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Residents give back through kite-flying


Residents give back through kite-flying

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THE DYING ARTS of kite-making and kite-flying have prompted young St Philip residents to start a new annual tradition of making and helping to fly kites for community children.

For the second year, old school friends John Jones and Akeem Mason will be coordinating the distribution of kites to children across the island.

“When I brought the idea to John, I realised he was thinking the same thing,” Mason, 25, said. “We just want to bring back the excitement of making kites and flying them.”

Tomorrow, Easter Monday, the Kite Flying Extravaganza and Giveback will be held in King George V Memorial Park. It is expected to host children of all ages.

This year Jones, a professional basketball player on contract in Australia, won’t be at the park but Mason, a craftsman by trade, has enlisted the help of fellow alumni of Graydon Sealy Secondary School – the former Garrison Secondary – some of whom also live in St Philip and youngsters from his district in Marley Vale.

“Last Easter when I was home I didn’t see any kites in the community,” Jones, brother of national athlete Akela Jones, said from Australia. “So I decided it was part of my childhood and I didn’t want to see this cultural practice vanish. I am not there but the event has to go on for the kids,” he said.

The team, which includes St Philip DJ Dwayne ‘Prodigy’ Pinder, has spent the last week making kites from scratch, starting with the frames.

“It is important to give back, especially to children who are in need and tend to feel left out,” he said.

Folklorist G. Addington Forde, author of the monogram Kites and a judge at the annual kite- flying competition at the Garrison Savannah in the late 1980s and 1990s, will be present to assist the young kite flyers.

The event starts at 10:30 a.m. (PR)