Hundreds of Jamaicans from every walk of life enjoyed the feast of cultural offerings at the Jamaica 55 Independence Village held at the National Arena from July 29 to August 6.
The nine-day event, put on by the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC), featured presentations in the performing arts and displays of traditional food, art and craft, among other things.
For the children, there was a kiddies’ village, where they were entertained and educated about the nation’s culture.
The celebrations included nightly entertainment shows such as the Standing Ovation concert; Jamaica Gospel Song Competition Grand Final; Miss Jamaica Festival Queen competition Grand Coronation; Festival Fashion Flair; Mello-Go-Roun; World Reggae Dance Championship; and Kingston Reggae Night.
Several organisations set up display booths highlighting their history and contribution to national development.
Among them were Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF), Institute of Jamaica (IOJ), Jamaica National Heritage Trust (JNHT) and Jamaica Defence Force (JDF).
Constable Bryan of the JCF told JIS News that persons were able to learn about the history of the organisation and how it has evolved over the years.
“As an organisation, which is celebrating its 150th anniversary, what better way to celebrate than to come to these events and inform and interact with the citizens and show them where we are coming from and where we are going,” he pointed out.



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One patron told JIS News that the Independence Village helps to foster cultural awareness.
“It’s a really good concept. I really like it and I’m really enjoying it with the family. I would like it to continue so that generations to come will appreciate the culture,” she said.
Another patron, Kim Fennell, agreed, noting that such events help to foster unity among citizens.
“I want Jamaicans to be supportive of other Jamaicans and I want the young people to come out and support their culture. It is so important for our growth,” she said.
The village was part of the Emancipation and Independence celebrations held under the theme: ‘Celebrating Jamaicans at Home and Abroad’.


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