The Junkanoo Committee this year features a lot of new faces who are ready to instill new energy and promote passion for Junkanoo, and culture, on Abaco. Nationally recognized artist, Anthony Morley, was elected Chairman of the new “All Abaco Junkanoo and Culture Committee.” He is aided by Vice-Chairpersons James Richard and Gaynelle Rolle.
During three meetings that took place on September 16, 23 and 30 a full committee was elected. Mr. Morley subsequently travelled to Nassau on September 29 to register the new members with the National Committee.
The new Chairman wants the parade to be a unique Abaconian production with all the costumes constructed on the island and all the participants being residents of Abaco.
The first consideration of the new group was to register the new name of the committee which will now be called the “All Abaco Junkanoo and Culture Committee”.
The new Chairman wants the involvement of as many people as are willing, so he suggested that two Vice- Chairpersons be elected to support him. On September 23, James Richard – Principal at Forest Heights Academy – and Gaynelle Rolle -with the Department of Revenue- agreed to fulfill these positions.
A treasurer was also chosen on that same date, Iris Henchell, who will be helped by an Assistant -Treasurer, Enid White. The Secretary, Karen Rolle, had been elected during the first meeting as well as a Marketing Committee headed by Natasha Gray.
Jaqueline Estevez has the position of Head Judge. She will be in charge of recruiting the judges and organizing their training sessions – which will be mandatory for them to attend. The training will be spread out over several weeks starting in October
Other sub-committees will be in charge of finance, parade organization, fund raising and other areas as the need arises.
It was decided that high school students from tenth, eleventh and twelfth grades attending art classes be contacted immediately to participate in the creation of a logo for the Committee.
Ways of promoting and advertising the cultural events were also discussed. A Miss Junkanoo Parade, Junkanoo Treasure Hunt, Trips through all the settlements and chalk art competitions were a few of the ideas floated.
Mr. Morley has a vision stretching over ten years to make Abaco a center of cultural events relating to Junkanoo. He would like to purchase vehicles to help groups with travel through the island. He would also like to purchase a building to harbour a museum and for that reason has devised many ways of raising funds.