On Sunday, November 14, head over to Markham Park in Sunrise for the ninth-annual Grace Jamaican Jerk Festival. Find everything from Caribbean music and cultural performances to chef competitions, sporting events, kids activities, and, of course, jerk food. The festivities at what is reportedly the largest Caribbean food festival in the United States begin at 10 a.m. and run until 10 p.m.
Eat your way through the festival by sampling jerk foods from about 35 vendors. Try traditional jerk dishes featuring chicken, pork, or shrimp as well as unconventional dishes like jerk ice cream. Be sure to check out the Publix Jerk Cook-Off where chefs will prepare their best jerk dishes to be judged for a chance to win $1,500 and the coveted Dutch Pot Trophy.
"I have observed the positive and progressive growth of the competition," said June Minto, coordinator for the Publix Jerk Cook-Off and Celebrity Quick Fire Competition. "Each year, we have at least three to four competitors from previous years returning to compete... not necessarily for the cash prizes but because of the level of fun and excitement they experience at the festival."
After you've stuffed yourself with food, find a spot near the main stage for live music from popular reggae, jazz, and R&B groups. The entertainment begins at 4 p.m. and continues the entire evening until the festival closes. Musical guests include John Holt, Ritchie Stephens, Nadine Sutherland, the Caribbean Music Farm, Bunny Bonito, the Code Red Band, Hardcore Movement, and the number-one Caribbean group, Byron Lee's Dragonaires.
The Grace Jamaican Jerk festival is presented by Publix and Digicel and sponsored by Western Union, Air Jamaica, the Jamaica Tourist Board, Barefoot Wine & Bubly, WAVS Radio, HOT 105, TeleAmerica, Jamaica National, and VitaMalt.
Tickets cost $15, and children under age 10 are admitted free.
For more information and to buy tickets, visit the Jamaican Jerk Festival website.
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Ninth-Annual Jamaican Jerk Festival
Sunday, November 14
16001 W. State Road 84