More than 200,000 visitors are expected to pour into southeast Queens for the two-day Jamaica Arts & Summer (JAMS) Festival, a half-mile long block party now in its 23rd year.
On Friday, Aug. 2 and Saturday, Aug. 3, Jamaica Avenue will be closed to vehicular traffic between Parson Boulevard and 170th Street all day long and participants will be able to stroll past more than 450 vendors, live entertainment, multi-cultural family fun, countless food trucks, and activities organized by community agencies.
The Cultural Collaborative Jamaica & JAMS Planning Committee, which was founded by a group of residents and community leaders who wanted to stimulate the economy and celebrate the area’s cultural diversity, organizes the street fair and the JAMS Under the Stars music festival in Rufus King Park on a state-of-the-art sound stage located north of Jamaica Avenue between 150th Street and 153rd Street. The concert line-up features hip hop acts, R&B, Pop, Reggae and Soca music.
The celebration resumes Saturday between 11 a.m. and 7 p.m. with the 11-block long festival featuring specialty block; including a farmer’s market on 160th Street, a health and welfare seniors pavilion at 165th Street and two dedicated blocks just for children between 168th Street and 170th Street.
“We invite the tri-state area and beyond to come experience all Jamaica Avenue and its surrounding communities it has to offer during JAMS Festival,” Cultural Collaborative Jamaica Executive Director Tyra Emerson said. “Keeping with our mission to link the cultural arts with economic development, we will continue to design and promote activities that encourage tourism and empower the larger community and its residents as well.”
The Jamaica Multiplex is partnering with CJJ for JAMS. Movie tickets will be half price all day and food and beverages will be available at a discount.
Since its inception, CJJ has successfully created and managed a wide range of collaborative programs that supports its members and greatly impact community knowledge of and access to local cultural offerings, services and tourism opportunities.
“We urge you to stay connected and tuned for all things JAMS/CCJ/Jamaicals have coming your way,” Emerson said. “We have more surprises in store. We can’t wait to see you there.”