First Jamaican Jerk Festival Makes New York Debut

Attendees turned out en masse for the event. (Alexander Sahadeo image/NAN)

Attendees turned out en masse for the event. (Alexander Sahadeo image/NAN)
News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Fri. July 29, 2011: For the first time in its history, the Jamaican Jerk Festival USA debuted in New York and not even a sudden downpour could extinguish the flames.

The family-style event drew a large crowd of Jamaicans and other Caribbean nationals to Roy Wilkins Park in Queens, NY on Sunday, July 24th to feast on the jerk cuisine that has taken the world by storm.

Jerk recipes were showcased by Miami-based Chef Irie Spice and Grace Food’s Top Chef, Mazie Miller, while festival goers were able to chow down on jerk pork, chicken, lobster, tofu and corn among other Jamaican delicacies.

As children delighted themselves in the Kidz Zone with rides, face-painting, a magician and a puppet show, adults were busy laughing it up with Ity & Fancy Cat and later, getting down to the rhythms of dancehall hitmaker Serani, Agent Sasco, a/k/a Assasin and of course, the star entertainer himself, veteran singer Freddy McGregor.

Eddy Edwards, chairman of Jamaican Jerk Festival USA, expressed delight in the New York debut.

“We are very pleased with the positive response from patrons and participating sponsors to the initial staging of the Grace Jamaican Jerk Festival in New York,” said Edwards. “The success of the event was the result of good teamwork between our partner VP Records, support from title sponsor Grace Foods and Presenting Sponsor Digicel, as well as participating sponsors and vendors. We plan to build on this impressive start and deliver an even better festival next year.”