Many Caribbean islands have had a rough time this year. An upcoming Tallahassee event will not only celebrate those islands’ cultures but also help rebuild a storm-devastated region.
Avis Simmonds works at Florida A&M University in the Office of International Education and Development. She is a native of the Caribbean island of St. Kitts. All in all, she is the perfect MC for this weekend’s Caribbean Festival.
“We will be of course sharing culture in our great city of Tallahassee. We will have the Bahamian Junkanoo, Caribbean dancers and food, reggae. Soca, salsa and steel band music!”
Simmonds said that musical lineup will include the Capital City’s very own masters of island grooves. “Sway Jah Vu! It’s going to be awesome and people need to come listen to them and have a good time dancing and enjoying the moment.”
It’s a party Simmonds said that will go this Saturday (11/11) from midday to midnight.
“From 12 noon until midnight and before midnight we’re going to have that great Junkanoo music with the cowbells, so come out and have a wonderful time with great music.”
But amidst the good times in Tallahassee, Simmonds noted these are not so good times for the islands whose culture is being celebrated.
“It is an opportunity to continue the connection with the Caribbean and most specifically in the time of their sorrow and pain with the hurricanes that devastated so many of those islands in the Caribbean. And we love those islands because we see them as paradise and we really want to bring them back to their paradise state.”
Which means this is a combination of festival and fundraiser.
“The proceeds from this event will go to benefit the people of the U.S. Virgin Islands, which is American territory. Puerto Rico and St. Martin, our beloved St. Martin.”
“CARIBE!” a Caribbean Festival happening this Saturday at Tallahassee’s Railroad Square Art Park. Admission is free.