Entertainment

TRIBUNE POLL: Readers say 'no' to carnival

August 12, 2014

THE majority of voters in The Tribune online poll say they are NOT in favour of the Government's controversial decision to host a Carnival in the Bahamas...

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Tomii Culmer's destiny

August 07, 2014

Tomacina "Tomii" Culmer was destined to wear the Miss Universe Bahamas crown. She believes her destiny was already written and that it was just for her to carry it out and make the people that she loves proud. If you go with that theory, then it was already in the cards for this Grand Bahama native to wear the Miss Universe Bahamas crown and she simply had to make it happen. And she certainly did when she won.
Tomii, 22, as she likes to be called earned the right to represent The Bahamas on the Miss Universe stage after winning the title the second time she entered the pageant. She entered in 2011, but withdrew after the contestants were revealed. After going through the sessions and seeing how much work went into being a queen and the requirements, she realized a lot would be required of the winner and that she had to be willing to do them if she wanted to make a difference. At the time she realized that the pageant world was not for her. Three years later, a more mature Tomii said she had grown into herself and realized that she wanted to leave a legacy behind. She wanted people to be inspired by her years after she's gone, and that she wanted people to talk about her (in a good way of course).
"From 2011, I've really been digging deep and trying to add another layer," said the five-foot, 11-inch stunning beauty. "For me, entering the pageant again was more of 'I need confirmation to know that I'm on the right path to be a better-known ambassador'," said Tomii who also models. "I travel a lot and when I meet people I'm automatically an ambassador, but I wanted the support of everything that comes with Miss Universe Bahamas -- the national support of being the ambassador. I got it and now I'm ready to work with it."
As she was declared Miss Universe Bahamas, Tomii buried her face into the shoulder of Rokara Hepburn who went on to become the first runner-up. The only thing she could recall going through her mind at the time was that she told herself not to have an ugly cry. Tommi said if she had heard Rokara's name called as the winner, that she would have been okay with the result because as far as she was concerned it was all destiny.
"We told each other right before we got on [stage] that what's supposed to happen is going to happen," she recalled. "I tell people all the time that destiny has been written a very long time ago, it's now playing it out, so you don't really have to stress about anything because it makes no sense," she said. "Either way it went I was going to be happy because I'd built a relationship with Rokara, and I told her to not give up until they call her name and that even after that she can't give up because so many opportunities are going to come because she's tall and beautiful."
Sinking in
It's still less than a week since she was crowned, but Tomii says the realization that she is now her country's beauty ambassador sinks in a little more daily. She thinks it will really hit home for her when she starts her training for Miss Universe and when she gets on the plane to fly to the as yet to be determined host country.
"I took a selfie with my sash and told my brother (Alfred Anderson-Lewis, who is not blood related) that I almost feel like this doesn't belong to me, like someone's playing a joke on me." And of course her friends aren't letting up. These days her day gets started by them saying "Good morning your highness" which Tomii finds "lame," but laughs off. Her focus she says is on being an inspiration, especially to little girls.
"My personal mission statement in life is to inspire, nurture and encourage inner peace and self-worth because I feel that's the base of any successful being, the base of anyone who wants to be positive in life," said Tomii. She said she was someone who once did not have inner peace and didn't feel she was worthy of a lot of things.
In July she shaved her head and started on a journey of really loving herself to contradict society's dictates that you have to look a certain way to be considered beautiful and you feel pressured by it. She wants to help as many girls as she can to not feel that pressure. She currently mentors a Brownie troop at Freeport Primary School and encourages the girls to love themselves.
"Some of them don't focus because people tease them about their hair, or their size, the way they look ... their skin color. I showed them a series of my modeling photos -- from by shaved head to wearing an Afro puff, and a Brazilian Remy, and they were all like, 'Miss Tomii, I can't wait for my hair to look like that' -- the long, straight hair, and I had to sit down and talk to them. They are girls that are seven, eight years old, and they understand and you take it so lightly. When they're that young, that's when you instill the values that affects their character and the way they feel about themselves and the way they pay attention."
Tomii has talked to the Brownie members about ladies being seen and not heard, and she says when she now goes into the classroom she meets the little girls with crossed ankles. She also said there is less teasing and bullying among the girls because she told them that as sisters, they should not subject each other to demeaning behavior.
Her one-year reign is just starting out, but Tomii knows how she wants to be remembered -- and that is as someone who set a standard for other people to emulate or strive to better.
"I want to be that queen that gets the prestigious Miss Universe Bahamas title back to that place where everyone wants to be behind it and everyone wants to support not only the queen, but the [Mis Bahamas] Organization. People just see the final night and the preliminaries, but they don't see the amount of work that goes into sessions and etiquette classes and presenting yourself," she said. She would also like to see pageantry supported, not just for her, but, for every queen in the future.
She said in the future all women entering the pageant should go into it with an open mind and wanting to leave with more than just a crown.
Take away
"I went into the pageant wanting to be more than just Tomii the model, I wanted to be Tomii the role model, but a lot of people didn't know that. And someone sent me a Facebook message and said 'I'm inspired by you. I don't look at you any longer as just Tomii the model, I look at you as Tomii the role model' and I just sat back and said if I win, I win. But for somebody that did not know my goal to just blatantly say it straight out, I felt like I won a long time ago, and not the crown."
Tomii says she came out of the recent pageant more refined with a clearer sense of her purpose and the journey she must take.
While she has yet to find out what fabulous country she will step onto the world stage for Miss Universe, she knows that she will start physical training next week at MacFit 360 and with pageant coach Grace Fontecha in October.
And whatever the outcome on the world stage, Tomii said it's just the beginning of her legacy and that she intends to further her personal mission statement.
"Destiny has already been written, it's just now for me to carry it out and make everyone proud. I've already made my mom, Jackie Frazer extremely proud. I have brothers and sisters who are blood and I love my family, but there are people who have been brought into my life who are like brothers and sisters to me because we're so close. We're all going down a similar path so we inspire each other. I've been blessed to have such great friends and such great energy around me for the past few years and it just adds to my family."
While she's been in New Providence since her crowning, she has friends and family that are eager for her to return to Grand Bahama to wish her well, before she moves to the capital for her reign.
Tomii may be Miss Universe Bahamas, but she wants you to know that she's approachable. She loves food. She enjoys carpentry and joinery -- actually she loves to work with her hands because she loves to be creative. She describes herself as more of a practical learner. And of course she likes hanging with her Brownies. Tomii also sings and was in a band called B12 in Freeport.

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Grand Bahamian queens win Miss Universe and Miss World Bahamas pageants

August 07, 2014

For the first time in the history of the Miss Bahamas Organization (MBO), two Grand Bahama queens won both the Miss Universe Bahamas and Miss World Bahamas crowns. Tomii Culmer and Rosetta Cartwright took home the Miss Universe Bahamas and Miss World Bahamas crowns, respectively, on Sunday, August 3, during the Miss Bahamas double header pageant at the Atlantis Resort.
Miss World Grand Bahama, Rosetta Cartwright, bested six other competitors to win the coveted Miss World Bahamas title. Cartwright also won awards for most photogenic, best talent, and the people's choice award.
Shanae Strachan, who also won awards for best national dress and best evening gown, was first runner up. Chantel O'Brian took home the BTC multi-media and beauty with a purpose awards, and was second runner up. Rontre Rolle was third runner up, and won the Miss Congeniality Award, as well as best swimsuit.
Miss Universe Grand Bahama, Tomii Culmer, was announced the winner of the Miss Universe Bahamas Pageant. Culmer bested five other contestants to win the pageant, in addition to awards for best evening gown, best costume, and best swimsuit.
Miss Congeniality and people's choice winner, Rokara Hepburn, was first runner up. Ominique Burrows was second runner up and the winner of the most photogenic award. Toni Bethel rounded out the top four, and won the BTC multi-media award.
"We are very pleased with the results," said MBO President Michelle Malcolm. "It was an extremely tight competition this year, but we are confident that Rosetta and Tomi will represent not only the Miss Bahamas Organization well, but also The Bahamas, and of course the Grand Bahama Community."
The newly crowned Cartwright said that she was "speechless and still in shock" but expressed her gratitude to her sponsor, Conch and Kalik Restaurant, as well as her district directors, the MBO, her fellow contestants, and her family and friends.
Culmer said that she was looking forward to sharing her Miss Universe Bahamas win with the little girls of the Brownies troop that she mentors.
"I promised them that I would bring home the crown, and I am ecstatic that I am able to do just that," said Culmer. "It is so important for little girls to love themselves. When I was younger, I didn't like what I saw in the mirror, but, thanks to a number of supportive people in my life, I grew to love myself, and I want to be that person who can help build young girls' confidence, and teach them to love every single aspect about themselves."
Model, entrepreneur and television star Nicole Murphy, was a judge for the Miss Bahamas Universe Pageant. She said it was a tough job to choose a winner, but Culmer's confidence set her apart from the other contestants.
"The way she spoke, her presence, what she spoke about, the way she answered her questions -- her gown was absolutely stunning! She just took over the stage," said Murphy.
Jerome Sawyer was the host for the evening, and was joined by model and former Miss Bahamas winner Braneka Bassett, for the Miss World Bahamas Pageant, as well as business woman and former beauty queen Leslia Miller-Brice for the Miss Universe Bahamas Pageant.
Bahamian singer, Jayne Doh, performed the official Miss Bahamas crowning song, Cover Girl, during both pageants, in addition to her single "Bounce" at the Miss Universe Bahamas Pageant. Angelique Sabrina performed in both competitions while Chase Fernander performed during the Miss Universe Bahamas Pageant.

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Guardians of the Galaxy manages to surpass my expectations

August 07, 2014

Guardians of the Galaxy (Rated T)
Cast: Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Dave Batista
Genre: Action Adventure
Dwight's Rating: 3.5
Sometimes having low expectations can be a very good thing!
The previews for "Guardians of the Galaxy" left me cold and uninterested in the film. Commercials made the characters look like laughable rejects from the "X-Men". And it seemed this would be another dud of a movie that only comic book fan boys familiar with these Marvel characters would even care about.
But after learning of its massive success in its opening weekend in the United States (it was the largest ever August release in history), my interest was peaked. And not only did it exceed box office expectations, but it managed to exceed mine as well -- and in a way as big as our galaxy is vast.
In the film, brash adventurer Peter Quill (Chris Pratt) finds himself the object of an unrelenting bounty hunt after stealing a mysterious orb coveted by Ronan, a powerful villain with ambitions that threaten the entire universe. Quill is forced into an uneasy truce with a quartet of disparate misfits: Gamora (Zoe Saldana); Drax the Destroyer (professional wrestler Dave Batista); Rocket, a genetically enhanced, gun-toting, talking raccoon; and Groot, a verbally challenged, tree-like humanoid. The galaxy's fate rests in the hands of this motley crew.
Yes, you read right. There's a talking raccoon, and a walking-talking tree, among many other oddities. Nevertheless, one can apply just about any and every positive superlative to this superlative movie. It is the funniest and most fun film so far this year!
No comic-based movie has felt this refreshingly humorous since the original "Iron Man". And the humor comes at unexpected times and in unexpected ways. The main sources of the laughs come from some of the characters that initially had me most skeptical about the film -- which greatly contributed to those low expectations. But Drax, Rocket the Raccoon (voiced by Bradley Cooper), and the tree, Groot (voiced by Vin Diesel), are the life of the party, and at the center of the movie's snappy dialogue and overall spirited pacing.
And who knew Chris Pratt -- a supporting player on TV's "Parks and Recreations" -- had it in him to be the next great leading man? There have been little hints here and there, including with his small role in the film "Zero Dark Thirty". But it's certainly cemented here. He demonstrates extreme versatility, with a classic leading man combination of comic timing, action ability and capability, and romantic chemistry with Zoe Saldana.
She, too, is arguably better here than in pretty much anything in which I've ever seen her, including "Avatar" -- the last blockbuster in which she played an oddly colored alien (this time she's green instead of blue).
Lest one assume it's all fun and games, there are scenes of sensitivity and emotional depth. Each one of the core characters has a touching back-story and is overcoming some form of loss or pain in their lives. These elements could have easily derailed everything into one giant, cheesy mess. But in the deft hands of Director James Gunn, who co-wrote the screenplay along with Nicole Perlman, these moments are skillfully managed and not overdone or overbearing. Instead, we are treated to a clever and witty balance of exuberant humor and spectacular action.
All of this high praise and buzz might now lead you to have overly great expectations for the film. But "Guardians" is unlikely to disappoint. I was tempted to give it my top four star (excellent) rating, but I've settled on three-and-a-half (very, very good). It is not for everyone; I'm pretty sure my mom would not appreciate all the weird aliens, talking raccoon and fighting tree. But it is more accessible and palatable than many movies of this genre, even some regarded as classics.
This movie sets up a sequel (scheduled to be released in 2017), and possibly the next, long-running movie franchise. While that's an exciting proposition, it comes with a bit of trepidation too. As we've seen before with "Iron Man", often the bar is set so high with the original that it makes it exceptionally difficult for any subsequent movie in the franchise, or even in the genre, to fill the galaxy-sized shoes. Great expectations, indeed!
o Dwight Strachan is the host/producer of " Morning Blend" on Guardian Radio. He is a television producer and writer, and an avid TV history and film buff. Email dwight@nasguard.com and follow him on twitter @morningblend969.

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'Sarah's Wedding' comes to a New Providence stage

August 07, 2014

"Sarah's Wedding", a unique romantic comedy filled with secrets, drama and laughter, is one of the most talked about shows in The Bahamas and has finally come to a New Providence stage.
The play, written and directed by Kerel Pinder, delivers a message that captures the importance of growth, and to show that no matter how messy your life gets, you are still someone worth rooting for. It will be held at The College of The Bahamas Performing Arts Centre, August 8-10.
Pinder, a young, talented individual embodies what Maya Angelou referred to as a phenomenal woman. Though written during a very difficult time in her life, Pinder said God guided her through that process and as a result Sarah's Wedding was written. Pinder was mentored in "Sarah's Wedding" by Gloria McGlone who has Broadway experience and is passionate about the arts. McGlone also plays an instrumental role in the success of "Sarah's Wedding" along with the YARD (Young Adults Regency Drama) group and the Freeport Players' Guild.
The show's producer, Alfred Anderson, describes "Sarah's Wedding" as a new standard for Bahamian playwrights and a new era in quality performances for Bahamian audiences.
Some of Grand Bahamas' top actors have roles in the play -- Zia Lewis as Sarah, Autumn Joy-Dames as Kharin, Grier Munro playing Shavon and Erica Weir as Summer. Other cast members include Jonathan Miller, Imani Roberts, Antonio Guarro, Nina Laing, Evan Williams, Antonio Smith, Ramon Webb, Luke Ignace, and Remardo Russell. Each character brings a unique twist to the overall story and invite all wedding crashers to attend the performance, as Sarah's Wedding is definitely the wedding of the year.
Curtains go up on Friday, August 8 and Saturday, August 9 at 8 p.m. and 4 p.m. on Sunday, August 10. Tickets are $25 in advance, $30 at the door for general admission and $30 in advance for VIP and $35 at the door.
Tickets can be purchased at Obsession Bahamas, Mackey Street; and Suntime, Marathon Mall.

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Cazna Hinds looks to take off

August 07, 2014

Cazna Hinds is an aspiring Bahamian artist who is looking to take off and make her dream of obtaining a college education a reality.
The singer, songwriter and producer will host "The Take Off" a fusing of acting and music on Saturday, August 9 to help defray her educational expenses.
The story line focuses on a young girl, much like Hinds, 26, who has turbulences and delays in her life and as a result has attitude problems, anger and bitterness. She drops the weight in the process to get to a better place in her life.
The two-hour musical written by Hinds, along with Radell Parks and Jaquay Adderley will be held at The National Centre for the Performing Arts, Shirley Street. The inspirational music will fuse jazz, hip hop, contemporary gospel and traditional hymns.
"There's something for everybody," said Hinds. The performance, she said, is for everyone with a heart. "It's not really religious... everybody with a heart should come, because we all want to laugh and get to a better place in our lives, not just practically, but spiritually as well."
The musical will also feature Cazna Hings/Mck/Halle, Najie Dunn, Jonathan Farrington, and Berturm Oh Bubbler. Music will be provided by All4One Band.
"I'm very excited for 'The Takeoff Concert',"said Hinds.
Hinds, who will fund her college education with funds raised from Saturday's performance said her love affair with music began through an encounter with a teacher in primary school as that teacher pushed her to discover that she had a powerful, amazing voice. She said God pushed her to follow a career in music.
From an early age she would lead songs at school, church and other events around town. She has worked with artists such a Sketch Carey, Sammi Starr, Halle' from Platinum Soldiers and her first single "Live for You" was produced by Souljah Shaddy. Hinds also had the opportunity to collaborate with producers such as Darryl Howell and Kyle Lovett who worked with Aaron Sledge, Kierra Sheard and Jessica Reed.
Her passion for music and her love for people birthed what she calls heart music, which she says is music that comes from the heart to mend the hearts of others and bring them closer to God. Hinds desires to help other young people with their dream of becoming singers, producers, musicians in the very near future as she knows that the road is difficult and someone to understand and push you is exactly what you need as you seek to go after success.
Tickets for "The Take Off" Concert are $20 general admission and $35 VIP. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. Tickets can be purchased at Melissa Sears, Mall at Marathon and Doongalik Studios Art Gallery, Village Road.

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Truth doesn't change

August 07, 2014

Firstly, let's get an accurate definition of the word "truth". Webster's Dictionary defines the word truth as that which is. So truth, real truth is in fact changeless. Truth does not change from time to time. And yet I so often find, that when I make a statement which I say is the truth, particularly when it relates to spiritual matters -- many, many people say the following -- "Well that's your truth, but it's not mine." My friend, let's get this straight right now, there's no my truth or your truth, there is only truth -- that which is for as the title of today's article simply and succinctly puts it, truth doesn't change.
So how come so many people throughout this great big world of ours seem to consistently disagree about what actually constitutes the truth? I'm sure glad you asked that question, and here's the answer. People's perceptions of what the truth is vary. However, let me repeat, truth doesn't change.
For example, in Christopher Columbus's time the perception of most people was that the earth was flat and that if one went too far they would fall over the edge. Thus many feared that when Columbus set sail to discover The New World his ship would indeed sail over the edge of the earth and be lost; that was their perception of the truth. But the truth is that the world is round and Christopher Columbus did indeed discover The New World he was seeking.
So, why is it that people so often perceive the truth differently, particularly as it relates to matters spiritual? Well, it's very important for all of us to become aware of and thus fully realize, that people are at different levels of awareness, and thus they perceive things differently. For example, what I believed as a young person growing up in a predominantly Catholic Ireland is totally different from what I believe and know to be the truth now, because I have simply evolved from a spiritual perspective.
So let's always bear this fact of life in mind -- truth doesn't change, however, one's perception of what constitutes the truth does indeed vary considerably, according to our level of consciousness.

o Think about it!
Visit my website at: www.dpaulreilly.com.
Listen to "Time to Think" the radio program on STAR 106.5 FM at 8:55 a.m. & 6:20 p.m.

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Bahamas Consul General's Office concludes Post-Indepence Events with Shaback

August 07, 2014

The Commonwealth of The Bahamas wrapped up post-independence celebrations in the city of Atlanta...

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Anthony M. Bertram keeps up the Bahamian Tradition by becoming the New Star on L.A. Entertainment Horizon

August 07, 2014

'The' Bahamas, the shining islands on the vastness of Atlantic Ocean, is known for its spectacular natural beauty...

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K. Lee Graham-Miss Teen USA 2014

August 05, 2014

Miss South Carolina! 17-year-old K. Lee Graham walked away with the top prize at the 2014 Miss Teen USA ...

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CROWNING GLORY FOR BEAUTY QUEENS
CROWNING GLORY FOR BEAUTY QUEENS

August 05, 2014

GRAND Bahama is the home of the nation's beauty queens this year. For the first time in the history of the Miss Bahamas contest, Grand Bahama women claimed both the Miss Universe and Miss World crowns...

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DJ Ovadose is on a mission

August 01, 2014

To the teen community he's known as DJ Ovadose, but his parents named him Jasper Thomas. No matter what you choose to call him he's apparently one of the hottest deejays in the country today -- and he's only 13.
DJ Ovadose is a Rake n' Scrape/EDM (electronic dance music) deejay who is on a mission to take Bahamian Rake n' Scrape music -- music that he says he loves to the world -- Dubai and a four-city tour of North America (New York, Los Angeles, Atlanta and Miami) for which he will need to raise at least $85,000 to make his dream a reality.
On July 29, Jasper kicked off a quest to raise the funds to send him on his journey to take Bahamian music to the world.
The first stage of the project that is expected to take him to Dubai, has a target goal of $50,000 set which Jasper is hoping to raise in 45 days. The funding period opened on July 29 and will close out on September 12, with DJ Ovadose's Dubai tour taking place between October and November.
The second stage target goal is $35,000 for the January to February 2015 leg of the proposed North American tour dates.
If he doesn't raise the necessary funds he will have to forfeit the project. But he is confident Bahamians will support him in his quest.
"I would love for everybody to support me, and I promise to do my part once everybody does their part," said Jasper who has a strong teen following. "I think Bahamians are very proud of what I'm doing and will actually be behind this."
Jasper also describes himself as a lover of Bahamian music which he grew up listening to, the result of being around older people. He said the sound played a major role in his life.
"I'm a big fan of Rake n' Scrape and I try to impact others with that. Some teens don't really get it, but my interpretation of the infectious beat with the drums ... when you actually are in the zone, you're taken away from different emotions," he said.
The teen deejay mixes Bahamian sounds with every genre possible from rap to Reggae, electronic music and even house music.
"I throw it in with other catchy tunes to make others want to actually dance because you can't just stick to one genre of music because not everybody will want to dance to one genre of music, so if you switch it up, then everyone gets what they want."
DJ Ovadose has been mixing Bahamian music with hit songs for a little over two years. In that short space of time he's carved out a great reputation. He's one of the number one requested deejays for teen affairs, he has guest deejayed at Atlantis' teen party spot, Club Crush and deejayed on a number of local radio stations including Hot 91.7 FM.
Tony Williams, programming director at Hot 91.7 FM said the few weeks Jasper guest deejayed at the station was really good for his age, and that they got good feedback from the public after his stint.
Jasper is such a hit with the community that he said parents have even called him up to deejay as a surprise for their children's events.
Jasper's road to becoming one of the country's hottest teen deejays began with him just being a fan of music. He said he surrounded himself with it so much so that in 2011 an uncle introduced him to online software and he began to fool around with it. He is actually self-taught, but said some people gave him tips along with way.
The teen quickly mastered the virtual deejay software his uncle gave him before he got his first mixer. Since then he has gone through three mixers upgrading each time. He's now on his fourth mixer, which is at the professional level.
The deejay who is home-schooled at the Leadership Academy, said being homeschooled allows him the time he needs to practice his craft to become the most requested teen deejay that he is today.
"My grueling routine of practice has catapulted me into the most requested teen deejay in The Bahamas," he said. He can be found spinning tunes at gigs most weekends and says there really isn't a time when he's not deejaying.
"My life is pretty much music," he said, but added that he does make time to talk with his friends.
Jasper credits his love of music to his father, Ian, and grandfather. His stage name he credits to his brother who told him that he was always listening to music and that he overdoes on it.
Long term Jasper says he wants to be a music producer and venture into making beats, but still deejaying from time-to-time.
For now, his immediate goal is to make it to Dubai. As of Thursday, DJ Ovadose had one backer who had pledged $100 on www.kickstarter.com/projects to help him achieve his initial $50,000 goal. People wanting to help the teen deejay make it to Dubai can pledge as much as they want. Pledges as low as $1 are accepted.
He choose Dubai as his first stop because he figured after spinning at Atlantis, Paradise Island the connection would be easier for him to get into the Dubai resort.
The funds raised will go towards defraying DJ Ovadose's expenses for he and his team's travel including airline tickets, hotel accommodations, and paraphernalia such as T-shirts CDs and armbands.

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Miss Universe Grand Bahama wins top model competition

August 01, 2014

Tomacina Culmer, Miss Universe Grand Bahama, was named the winner of the Miss Bahamas Top Model Competition, and has won a contract and six-page spread with Profiles 98 Magazine in addition to international training in the United States and Jamaica.
Ominique Burrows, Miss Universe Long Island was first runner up during the competition that took place on July 25 at the British Colonial Hilton Hotel. Chantal O'Brien, Miss World Ocean Cay was the second runner up.
The Miss Bahamas double header pageant will take place on Sunday, August 3 at the Atlantis resort.

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Lil Duval to headline 7th Annual Laughfest

August 01, 2014

Some comedians have to work hard to make people laugh -- others just do, and Lil Duval, one of the biggest names in urban comedy today believes he was born with the gift to make people laugh. To him comedy is a natural thing and people always find him funny.
It's this funny man, who is known for touching every nook and cranny available with his special brand of humor who will headline this weekend's seventh LaughFest comedy show.
WizeGuy Entertainment and The Beam Agency will host LaughFest on Saturday, August 2, at the National Theater for the Performing Arts. It's a show that promises laughs and aims to leave Bahamian audiences in stitches. The jokes start flying at 9 p.m.
Not only is Lil Duvall (Roland Powell) the host of MTV's "Guy Gode", he is also the host of MTV2's "Ain't That America", and has headlined at comedy clubs all over the United States and world. He has appeared on Shaq's All Star Comedy Jam and has worked with other famous comedians including Kevin Hart, Jay Pharoah and past Laughfest headliner Gary Owen.
Performing in The Bahamas for the first time will be something of a homecoming for Duval who proudly touts his Bahamian heritage and Heastie ties regularly on social media.
Joining Lil Duval onstage will be Benji Brown, Trixx and The Bahamas' own Mark B. Joker's Wild and Hot 91.7 FM's own Naughty, the host of the morning show, the "Naughty Morning Show" who has over 15 years experience will serve as host. He is excited about this year's event.
"Comedy fans will love this year's 'LaughFest!' as Lil Duval is the funniest touring comedian right now and we're happy to have landed him with all that he has going on," said Naughty.
"Benji Brown is also a huge name in comedy and he's bringing his many voices and talents right here to [New Providence]. I also can't even tell you how hilarious Trixx is -- you just have to see this show."
Naughty assures patrons that he and Mark B will ensure all the local bases are covered as there's just too much local humor.
"We will definitely have fun," said Naughty.
Tickets for "LaughFest 2013" can be purchased at Fine Threads -- Village Rd., Bernard Rd. and Thompson Blvd; John's Shoes -- Palmdale and Carmichael Rd; and all Cash 'n Go locations at $35. Limited VIP tickets are available at $50.

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An epic battle between a superhuman man vs. a superhuman woman

August 01, 2014

Hercules (Rated T)
Cast: Dwayne Johnson, Ian McShane, Rufus Sewell
Genre: Action Adventure
Dwight's Rating: 2.5
Lucy (Rated C)
Cast: Scarlett Johansson,
Morgan Freeman
Genre: Action
Dwight's Rating: 1.5

It was an epic battle between a superhuman man versus a superhuman woman at the box office this past weekend. One of the films looks to a fictional future, and the other looks to a mythological past, but the themes and tones are remarkably similar. And while one is an enjoyable romp, the other is a regrettable waste of time.
"Lucy" is the latter -- a sad, jumbled mess of a movie. Poor Scarlett Johansson stars as the title character. It's not her fault; she's always enjoyable to watch, and delivers a reasonable performance here. Unfortunately, in this case, she's working with some incredibly loony material.
Lucy accidentally gets caught up in a drug trafficking operation, and is forced to be a drug mule. But when the bag containing the powerful synthetic drugs rupture inside her abdomen, she develops superhuman powers, transforming into a merciless warrior beyond human logic. She also decides to turn the tables on her captors, a Taiwanese drug cartel.
With a plot like this, there are only two directions this movie could have taken -- really provocative or really ridiculous. And this one ends up on the really ridiculous route, and then leaps right off the track.
Throughout the movie, we are reminded that human beings generally only use about 10 percent of their brain. Sadly, it appears director/writer Luc Besson only used about three percent of his. He seems to believe we're either all too dense or dull to have imaginations, and repeatedly provides cutaways -- "Family Guy" style -- for what seems like almost every single scene.
For example, Lucy enters a potentially dangerous situation -- cut to a gazelle in Africa looking up nervously while drinking from a watering hole as cheetahs lurk in the grass. Really? Other scenes play like something from a National Geographic documentary, again rife with cutaways of nature or techie science stuff. I'm pretty sure that when people pay money to go to the cinema, most don't want to feel that they're watching a TV show.
Morgan Freeman essentially phones in his performance, playing largely the same character he did in the strikingly similar "Transcendence" starring Johnny Depp. "Lucy" actually makes "Transcendence" -- a film which I panned, earlier this year-- now seem quite sensible.
"Lucy" ends up trying far too hard to be the next "The Matrix" or "Inception". But it is so far off the mark. (And just wait until the ending -- the spectacularly ridiculous icing on this very sour cake.)
A much better choice is "Hercules" -- although it is not as good as it had the potential to be.
The story here picks up after Hercules' 12 labors. He's haunted by his past and his legend, and has become a mercenary along with his five faithful companions. They travel across ancient Greece selling their services for gold, essentially as "swords-for-hire".
I'm sure many are wondering how many times Hollywood will try to tell any Hercules story. (This is actually the second Hercules movie this year, although hardly anyone remembers the one released in January.)
Thankfully, this one is whimsical and action-packed, with a prominent and pervasive sense of humor. Extremely prominent and pervasive! Every character but Dwayne Johnson's Hercules delivers a constant barrage of comedic lines -- especially Rufus Sewell's exceptionally sarcastic, Autolycus -- as if they're on a sitcom. This happens even during the epic and violent battle scenes. Nevertheless, it's fast-paced and visually appealing. For some, it's all anyone could want in a summer movie.
But it feels like something is lacking, preventing me from completely gushing over it. The problems probably lay at the feet of Director Brett Ratner, of the "Rush Hour" film series fame. He's built a career on quick thrills and humor, with music video-like freneticism. That tradition continues here.
However, it feels as if the pace in "Hercules" had been slowed down just a bit, if the snarky humor had been toned down just a smidgen, and if some other odd choices had been eliminated, we could have had something very special here. Those odd choices include a potty mouth. In a movie tailor-made for teens and pre-teens, it seems highly unnecessary for our hero Hercules, son of Zeus, to be dropping an F-bomb. It's a bit jarring, and just plain weird.
That may be nit-picking, but without a doubt, it does feel that with just a little more effort, and a little less laziness, we could have had something closer to a near-classic like "Pirates of The Caribbean" (the original, not the many painfully awful sequels that followed.)
Otherwise, "Hercules" is a straight-forward, inoffensive summer pastime. Consider it the vanquisher in this round of superhuman man versus superhuman woman.

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Move to the next level

August 01, 2014

Life for everyone on planet earth should be, in my opinion, all about growth -- physical growth, mental growth, and most importantly spiritual growth. It should be a gentle, gradual progression from one level to the next as we strive each and every day for ultimate perfection, that in the long run is the real goal -- perfection so that we can return to our source to live for eternity.
Now there are a whole lot of people spread throughout this great big world of ours who have indeed achieved a great deal of success across the board in all areas of their life, and indeed they are to be commended and complimented for what they have achieved so far to date. I do hope you noticed the phrase "so far" in the last sentence. That's right, you may have indeed reached great heights of accomplishment in all areas of your life. However, I contend, that no matter how great your achievements are to date, you can indeed still do better, there are new goals for you to reach, new frontiers to conquer as you strive daily for the ultimate goal, which is as I have already stated, perfection.
So, irrespective of your success to date, it's time for you my friend, to as today's title succinctly puts it, move to the next level. But D. Paul I'm tired of striving to reach goals. I just want to rest and take it easy. I always remember the words of the late, great Dr. Maxwell Maltz who wrote the definitive book on self-image psychology titled "Psycho-Cybernetics" who said at 67-years-old when asked by his neighbor when he was going to retire, "You can't retire from life." No you can't!
My mentor Earl Nightingale's definition of success is "The progressive realization of a worthy goal or ideal." So this means in effect, that in order to be consistently successful, we need to at all times be progressively realizing new goals. Yes indeed, success is the journey and not the destination. Success is the achieving and not the achievement.
So I don't care what great heights of accomplishment which you personally have risen to, or how outstandingly successful you are in all aspects of your overall life to date, today is a brand new day, a new beginning, the day when you set out anew, to move to the next level. Now, go to it!
o Think about it!
Visit my website at: www.dpaulreilly.com.
Listen to "Time to Think" the radio program on STAR 106.5 FM at 8:55 a.m. & 6:20 p.m.

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Celebrating Bahamian-American links

August 01, 2014

It was a cultural expression to embrace and celebrate Bahamian-American links, lineages, roots, love and legacy at last weekend's Miami/Bahamas Goombay Festival celebration in Peacock Park, Coconut Grove, Florida.
In its 38th year, the event featured an art exhibition and cocktail reception at Kroma Art Gallery in Coconut Grove, as well as a park festival. And some of The Bahamas' most renowned artists, artisans, chefs, entertainers and cultural icons performed at this year's event to showcase the culture of The Bahamas.
As expected, Junkanoo, which represents Bahamian roots and heritage, was a hit and was presented by The Junkanoo Revue Band and the Junkanoo Shakers.
The world renowned Royal Bahamas Police Force Pop Band, and legendary soul singer Betty Wright, who has Bahamian roots and who was crowned Goombay Queen 25 years ago, were crowd favorites. Paul Bodie and The Togetherness Band, Steve "Golden Child" Carey and Kenneth and The Eleutheran's Band were also hits.
Guests also got a taste of authentic Bahamian dishes created by award-winning chef Simeon Hall Jr., who delighted patrons with his famous split peas crab soup and dumplings, fish cakes and guava duff. Dozens of other vendors, comprising Bahamians in the United States, provided native peas 'n'rice, fried snapper, cracked conch, baked macaroni and cheese, curried goat, and conch salad dishes.
Culturally inspired booths including a Junkanoo educulture expo by educator Arlene Nash-Ferguson; wood carving by James Rolle; straw craft by Veronica Dorsett; Bahamian colored and crafted jewelry by Whitney Butler and artists renderings by Piaget Moss and Jamaal Rolle were also on display.
"The Bahamas and the United States of America [Miami] in particular, share a unique history," said Harrison Thompson, permanent secretary at the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism. "The community of Coconut Grove, Florida has been built and settled by Bahamians, many of whom went there on contract to accept menial jobs as farmers, construction crew members and the like to financially support their families back home. Those Bahamians that stayed settled in Coconut Grove and other nearby districts of Miami. Those that returned to [New Providence], purchased land in the then emerging inner city constituency they called Coconut Grove, which served as a reminder of the prominence and independence of those 'merican cousins' and family members who stayed behind in South Florida."
The festival was sponsored by the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism; Commissioner Marc Sarnoff and the City of Miami, District 2, City of Miami Commission, Miami-Dade County; the Bahamas Consulate, Budweiser and the Bahamas Goombay Committee of South Florida.

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Julien Believe to perform at Ranfurly Fashion Fund Raiser

July 31, 2014

Bahamian recording artist and Icon winner, Julien Believe, the creator of The Caribbean Slide...

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Over 170 Entries for Bahamas Carnival Song Competition
Over 170 Entries for Bahamas Carnival Song Competition

July 31, 2014

Scores of individuals lined up to enter their demo song and application before the deadline...

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Bahamian Kenneth Kerr Emerges as Caribbean Male Model to Watch at Men's Fashion Week
Bahamian Kenneth Kerr Emerges as Caribbean Male Model to Watch at Men's Fashion Week

July 30, 2014

The initials K.K. are quite known in Hollywood and the fashion world but now...

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