Bacchanal Bliss

Monday, April 22, 2019

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WHILE some people identify as soca lovers, one couple found love in soca.

Jermaine Bygrave 'popped the question' to his girlfriend, Chantea Johnson, during Bacchanal Beach J'Ouvert at Grizzly's Plantation Cove in St Ann on Saturday.

“I have known her for a year. We met at Bacchanal Beach J'Ouvert last year, actually. And I was planning the proposal since December, but I wanted to do it here because of sentimental value,” Bygrave told the Jamaica Observer, moments after proposing.

The colourful crowd at Grizzly's Planation Cove cheered on Bygrave as he proposed on stage, to which Johnson said: “Yes”.

Bygrave, who hails from St Catherine, said Beach J'Ouvert was ideal for him, because Bacchanal Jamaica events had the best vibes.

Many patrons travelled from far to get doused in the paint, water, and foam while listening to the latest soca selections.

“Since I've been in Jamaica, and even while I was back home, I kept hearing about Bacchanal Beach J'Ouvert, so I decided I had to come this year,” said Grenadian Kizzy Simon.

Fiona McKenzie, from Portmore in St Catherine, is not just a Bacchanal fan but part of the 'Bacchanal family'. She has been to its last 10 events.

With the Toll Road making their trek 45 minutes from the Corporate Area to St Ann, plenty of Kingstonians were part of the festivities. The Observer caught up with a director of Bacchanal Jamaica, Michael Ammar Jr, to hear his thoughts on their signature event.

“This is the time when everybody is coming and it's already pretty full. So yeah, it's good,” he said.

Ammar Jr was not troubled by rival events held over the Easter weekend.

“It's a lot of competition but there's also a lot of people on the north coast for all these parties. Easter weekend has become the official start of carnival, so you have the cooler thing, you have Frenchmen, you have Bacchanal but it's good. One party feeds on the other,” he stated.

Revellers were treated to performances by Shenseea and Trinidadian Shal Marshall as well as traditional and contemporary soca songs from deejays Smoke, Cyclone and Tyler. As usual, Patrick “Hype Man” Anthony brought his high energy to complement the live sets.

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