New Year’s Eve, Monday December 31: The time was 11:59 pm, and the countdown to midnight was displayed on a massive screen along the waterfront of Downtown Kingston.
Thousands of families, men, women and children from across the country gathered in the capital city to welcome 2019’s untold promises and say their last goodbyes to 2018.
The excitement was palpable; children on the necks of their fathers bounced anxiously, their eyes sparkled as the countdown neared the 30-second mark.
“Three, two, one. Happy New Year!!!!!!!” the collective roar of Kingston was outperformed in mere seconds by the thunderous fireworks display that enchanted its audience. For three minutes, smiles and laughter infected everyone – husbands kissed their wives, friends shared a warm embrace – love and optimism ran wild through the hearts and minds of Jamaicans as January 1 went off with a bang!
The Urban Development Corporation (UDC) put on a remarkable spectacle for Jamaicans who turned out to the Kingston waterfront for 17th annual fireworks and concert.
Festivities began as early as 3pm, with a fun-filled package awaiting those who made the journey to the colossal kiddies’ village. The UDC parking lot was transformed into a massive vendors’ village, with culinary delights, crafts, toys and other gifts adding to the cheerful mood along Ocean Boulevard.
An added feature for 2018 was the introduction of VIP and Ultra VIP sections, to accompany the usually free admission to the general public.
Music is arguably a strong link in Jamaican culture and the stellar line-up of artistes and musicians leaves the crowds hungry for more.
Kukudoo delivered an energised and spirited Gospel performance, before the top finalists of the 2018 Digicel Rising Stars graced the dazzling stage.
Ryan Mark, Shuga, the ‘Annointed One’ Bugle and a rebellious set from Tony Rebel whet the crowd’s appetite leading up to the big countdown.
The audience was even treated to a dance off by Government ministers Alando Terrelonge and Kamina Johnson-Smith and the time for the countdown was here.
Hosted by the ‘Fluffy Diva’ herself, Miss Kitty the fireworks and grand celebrations were over, and Jamaicans were promised a massive show. As some revellers streamed out of the venue, many stayed behind to rock to the songs of Agent Sasco and Queen Ifrica well into the 2am hours.
For 38-year-old Kerry-Ann Brown, her first experience of the fireworks was worth the trip. A resident of St. Elizabeth, Brown told Jamaica Today that she always wanted to make the journey and decided 2018 was the year she would end her ‘firework duck’.
“It was great, I tell you, the sounds, the music, the lights. I’m definitely coming back with my son next year!” she told Jamaica Today.
See some of Jamaica Today’s highlights in the link below: https://www.jamaicatoday.com/fireworks-performances-on-the-waterfront-in-downtown-kingston/