Festival activities to be staged in western Jamaica by the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC), were launched today (July 21), at the Wexford Hotel, in Montego Bay, St. James.
The events, which will take place in St. James, Hanover, Trelawny and Westmoreland, from July 25 to August 6, include Emancipation vigils, Independence thanksgiving church services, street gala and dance, civic ceremonies and float parades. There will also be a special Emancipation lecture at the Calvary Baptist Church Hall, in Montego Bay, on July 26.
Acting Field Services Director with the JCDC, Marjorie Leyden Vernon, gave details of the activities, while Miss St. James Festival Queen 2009, Crystal Blake, officially launched the 2009 festival events for the region.
With the activities being held nationally under the theme: ‘I Believe in Jamaica’, Mrs. Vernon used the launching ceremony to thank the many sponsors in the region, including Minister of Water and Housing and Member of Parliament for North West St. James, Hon. Dr. Horace Chang, who contributed $2 million from the Constituency Development Fund (CDF); the Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF), which contributed $5 million; and persons and businesses that are donating some $6 million in cash and kind.
Jamaica Festival Song Top Ten Finalist, Chris Christie (right) and his back-up singers, entertaining the audience, at the launch of festival events in western Jamaica, held at the Wexford Court Hotel, in Montego Bay, St. James, today (July 21).
Meanwhile, Councillor in the St. James Parish Council and Chairman of the Montego Bay Independence Day Gala Committee, Mexine Bisasor, said that, “year after year we come together, not only to celebrate our Independence as well as Emancipation, but to also bring to the forefront of our minds, those precious and unforgettable moments, memories and important experiences that led up to our Independence.”
She argued that 47 years ago, the people of Jamaica won a great victory in gaining Independence, and today, “we are cherishing that moment and paying tribute to our mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters, who contributed to the struggles of a nation in want of total freedom.”
Miss Bisasor emphasised that the memories of those who struggled, should never be forgotten.