WASHINGTON – Jamaica’s Ambassador to the United States, His Excellency Stephen Vasciannie, is slated to deliver the keynote address at an awards ceremony in Atlanta, Georgia, on January 19 which will culminate a series of year-long series activities staged in that city to mark Jamaica’s 50th Independence Anniversary The function, which is scheduled for the Atlanta City Hall Atrium, will see a number of Jamaicans residing in that city, being honoured for outstanding contributions to that community. Noted Jamaican singer, Karen Smith, and Atlanta-based artiste, Monty Montgomery, head the list of entertainers slated to perform at what is expected to be a grand affair. Several activities, showcasing Jamaica’s culture and heritage, were organized by the Jamaica 50 Atlanta Planning Committee, as Jamaicans and other nationals commemorated the country’s Independence Jubilee during 2012. The events included: an Ecumenical and Thanksgiving Service at St. Timothy’s Methodist Church; a Flag Raising Ceremony at Atlanta City Hall; and an Independence Ball hosted by the Atlanta/Jamaica Association. Other events staged, which were endorsed by the Planning Committee, included: a fashion cabaret; and the Atlanta Caribbean Jerk Festival. Patron of the activities, Jamaica’s Honourary Consul to Atlanta, Vin Martin, said the aim was to present an “entertaining and culturally-pleasing round of events that everyone (could) participate in and celebrate with us”, adding that “I know we succeeded in doing that”. Planning Committee President, Heather Potter, described the activities as a “wonderful celebration for the Jamaican community here in Atlanta (which) has allowed all of the metro-Atlanta area to experience Jamaica at its best”.