How the West has wonBETTY WEST says she is going all out this year. (Lennox Devonish)
By Sherie Holder-Olutayo | Fri, May 04, 2012 - 12:02 AM
Betty West has seen MUCH in her 60 years plus of “living”. She’s resided in the region; in Europe; finally making Barbados her home. She has raised three children, all successful in their own right, and has the joy of being part of the baby boomer generation.
But what sets Betty apart is her zest for life, her ability to reinvent herself, and to look beyond her personal frailties and keep going strong. At 70 she had earned her place in the Crop Over record book as one of the icons of the festival; and, despite her age and battle with Parkinson’s disease, she shows no signs of slowing down.
In fact, Betty has primed herself for this year’s festival and is proving to be in top form. She’s forming key alliances which she hopes will give her Crop Over band an edge in this year’s competition.
“For five years Pirates Inn has been on board as a sponsor, but this year it’s doing much more. It has become a partner,” Betty said. This partnership with Betty has been spearheaded by Renee Coppin, manager of Pirates Inn.
“I have a tremendous amount of respect for Betty . . .,” Renee said. “This year we came up with a formula that allows Betty to draw on my more administrative skills and she could focus more on the creative side of things. There is more financial input, but it’s a partnership in terms of using our strengths to take the band forward.”
Once again she is looking to flex her creative prowess in a big way this year, though she is keeping tight-lipped on her band’s concept until after her band launch tomorrow at Cricket Legends.
What Betty doesn’t plan on skimping on is her designs and artistry that have become a staple for Crop Over. “I can’t take the short way out,” Betty says of her costume designs.
“I’m going all out this year.”
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