By TimesLedger Staff
Two festivals that highlight the borough’s cultural diversity are on the menu this weekend.
At Rufus King Park (150-28 Jamaica Ave.), the Jamaica Arts & Music Summer Festival, also known as JAMS, is marking its 20th anniversary today and tomorrow. JAMS is a two-day celebration that highlights the multicultural fabric of the borough of Queens and provides a vehicle for tourism and economic development for downtown Jamaica and the surrounding areas.
Things get under way this afternoon at 5 p.m. with an opening concert featuring local artists Julie Winters, Zen Masters and Jahlonte Poindexter. At 6 p.m., the sounds of jazz, rock and funk, as well as rhythm and blues, will keep things jumping during a concert under the stars. Acts are scheduled to include Ashley Chambers, John Smith and Barbara King, along with amazing moves from the Nubian Gents and Feminine Fire step teams.
Tomorrow’s JAMS festivities will take place along Jamaica Avenue’s main commercial strip from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Activities will include live entertainment on the main stage from 12 pm to 7 pm, a children’s zone (open from 12 p.m. to 6 pm), a health and wellness pavilion (open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.), food vendors, arts and crafts from local artisans, and more. In honor of the festival’s 20th anniversary, JAMS is also bringing back its Classic Car Showcase from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m., featuring vintage, restored and new autos.
To find out more, go to www.go2cc
In addition, one of the highlights of a summer in Queens is coming to Flushing Meadows Corona Park on Saturday and Sunday. That’s when hundreds of Dragon Boats will take to Meadow Lake to participate in the 26th Annual Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival. With prizes that include round-trip tickets to Hong Kong, those watching the races can expect to see some spirited competition.
The races are just part of the party. With musical performers in genres ranging from traditional Chinese music to Mariachi, as well as comedy and storytelling, there will be no shortage of entertainment options for those who turn their eyes away from the water every now and then. And with a wide array of food on hand, going to the Dragon Boat Festival promises a whole weekend full of fun.
For more details, check out the special Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival section in this week’s TimesLedger, Bayside Times and Flushing Times, or go to www.hkdbf