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‘Independence Village’ to be Centerpiece of 2016 Festival Celebrations

Kingston Jamaica: The Ranny Williams Entertainment Centre will be the heart of national activities for the 2016 Emancipation and Independence Celebrations. The Centre will be transformed into the “Independence Village” and in keeping with this year’s Emancipation and Independence theme “Let’s Get Together and Feel Alright”, promises an exciting and thrilling experience for Jamaicans and visitors to the island.  The Village will be open with free admission from Monday, August 1 to Saturday, August 6, 12 noon to 5 p.m. with a paid entertainment show each night.

The Independence Village will feature daily and nightly activities for the entire family including live performances, exhibitions, food court, petting zoo, a Kiddies Village, rides and other attractions. There will be promotional booths and displays by the private and public sector companies providing services, including the Registrar General Department and Passport Immigration and Citizenship Agency (PICA). A special feature of the Village will be the Promenade of Pride, highlighting 54 proud moments in our nation’s history.

Jamaicans far and wide are also being encouraged to participate in this year’s Festival Fashion theme: “Wear It In Gold and Stripe It Bold” throughout the festival season, in addition to the wearing their national colours. Interested fashionistas can demonstrate the theme by pairing bold stripes with varying shades of gold, and being creative and daring with their designs.

Gospel Song Finals – July 31

Prior to the official August 1 opening of the Independence Village, the Ranny Williams Entertainment Centre will open its gates for the grand final of the Jamaica Gospel Song Competition on Sunday, July 31. This event will be headlined by Gospel singer Rev. Glen Graham and begins at 7:00 p.m.

August Mawnin’ Market, Festival Queen Grand Coronation – August 1

The Village officially opens on Monday, August 1 with Augus Mawnin Market, beginning at 6:00 a.m. The JCDC will carry “Curry come Uptown” by replicating the popular ‘Sat’day’ shopping experience, inclusive of reasonably-priced, fresh, produce on sale. The day’s activities will continue with the official opening of the Independence Village at noon, with specular exhibitions by Institute of Jamaica, National Library of Jamaica and JDF and other public and private sector promotional booths.  The day will end with the Miss Jamaica Festival Queen Grand Coronation providing the night’s entertainment at 8:00 p.m.

Auntie Roachy Festival, Fashion Greets Music – August 2

Beginning at noon on Tuesday, August 2, The Auntie Roachy Festival will showcase the creative talent of our Literary and Film Industries. Then at 8:00 p.m. the exciting Fashion Greets Music will showcase the Independence-themed fashion of young and emerging as well as established designers. The fashion show will be infused with performances by local Reggae artistes and the 2016 Jamaica Festival Song Winner, Oneil “Nazzleman” Scott.

Mello-Go-Roun – August 3,World Reggae Dance – August 4

The celebrations will continue on Wednesday, August 3 at 8:00 p.m. with the premier festival family show, Mello Go-Roun’, which will feature the best of the best in the Festival of the Performing Arts. On Thursday, August 4, the highly anticipated finals of the World Reggae Dance Championship will bring dancers from across the globe to the Ranny Williams Entertainment Centre, beginning at 8:00 p.m. Guest performers will be popular Dancehall artistes Bling Dog and Chi Ching Ching.

Reggae to Rio – August 5, Grand Gala – August 6

Making its premier at the 2016 Independence Village on Friday, August 5 will be Reggae to Rio. This Reggae concert in honour of our Jamaican athletes participating in the 2016 Rio Olympics, will see tributes being done to internationally acclaimed Reggae artistes such as Bob Marley, Peter Tosh, Dennis Brown and Buju Banton by well-known Reggae artistes such as Judy Mowatt, Romain Virgo and Duane Stephenson. The Independence celebrations will culminate on Independence Day, Saturday, August 6 with Grand Gala at the National Stadium and the annual viewing party of the Gala at the Ranny Williams Entertainment Centre.

While the event Fashion Greets Music is free to the public, tickets for Jamaica Gospel Song, and Reggae to Rio are adults $1000 pre-sold, and $1200 at the gate, while tickets for Mello-Go-Roun, Miss Jamaica Festival Queen and  World Reggae Dance are $1200 pre-sold and $1500 at the gate, with children’s tickets being $500 for all events. Group rates are also available and season passes are $5,500.00 for adults and $2,500 for children.

Tickets are available at the Sangster’s Book Stores locations: Mall Plaza, Portmore, Sovereign Centre, King Street, Cross Roads and Spanish Town and also at all Bill Express locations island-wide. Tickets can also be purchased from the JCDC Head Office at 3-5 Phoenix Ave, Kingston 10 and online at www.jcdcjamaica.com.

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