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Scintillating island rhythms make the quintessential complement on a hot summer’s day to a frosty-cold drink and exotically spicy and succulent, uniquely Jamaican, jerk foods. All this and a whole lot more will be at the fourth annual Jamaican Jerk Festival, scheduled to take place on Sunday, September 18, noon to 9 p.m. at it’s new location, Markham Park, 16001 W. State Road 84 in Sunrise, Florida (State Road 84 at Weston Road).

The live entertainment promises to be a blast, featuring Reggae and Dancehall, Pop & Mento, Calypso and Soca music. Headlining the main stage will be Byron Lee and The Dragonaires, integral and dynamic legends of Jamaican and Caribbean popular music. A dance band from the days of Ska through to today’s dancehall beats, they will rock the house with something for everyone. Local favorites, the Mighty Vikings Band, will bring their repertoire of Jamaican sounds, plus they promise to bring a totally new direction (hints: sensuous, Brazil). A recent find, the Miami-based Argentinian reggae-ska-rocksteady group, Kayak Man, and comedian Girley, who is notorious for keeping his audience in stitches, will also perform.

The Jamaican Jerk Festival is a real family treat, filled with attractions and activities for all ages to see and do. Booths will be selling jerk chicken, pork, fish, seafood, vegetables and almost anything else imaginable, plus art and crafts, travel, even back massages and more. There are Jerk Cook-Off Contests, a Jerk Pork-Eating Contest, and Demonstrations by Jerk masters, direct from Boston Bay in Portland, Jamaica. There will also be a Domino Tournament, the Air Jamaica Children’s Fun Zone, with rides, games and activities, and prizes and surprises.

Another huge attraction is the Cultural Heritage Village, featuring traditional Jamaican lifestyle and old-time artifacts, as well as exciting performances, book readings and signings, and more. It continues to grow in popularity and size year after year. Performing on the Cultural Heritage Village stage will be The Jamaican Folk Revue, with their interactive repertoire of songs, dances, anecdotes and stories, and South Florida’s own Talawah Mento Band. These groups delight festival-goers, who join right in the singing and dancing in this more intimate setting. Miami Carnival commemorates 21 years with a special parade and costume display, plus music by the Tamboo Bamboo Steel Band.

New for this year, the Reggae Village, the spot to mingle and chill with an ice-cold brew and bounce to the latest joints and scorching selections of deejays Peter T, Richie D and Hardcore Movements.

The Jamaican Jerk Festival promises to be a fun family day, island style. Celebrate the end of summer with a fabulous send-off! Advance tickets are five dollars and are available from selected Caribbean outlets or on-line at JamaicansRUs.com. Admission at the door will be ten dollars. Patrons are reminded of Broward County Parks fee of one dollar.

The Jamaican Jerk Festival is presented by Ridims Marketing Jamaica Awareness, Inc. and Air Jamaica; sponsored by Western Union, Grace Foods, JRS Tours, Ting, D&G Sodas, DelanceyHill, P.A., WAVS Radio, Mystic 1580 and Hot 105.

For further information contact Ridims Marketing Network at 305-891-1242.

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Written by Staff Writer