- St Elizabeth welcomes second staging of environmentally friendly event
While the environment is central to promoters of Earthbound Ecofest Green 4 Life, the pioneering festival slated for Rivfalls, Maggotty, St Elizabeth, on Saturday, they are also keeping an eye out for the economic environment.
In an era where Jamaicans are being urged to 'eat Jamaican' and slash the crippling food-import bill, which was just over US$800 million in 2009, Earthbound Ecofest is going a step further to put on an all-Jamaican festival, in addition to the 'strictly yard' cuisine.
"We want to see families come out on June 23. One of our greatest wishes is to see from grandparents to babies come out together and enjoy themselves. We have the venue and the entertainment which is just right for that," Yolande Rattray-Wright, head of the Wright Agency, the company promoting Ecofest, said.
"Some of them don't get to go to what we now call green spaces. Well, Green 4 Life is one huge, safe, green space."
Several aspects of Ecofest are designed to keep the young and young at heart happy.
In the Pickney Park there are train rides, water slides, a Ferris wheel and a petting zoo.
Danyel's Den Gaming Zone will host the domino and ludo competition, while there will be a 'Nature Walk Thru', a farmers' market and swimming in the 100 per cent Spring Water Falls. Of course, the sounds of music won't be far off either, as artistes are expected to provide entertainment as well.
Music by St Elizabeth's ruling sound, Bredda Hype, will be playing reggae after the gates open at 8 a.m. with totally homegrown entertainment package with Lymie Murray, Apostle, Kantana, Nature, Alexandria Love, Maggotty High School Choir, and others, will be available.
Marley, which has been receiving rave reviews since its launch at Emancipation park last month, will be shown at 6:30 p.m.
The slant towards roots reggae is part of the overall strategy of supporting enduring Jamaican products, as Rattray-Wright pointed out:
"Roots reggae is where it is really happening for our music, especially internationally. We want to raise that awareness and present a music that is in harmony with the human spirit in a beautiful, natural environment."
"We have everything we need here to feed ourselves, clothe ourselves and entertain ourselves, while, at the same time, taking care of our country," she said.