• JIS News

    Thousands of Jamaicans have been responding to this year’s Emancipation and Independence celebrations, showing that patriotism in Jamaica is alive and kicking.
    Speaking with JIS News, Public Relations Co-ordinator, Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC), Danielle Hopkins, said that, “I have definitely seen an increase in the number of patrons since last year.”
    “We have moved, with the exception of Augus’ Fair, into a larger venue, the National Indoor Sports Centre, where we had a number of the activities this year, and we have had almost capacity crowds at all the venues,” she pointed out.
    “At Augus’ Fair we probably had an estimated 3,000 people; at the World Reggae Dance Championship, the crowd grew to about 10,000; at Mello Go Roun’ we had a few thousand patrons; at the National Thanksgiving Service, there were about 2,000 persons and for the Culinary Arts Expo, we had at least 2,000 persons,” the Public Relations Co-ordinator pointed out.
    This show of support is exactly what the JCDC had in mind when they set out to ensure that Emancipation and Independence celebrations remain relevant to current and future generations.
    “Our aim at the beginning of the season was to provide an atmosphere where Jamaicans could come out and be proud to be Jamaicans and give people an opportunity to reminisce on what used to be and how Independence used to be celebrated,” Miss Hopkins explained.
    “I can say that the response from the Jamaican public this year has really been tremendous. We encourage people to come out in their national colours and we have really seen people making an effort. They wear something yellow, something green and the spirit of patriotism is really alive this festival,” she noted, while expressing pleasure at the turnout at Augus’ Fair, where she saw parents and grandparents bringing the young children out and teaching them about the various aspects of Jamaica.
    The Emancipation and Independence season will climax with the Festival Float Parade and Grand Gala on August 6. The parade will travel through the streets of Kingston and St. Andrew, while the Grand Gala will be hosted at the National Stadium. Jamaicans are being encouraged to come out in their numbers to witness extraordinary entertainment.