The seventh annual Taste of the Caribbean and Jerk Festival, one of Hartford’s most family-friendly events will be held at the Mortensen Riverfront Plaza, Downtown Hartford, on Saturday, August 4, 2012 from 1 p.m. to 11 p.m.
The Festival will showcase Caribbean foods, culture, music, dance and travel destinations, and is representative of the English, Spanish and French Caribbean influences.
Hartford’s Caribbean culture is thriving and the Taste of the Caribbean and Jerk Festival offers a true exhibition of the best music the Caribbean has to offer - Reggae, Salsa, Soca, Jazz, Calypso and Gospel.
There will also be Moko Jumbie accompanied by the Cultural Dance Troupe of the West Indies, and a Carnival Parade in which masqueraders display their elaborate and colourful costumes.
This year’s live entertainment will be headlined by Jamaica’s Reggae Artist Leroy Sibbles, Trinidad’s Calypso Rose, and Guyana’s Angels Band.
Other entertainers slated to perform include, Hartford Steel Symphony, Anthem Band, ReBelle, D’Tay - Haitian Kompa Band, Orquesta Espada, Don Minot, Misteree, Tuff Lion, The Caribbean American Dance Company, Maxine O’Connor, The St. Lucian Folklore Association, Amandla Band, Toussaint The Liberator, Pureza Latina Cultura and many more.
In addition, an array of Caribbean culinary delights like roti, jerk chicken, curried goat, empanadas and flying fish will be served. There will also be Caribbean merchandise on sale and health information presented.
A Children’s Village with games, storytelling, and face painting together with a play bounce station and macaroni jewellery-making will also be offered.
In 2006, a vision was formulated to enhance the City of Hartford’s revitalisation efforts. A group of Caribbean leaders and the Caribbean American Young Adults Social and Civic Organization (CAYASCO) partnered with The Riverfront Recapture organisation to present the first annual Taste of the Caribbean and Jerk Festival.
During the inaugural year of the festival, 7,000 people of various economic backgrounds and nationalities visited the Riverfront Plaza to participate in this festive event.
In 2011 an estimated crowd of 20,000 patrons attended the ten-hour festival. 2012 promises to be even bigger. Admission is free and open to the general public. For further information about the Festival, please visit the Taste of the Caribbean website at: www.tastect.org.