Waterhouse readies for Splash

By Aaliyah Cunningham
Observer writer

Friday, December 14, 2018

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Next Tuesday, Waterhouse Mini-Stadium will come alive for the fourth staging of Ghetto Splash in that Kingston community. Residents of Drewsland and surrounding areas are eagerly anticipating the event which has brought exposure, employment and unity to their communities.

Ghetto Splash is not just a stage show for residents of Drewsland-Waterhouse, but also an opportunity to be highlighted beyond crime, gain extra income for the Christmas season and for communities to enjoy “upful” vibes.

It brings out scores of different people; residents dub it their Sting, a nod to the popular Boxing Day show.

“Mek mi show yuh how di people dem love it. If December reach an' wi nuh see the posters dem yet, wi start fret!” one Drewsland resident told Splash.

“I cook an' sell over there every year. It benefit me because I have two fatherless kids an' when mi sell, mi mek a profit and know seh my daughter nice fi di Christmas after,” said Tia, a resident of Drewsland.

Tia and her children also enjoy the performances of top dancehall acts.

“Mi nah guh spend my money and guh nuh Sting an' mi know mi have my children fi guh school, suh when mi can go over there an' watch it or my children can watch it, 'cause if free, it a benefit us a lot,” she added.

The show not only benefits vendors but also young men in the community who are given an opportunity to work as security guards for the night. They work alongside members of the Jamaica Constabulary Force to ensure safety for the event.

“Yuh have police force different from security force an' yuh have people from the area as security that is there, security fi mek sure yuh car park properly, security for the vehicles at di back, at di front, an' it's very safe, yuh don't have to worry yuhself. Yuh don't have to be afraid to come,” said Tia.

Drewsland and neighbour Waterhouse have suffered from spells of violence over the years, which is one of the reasons residents look forward to Ghetto Splash.

“When it a come to Ghetto Splash, all peace deh deh. Di greatest ting wid it, more time yuh have enemy wid enemy an' dem end up work (together) and everything work as unity,” said Capri, a regular patron.

Even the elders enjoy it.

“Ghetto Splash is nice, man, mi nah downgrade it an' seh mi nuh like it. Mi nuh guh, but mi like it to, mi deh ya sometime an' hear it when artiste a lick dung artiste, mi love it!” said an elderly fruit vendor, who sells outside the venue.

Ghetto Splash started in Craig Town, hometown of founder Patrick Roberts. It remains a space for young artistes in the community to showcase their talent.

“The younger yute dem waan people wha' nuh know dem talent can get a chance fi people know dem talent and si seh dem bad, so anybody can invest inna dem and give dem a lickle encouragement,” Eva Strap told Splash. He is among the emerging artistes from Drewsland who will be performing next Tuesday.

“Ghetto Splash is a wonderful event; anytime it keep, youths from the community get a lickle work, people get work as security, vendors come out an' dem sell to earn a money, as well. Also, it help fi decrease the war wah gwaan within the community an' surrounding community,” said Fyah, another Drewsland resident who attends the event yearly.

This year's Ghetto Splash features Beenie Man, Popcaan, Aidonia, Dexta Daps, Agent Sasco, Bounty Killer, Wayne Marshall, Spice, Jahfrass, Propa Fade, Govana, Dre Island, Bugle, Nesbeth, Capleton, Tarrus Riley, Peter Metro, Omari, Jah Cure and Ishawna.

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