Margarito “Merch” Chantelope and Theresa Mena were crowned King and Queen of the Cayman Brac Agriculture Show on Saturday (25).
The show, held at Agriculture Grounds on Songbird Road on the Bluff, was the biggest of its kind in the Brac and packed in animals, crafts, and exhibits and played host to over 1,500 visitors, including HE the Governor Mr. Duncan Taylor, his wife Mrs. Beatrice Taylor, Speaker of the House Hon. Mary Lawrence, Deputy Premier and Minister responsible for Agriculture Hon. Juliana O’Connor-Connolly, Acting Deputy Governor Mrs. Mary Rodriquez, Chief Secretary Mr. Alan Jones, Deputy Chief Secretary Jonathan Jackson and Director of Agriculture Adrian Estwick.
“The show attracted a record crowd and was an immense success both from the perspective of the organisers and visitors,” said Deputy District Commissioner and Chairman of the Cayman Brac Agriculture Show organising committee Mark Tibbetts. “I would like to thank everyone – visitors, sponsors, volunteers, farmers and members of the Committee — for making this show a huge success. The event also showed the importance of agriculture in our society. It attracts more people every year and keeps getting better and better,” he added. He also thanked persons who flew over from Grand Cayman, noting “this was the biggest group to date.”
Deputy Premier Hon. Juliana O’Connor-Connolly said she felt blessed to be “a witness to the bountiful blessings of the farmers. The huge range of activities and competitions on offer had something for everyone. The show was the perfect setting for the entire family and I was pleased to see the young and elderly and everyone in between having such a wonderful time.”
C Level Band opened and closed the Brac Agriculture Show and in between Dexter Bodden, Barefoot Man, Andy Martin (Cayman Cowboy), Layman Scott High School Steel Band, Tammy Banks-DaCosta and Friends (Gospel) and District Commissioner Mr. Ernie Scott entertained. Koalition performed a couple dance numbers. Various activities along with the food, displays from the Government Departments and organisation such as Lions Club, which provided health checks, kept patrons entertained throughout the day. Visitors were also able to admire the various crops and craft items and children and adults enjoyed the various animal stalls on display in the competitions.
Besides its innate ability to entertain, the show has traditionally been a key step in assisting the Department of Agriculture in spreading message and benefits of backyard farming. Visitors to the show purchased several thousand seedlings and plants. Humbled at being selected King of the Show for the second consecutive year, Mr. Chantelope said: “I am pleased to win but would have been equally pleased if the title had gone to someone else. I love to farm and this show is good for us farmers.” However, his pumpkins, prize-winning yams and cassava – including one that weighed over 100 pounds and had a four foot span — made it easy for the judges. Ms Mena too was pleased to be crowned for a second year.
“I love to farm and I share most of my crops with my neighbours. I spread my blessing with others,” she said.
The Prince and Princess of the show were David Scott (Creek and Spot Bay Primary School) and Lorie Parchman from West End Primary.
Shiela Murphy won the Grand Prize of US$2,500.