approximate that date while also ensuring a long holiday weekend.
August Monday commemorates the end of slavery in Dominica. Even though it actually took years before slavery was finally fully abolished, a single day is picked out to focus on this transformation. The whole island celebrates in a big way, with musical performances, costumed dances, sports matches, and other events.
There are also official ceremonies held at Peebles Park in Roseau, where people listen to speeches, view the emancipation monument, and listen to a public concert.