As Jamaican pop star Shaggy delivered his final hit to close the 15th Annual Grace Jamaican Jerk Festival, patrons headed home totally satiated from the day of feasting on an infinite variety delicious jerk foods, watching engaging cooking demos and competitions, and being thoroughly entertained-from the Cultural Stages to the Main Stage and everywhere in between.
Held on Sunday, November 13 at Markham Park in Sunrise, the festival was by all accounts another resounding success, attracting some 14,000 patrons, including a number of local and international politicians, business people, sport stars and more. Jamaica’s former Minister of Security Peter Bunting, wife Anushca and son Zen were spotted enjoying the day’s festivities, while Sunrise Mayor, Michael J. Ryan, Miramar Mayor Wayne E. Messam and a host of city commissioners got their fill of fun. Olympic gold medalist Elaine Thompson, who swept the 100m and 200m track and field events in Rio earlier this year, spent the day meeting and greeting fans by the International Freight Consolidators booth, and was honored with a proclamation by the Broward Board of County Commissioners presented by Commissioner Dale Holness.
Managing Partner and Culinary Creative Director June Minto was totally pleased with this year’s event, citing an awesome reception of the new Publix Pavilion, which was a hot spot for patrons all day long. “We’re very happy to have given the patrons a place where they could enjoy cooking competitions, interact with the chefs and win awesome prizes.” She was also incredibly satisfied with the VIP area, where guests enjoyed a heightened experience in a lap of luxury, dining on gourmet foods, tapas style, and settling in enviable spots for the entertainment on the Main Stage-an exclusivity that was worth every penny.