Reggae World Music Festival Takes Place at Bayfront

Duluth, Minn.-When the thumping beats of reggae fill your ears and the savory smell of Jerk Chicken fills your nostrils that means the Reggae World Music Festival has begun in Bayfront Festival Park..

Going strong for 13 years, folks from all walks of life are drawn to the chill tunes that reach deep into listeners’ hearts. Organizers say that connection is what draws people back every year.

“Y’know that coming together in an age where we see y’know issues and division,” said Chief Manager Janna Dreher. “Y’know there’s that expression one love, which means y’know coming together as a people united in love and understanding.”

The walkways become sprinkled with Jamaican culture. Items emblazoned with Jamaican symbols and Bob Marley portraits fill the Bayfront walkways. And of course no culture would be complete without far–out flavors, which pack a punch.

“It’s the power to put you to sleep, I think that’s what our food does,” said Dennis Henry, Jerk Cook at Momma Rose’s in Minneapolis. For him the festival is a chance to broaden people’s minds to other foods besides Jerk Chicken.

“There’s so much more than just jerk chicken. you got curry goat which is our main animal that we use in Jamaica. so it’s curry goat and ox tails. And red snapper is our main fish that we eat. So just to bring people to know more than just Jamaicans and Jerk Chicken.”

What brings the experience together is of course the people, or “bredren” in Jamaican English. And the reggae fest brings the best of the “bredren” to jam at the waterfront. Darin McGowan describes one of his memorable experiences with his fellow festival-goers.

“One year we came out here and the wind was really high and we need some help adjusting our tent and some people that we didn’t even know joined in until we got it right,” he said. “So people are friendly. Really good vibe, really good atmosphere.”

The friendly vibes of Jamaica, melding with the friendly vibes of Duluth.


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