Tue | Dec 6, 2016

Get creative on Valentine's Day

Published:Sunday | February 8, 2015 | 12:00 AM

Keisha Hill, Sunday Gleaner Writer

With Valentine's
Day fast approaching, chocolates, teddy bears, roses and poems
everywhere are gearing up to take the February 14 spotlight once again. Arts & Education
thinks it is time to step out of the box - a little.


Jamaica is the
place for romance, with our rich art culture, breathtaking scenes,
stunning waterfalls, rolling mountains. You can make your Valentine's
Day more memorable. If your valentine loves the arts, here are a few
ideas for a memorable date or a gift.

Love on the seas

If the live-music scene is more your
style, the Lover's Rock Catamaran Cruise by Island Routes Caribbean
Adventures invites visitors across the island to sail off into the
sunset on a romantic cruise. Delectable appetisers and exotic cocktails
will be served to the sound of classic reggae beats as the vessel makes
its way along the coastline.

Music and dancing

Reggae
Month Valentine Dance - This classy dance party on Valentine's Day
features the acclaimed Stone Love sound system, well known locally and
internationally for the ability to create fun-filled party vibes with
excellent musical selections. Stone Love was the recipient of a Jamaica
Reggae Industry Association 2014 Honour Award.

Selections by
Mikey T and live performances by popular entertainers will help to make
this event the best choice for couples and music-loving singles who want
to enjoy a night of elegant dining, dancing and networking in the
Reggae Village at the Ranny Williams Entertainment Complex. Sponsors
include the Ministry of Youth and Culture, JCDC and Bess 100 FM.

Wassi Art

Located
in the resort town of Ocho Rios, Jamaica Wassi Art has been described
as "an unexpected treasure chest of unusual pottery that absolutely
delights collectors and visitors". You can watch as young, talented
Jamaican artists mould clay into creations that are unique, beautiful
and inherently cultural. Items available for purchase include plates,
jars, vases, candle holders, tumblers and sculptures, to name a few.
Each creation is an experience of human spirit poured into fire and
earth to create a cherished island treasure worth taking home to your
living room.

Picnic

Put your culinary skills to the test and pack a picnic basket and head off to Castleton Gardens or to Cinchona Gardens for the day.

Take a rum tour

Appleton Rum is one of the Caribbean's best, and can be considered an aphrodisiac. Known for its iconic orange and chocolate and nutmeg notes, Appleton Rum is available at most hotels, restaurants and bars. Lovers can sip this premium rum, and even take a few duty-free bottles home for later. Couples can go on a tour together at the Appleton Estate in St Elizabeth, and see the lush environment in which the rum's main component, sugar, is grown.

See a play

Tons of laughs or some drama always make for a great date, so take your significant other to see a play. Nesta's Rock - the Jamaica Junior Theatre's 2015 Production - an original musical production inspired by the childhood of Robert Nesta Marley. This marks the official celebration of his 70th birthday. Cost: $1,500.

Explore Devon House

Devon House stands a proud symbol of Jamaica's compelling history. In the late 19th century, its location on the corner of Trafalgar and Hope roads in Kingston was known as Millionaire's Corner.

Adjacent to the historic Devon House is a tiny courtyard filled with shopping treasures. Arts and crafts, trinkets and souvenirs can be found at the numerous shops and boutiques. Choose from a wide selection of handcrafted pieces of art and sculptures by local artisans or an array of local cooking sauces, pottery and hand-made dolls.

Among the shops found there are Things Jamaica, Wassi Art, Rum Roast and Royals, Reve Jewellery, Norma's on the Terrace restaurant, the Grogge Shoppe, Bin 26 wine bar, Chocolate Dreams and Cooyah Rootz Wear. No trip to Devon House would be complete without sampling the delectable Devon House I-Scream.

Visit an art gallery

The Biennial is currently on at the National Gallery and Devon House as well as the National Gallery West. Paintings, pottery, installations, mixed media will be exhibited. There is also a gift shop at the National Gallery so you can take home a piece of the memory. School of the Visual Arts (Edna Manley College of the Visual & Performing Arts) and Olympia Gallery have also mounted exhibits. One can also take a stroll through The University of Technology Sculpture Park.

Rafting

The Martha Brae River in Trelawny provides the ultimate opportunity for relaxation. Two people can sit pretty on a bamboo raft while they glide along, catching all the sights at the edges of the tropical river banks.

keisha.hill@gleanerjm.com