Meze Audio 99 Classics Walnut Gold

Written by Marshelle Haseley

Imagine a piece of nature emitting music into your soul—that is the Meze Audio 99 Classics Walnut Gold. It is one of the most beautiful and skilfully designed pieces of electronic device on the market, coupled with a clean and superior sound quality.
The amazement begins with its sleek, black hard EVA carrying pouch. Upon opening the pouch, the stunning dominant hand finished, walnut wood earcups and gold-plated accents of the electroplated precision die-cast zinc alloy hardware are bound to attract lovers of music, who are fascinated by fashionable, functional art.

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The fatigue- resistant chromium-manganese alloy spring metal band ensures a comfortable fit, assisted by the self-adjusting PU headband. The soft PU leather ear pads with medium density memory foams give the most luxurious headphone experience—aesthetically matching the sonic splendour we expect from Meze.

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Photography by Azlan Mohammed

The detachable Kevlar-reinforced cables with machined aluminium casing ensure ease and durability. This antique-meets-modern piece is built to last, and is compatible with Apple, Android, Window, and other devices.

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Listening to any genre of music on this fine piece from Meze Audio takes the listener on a journey—every instrument becomes audible, enhancing the listening experience beyond the imagination.

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The Meze Audio 99 Classics Walnut Gold is a must get for all music lovers who enjoy music, and fine, classic, luxurious experiences.

Simply Iconic: The Zeppelin Review

By Tricia Williamson

It’s been over a decade since Bowers & Wilkins’ first introduced the iconic Zeppelin. This wireless speaker has a stylish, unique and sleek design. I must admit at my first glance of it online, the sheer size didn’t strike me until you see its presence in person. So if you’re in the market for a compact- this is not it.

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Photos courtesy of Bowers & Wilkins

Weighing in at 14lbs, a height of 188mm and width of 660mm- this juggernaut in audio is built for your home. At $699USD, it’s no walk in the penny park. Nevertheless, it is a great addition to your interior design- perfect for a large room with a high ceiling such as a living room or party space.

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Big in size, but even bigger in sound. The Zeppelin is loud and offers high quality, clear audio in its delivery. The speaker is impressive even at high volumes the bass remains powerful yet controlled. Bowers & Wilkins have always been excellent in their craftsmanship.

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As Christmas nears, and we gather for parties and gatherings with family and friends, the Zeppelin is the speaker for your party. You can wake the neighbourhood with this… But please don’t.

Miami Spice: Farm-to-Table Destinations

Welcome to Miami, where farm-to-table cuisine means juicy heirloom tomatoes in the middle of winter, mangos, and jackfruit in the summer and fresh greens year-round. Here, chefs embrace the bounty of fruits and vegetables that flourish in South Miami-Dade’s agricultural district.

Coconut Ceviche Tacos at Plant Food & Wine in Wynwood
Coconut Ceviche Tacos at Plant Food & Wine in Wynwood

Paradise Farms was established roughly 18 years ago specializing in organic produce and edible flowers sold to restaurants. Located in the heart of Homestead, about 45 minutes south of Downtown Miami, the farm supplies many chefs and farmers markets with local fruits and vegetables, herbs, eggs, mushrooms, and other produce.

James Beard award winning chef Michael Schwartz in his herb garden

In Homestead, you can sample authentic tropical farm-to-table dining – and drinking – any time of the year at Schnebly Redland’s Winery & Brewery and its RedLander Restaurant helmed by Chef Dewey LoSasso, a lush, palmy outpost in South Dade. Your meal might include mahi-mahi ceviche and salad made with Malabar spinach or guava-basted chicken wings. Accompany your meal with avocado or passion fruit wine or a Big Rod coconut ale, all made on site at the winery.

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Bringing the Farm to Your Plate
James Beard Award-winning chef Michael Schwartz is credited with making fresh, local ingredients the star of the show when he opened Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink in Miami’s Design District in 2007.

Pineapple & Citrus salad at Essensia
Pineapple & Citrus salad at Essensia

Backyard Gardens
The pioneering farm-to-table restaurant, Essensia at The Palms Hotel & Spa, takes local love a step further. While they’ve relied on farmers like Teena’s Pride for heirloom tomatoes and other produce, they also grow their own herbs and vegetables in an organic garden behind their tiki bar. Thai basil, lemongrass, lemon balm, Cuban oregano, edible flowers and vegetables all find their way into recipes and cocktails on the menu.

Craig Harley & His Inspiring Journey

by Denar Brown

When the reality that life is a marathon and not a race hits you, then the little changes you made start having big impacts. To think that 2 years ago I was over 40 pounds heavier, struggling in my career and trying to balance the other aspects of my life as well. Craig Harley is the managing director at Creative House Photography and also an athlete. Craig’s work surpasses horizons and expectations, as he is not only known in Jamaica but internationally. However, the process of building himself has been a really heavy deadlift. Owning a business and balancing the gym is not an easy task, especially when your goal is to compete on a national level for men’s physique. When I just started out, I only worked out 3 days a week, until I moved to 5 days a week and then I stopped for a couple of years. Craig told us in his interview that work became cumbersome and fitness had to take a back seat. The stress from work and family was unbearable. Craig told us that there were moments when he had to just stop where he was, drown the world out and remind himself what he is trying to achieve, what he wants from himself, what he wants to eat… In 2016, Craig’s weight struts down the runway of his life, sporting a brand new 40 pounds of fat. This was a stressful point in my life.

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Photography by Dash Productions

Craig lost his father when he was 12 years old, and growing up in the community of Norman Gardens would never be the same. His father was an entrepreneur, and Craig was determined to make his father proud with his business ventures. To do this, Craig created a narrow depth of field for his career, which blurred out the other important aspects of his life: family, friends, and fitness. When you are on the go, working in a fast paced environment and trying to get everything done with only 24 hours in a day, you are more likely to eat food that follows the pace, fast food. Late nights meant late eating, networking meant lots of drinking, everything felt like it fell in place, the right moment and the right time for me to have a drink or to eat the stress away. We were at a Christmas photo-shoot when I accidentally saw myself in the mirror. I looked unflattering; I was so busy building my career up, that I neglected the diameter of my gut. This was not a good look Pull up! Pull up! Lift! Harley’s life needed a change.

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Craig Harley: Before & After

Sooner rather than later Craig realized that the work stress would never end, owning a business will always be a stressful job, so when the work stress started again, Craig decided to use the gym as a relief. However, just going to the gym did not suffice, Craig wanted a challenge, something to motivate himself to keep going, to do better, to build himself. With such a drive a need, there is only one thing that you do to push your own determination and cement it in the memory of others, and that is to make a social media post pledging to enter the countries biggest bodybuilding and fitness competition. Craig thinks of himself as a Harley whenever he is training at the gym, powerful, loud and determined. I won’t quit, but I will cuss the entire time. In preparation for the competition, Craig went through 3 trainers, intense dieting and rigorous training exercises. Sleepless nights were replaced by hungry nights as I worked on curbing years of bad eating habits. The worst part of the process was expecting faster results, I felt like I was on the brink of having the life sucked from my body and the results did not match my pain then, but I knew I had to trust the process. The best part of the experience came next, when the trust started paying off and I started seeing the improvements, the joy of stepping on a scale almost became an addition as I took pride in knowing I took some weight off earth’s shoulders.

Since his decision to invest more in himself, business has been better, Craig’s level of confidence has positively affected his professional and other relationships. He has struck a balance in his life between work, family, his mental and physical health. We asked Craig if he could tell someone who is having a similar issue some words of encouragement what would he say? Make the effort to do the work and allow your body to respond. Life is a marathon, not a race, it’s not about when you start or how fast you go but rather how long you can stay in the game. A healthy lifestyle promotes a longer life, take a risk on bettering yourself.

The Allure of Owia Salt Pond in St. Vincent & the Grenadines

By Melony Mejias

During one of my summer vacations, my family and I travelled to the wonderful island of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. This was my second trip to the island, and it left an everlasting impact on my life, and my photography.

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The first time I visited Saint Vincent, I was only a child and had a vague memory of my experience— evidently I knew one day I had to visit the island again. I had to regain and enrich my memory of this wonderful island. Fortunately, for me, my aunt and uncle currently live in Saint Vincent, so I am at liberty to visit the island at my leisure. On the third day of our trip, my aunt suggested that we visit some unique places. One of those places mentioned was the salt pond located in Owia.
Immediately, I Googled the location to see where we were about to embark upon, and I was truly amazed at the natural phenomenon in pictures. Upon seeing the pond, I was ecstatic to take many pictures but before I express my experience and thoughts about the pond, let me elaborate on some facts about the Owia salt pond.

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The Owia Salt Pond is located on the North Eastern Coast of St. Vincent in the village of Owia which is home to some of the indigenous people of St. Vincent and the Grenadines— the Black Caribs. The salt pond was formed when larva from the volcano erupted and met the sea. The salt pond forms a vital buffer zone between terrestrial and marine ecosystems.
The volcanic rock formations magically formed itself into a pool which is continuously refreshed by waves splashing in from the sea. Reef fish and coral formation gives the pond a unique colour which looks a tropical pool. I stayed at the pond for approximately two hours. My experience at the Owia salt pond was one filled with amazement, joy, laughter and fun. Bathing in the pond felt therapeutic. The reef fish lightly nibbling at my feet in the water felt relaxing and unlike anything I have experienced thus far. The salt water in the pond felt warm and calming and I felt like never leaving. Although I was engrossed enjoying my time bathing in the pond, I was able to photograph this natural phenomenon.

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It was truly a delightful site to see and experience first-hand and I recommend it to anyone who is planning to visit Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. It is said that The Owia Salt Pond has been used for therapeutic purposes in the past, I concur to this as I have experienced bathing in the pond myself. It will be an experience unlike any other.
The rocks depicted in the photograph are the volcanic rock formations that surround the pool. The pond consists of reef fish and coral formations that give pond its colour. It is truly a wonderful natural phenomenon that visitors should see and photograph while visiting the beautiful Island of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.

Reflection by Lorraine Givans

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Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

We are now in the last quarter of 2018. This is a great time to reflect on your journey thus far towards your vision, dreams and the goals you had set for your business. And, of course, yourself, as it is important to ensure your overall well-being is holistically aligned to your vision and dreams.

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Lorraine Givans

On reflection, acknowledge and embrace all your achievements, no matter the size. We tend to put too much energy on what we have not achieved. So acknowledge and embrace your wins if you have not already taken this time to do so.

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Review Your Goals

Be gentle with yourself while reflecting on the goals that you may not have achieved to this point. Review those goals and identify one that you wish to achieve and that you are prepared to commit to. Ensure that is SMART-Specific Measurable Achievable Realistic & Timebound, i.e. can be achieved by the end of 2018.

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Photo by Engin Akyurt on Pexels.com

Break this goal down further and set actions for each month, then set daily intentions towards this goal. If you have a staff team, check in with them and their key performance areas and be sure to acknowledge their wins too. Set a goal that you believe is achievable for each individual and also that is in alignment with your overall objectives for your business.

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Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

Use this time to revisit your daily routine and the tools you have been using to support you. If you feel that something is not working for you now or needs tweaking or changing, do it NOW!

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Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

So to summarize:
• Acknowledge and embrace all your achievements
• Review your goals and set one you wish to achieve by the end of 2018
• Acknowledge your staff teams achievements & set their goals accordingly
• Review your daily routine & the tools you use to support you

You have now positioned yourself and your business to end 2018 holistically aligned to your Vision.

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Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

As you reflect, remember, you have a unique message for the world: “Be Uniquely & Unapologetically You and Step into Alignment with Your Vision.”

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Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

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Lorraine Givans is the Chief Supporting Officer (CSO) and Founder of Destiny Achieved Coaching. She is a Certified Business & Life Coach and NLP Practitioner. Lorraine supports business owners and entrepreneurs with a unique message, brand, and commitment that is dedicated to ensuring clients “Step into Alignment with their Vision.”

She is passionate about business support and with this in mind, Givans only works one-on-one and personally designs a bespoke programme specific to the needs of each business. Destiny Achieved Coaching embraces Vision 2030 Jamaica and will endeavour to support its clients in ensuring that their business will be in alignment with this vision.

The V-Moda Remix Review

By Tricia Williamson

As Christmas nears, the $200 price tag for the V-Moda Remix Wireless speaker is an excellent gift that’s hard to beat! VModa has done it again delivering its award-winning, exceptionally high-quality sound in this beautifully designed speaker. With this brand, you are always sold from the unboxing experience.

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V-Moda Remix presents you the first 2-in-1 Bluetooth speaker and amplifier. The sound is clean and clear with detailed immersive music experience every audiophile absolutely loves! Top features include: over 10 hours of playtime, wired/wireless mode and a daisy chain feature (chain included in box)

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Compatible with iOS, Android and all smartphones, tablets, and computers. Upgrade your listening experience beyond your iPhone or Samsung built-in speakers. The Remix powers it up to great live studio space.

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We are in the customizable economy and this wireless speaker is fully customizable to suit your look and tastes. It can embody your personality from all sides with 3-D printed options. Included in the package are 4 Remix Rings to add a pop of colour to your housing. If the quality of design is as important to you, as much as the high quality of sound- then mix it up with the Remix.

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It’s one of my top choices for you and your beau- perfect to take with you when you travel and even better to move around with you in your home.

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PANACHE Archives: Dr. Lawrence Williams- Paving the Way In The Fight Against Cancer

PANACHE Magazine Archives: April 2011 ¬Exclusive Interview by Tricia Williamson

In 2011, Dr. Lawrence Williams was a Research Consultant consulting at the time with the Products Research Unit at the Research Council (SRC) in Jamaica. He was also continuing his research into natural products for agrochemical and medicinal purposes. In our exclusive interview with him several years ago, he shared insights into his ground-breaking research. In this issue, we’re sharing that story again.

PANACHE: How did you get started at the Scientific Research Council (SRC)?

Dr. Lawrence Williams:
I have a long history with the SRC. It began from my Ph.D. days after I completed my B. Sc, I was told that the SRC had a project where they wanted to explore natural products as insecticides and that was being facilitated through Professor Ajai Mansingh, at University of the West Indies (UWI), Mona Campus. I applied for the job and was successful. Later I was informed that the work would count towards my graduate program. I later pursued a Master’s of Philosophy which was upgraded to Ph.D. In 1990. I completed my Ph.D. in 1991 and graduated in 1992. I eventually returned to the SRC as the project supervisor for the Natural Product Unit. After two years I went back to the University of the West Indies (Mona) to pursue a post-doctoral program with Prof. Ajai Mansingh and after completing one year on that program I joined the Anatomy Department (UWI, Mona) teaching histology and conducting neuro-anatomy tutorials.

While in the Anatomy Department, I explored the toxic effects of plants that displayed promising pesticidal potential. I was interested in extracts of the guinea hen weed and a compound isolated from the extract known as dibenzyl trisulphide (DTS). From these studies in the Anatomy department, we saw that DTS had interesting pharmacological properties.

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Photo credit: medicalherbals.net

Dibenzyl trisulphide stimulated the proliferation of cells in the thymus gland which is an immune enhancing organ along with the stimulation of some bone marrow parameters. I later decided to explore the mechanism of action of DTS. Which was done through an Alexandervon Humboldt Research Fellowship program with Professor Harald Rosner at the University of Hohenheim, Stuttgart, Germany using neuroblastoma cells in 1999.

We found that while looking for the mechanism of DTS, it would inhibit the proliferation of the neuroblastoma cells at the micro-molar concentration which suggested to us that it could have anti-cancer potential. And that’s where the cancer work began.

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Dr. Lawrence ¬ Photo credit: UTECH

PANACHE: Where are you now with the cancer research that has got everyone a buzz in 2011?

Dr. Williams: We published a paper in the journal “Biochimica et Biophysica (BBA)” In 2001 looking at the mechanism of dibenzyl trisulphide (DTS); particularly how it inhibits the proliferation of cancer cells. Shortly thereafter a group in San Diego lead by Professor Haoyun published a patent on DTS and its derivatives as anti-cancer agents in animals. We later found that when DTS is bound to serum albumin the anti-cancer potency increased by 2,500 fold and this discovery was patented by us.

Now the research is at the stage of exploring the toxic effect of the conjugate (DTS and albumin) in animals. To date, the conjugate seems to be non-toxic, and we are planning to use human serum albumin in the testing. Thereafter we will do the clinical trials.

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Photo Credit: Hallsharvestfood

PANACHE: Tell us more about the guinea hen weed?

Dr. Williams: The plant is good for various types of cancer including lung, melanoma, breast, prostate, and lymphoma and that is known from people who are using it. The pure compound is far more powerful than the crude extract. The plant is grown locally throughout Jamaica and is also grown in Latin America, and in some parts of West Africa. It has a traditional history of being used as a medicinal plant from ~the time of the Mayans and in Africa, it is known as a cure-all for a variety of diseases. It is a dark green leafy vegetable- type plant. It is a cowering plant and somewhat similar to callaloo only that it has a spine that grows out of it when cowering.

The plant has several aliases including gully root, guinea hen weed, and anamu. Anamu is the name of a celestial god in Mayan mythology and this plant is said to have that name because of its healing properties it is also called Strong Man Weed in Jamaica.

PANACHE: Do you know it to be used in any roots drink?

Dr. Williams: No, however, it is used in a ritual where they use plants to heal the very sick. It is an African religious ritual and it is one of the main plants used.

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Photo credit: Santo Products

PANACHE: What is your vision 10 years from now with this work and the impact of this research?

Dr. Williams: This plant not only has anti-cancer potential but it also has anti-aging properties and this is supported to some extent by the thymus research we have done. The thymus is an immune organ which when it is dying off (atrophy) your body becomes prone to degenerative diseases including arthritis. If we decide to pursue the anti-aging market then we can have a medicine on the market within ten years. We nevertheless will be going for the conjugate as opposed to the pure compound since it is more superior as an anti-cancer agent in comparison to the pure compound and I hope that will be on the market in 10 years. From what we have seen it inhibited the proliferation of a wide range of cancer cells, it is non-toxic and more importantly does not have any effect on non-cancerous cells and seems, therefore, to be selective for pathological cells.

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Photo credit: Queen’s University Belfast

PANACHE: In terms of research do you think more needs to be done by the private sector, the government to support the research that is coming out?

Dr. Williams: Yes, research is very expensive and particular the private sector should play a greater role. The government should offer benefits such as tax breaks to businesses in the private sector. In return, the money from tax breaks should go to research institutions such as the University of the West Indies and the Scientific Research Council. I personally feel that the government should look into that as our plants are very important because there seems to be a wealth of traditional knowledge which could serve as leads to the development of our natural products and that in turn could improve our economy.

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Photo credit: Stills Branding

PANACHE: What has been your biggest challenge in conducting this research?

Dr. Williams: The laboratory facility is one example, labs for cell culture needs to be improved. I know that Dr. R Delgoda is doing cancer work and has struggled to get the facilities in place and now they have advanced in that pursuit which in itself is a good step. Sophisticated laboratory equipment and qualified personnel are areas that need to be addressed.

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Photo source: IamJamaican

PANACHE: We have noticed that you have patented your work, how important is it to protect that intellectual property?

Dr. Williams: It is very important because cancer is one of the number one killers in the world. For example, breast cancer treatment in the United States is a 40 billion US S industry per year. Therefore, if this compound is effective on breast cancer and is non-toxic, as we have seen thus far, this would become an important foreign exchange earner. Thus, from an economic point of view, this protection via the patent was important so that no one can steal it.

PANACHE: Lastly what would you say has been the most rewarding?

Dr. Williams: Getting the patent. That has been the most rewarding milestone…to date.

This story was originally featured in PANACHE Spring 2011 Issue.

All Rights Reserved.

 


2017 Update:  UTech, Jamaica Adjunct Professor Lawrence Williams Receives Patent for Anti-Cancer Drug 

Dr. Lawrence Williams displays two of his Guinea Hen Weed pharmaceutical products retailed under the Timeless Herbal Care brand – the Guinea Hen Weed Tonic and Restorative and the Guinea Hen Weed Magic Relief pain ointment.  The occasion was a special briefing session at UTech, Jamaica’s Papine campus on Thursday, January 12, 2017, to announce a Memorandum of Agreement signed between UTech, Jamaica and Timeless Herbal Care Limited to support the development of the medicinal cannabis industry in Jamaica.

Twenty eight years of dedicated research on one of the endogenous plants of Jamaica Petiveria alliacea (guinea hen weed) has landed Adjunct Professor in the College of Health Sciences , University of Technology, Jamaica Dr Lawrence Williams and co-researcher Dr George Levy (USA) a patent with the United States for the discovery of anti-cancer activity of the plant.

The invention involves the isolation of the active ingredient dibenzyl trisulphide (DTS).  DTS is classified as a polysulphide mitogen with a wide spectrum of activity including anti-proliferation and or anti-cytotoxic effect on human cancer cell lines.  DTS also acts to stimulate the production of stem cells from bone marrow and thymus with very little toxic effects.

Dr. Williams joined the College of Health Sciences in 2016 and has been involved in plant-based research at both the graduate and undergraduates levels.

Dr. Williams obtained his Ph.D. from the University of the West Indies followed by post-doctoral studies at the University of Hohenheim, Institute for Chemistry, Stuttgart, Germany. He is an accomplished researcher with over 70 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters on plant-based medicine.

His extensive research profile had made him the recipient of numerous awards and fellowships including the 2013 Honored Member for Research, Continental Who’s Who, USA;   2011 Silver Musgrave Medal for Outstanding Merit in the Field of Science (Scientific Research) from the Institute of Jamaica; Induction into the International Biographical Centre (IBC), Hall of Fame, Cambridge, UK (2004), among many other awards.

Dr. Williams’ current work at UTech, Jamaica also includes the supervision of a post-graduate research project on the anti-inflammatory activity of curcumin and cannabidiol and undergraduate research projects on the Insecticidal activity of Neem extracts and malathiam and Antibacterial activity of Neem extracts.

Source: https://www.utech.edu.jm/news/utech-jamaica-adjunct-professor-receives-patent-for-anti-cancer-drug-1

Calabash: The Best Literary Festival

Words by Justine Henzell & Photography by Collin Reid

One of the best ways to spend a weekend anywhere in the world is at the Calabash International Literary Festival in Treasure Beach. A small fishing village on Jamaica’s rugged south coast may sound like an odd place for book lovers from around to congregate but that seaside haven is exactly where thousands make a pilgrimage to every other year.

Yes thousands! From all over Jamaica and from all over the world for 3 days and nights of readings and music which are all presented for free. As the organisers say “Passion is the only price of entry”. Started in 2001 by three friends, Colin Channer, Kwame Dawes and Justine Henzell Calabash is now firmly established on the world calendar of literary events and has hosted Nobel Laureates, Pulitzer prize winners, Man Booker Prize winners, MacArthur Genius Award winners and many Poet Laureates from around the world.

The 2018 staging saw four Lady Laureates reading together for the very first time anywhere – Carol Ann Duffy from the UK, Georgette LeBlanc from Canada, Tracy Kay Smith from the USA and Jamaica’s own Lorna Goodison. Readings of poetry, fiction and non-fiction and memoir are all popular as are the in-depth and often hilarious conversations. Open Mic is expertly guided by Professor Carolyn Cooper and the standard is very high – the audience makes sure of that!

The next staging of Calabash will be May 29-31 2020 so make your reservations now! Follow @calabashfest for all updates.


Be sure to check out reviews from authors that attended the event earlier this summer! See link below:

Panache Mag August 2018

Free Digital Edition: https://goo.gl/7P5gG1

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Mercury Fest 2018

Written By Tevyn Gill | Photos courtesy of the St. Lucia Tourism Authority

Only 3 weeks after an action packed Carnival season, the beautiful, tourism driven island of Saint Lucia followed up keenly with their highly anticipated beach and boat festival, Mercury Fest Saint Lucia. Formerly the hosts of the popular Mercury Beach — initially of Martinican origins — that gained much of its growth on the same Lucian shores of Pigeon Island, saw an end to the event’s four-year run in Saint Lucia. Being one of the most anticipated events of the summer to be held on island, however, the proactive action of Epic Events and the Saint Lucia Tourism Authority seized the opportunity to fill the gap with their own version of the same concept to satisfy the ever growing demand.
The two day event comprised of three events between August 10th & 11th. Its inaugural installment of the now 100% locally produced festival attracted an influx of visitors from all around the region, with over 4000 guests from the French speaking territories where the concept was populated. It is also estimated to have hosted over 150 vessels, which included speedboats, catamarans and yachts from Martinique and Guadaloupe, Barbados, Trinidad, St. Marteen, Puerto Rico, Africa, France and Canada.

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Photos courtesy of the St. Lucia Tourism Authority

Clearly a successful replacement, Mercury Fest generally followed a similar format to its predecessor, with a concert-styled event on Friday night and the typical massive beach party during the day on Saturday at the same venue. Tickets to the events were sold independently, costing EC$100/EU$33 for the Friday alone and EC$150/EU$50 for Saturday only, or as a two-day pass for one price of EC$230/EU$75. As per last year, the Gros Islet Street Party was also promoted as the pre party to the concert, and was a free addition to help usher in the fantastic vibe of the wild weekend.

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Often called the “Spring Break of the Caribbean,” the festivities started on August 10 from 8pm with the traditional Friday night street party in Gros Islet, where the electric atmosphere of the weekend was off to a roaring start. Foreigners and locals could be seen in the packed streets of the vibrant little village enjoying the unique culinary delights of the island or drinking and dancing the night away to the local entertainment. Visitors were offered a smooth introduction to the culture of partying like a local, while also promoting the integration of the variety of cultures present on the island. After their crash course at Gros Islet, ticket holders and spontaneous pumpers alike made their way over to Pigeon Island beach for the first official offering of Mercury Fest 2018.

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For the first time, the venue was outlined in such a way that even the beach’s local vendor huts were incorporated into the event, providing a wide variety of food options and even smaller bar alternatives (a local revenue stream that was missing in previous years). Hosted on both days by the domestic beauty, Mareen Alexander, and energetically translated by the bubbly Esmerasta from Martinique, the show drew an impressive crowd for Friday’s headliner, Kalash. The French Dancehall sensation, known for his hits ‘Free Me’, ‘Taken’ and ‘Mwaka Moon’ was preceded by local artistes such as Ricky T before gracing the stage to the delight of the ecstatic and heavily French populated crowd. However, both French and English speakers alike united in singing the Martinican star’s lyrics word for word as he continued to entice the crowd more and more with his ‘Mavado-esque’ style. Kalash impressively closed the first show, leaving people in great anticipation for the grand festivities of the following day.

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Wasting no time, patrons and vessels began arriving from 9am on Saturday. The classic theme of boats, bikinis, foam and fun was in full effect, with rows of boats lining the entire span of beach, and people swimming and basking in the calm, clear waters. Advertised as the “ultimate beach party,” the festival provided an abundance of the most beautiful women and coolest personalities of the Caribbean. The picturesque ambience provided by the foamy fun and magnificent weather were amplified by the entrancing music by some of the top DJs from Martinique and Saint Lucia, including the likes of DJ Gil, Levi Chin, Hollywood HP and DJ Litchie on the impressive cast. The growing crowd was also treated to performances by the very best Saint Lucian artistes including Shemmy J, Sedale, Mata & Migos, Keisha, Teddyson John and Cooyah leading up to the headline act, Jamaica’s dancehall superstar, Popcaan.

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The popular Jamaican artiste had the crowd chanting his lyrics to every song, and completely captivated by his entertaining antics. He previewed stand out songs from his new album, Forever, such as ‘Silence’, ‘Foreign Love’ and ‘Firm and Strong’. He gave a performance that indubitably left both patrons and promoters satisfied with the Mercury Fest product for 2018, and eagerly looking onward to the future of the festival.
For its first edition, Mercury Fest definitely kept all its promises, as well as keeping the major boat and beach event alive in the island of Saint Lucia. Each year the nautical event succeeds to provide a memorable experience to attendees as the biggest and best beach party. Tourism Minister, Mr. Dominic Fedee said he sees it as a tremendous success, especially in light of the enormous economic impact it has on the island. His hopes are that it continues to gain traction and pull even bigger and more diverse crowds as the event is way more than just a party. It also features local gourmet cuisine, premium drinks, and promotes international integration, home-grown talent and exceptional entertainment from around the region. It is an opportunity to promote Saint Lucian culture and arts while encouraging the engagement of the wider Caribbean region in this all-encompassing experience.

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The vision is that the two-day festival will gain similar regional and international recognition as other notable Caribbean festivals, such as Dream Weekend in Jamaica. This will further boost tourism in Saint Lucia, and by extension, the economy while playing a role deepening Caribbean integration. The saying “out with the old, and in with the new” may be quite applicable for the little island with big dreams, it seems. Regardless, one thing is certain: in the island of Saint Lucia, Mercury Fest is by far the best and biggest beach party of the summer. See you there in 2019!

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Wasting no time, Day 2 patrons and the line water vessels began arriving from 9am. The classic theme of boats, bikinis, foam and fun was in full effect, with rows of boats lining the entire span of beach, and people swimming and basking in the calm, clear waters. Advertised as the “ultimate beach party,” the festival provided an abundance of the most beautiful women and coolest of the Caribbean. The picturesque ambience provided by the foamy fun, the magnificent weather were amplified by entrancing music by some of the top DJs from Martinique and St. Lucia, including the likes of DJ Gil, Levi Chin, Hollywood HP and DJ Litchie on the impressive cast. Performances by the very best Saint Lucian artistes including Shemmy J, Sedale, Mata & Migos, Keisha, Teddyson John and Cooyah— leading up to the headline act, Jamaica’s dancehall superstar Popcaan.

The Jamaican superstar had the crowd chanting his lyrics of every song, and completely captivated by his entertaining antics. He previewed stand out songs from his new album, Forever, such as Silence, Foreign Love and Firm and Strong. He gave a performance that indubitably left both patrons and promoters satisfied with the Mercury Fest product for 2018, and eagerly looking onward to the future of the festival.

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For its first edition, Mercury Fest definitely kept all its promises, as well as keeping the major boat and beach event alive in the island of St. Lucia. Each year the nautical event succeeds to provide a memorable experience to attendees as the biggest and best beach party. Tourism Minister, Mr. Dominic Fedee said he sees it as a tremendous success, especially in light of the enormous economic impact it has on the island. He said hopes it continues to gain traction and pull even bigger and more diverse crowds.
The event is more than a party. It displays local gourmet cuisine, premium drinks, and promotes international integration, home-grown talent and exceptional entertainment from around the region. It is an opportunity to promote St. Lucian culture and arts while encouraging the engagement of the wider Caribbean region in this all-encompassing experience.

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The vision is that the two-day festival will gain similar regional and international recognition as other notable Caribbean festivals, such as Dream Weekend in Jamaica. This will further boost tourism in St. Lucia, and by extension, the economy while playing a role deepening Caribbean integration. The saying “out with the old, and in with the new” may be quite applicable for the little island with big dreams, because one thing is certain: in the island of St. Lucia, Mercury Fest is by far the best and biggest beach party of the summer. See you there in 2019!

Caribbean Travel & Lifestyle Magazine