Jamaica 56 Celebrations in the United States

Photo: Derrick Scott Jamaica’s Ambassador to the United States, Her Excellency Audrey Marks (fourth left), joins the large congregation at the Jamaica 55 independence service held last year at Dumbarton Chapel, Howard University School of Law in Washington DC. (Photo Derrick Scott)

Story Highlights

  • Jamaicans residing in Washington DC, Baltimore, Philadelphia and Atlanta will be celebrating the country’s 56th anniversary of Independence with a number of activities from August 4 to 26.
  • The Embassy of Jamaica in Washington DC, under the leadership of Ambassador Audrey Marks, will be engaged in several events, in collaboration with various Jamaican organisations.
  • In Baltimore, Ambassador Marks will deliver the keynote address at the Jamaican Association of Maryland’s (JAM) annual Independence gala at Martin’s West on August 4.

Jamaicans residing in Washington DC, Baltimore, Philadelphia and Atlanta will be celebrating the country’s 56th anniversary of Independence with a number of activities from August 4 to 26.

The Embassy of Jamaica in Washington DC, under the leadership of Ambassador Audrey Marks, will be engaged in several events, in collaboration with various Jamaican organisations.

In Baltimore, Ambassador Marks will deliver the keynote address at the Jamaican Association of Maryland’s (JAM) annual Independence gala at Martin’s West on August 4.

JAM will use the occasion to present its Marcus Garvey Award to local philanthropist Cecil Clarke, and its Community Service Award to Pastor Ezra Sterling.

Dumbarton Chapel at Howard University School of Law is the venue for the annual service of thanksgiving to be held on Sunday, August 5, commencing at 11:00 a.m.

Ambassador Marks will deliver the Prime Minister’s Independence Message, while Senior Pastor of the Apostolic Church of Christ in Syracuse, New York, Rev. G. Maxwell Jones, will deliver the sermon. A reception follows the church service.

On Sunday, August 12, JAM will host an Independence thanksgiving service at the Baltimore Central New Testament Church of God, beginning at 5:00 p.m. The sermon will be delivered by Rev. Stanley Murray.

The DC World Reggae Festival will take place on Sunday, August 19 at the RFK Stadium festival grounds, featuring Shabba Ranks, Chronixx, and Toots and the Maytals. The event is endorsed by the Embassy of Jamaica.

Curtains will come down on the Independence activities in Baltimore on Saturday, August 25, with a free family day picnic at Rosedale Park.

Over in Philadelphia, Independence activities begin on Saturday, August 11, with the Team Jamaica Bickle Independence Gala, at the Calabash.

On Sunday, August 12, a service of thanksgiving will be held at the Philadelphia Seventh-day Adventist Church, with Rev. Wesley Pinnock to deliver the sermon.

Philadelphia will wrap up its celebratory activities on August 26 with the Caribbean Festival at Philadelphia Penn on the Waterfront.

In Atlanta, Jamaicans and friends will join in a thanksgiving service on August 5 at St. Timothy United Methodist Church, and on August 11, the Atlanta Jamaican Association will stage its annual Independence Ball & Scholarship Awards at the Sheraton Atlanta Hotel.

Jamaican Olympic bobsledder, Devon Harris, will give the main address.

“We are looking forward to the opportunity to stage these events, along with our partners and friends who have helped to make Jamaica the wonderful country that it is,” said Ambassador Marks.

“I hope that all Jamaicans in the diaspora will continue the great tradition of sharing the Jamaican spirit. I encourage all Jamaicans and our friends to embrace this year’s theme; ‘Jamaica 56 – One Love…One Family’ in celebration of Jamaica, land we love,” she added.

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