All about parties this weekend

BY RICHARD JOHNSON Observer senior reporter

Friday, August 01, 2014

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The holiday weekend commences today and for many it is taking in the various activities organised to celebrate our Independence and Emancipation, while others see it at the opportunity to party. And there are a lot of parties to choose from.

The three major parties being staged this weekend at SPF in Ocho Rios, Dream Weekend in Negril, and Flex Week across the Corporate Area and Portmore in St Catherine.

These three events are now competing for the lion share of the party market and sponsorship. All three have been able to hook a major title sponsor in the form of a liquor brand. SPF has Appleton, Dream Weekend has snagged Smirnoff, while for Flex Week it is Rumbar Vodkka.

Each party claims to have that one thing that sets it apart.

Marketing and sponsorship consultant to SPF, Cortia Bingham, says her event, which runs from August 1-3, prides itself on being a "premium up-market event".

"No other event series in Jamaica's pays such attention to detail and delivering high-quality lifestyle entertainment services across five events in three days," she notes.

Bingham's counterpart over at Flex Week, Tara Fraser points to the variety of events from August 1- 6, which are offered at a minimal price, which makes her event special.

"There are 10 events that are being held over the course of six days, August 1- 6. There is no additional cost of booking hotel rooms, food etc. At the end of the day, after you have partied, you go home," Fraser pointed out.

For the promoters of the Dream Week, from August 1-6, it's all about the entertainment value.

"Most entertainment festivals locally and internationally are three or four days maximum. We deliver six days of non-stop action with 10 signature events that deliver a one of a kind experience that's the best value for money in the Caribbean," said Dream Entertainment director, Kamal Bankay.

The three events will send patrons digging deep into their pockets. A season ticket to Flex Week will cost $12,500 and covers all 10 events. The weekend pass to SPF's four marquee events will see party goers counting out $17,000. For its 10 parties over six days, the Dream team is asking $25,000.

The promoters of these events have wisely devised a target market and have gone to that demographic with its promotions.

For SPF, Bingham explains that: "it's the more mature adults who deserve and ask for more from their party experience."

Fraser and her team at Flex Week have gone after "young professionals who want an opportunity to relax and enjoy yourself over the weekend but you do not wish to go out of town."

Meanwhile, the team from Dream have opened their arms to the young party set.

"Anyone over 18 years old from every corner of the globe. This year, we have people arriving here from Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia North and South America, the Caribbean and our loyal Jamaican patrons," said Bankay.

Each team is pleased with its stamp on the holiday party market and have indicated that there is no immediate plan to shift the location of the events.





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