Free Jamaican festival at Downsview Park

Byron Lee’s Dragonaires will headline the musical talent at this year’s Jambana Cultural Festival, taking place on Monday, August 3 from 1to 9 p.m. at Downsview Park (off Sheppard Avenue between Allan Road and Keele Street). And Jamaica’s king of comedy himself, Oliver Samuels, will headline the evening’s comedy at the show which is free to the general public.

The family event will feature Canadian and international reggae, jazz and gospel artistes, dancers and a performance by Jamaica’s acclaimed 10-member Charles Town Maroon Drum and Dance Ensemble which will provide a sense of history, education and culture with an engaging performance.

Some of Canada’s finest entertainers will perform, including Juno winners Humble and Nana McLean, Steele, Exco Levi, Jay Douglas, African reggae artist Kwesi Selassie, Brazilian rising star Luanda Jones, Jakki James and Mountain Edge. The always engaging octet, Baby Boyz, will unveil a thrilling “Michael Jackson Tribute”.

 Rounding out the comedic segment with Samuels will be Jamaica’s Miss Comedy and Excitement, Terri Salmon and comedian Sabu Grant.

There will also be a Health Village where eight organizations will provide information on diseases that heavily affect the African Canadian community such as sickle cell disease, prostate and breast cancer, diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure and stroke.

The Seventh-day Adventist health team will present several ways to cook up healthy meals and food vendors will ensure that traditional Jamaican delights, juices and ital foods are served up to make Jambana a memorable event.

There will also be craft vendors, a Lick-A-Six Domino tournament, a Children’s Village with rides for the kids and Anansi stories. 

A VIP Village, for which admission of $20 will be charged, includes seating, a meal and a drink. (VIP tickets are available from or at the park on August 3.)

“Jones & Jones is pleased to continue to produce this event … and we are delighted to move to a larger venue, Downsview Park, which has the capacity to host continued growth,” says co-founder Allan Jones. “This event has grown into the largest event outside the Caribana parade. We encourage people attending the festival to come with their chairs, be relaxed and be entertained.”

Actor/comedienne, Marcia Brown, CHRY Radio host Natty B and Allan Jones will perform MC duties.

More information on JAMBANATM is available at 905-452-1911 or

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