INTERNATIONAL REGGAE DAY
Held on July 1, International Reggae Day is an international media event celebrating the best of Jamaica's creativity and its impact on culture worldwide.
International Reggae Day is the odd one out on this list because it's not confined to Jamaica but is in fact an international media event celebrating the best of Jamaica's creativity and its impact on culture worldwide. The aim of its founder, Andrea Davis, is to create a yearly global reggae party on July 1. The idea for International Reggae Day came to her following a speech by Winnie Mandela who talked about the inspiration reggae music gave to the people of South Africa in their fight against apartheid. This motivated Andrea Davis to launch the first International Reggae Day in 1994. Jamaicans and people around the world are invited to participate in the ILOVEJA campaign by wearing their Reggae colours, listen to Reggae, log on to the IRD website, drink a Red Stripe, donate to a Jamaican charity and plant a tree. The 2014 edition was the 20th staging of IRD and this year's theme was 'you reap what you sow'.
International Reggae Day is always on July 1
There are licenced IRD events worldwide and events in Jamaica, most of them in Kingston. Past celebrations have included Kingston concert festival events, workshops/forum, talent search, family day/kids village, awards, unplugged concerts, product launches (restaurants/books/albums/singles etc), fashion shows, dance, art exhibits and culinary presentations.
Some 35 cities across the globe are staging IRD events on July 1. Check the IRD website and Facebook page to see if there's an event near you. There is no information yet as to what IRD is going to look like in Jamaica. We'll keep you posted.