Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Make Trelawny Jamaica’s first Sporting Parish

As Jamaica bids for continued sport supremacy in the world, on and off the field, there are always more things to look at to create the competitive edge in a more organised way. Within the next three to five years the country will participate in a number of regional and international competitions which are aimed to reposition the country’s top-rated position in the sporting arena.

International competitions will come in football, cricket, track and field, netball, basketball and volleyball and the national athletes will have numerous opportunities to make Jamaica even prouder. There are two world championships and one summer Olympic Games up to 2012.

But while we continue to perform well externally, we need to capitalize on the income the country can and should be earning as a sport tourism destination. Even in this recession, consumers are going after products/services to suit their sophisticated taste buds…Jamaica, once you go you know.

Designate Trelawny Jamaica’s Sporting Parish

For economic gains we could establish a direct link with the success of the country’s sport industry with the parish. Here are some ideas

- Establish a museum/hall of fame/walk of fame with information of those from the parish
- Form a partnership with a major international firm to sponsor the facility. Start with a three to five year plan to host one major event a year
- Re-structure the Mutli Purpose facility to meet the growing demands of the sport and entertainment industries
- Get the schools involved to research the history of the parish
- Twin the parish with a town in either the UK, USA or Canada
- Re-brand the parish

Other cities have done this successfully in Canada, Malta and the UK. Why not Jamaica?

What makes Trelawny special?

A good percentage of our sporting stars come from Trelawny. The parish also has a sporting facility, Trelawny Multi Purpose Stadium, which has not even begun to be used to its full potential. The capacity of that facility has shown that it is able to host international competitions to bring about big crowds. With some structural adjustments the facility could do much more.

Here are just some of the famous sons and daughters of that parish: Usain Bolt, Veronica Campbell Brown, George Kerr, Astia Walker, Michael Green, Debbie Ann Parris, Michael Frater, Marvin Anderson – track and field; Gerald ‘Hero’ Scott – football are just some of the people who have recorded success at the highest level.

There is accommodation – Braco, Starfish, FDR Pebbles; there are attractions – Outameni, Glistening Waters, Cockpit Country , just to name a few. There is also great potential for a cruise ship pier; and this parish is between St. James and St. Ann. Now if those reasons aren’t good enough, then.

A total of nine months after the success the country had in Beijing, I think this is a great way to consolidate our efforts in a serious way. Make way for the rest of the Trelawny stars to emerge. Let’s get to work.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Trelawny Multi Purpose Complex

Coming up:

I weigh in on the use of the Trelawny Multi Purpose Complex and more importantly on the parish of Trelawny.
What should be done for the parish to maximise on the earning potential of the parish?

Please send your comments...

Friday, May 8, 2009

Use technology to promote sport

Jamaica's innovativeness will come into question over the next three to five years as we battle harsh economic times to continue to promote the island as a sport tourism destination.

So it is well known that we have the product, athlete and some reasonably cared facilities. We need to package them for two reasons:

1. To attract visitors to the island for the period of the events.

2. To have wide viewership around the region and the world.

I, therefore, call on the local producers, members of the film production community to merge their resources to create made-for-television events to distribute to the world community. Use the Internet as a way to distribute the product in a way that can also attract earnings.

The Internet has become a most valuable tool for distribution of content, why not sports?

Stream our events and ask consumers to pay. We have some events which have become prime content and our diaspora community which is hungry to view these events will pay and even advertise to provide additional income.

So, for 2010, let's look at Gibson Relays, Manning and daCosta Cup finals, senior netball finals, Boys and Girls' Championships are just some of the events we could stream. The alumni groups across the US and UK, I am sure, would be interested in these products. They must be marketed and promoted in an effective way to yield the best results.


There are opportunities at international trade fairs which the island can capitalise on by attending. A senior film official says, "While it is important to attend these events, we should look for agents who handle distribution of sports products in the regions being targeted as primary markets. The official noted that agents have specific catalogues they promote and distribute and the best way is to court those agents."

There are sport networks which may be open to negotiation to air some of these programmes, so we should seek that opportunity too. While we seek to promote in international markets, there is room for more local consumption. It is also a way of preserving our history so the next generation is up to speed.

Feedback: cubeckford@gmail.com

Should Jamaica go after major sport events?

Jamaica was the featured country of the past Olympics and our athletes excelled beyond thought and expectations and there was no advertisement from the JTB saying, "Come to Jamaica ..." If it were not for Puma sponsoring Usain Bolt, Jamaica would have had no media presence.

Your ideas are excellent and I hope 'the powers that be' hear you and start implementing some internal changes in Jamaica to accommodate such a bold idea.

Sam from California

It has always been said that during the winter months the people who reside in the cold temperature want somewhere to train. Has anyone in Jamaica ever really explored the possibility of earning from anything like that?

I think your idea is excellent and just hope some of the people who run our sports programmes will get with the programme.