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HomeNewsArchivesMonth-Long July 4th Celebration Begins June 2

Month-Long July 4th Celebration Begins June 2

May 25, 2007 — St. John is gearing up for its annual month-long July 4th Celebration, which will feature music, parades and pageants.
"Come to have fun and to meet people you haven't seen in a long time," said Leona Smith, who chairs the island's Festival and Cultural Organization.
St. John kicks off the July 4th Celebration at 4 p.m. June 2 with Pan-O-Rama in Cruz Bay Park. So far 11 groups have signed up to participate: the Love City Pan Dragons from St. John and, from St. Thomas, the Ulla Muller School Panatics, Pan in Motion, St. Thomas All Stars, Phoenix Sounds Steel Orchestra, Addelita Cancryn Pan Iguanas, Joseph Gomez School Pan Blasters, Bertha Boschulte Junior High School Burning Blazers, Kerwin Terrace School Wess Stars Steel Orchestra, Eudora Kean High School Devil Rays and Evelyn Marcelli School Crome Iguanas.
A gospel show follows at 7 p.m. June 3 at the Winston Wells Ballfield. Yvette Powell, who chairs the gospel committee, said the theme is Great Caribbean Women of Gospel. Acclaimed gospel singer Harrella Goodwin will headline the show.
"She's the grandmother of Caribbean gospel music," Powell said.
The show also includes gospel singer Delita O'Connor, the Unity Dancers pantomime dance group and Linelle Audain on steel pans, all from St. John. From St. Thomas, songwriter and singer Judy Turnbull will sing, known for her songs "Women of Excellence Arrive" and Breakthrough," Powell said.
St. Vincent native Bridget Blucher, who now lives in Florida, will also perform. Her hits include "Strength" and "I'm Still Here."
Tickets to the gospel show run $15 for adult and $5 for youths. They're available at the door at Spencer's Jeep Rental on St. John and the Bible Book Gift Shop on St. Thomas.
Activities slow for a bit until June 15 when folks gather for the senior variety show. It begins at 7 p.m. at the Winston Wells Ballfield.
The event will feature seniors on stage in swim, evening and sport wear and participating in a talent show, said Jane Johannes, who is organizing the event.
The July 4th Celebration bicycle race starts at 8 a.m. July 16 at the V.I. National Park ballfield and ends at the Myrah Keating Smith Community Health Center. The bicycle race is held in memory of the late Yulandra Potter, who for years organized the event.
The princess show starts at 6:30 p.m. June 17 at the Winston Wells Ballfield. Contestants are Kimisa Smith, 9, Shadiyah Boynes, 8, and Yalfri Santana-Reyes. Kimisa, who attends Julius E. Sprauve School, is the daughter of Shikima Espirit and Steve Smith. Shadiyah is a Guy Benjamin School student whose mother is Shanice Boynes. Yalfri's mother is Ada Santana. She's a Sprauve School student.
Tickets for the princess show run $12 in advance and $15 at the door for adults, said committee member Enid Doway. Children's tickets are $8 in advance and $10 at the door.
Judges will pick Miss St. John at a pageant to be held at 8 p.m. June 23 at the Winston Wells Ballfield. Constants are Shanekua Lee, 17, Jenicia Dalmida, 18, and Dior Parsons, 17. Lee's parents are Catherine and Ronald Lee. She is a Charlotte Amalie High School student. Doway didn't have information about Dalmida's parents because the young woman hails from Tortola but now lives on her own on St. John. Parsons, an All Saints School student, is the daughter of Delia Smith and Delbert Parsons.
Tickets run $15 in advance and $20 at the door for adults. Children's tickets are $10 in advance and at the door. Tickets for the Princess and Queen shows are available at Chelsea Drug Center at the Marketplace on St. John and at International Records and Tapes on St. Thomas.
Miss St. John will be crowned during Food Fair, to be held at 1 p.m. June 24 in Cruz Bay Park. The Food Fair honors Laurel Hewitt-Sewer.
"Because of her delicacies — her homemade pastries," Smith said.
Boat races will also be held at 3 p.m. June 24 in Cruz Bay Harbor.
The July 4th Celebration Village opens at 7 p.m. June 28 in the parking lot across from the post office. The villa is named after Camille Paris.
"He's been with us for about 10 years and coordinates all the music," Smith said.
The Children's Village opens June 29 and closes July 3. It runs from 6 to 10 p.m. near the V.I. National Park ballfield. The event features games and refreshments geared toward children ages two to 12.
A cultural day will be held at 1 p.m. July 3 in Cruz Bay Park. The event includes an emancipation-themed play and music, according to Alecia M. Wells, who chairs the Cultural Day Committee. All the articles for sale in the park will be related to the territory's culture, she said.
A musical mix will be held beginning at 10 p.m. July 3 at Winston Wells Ballfield. Organizer Lucinda Jurgen has lined up Bunny Wailer and Young Joc plus a roster of local artists. Ticket prices are not yet set.
On July 4, J'ouvert begins at 4 a.m. when hundreds of people will gather to tramp behind their favorite band through the streets of Cruz Bay. A parade from the V.I. National Park Ballfield through the streets of Cruz Bay follows at 11 a.m. The Westin Hotel and Villas Manager Graeme Davis will serve as parade marshal.
Davis and the Westin have been tireless supporters of community events, including the July 4 Celebration, Smith said.
The entire shebang wraps up with fireworks over Cruz Bay Harbor. It begins at 9 p.m. July 4. The village closes that night.
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