Jamaicans to celebrate nations 43rd Independence in South Florida

Jamaicans in South Florida communities are beginning to celebrate Jamaica’s 43rd anniversary of Independence with several activities throughout the tri-county area. All three counties have acknowledged the nation’s Independence with proclamations to be presented to the Consul General, Ricardo Allicock.

The Premier Independence Ball was held last Saturday, July 23 at the Signature Grand in Davie. Jamaica United Relief Association (JURA) and Members Only Social Club of Miami along with the Cornwall College and Immaculate Conception Alumni Associations jointly hosted that event. Entertainment was provided by Jamaica’s Fifty/Fifty Band. Proceeds raised from the Ball will benefit health and education projects in Jamaica.

Minister of State in the Ministry of Education, Hon. Donald Rhodd, will be the guest speaker at the 21st annual Grand Independence Ball to be held on Saturday, July 30, at the Renaissance Hotel, in downtown Miami. The Florida-based folk group, the Jamaica Folk Revue and the Bare Essentials band will provide entertainment. This event is hosted by Needy Kids of Jamaica, a South Florida non-profit group.

The seventh annual Culturama Concert returns to Miami with an added show in Tampa. Billed as Culturama 2005, this event is a showcase of various Jamaican traditional and folk art forms that include dance, song, and drama.

This year’s performances will include the Festival award-winning Clonmel Cultural Club which includes students from Clonmel Primary and Junior High schools from St. Mary, the Stella Maris Dance Group, Peace Makers Mento Band, the Tivoli Gardens Dancers and popular dance group the Nomads.
Local performers will include folkloric group, the Jamaica Folk Revue and the Tallawah mento band.

The show begins on Saturday, July 30 at the University of South Florida in Tampa. The Cultural performers will then play to audience at the Coral Springs Performing Arts Center on Sunday, July 31. The annual Culturama event is hosted by South Florida based Jamaica Awareness, Inc., and the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC).

The 14th annual Community health fair of the Palm Beaches will be held on Saturday, July 30 at the Children’s Medical Services of St. Mary’s Hospital in that area. The all-day event is hosted by the Jamaican of the Palm Beaches and the United Sports and Cultural Club associations of Jamaican volunteers.

Jamaicans in the Catholic Mission will celebrate the annual Independence Mass on Sunday, July 31 at 2:30 p.m. at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church in Kendall, South Miami.

In preparation for the upcoming fall school semester, hundreds of students are expected to benefit from free immunizations and physical health screening by volunteer medical and para-medical professionals from the community.

Jamaican nationals in Palm Beach are invited to worship and fellowship at the Grace Episcopal Church in West Palm Beach on Sunday, July 31 at 10 a.m.
Minister of Labor, Hon. Portia Simpson-Miller and the Leader of the Opposition, Mr. Bruce Golding will be in attendance at the annual Ball of Jamaicans of the Palm Beaches Association to be held at the Hilton Hotel in West Palm Beach on Saturday, August 6.

The First Jamaica Independence Day Celebration Picnic will be held on Saturday, August 6 at Tree Tops Park in Davie starting at 10am and will feature a host of activities for the entire family.

The Greater Caribbean Chamber of Commerce in association with the Broward County Libraries Division will host the Caribbean Emancipation Lecture Series presented by Professor Hilary Beckles, Principal University of the West Indies
Cave Hill, Barbados at the African-American Research Library and Cultural Center. From Nanny of the Maroons to Shirley Chisholm & Beyond Caribbean Women in the Struggle for Emancipation.

Jamaicans and friends of Jamaica are invited to come together for the annual Ecumenical Church service to be held on Sunday, August 7 at 4 p.m. at the First Presbyterian Church of Fort Lauderdale as several congregations will host services of celebration. The Consulate General of Jamaica, Miami office will host the annual Ecumenical Service.

The Reverend Oliver Daley of Ridgemount United Church in Mandeville will be the guest preacher at this event. Recitals are expected from the Jamaica Independence Choir made up of choristers of several Jamaican congregations in the South Florida communities.

A community reception hosted by the Consulate staff will follow the service at which several hundred Jamaican nationals and friends have been invited to participate in an evening of fellowship.

The 21st Annual Miami Reggae Festival presented by Jamaica Awareness, Inc at the Bayfront Park will feature live performances from Alton Ellis, Ken Boothe, Tinga Stewart to name a few on Sunday, August 7.

On Sunday, August 7 the United Sports and Cultural Club will host the annual all day Independence Festival and Concert at the John Hopkins Park. A line-up of Jamaican and local artistes are expected to perform at the event which will also include activities for the entire family.

The Jamaican community in Port St. Lucie community will also celebrate the nation’s 43rd Independence with a thanksgiving service on Sunday August 7 at 2:30 p.m. at the First Congregational Church of Port St. Lucie.

The Christian Awareness Association will host their annual service on Sunday, August 14, at the San Isidro Catholic Church at 2310 Martin Luther King Boulevard in Pompano Beach, starting at 3 p.m.(List compiled by JIS-Cheryl Wynter and

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