Caribbean Festival set for Labor Day weekend at The Beach

Upcoming Labor Day weekend festivities will be spiced up with Caribbean flair at The Beach of Clayton County International Park in Jonesboro.

The Caribbean Association of Georgia has partnered with the Clayton County Parks and Recreation Department to host the third annual “South Metro Caribbean Festival,” on Sept. 3, from noon, to 8 p.m., at 2300 Highway 138 S.E., Jonesboro, said Jackie Watson, president of the association. There will be a fireworks display after the event at 9 p.m., as part of an early Labor Day celebration, she said.

“We think it is a great event to provide for the community to cultivate the [Caribbean] culture and promote the culture,” said Watson.

The admission cost is $10, and it will allow participants access to all of the park’s amenities at no additional cost, she explained. There will be no parking charges for this event, Watson said.

She said this is the association’s largest event of the year. It enlightens the community with the culture and traditions without having to travel to the region, she continued.

The festival targets people from all ethnicities and ages, added Watson.

People will enjoy food items such as jerk and curry chicken, oxtail, rice and peas, she said. The event will also include vendors, prizes and contests.

Watson said various partners of the event scheduled to attend and provide displays and services include: the Clayton County Sheriff’s Office, Clayton County Fire & Emergency Services and the Clayton County Library System.

Participants will be able to enjoy live musical performances, miniature golf, beach volleyball, moko jumbi stilt dancers and a fashion show, she said.

The festival will have a children’s section, she said, which will include inflatables, a clown, face painting, a cricket and soccer demonstration, limbo dancing and tug of war.

Watson said there will also be free health screenings for everyone and free dental exams for children.

The Caribbean Association of Georgia, a non-profit organization headquartered in McDonough, decided to hold the event in Clayton County three years ago to provide south metro Atlanta residents with a Caribbean event, she said. Most Caribbean organizations and events are located in DeKalb County. “We wanted to tap into the southern region,” Watson said.

Troy Stubbs, an administrator at Clayton County International Park said they’ve partnered with the association for the past three years because the festival attracts a good crowd to the park. “Clayton County is a diverse community and it gives people an opportunity to see a Caribbean festival,” he said.

Watson said she is excited about the upcoming festivities.

“Clayton County is a wonderful county, and it’s very supportive of the Caribbean community,” she said.

For more information about the event contact The Caribbean Association of Georgia at (678) 464-0680, or e-mail at caribbeangeorgia@gmail.com.