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Virgin Islands’ 2nd Annual Salsa Festival Opens Queen Competition Registrations



Couple dancing tango

The fusion of pageantry and salsa dance comes alive as the Virgin Islands Salsa Festival announces its Queen Competition, slated for June 1, 2024, with registrations now underway.

On Monday, Festival Director Alexander Simon disclosed that the competition is inviting entries across three age brackets: Little Princess (ages 4-7), Princess (ages 8-11), and Queen (ages 18-45). The contest is set to be a “display of talent and a reflection of cultural diversity,” says Mr. Simon, urging “all fervent and committed individuals to grasp this chance to become a part of the Virgin Islands Salsa Festival’s tradition.”

Spearheaded by the Cruzan Dance Company, the festival showcased salsa maestros Joey Hernandez y Puerto Rico es Salsa alongside Nikki Brooks in its debut event this year. Both acts are revered for their captivating stage allure and rhythmic beats.

Although the artist lineup for the 2024 Salsa Festival remains under wraps, the Festival Queen competition aims to offer a stage for participants to “exhibit their prowess and enthusiasm for salsa’s history and Latin culture,” as per Mr. Simon.

Prospective contestants are encouraged to visit the festival’s website for more details or contact (888) 923-2623 for further information. The registration window stays open until November 27, 2023.

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Janeisha John Shines on the International Fashion Stage



Janeisha John, a native of the Virgin Islands, graces the cover of L’Officiel India’s latest issue, making a significant mark in the global fashion industry. This cover, generating international buzz, showcases the creative work of another USVI native, Aria Garcia.

Janeisha stuns in a breathtaking dress designed by Garcia, blending innovative design with classic elegance. The magazine spread features six distinct looks, each styled to reflect the vibrant and evolving nature of contemporary fashion. Notably, Janeisha dazzles in a green dress from Garcia’s acclaimed “Joy” collection, first unveiled in the Spring/Summer 2020 season.

Captured by the renowned photographer Chris Martin, Janeisha’s presence is immortalized in a series of captivating photographs that exude energy and narrative, highlighting her versatility and the avant-garde styling of the shoot.

Janeisha’s career reaches new heights with this iconic magazine feature, according to a release issued Monday. From her beginnings in the Virgin Islands to the cover of L’Officiel India, her journey epitomizes style and grace. “Working alongside Aria Garcia, Chris Martin, and the entire team has been awe-inspiring,” Janeisha shared. “Their unparalleled creativity and dedication have elevated this project to unprecedented heights. I am humbled to be part of such a visionary and groundbreaking endeavor.”

The release highlights Janeisha’s meteoric rise in the fashion world, attributing her success to relentless passion and unwavering dedication. Her ascent from humble beginnings to style icon serves as an inspiration to fashion enthusiasts worldwide, demonstrating that dreams can be realized through perseverance and determination.

L’Officiel India, a trendsetter in avant-garde fashion and cultural zeitgeist, continues to redefine industry standards with cutting-edge editorials, exclusive interviews, and breathtaking photography. This latest issue, curated under the visionary eye of Aria Garcia, stands as a testament to the magazine’s commitment to pushing boundaries and celebrating global fashion and culture.

Available now on newsstands and digital platforms, this issue invites readers to explore the luxurious world of high fashion, positioning L’Officiel India as a cornerstone of fashion innovation and excellence.

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Utopia: The Unity Festival Highlights – Starring Burna Boy



Set to make history in the U.S. Virgin Islands, Utopia: The Unity Festival promises an unforgettable day of music and entertainment at St. Thomas’s Crown Bay Dock on Sunday, May 5th. The event headlines global music icon Burna Boy, alongside a stellar lineup of top-tier artists.

Ticket Information:

  • General Admission: $174
  • Front Stage Access: $209
  • VIP Tickets: $350

VIP attendees will enjoy an enhanced experience with access to both the front stage and exclusive amenities including gourmet food and beverages, air-conditioned restrooms, and multiple service stations.

Tickets are available for purchase on EventBrite and at the festival gate. Attendees should bring a digital or printed copy of their ticket for scanning and wristband distribution.

Event Lineup and Schedule: The Unity Festival boasts a diverse array of performers, from local talents to international stars like dancehall sensation Spice and Grammy Award-winning duo R. City. Burna Boy, accompanied by his full band of over 30 members, is set to deliver a spectacular performance. The event will also feature renowned deejays Puffy and Private Ryan. Gates open at 2:00 p.m., with the festivities kicking off at 4:00 p.m. and concluding at 3:00 a.m.

Security and Amenities: Enhanced security measures include professional personnel with law enforcement expertise, the V.I. Police Department, and the V.I. Port Authority Police securing the venue and adjacent waterways. Emergency medical services, including St. Thomas Rescue with ambulances and emergency teams, will be on site.

Food and beverages will be readily available from multiple vendors and bars. Patrons are encouraged to reuse their drink cups to reduce waste and enjoy discounted prices on subsequent purchases.

Environmental Considerations: The festival area will be fully enclosed with shaded fencing to ensure privacy and security. Organizers have strategically placed garbage bins throughout the venue to promote responsible waste disposal.

Utopia: The Unity Festival is more than just a concert—it’s a celebration of music, culture, and unity that promises to deliver joy and an unparalleled collective experience to the U.S. Virgin Islands.

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The Countdown to St. Thomas’s Unity Festival Heats Up



The excitement is palpable as we edge closer to the Unity Festival, poised to transform Crown Bay Dock into a pulsating epicenter of music, culture, and togetherness on May 5th. This year’s edition, headlined by the globally acclaimed Burna Boy, is shaping up to be a memorable day for everyone present, despite an unforeseen change in the lineup.

The festival’s atmosphere took a bittersweet turn when organizers recently announced the absence of Morgan Heritage from the lineup, due to the unfortunate passing of Peetah Morgan. Known for their indelible mark on the reggae genre, Morgan Heritage will now grace the USVI with their presence on St. Croix at a future date, offering fans a chance to honor Peetah Morgan’s enduring legacy.

In a move that reflects the festival’s commitment to accessibility and unity, ticket prices have been revised, with general admission now starting at $174 plus taxes. This adjustment ensures more fans can experience the exceptional array of talent scheduled to perform.

Burna Boy, renowned for his mesmerizing performances and pioneering music, is poised to headline the event, guaranteeing a captivating show. R. City, the Grammy-winning duo from the Virgin Islands, will return home to deliver their eclectic mix of pop, reggae, Soca, and R&B, adding a local flavor to the international lineup.

Spice, the dancehall phenomenon, is set to thrill attendees with her energetic performance and hit songs, making her one of the most anticipated acts of the festival. Her presence underscores the festival’s dynamic range of musical offerings.

The event will also shine a spotlight on the USVI’s own musical talents, including an array of local bands and DJs. International sensations DJ Puffy and DJ Private Ryan are slated to perform, promising to enhance the festival vibe with their genre-blending mixes.

With its final preparations underway, the Unity Festival stands as a powerful symbol of music’s unifying force. Organizers are committed to presenting an event that celebrates the Caribbean’s unity, music, and diverse cultural heritage.

As the festival nears, it not only signifies a key moment in the Caribbean’s cultural calendar but also marks the culmination of the St. Thomas Carnival season. This positioning as the final act of the carnival provides a fitting and vibrant conclusion to the festivities, celebrating the community’s culture, resilience, and shared joy. Attendees are invited to be part of a momentous close to the carnival season, experiencing a gathering that transcends music to embody the spirit of the Caribbean.

Fans looking for more information or to secure their tickets are encouraged to visit the Unity Festival’s official EventBrite page. With the festival poised to be a standout event of the year, securing a ticket promises a day filled with unity, music, and unparalleled celebration.

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