Some two hundred patrons attended a special ‘”Taste of The Bahamas” Reception held recently at the African American Research Library and Cultural Center in Fort Lauderdale. The event, which showcased the diverse culture of The Bahamas, with special emphasis on Freeport, Grand Bahama, was part of the Broward County Library Destination Friday’s program and was facilitated by the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism and Aviation (BMOTA).
The event featured Bahamian entertainment including a live performance by the Sunshine Junkanoo Group and DJ Levon Rolle. Also, in order to ensure that invited guests were aware of traditional Bahamian customs, a bush tea specialist, also known as Mr. Bush Tea (Fenrick Russell of Freeport, Grand Bahama) spoke about the historic use of the bush teas for medicinal purposes. Guests also had the opportunity to speak one on one with Grand Bahama Island Partners including Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line, Balearia Cruise Line, and Lighthouse Pointe Grand Lucayan. Patrons also had a chance to win roundtrip travel for two on Bahamasair to Freeport Grand Bahama for a three day/ two night stay at the Lighthouse Pointe Grand Lucayan.
Betty Bethel, Director of Sales & Marketing, Florida at BMOTA said,“The opportunity to promote The Bahamas’ destination and culture at the historic library was most appropriate and timely as it also showcased the many assets as well as differentiated the product offerings in The Bahamas from the other competing destinations.”
“Here we used the allure of our culture – food, drink, music, storytelling, Industry partners workshop and live Junkanoo ‘rush out,’ which no other destination can match.”
“This event was a hit and it resonated very well with the many visitors and second and third generation Bahamians who now reside within the South Florida communities, and have planned home reunions in The Bahamas in 2019,” she said.
“The Bahamas has always enjoyed a wonderful relationship with the African-American market, especially with the people in Florida, as many of its natives share a heritage affinitywith The Bahamas, the birth place of some of their forefathers, who sought better financial opportunities and migrated to Florida during the ‘contract day. This event was also an opportunity to begin developing diaspora travel from Florida.”