Sat | Dec 10, 2016

Port Royal Seafood Festival aims to stand out

Published:Wednesday | October 15, 2014 | 12:00 AM
Anthony Lawrence, global brand manager at GraceKennedy Limited, is engaged in conversation with Jennifer 'Jenny Jenny' Small, organiser of the Port Royal Seafood Festival, during the launch held at the Old Naval Hospital. Photos by Brian McCalla
From left: Bernadette Daley, Dwight Dixon, Jenny Jenny and Angela Black greet each other at the launch of the Port Royal Seafood Festival, held at the Old Naval Hospital, recently.
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Jenny Jenny says Port Royal is growing from strength to strength and will gradually be transformed into a tourist attraction.

According to the media personality and event organiser, the annual festival belongs to the people of Port Royal and is now a staple event in the historic landmark.

Hosted at the Old Naval Hospital, Jenny Jenny and her team decorated the venue to give patrons a taste of what the actual event would resemble. The venue carried several booths, courtesy of the sponsors, each of which offered goodies, ranging from food to beverages.

AIMING FOR GROWTH

In speaking with The Gleaner, the very hands-on and ever bubbly Jenny Jenny, said this year's staging would reflect growth.

"We have so many exciting things added this year. We have Busy Signal, Kiprich, George Nooks, Beenie Man, Gem Myers. This year, we have widened the net. Last year, we had Tommy Lee (Sparta), but this time we want to let the people know that this line-up has been around for a while and we tend to underestimate them and they are going to be shining in fantastic style," she said.

Jenny Jenny also highlighted that this staging will see Excelsior (The Jamaica Biscuit Company) hosting a bingo game on location, as she says, bingo at a festival is largely unheard off. However, Port Royal Seafood Festival is aimed at standing out.

"I dare you to go and research if anybody has ever had a bingo in the middle of a festival. There will also be domino competition, and 10 Port Royal fishermen will be going up against each other in a competition called 'The Biggest Catch'. They have to go out in the sea from early morning and give me the biggest haul, and I don't mean several fish, the biggest fish is what we want," she said.

There will also be a clash between a soldier from Port Royal and a DJ representing Port Royal Seafood Festival. The festival is 11 years old and was started by Phillip Paulwell. Jenny Jenny also disclosed that the Old Naval Hospital, which also houses a theatre, would be renovated by the Government.

Levine Thomas, who represented Excelsior Water Crackers, said the brand, which has existed for over 100 years, is focused on local development, which is why they are committed to endorsing the Port Royal Seafood Festival. The company will also direct some of the focus on children, courtesy of the Excelsior Smooches Village, which will feature a mascot, food, giveaways and surprises.

Angela Black, who spoke on behalf of Grace Tropical rhythms, told The Gleaner that the company was able to forge a seven-year relationship with the festival due to the fact that it is a family oriented event.

"Grace Tropical rhythms, is the perfect complement and this is not something that we would want to move away from, just the whole planning and what it means to the community of Port Royal, the kids and seafood specialists. This year, we want to involve the chefs who cater to the patrons a lot more. So we are going to draw from our list of chefs that are here, and we are going to ensure that they are the caterers for the Grace team for the day. We are going to set up a kitchen specially for them and they are going to provide for us for the entire day," Black revealed.

There were also performances from some of the up-and-coming acts who will receive exposure from this year's show. Port Royal Seafood Festival 2014 is sponsored by Grace Tropical Rhythms, Excelsior, Digicel, Gas Pro Limited, Tastee Cheese, Singer, Grace Soups, Kendel, Jamaica Flour Mills, among others.

curtis.campbell@gleanerjm.com