Thousands of Cape Town minstrels are gathering to celebrate the city’s culture and history at the annual Cape Town Street Parade.

The Tweede Nuwe Jaar procession, which is usually held on the 2nd, is being held on Saturday.

It was shelved to Saturday out of respect for the Islamic Jum’ah observation, which coincided with the sunset on the traditional date.

Thousands of people are expected to line up along the parade route from the District Six to the city centre.

A flurry of colour, song and dance is the hallmark of the street party.

The Kaapse Klopse Karnival Association Director Muneeb Gambeno is promising a fun-filled day.

“This is really what life is about, smiles, laughter, fun-filled family and the real, right spirit to usher in the New Year in a true Cape Town fashion. We remember our ancestors. We are not remembering their perils and difficulties; we understand our history and the sacrifices that they made so we can understand our future and ourselves.”

The annual New Year’s festival celebrates the heritage and history of the people of Cape Town – dating back to the colonial era when Dutch colonialists used to give slaves a day off on the 2nd of January to celebrate the New Year in their own way.

It became a celebration of freedom in 1838 after the end of a four-year slave apprenticeship that had followed the abolishment of  slavery in 1834.

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