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ST. CROIX — The island of St. Croix, already experiencing an eventful week with Emancipation and July 4 celebrations on Tuesday and Wednesday respectively, will continue the activity-filled week with a Jump Up event in Christiansted on Friday night and the annual Mango Melee at the Botanical Garden in St. George on Sunday.
Tonight’s Jump Up affair, called a Summer Heritage Jump Up, will start at 6:00 p.m. and end at 10:00 p.m. Among the featured performances are the Guardians of Culture Mocko Jumbies, the Central High School Jazz Band, Unlimited Sounds and others. Of course, a host of vendors will line the streets serving a variety of eats.
Following Hurricane Maria’s ravaging of St. Croix in September, the Botanical Garden looked like someone had dropped a nuclear missile on the property; it was devastated. But the stewards of the beloved location worked hard and fast to restore its beauty, knowing how many activities are held there, and assuring that come July 2018 the grounds would be ready for the facility’s feature annual event: Mango Melee.
This year, the highly anticipated event — celebrating 22 years — will be held on Sunday, according to the Botanical Garden management. The all-day affair includes food craft and vendors, music and other entertainment, the Mango Dis, Mango Dat contest, a dunk tank, educational opportunities, and of course, the mango eating competition.
Two years ago, a video posted on The Consortium’s Facebook page showing the adult mango eating competition garnered over 362,000 views — one of The Consortium’s most popular videos thus far.
Viewers hailed from all over the Caribbean and the world, including Jamaica, Trinidad and Antigua, among others, as well as people in Europe and even Japan — putting the territory in a rather cool light on the global map.
“What a lovely competition. The mangoes look sweet too,” said Lynessa Williams from Grenada.
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