Showing posts with label Shuga Henry. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Shuga Henry. Show all posts

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

My Sweet Jamaican Adventure - Hip Stip, Montego Bay

My recent roaming adventure lead me to the beautiful island of Jamaica. Being a native of the island, I always jump at the opportunity to return to and explore the jewels of my country.

Jamaica is divided into 14 parishes - Cornwall County : Hanover, Saint Elizabeth, Saint James, Trelawny, Westmoreland; Middlesex County:  Clarendon, Manchester, Saint Ann, Saint Catherine, Saint Mary; Surrey County: Kingston Parish, Portland, Saint Andrew, Saint Thomas. On this trip I was able explore 4 parishes, Saint James, Trelawny, Manchester and Kingston Parish.

My adventure began in Montego Bay, St James.  Montego Bay is the capital of the parish of Saint James. It is the second largest city in Jamaica and the fourth largest by population after Kingston, Spanish Town and Portmore. Montego Bay is a popular tourist area. I stayed on the Hip Strip located along Gloucester Ave. The Hip Strip is a long road with hotels, beaches, shops and attractions.

Some of the Hip Strip attractions include Margaritaville ,   Acropolis Gaming & Entertainment Centre , Doctors Cave Beach and local free beaches. 
Free Local beach on the Hip Strip
Free local beach on the Hip Strip
Going to the beach is a must in Jamaica. The clear blue waters and beautiful sun rays make for a perfect day everyday in Jamaica. 

Along the Hip Strip you can find beautiful hotels, restaurants and craft vendors. 

Margaritaville was a delicious, exciting and entertaining experience. Now, normally when I return to my island I prefer to eat native foods. However, this time my pallet craved something different. I explored the tempting menu and was truly pleased. Each dish was prepared exquisitely. Although the entrees were familiar, each was prepared with Jamaican spices and flavors which created a unique twist.

margaritaville, Montego Bay, Jamaica

margaritaville, Montego Bay, Jamaica
Jimmy's Jammin' Jambalya

Jimmy's Jammin' Jambalya was an extraordinary dish loaded with plump shrimp, chicken and succulent Jamaican andouille sausage simmered in a spicy (Jamaican styled) Cajun broth. Served on a fluffy bed of white rice. De-Lish!

Combo Platter
 The Combo Platter was one of my favorites. This beautiful dish was comprised of half a rack of finger-licking baby back ribs, zesty blackened chicken and crispy, deep fried with rich flavor, coconut shrimp served with golden french fries. The dish came with two dipping sauces, tangy bbq and a spicy pepper sauce.

margaritaville, Montego Bay, Jamaica, Hip Strip
Cheeseburger in Paradise
 The Cheeseburger in Paradise  was exactly as described. I was definitely in paradise indulging in this scrumptious cheeseburger. It was a basic cheeseburger that I opted to have with crumbles of bleu cheese on top. What made the dish more delightful and fun was the guitar shaped platter it was served on. How cute and clever!

Cheeseburger in Paradise

margaritaville, Montego Bay, Jamaica
Honey Mustard Chicken Sandwich
 The Honey Mustard Chicken Sandwich was a marinated chicken breast topped with smoke applewood bacon, Swiss cheese, creamy avocado ( known as pear in Jamaica), lettuce and tomato presented in between a soft pretzel bum. I love the concept of pretzel and bread combined. Delicious!

margaritaville, Montego Bay, Jamaica
 This mamma jamma of a burger was a piece of beefy heaven.  The Bacon, Onion, Bleu cheese burger known as the B.O.B was a juicy full-flavored burger layered with smoked applewood bacon, onion rings, drizzled bleu cheese dressing, lettuce, tomatoes and topped with Gorgonzola cheese crumbles served on a buttery brioche bun. I know...that was a mouthful. A big savory, finger-licking mouthful!

Jolly Man
 The Jolly Man is a fruity concoction busting with awesome flavor. It was a great companion to the delicious burgers.

margaritaville, Montego Bay, Jamaica, Hip Strip
 Bananarama  was a scrumptious delectable dessert. It is stamped as the Caribbean Favorite so it a must have when you visit Maragritaville.   This glorious dessert was made with a perfectly ripe banana rolled inside a tortilla shell, fried crisp, topped with luscious chocolate sauce and served with a scoop of rich vanilla bean ice cream. Added as an extra special tasty treat were the freshly made banana chips and whip cream that garnished the dessert. Simply irresistible!

margaritaville, Montego Bay, Jamaica

margaritaville, Montego Bay, Jamaica, Hip Strip

After a extraordinary meal, the fun adventures can begin. Margaritaville has a wild 120ft water slide that winds its way from the rooftop terrace and shoots you out into the beautiful Caribbean sea below.  In addition there are two giant water trampolines and a huge water slide. 

picture courtesy

picture courtesy of

picture courtesy of

margaritaville, Montego Bay, Jamaica, Hip Strip

 After an action packed fun filled day, Margaritaville offer dynamic nightlife.  At night the restaurant is transformed into Club Ville and it totally comes alive. Nightlife includes a great mixture of tourist and locals. The deejays spin a great mix of reggae, dancehall, hip-hop and dance music.

margaritaville, Montego Bay, Jamaica, Hip Strip
 So the next time you're in Jamaica make sure you stop by and visit the Hip Strip. Great adventures await you that will be flavorful and joyous for the soul.

So.. Roam free and be inspired!

margaritaville, Montego Bay, Jamaica, Hip Strip

attractions on the

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Graffiti Haven 5Pointz Will Be Demolished

courtesy of
Long Island City, Queens, NY

My heart is heavy. I just caught wind of the news that the beloved graffiti mecca 5Pointz will be demolished by year end. I turned on my laptop to find an explosion of this information on Facebook. I tell you as an artist I am truly devastated and deeply saddened to hear this horrible news.

5Pointz: The Institute of Higher Burnin'  was an American outdoor art exhibit space in Long Island City in Queens, New York. It was considered to be the world's premiere "graffiti mecca," where aerosol artists from around the globe painted colorful pieces on the walls of a 200,000 square-foot factory building. I had the pleasure of walking the complex in it's entirely two years ago. My friend Perry, a graffiti artist and intern there at the time, gave me the grand tour.  The building was a spectacle of awe-inspiring art work. I mean, the concepts behind each piece was truly amazing. The building was a grand colorful fixture of the L.I.C skyline, dazzling and inspiring the eyes on the 7 train line. For the past 20 years, graffiti artists have been allowed to use the building as a canvas. 5Pointz has been featured in various movies and music videos with the most recent appearance in the film Now You See Me. 

The building will be demolished to make way for luxury condos.  The $400 million redevelopment project will include a new public park, over 50,000 square feet of retail space and a 250 space public parking garage. The Daily News reports the redevelopment plan - spearheaded by the owners of the site Jerry Wolkoff and his son David was approved overwhelming by City Council in October.

courtesy of Daily News
TimeOut New York reported on November 19, 2013 that the 5Pointz building was painted white overnight by the owner.  The owner stated that the whitewashing was not done maliciously.
He said the overnight paint job was done in an effort to avoid confrontation. According to the CBS New York Wolkoff said, “I can just picture the building coming down one piece at a time. It would be torture for me and it would torture for them. It’s like a Band-Aid, I just felt, one shot.”
courtesy of Daily News

 I understand and support what he did. Can you imagine the deep internal pain felt by the artist to witness their hard work being demolished by a wrecking ball. Each brick that was covered with a precise art piece just knocked down and thrown away like garbage. To even write this statement hurts my heart.

I know money needs to be made in life. However, why does money always have to trump the beautiful and the necessaries like art houses, hospitals, schools. 5Pointz fan Christopher Calderhead said. “It’s the death of a real cultural institution in the city and there doesn’t seem to be any room for this kind of art anymore.” (excerpt from CBS New York). I agree with him.

Long Island City is a growing area that is becoming more attractive and trendier each year. L.I.C is notable for its rapid and ongoing gentrification, its waterfront parks and thriving communities. With ample public transportation, the 59 street bridge and the Queens midtown tunnel in close proximity and Manhattan a hop stop away, I suppose it was time to jump on the money train and take the building into a profitable future.

Well, best of luck to the owners. To all the artists around the world who contributed to the majestic 5Pointz I say thank you for your magnificent works. It was a phenomenal ride while it lasted.

courtesy of Daily News

Monday, November 18, 2013

Awesome Brooklyn Events This Week 11/19 - 11/23

Shuga Henry
Howdy everyone! You're roaming reporter here with the Brooklyn events update. New York is so large and festive. There is always something awesome happening every day. Now, I am only one person. Although sometimes I wish I was multiple persons! Then I could be everywhere at one time. Do you know how much I could conquer?? However, I digress. Listed below are event highlights happening this week in the borough currently dubbed the "New Manhattan".

4th Annual Williamsburg Independent Film Festival  November 21-24 at Indiescreen 

The Fourth Annual Williamsburg Film Festival, comprised of 57 films from over 4 continents, will take place at IndieScreen between November 21st and November 24th, 2013. From Jerome Robbins' choreography shining in its natural setting, to the brutality lurking in the shadows of old school Williamsburg, to the soaring inspiration offered by one talented teacher in a Brooklyn Public School, to a chilling eco-thriller from the California coast, the Festival truly has something for everyone. 
( excerpt from

Aladdin & The Wonderful Lamp:  Sat 11/23 -Sun 11/24
 This theatrical event for children will be presented by Puppetworks. The play is accompanied by the music of Aram Khachaturian's Gayane ballet suite. Some of the special effect include a   flying carpet and a vanishing castle.

Stew at BRIC House. Friday, 11/22 @ 7:30pm, 11/23 @7:30pm
 The brilliant and charismatic solo artist, playwright ( "Passing Strange") (I loved this show on stage!!) and the "Negro Problem" presents Stew's "Listening Party" a two evening event devoted to works in progress. The presentation will be drawn from three musicals, a song cycle and video tribute to his Brooklyn neighborhood.  This sounds like a fabulous and eclectic event. I plan to be in attendance for all the festivities!
Price: $10

Kanye West + Kendrick Lamar - Barclays Center: Tuesday, 11/19@ 7:30pm, Wednesday, 11/20 @ 7:30pm
This should be an all out thrill.  West and Lamar will take the stage as part of the "Yeezus" tour.     This should be an amazing concert.

The Jukebox: Union Hall NY - Thursday, 11/21 @ 8pm

This is a jazzy venue seen on "SMASH" before NBC canned it. I'm still in mourning of this. Anyway, the The Jukebox is hosted by Steve(s) Heisler & Jacobs and Margaret Lyons. This is a monthly sing-along comedy show. Each gust performs a piece inspired by a song - (this can be a story, stand-up, sketch or something in-between.) After the story is completed, the guest are invited to karaoke their hearts out. 

Doors: 7:30pm/ Show: 8:00pm
 $7 adv/ $10 Day of Show

 These are my highlights for the week. I look forward to roaming, exploring and reporting more about what the city has to offer. Stay tuned for the "What's Poppen" weekend highlights.

Random Fun Facts of the Day

Photo Credit: Disney Channel
  • Mickey Mouse turns 85  today! Well it was actually yesterday. However, birthdays are for celebrating so here is to you Mickey.  Happy Cake Day... M-I-C-K-E-Y  M-O-U-S-E.
  •  The Oxford Dictionaries has chosen the word "Selfie" as the word of the year. Oh the educational joys Facebook and Twitter has introduced into our lives.

And... The Quote of the Day:

"Successful people are just ordinary people with extraordinary determination. Remember, if you don't know the struggle, you don't know the strength. "