QUEENS — Jamaica residents will kick off summer this weekend with a free music festival and numerous attractions for kids, including a workshop on making ice cream.
Several local musicians will perform hip-hop, jazz, pop and R&B during the music festival, which will take place Friday in front of the Jamaica Performing Arts Center.
Joya Bravo and Kayla Bliss are among the artists scheduled to perform, according to the Greater Jamaica Development Corporation, which is organizing the event as part of its Culture Builds Jamaica initiative. Local dance group Lush Variety will also perform.
“The idea of our Culture Builds Jamaica initiative is to bring more and more people to celebrate the neighborhood,” said Carlisle Towery, GJDC president. “What better way to do that than bringing local musicians to entertain people in the streets on a summery Friday.”
During the event, children will learn to make ice cream. The museum has an old machine, in which the kids will mix the ingredients, according to Emily Melchin of King Manor Museum.
Participants will take turns cranking the machine while working on about six batches of vanilla ice cream.
Kids will also work on "sun-inspired" art and crafts, Melchin said, including making a simple paper version of a sundial and creating collages made of leaves and flowers on paper that is sun-sensitive and will retain the shapes after being exposed to the light.
Children will also get to read stories, blow giant bubbles and learn several historic games, including hoop-and-stick, Melchin said.
Summer Music Festival will take place in front of the Jamaica Performing Arts Center at 153-10 Jamaica Ave. on Friday, June 20, from 5 to 7:30 p.m. (rain date: Thursday, June 26).
Summer Solstice Festival will kick off on Saturday, June 21 at noon. The event will end around 4 p.m. King Manor is located in Rufus King Park at 153rd Street and Jamaica Avenue.