Fri | Aug 18, 2017

PAN to stay in Black River

Published:Friday | September 2, 2016 | 9:00 AMPaul Clarke
St James chef Oliver ‘Chop Chop’ Madourie (left) dances up a storm with ace dancehall artiste Ding Dong at Saturday’s PAN Regional Championship at Independence Park, Black River, St Elizabeth. Madourie won the regional title.

Western Bureau:

PAN, formerly known as the CB Chicken Pan Championship, returned home with a bang on Saturday, when numerous patrons descended on Independence Park, Black River, St Elizabeth for the 11th staging of the regional finals.

There was fun, food and music, a trifecta of pleasures always sure to stimulate interest, prompting Alicia Bogues, brand manager for CB Foods, to declare that the championship will remain in Black River next year.

"PAN actually started at STETHS (St Elizabeth Technical High School), but it's our first time in Black River.,so we are back home trying some new territory, and it was an amazing day," Bogues said.

"I am beyond pleased. I am very humbled by the turnout. Many people had doubted whether we could pull out the kind of support that PAN is noted for and Black River never

disappointed."

Over 28 contestants from Manchester, Clarendon, St Elizabeth, St James, Hanover and Westmoreland competed in the regional final, from which the winners will move on to the national final. Oliver Madourie from St James was the overall regional champion.

There was plenty for the children to enjoy, such as the Kiddies' Village, which had its own zip-line and water slide, with the ever-popular bounce-a-bout also a favourite.

At approximately 7:00 p.m., with more than half the day's proceedings out of the way, it was time for the stage show segment featuring Kevin Downswell, Ding Dong and Busy Signal.

Downswell, opened with the electrifying That's Enough Oh Lord, before doing Me Naah Bow, I'm Not Afraid (from his latest album), Close to you, and the heart-tugging If It's Not You, which elicited more reverence from the engrossed patrons.

After Downswell's blessing of the evening's proceedings, it was Ding Dong's turn, and he, along with his crew of 10, danced up a storm, much to the delight of patrons.

Syva, Gas and Low Mi Nuh were staples and patrons enjoyed bopping to the tunes while having the Ravers Crew on stage as dance tutors.

Oliver 'Chop Chop' Madourie, one of the participating chefs from St James, showed his virtuosity with some crowd-pleasing dance moves of his own, which was the highlight of the night outside the billed acts.

Busy Signal took the stage and it was all systems go as he started with Step Out, followed by Nah Go Jail Again and Stamma. He then went into Bedroom Bully, Personally, One More Night and string of other hits before closing out with a medley which included Rivers Of Babylon.

Region two will host their final in September in Portland, with the grand final set for October in Half-Way Tree, St Andrew.