Mix of activities at Grace Ja Jerk Festival
June is National Caribbean American Heritage Month and jerk flavours will waft in the air at the Festival Lawn, RFK Stadium, Washington, DC, for the 3rd Annual Grace Jamaican Jerk Festival on Sunday, June 10.
Bringing a lot of heat to the day's entertainment will be the internationally acclaimed reggae ambassadors, Third World. Elephant Man will thrill the ladies with his high-energy performance and soca queen Alison Hinds is sure to electrify with her party anthems. New Kingston will add a taste of roots rock reggae while DJ Ricky Platinum will add even more flavour to the festival's extensive entertainment package with a selection of dance hits and club favourites between sets. Tony Carr, host of This is Reggae Music, along with Ragashanti, of Tamborine Radio, will perform MC duties.
This year, the main stage will open with cultural presentations from some of DC's leading groups, such as The Malcolm X Drummers and Dancers, led by Doc Powell, storyteller and author Joelle Wright, as well as Divine Divas, a motivational modelling group of teens and children. Sounds of Culture will present traditional Jamaican folk and mento songs, while recording artiste and influencer Xyclone will bring a reggae/dancehall flavour. Popular DC-based MC, Michael Campbell, will host this segment.
Other highlights of the event include the Shoppers' Culinary Pavilion, which will feature cooking demonstrations and tastings by Chef Irie, host of Taste the Islands television show on PBS. Washington, DC's Chef Giovanni Merle and Chef 'Jumoke' Jackson will showcase tasty recipes, while a fierce celebrity cook-off will add enjoyment as the crowd cheer on their favourite celebrity competing for bragging rights.
There is also a Kids Zone, offering face-painting, rides and storytelling. Patrons can stroll and discover unusual novelties, trinkets and their island T-shirts from a number of arts and crafts vendors willing to offer bargain prices for their wares.
The 3rd Annual Grace Jamaican Jerk Festival DC is presented by Jamaican Jerk Festival NY, LLC, in association with the Institute for Caribbean Studies with support from the Mayor's Advisory Commission on Caribbean Community Affairs. Sponsors are Grace Foods, Shoppers Supermarkets, VP Records, Giant Foods, and Ablazin Radio.