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Team Jamaica on track for fund-raiser

Momentum and support are building for next Sunday’s benefit Team Jamaica on the Road to Beijing concert, aiding high school athletes coming to the Penn Relays track meet in Philadelphia and Jamaicans representing their country in the Summer Olympics.
Officials from the Team Jamaica Bickle hospitality project recently announced several late-breaking developments connected with the fund-raising show, which will be held at the Brooklyn Center for the Performing Arts at Brooklyn College, starting at 7 p.m.
Last-minute news for the show includes:

  • Music star Cocoa Tea - who is riding the success of his “Barack Obama“ song hyping the presidential candidate - has been added to the lineup of performers.
  • Black Entertainment Television‘s commitment will record the concert and air it on its BET and BET J cable channels.
  • Actress Sheryl Lee Ralph is lending her voice to ads promoting the concert.
    In addition to Coco Tea, Ritchie Stephens, Etana and Duane Stephenson are scheduled to perform. Supporters for the event include the Jamaica Amateur Athletics Association and VP Records.
    Proceeds from the benefit will help fund a scholarship fund and TJB’s Penn Relays initiative for scholastic track and field athletes from Jamaica. In addition, with the 2008 Olympics in mind, some of the concert proceeds will go to Jamaican athletes training for the Beijing Games.
    Tickets are on sale at the Brooklyn College box office. Call 718-951-4500. To buy tickets online or find local ticket outlets, visit teamjamaicabickle.com. For information on Team Jamaica Bickle, call Irwine Clare at 718-523-2861.

    Focus on Trinidad and Tobago
    Ashmeer Mohammed, director of KC Confectionery Ltd., will be the featured speaker at a business development forum on opportunities to link businesses in Trinidad and Tobago with Trinidadian American firms in the U.S.
    The session will be held at the Trinidad and Tobago Consulate, 475 Fifth Avenue, fourth floor (between 40th and 41st Streets) in Manhattan on Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. Call Andrea Chambers-Wilson at 212-682-7272 for information.

    What a steel
    The increasing popularity and proliferation of steelbands across the U.S. - in schools and colleges, churches and community organizations - has sparked “Emergent Business Enterprises: Steelbands in Educational, Religious and Community Institutions,” a two-day symposium at the Clark Atlanta University in Atlanta Thursday and Friday.
    Call Ajamu Nyomba of Clark Atlanta University at 404-880-6286 for information.

    Marley’s mom dies at 81
    Cedella Booker, mother of reggae music pioneer Bob Marley, died last week in Miami. She was 81 and apparently died from natural causes, The Associated Press reported.
    The music legend was born from the union of Jamaica-born Booker and Norval Marley, a British man. He died in 1955.
    Booker later remarried and settled in the U.S. Booker was the author of the Bob Marley biographies “Smilin’ Island of Song” and “Awake Zion!”

    Strategies for Haitian-Americans
    A comprehensive game plan for Haitian-Americans in the U.S. will be discussed this week at “Advancing the Haitian-American Agenda: Economic, Civic and Social Strategies,” a national conference that will take place this week in Brooklyn.
    Presented by the Haitian-American Business Network and Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz, the conference will be held Thursday through Saturday.
    The first two days of the event - which are free and open to the public - will feature the Toussaint L’Ouverture Business Award and symposium on Thursday and the economic, civic and social strategies workshops on Friday. Both events will be held at Brooklyn Borough Hall, 209 Joralemon St. The event will close with an award dinner gala and showcase on Saturday at Glen Terrace, 5313 Avenue N in Brooklyn.
    For information, call 877-278-9143 and visit the Haitian-American Business Network Web site at www.habnet.com.

    Reggae legends onstage
    Romantic reggae music pioneer John Holt, and Freddie McGregor, one of the music genre’s most respected and soulful performers are the headliners for the anticipated Reggae Symphony concert in Fort Lauderdale next Sunday.
    The Florida show – which also will star Lloyd Parkes’ We the People Band and the New York Symphony Reggae Strings ensemble - is inspired by a similar 2001 show in which the singers performed with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.
    Next week’s show is being produced by Big Ship Music and Riddims Marketing with support from Jamaica National Money Transfer, south Florida’s popular HOT 105FM and Funsation4.
    Tickets for Reggae Symphony are $100, $75, $55 and $45. For information, call the Broward Center for the Performing Arts box office at 954-462-0222 or 877-311-7469.

    New UN post for Pollard
    Veteran United Nations official Catherine Pollard of Guyana has been named the international organization’s assistant secretary-general for human resources management, organization officials said recently.
    Pollard - who most recently served as chief of staff in the Department of Peacekeeping Operations - previously held positions with the organization’s development program, its protection force in Croatia, and the UN volunteers program.

    This column is reprinted from the April 13 Sunday editions of The New York Daily News. If you have any items suitable for this column please e-mail them to jmccallister@nydailynews.com.

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