If you missed last year’s first staging then you should make every effort to see the 2007 staging of the second annual Island Games (IG) in Track & Field athletics at the Mitchell Field athletics Complex in Uniondale (Long Island), New York.
And when you think about it, Sunday, June 10, 2007, the actual date of the event is not too far away.
The IG meet is expected to extend the season for a number of the top Jamaican and Caribbean regional student/athletes past the annual Penn Relays Carnival in Philadelphia at the end of April.
Payne, a Jamaican entrepreneur and founder of the IG, will be in Jamaica this weekend to attend the Grace Boys & Girls High Schools Athletics Championships – ‘Champs’ – at the National Stadium, Kingston, and to announce this year’s IG selections within a few days thereafter. He is using the ‘champs’ platform to announce two major developments regarding the promotion and management of the Island Games this year.
The IG committee has retained the services of Dorothy and Rachel Clinton regarded as among the best US meet managers for their handling of the annual USA National Scholastic Indoor Championships, a coming together of more than 2,500 of the best student/athletes from across the USA. There will be a strong US presence this year as
“The Clintons will be responsible for recruiting the elite high school athletes from across the USA to match strides with athletes from Jamaica and the Caribbean at IG 2007,” gushed Payne at a recent planning committee meeting.
With more than 60 of Jamaica’s best junior athletes expected to be invited, this year’s meet will be extremely competitive, and according to Payne Jamaica will be hard pressed to retain the “ChampsUSA” trophy they won last year.
Also, Jamroppo, a public relations company headed by Cathy Kleinhanns, a former public relations manager with Sandals Resorts, will join the IG committee. Ms Kleinhanns will have responsibilities for marketing the games. Promotion of this year’s games got an early boost at the recently concluded International Sports Awards Banquet which featured the honoring of some of Jamaica’s major athletic personalities including Hon Teddy McCook, Asafa Powell and Sherrone Simpson.
Payne, a Camperdown/KC alum said that one important highlight of the June 10, 2007 staging of the IG will be a citation to the members of the 1964 schoolboy team from Kingston College, the very first Jamaican school team to compete at the Penn Relays Carnival in Philadelphia. Wendell Mottley, the former Trinidadian Olympian will also be honored at this year’s event.
Four decades later, the Jamaican phenomenon is what drives the annual pilgrimage to what is now the biggest and best meet of its kind in the world.
For additional information on the 2007 Island Games, contact: [email protected]