Sinbad to Jam in U.S. Virgin Islands

Sinbad to Jam in U.S. Virgin Islands
Annual Kmart presents . . . Soul Music Festival
Scheduled for Memorial Day Weekend in St. Thomas

U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS, March 1, 1999 – Internationally known comedian, actor and producer Sinbad will bring his exciting blend of comedy, funk and celebration to the U.S. Virgin Islands this spring. The fifth annual Kmart Presents . . . Sinbad’s Soul Music Festival will be held on St. Thomas, USVI, Memorial Day weekend, May 26-31.

The six-day festival will feature live musical performances by world-class talent, comedy concerts, music jamborees and beach parties which will be held at venues throughout St. Thomas. While most of the festival participants will be staying on St. Thomas, many others will find their accommodations on nearby St. John. Special 20- to 40-minute ferries will carry St. John guests to and from the many festival activities on St. Thomas. There will even be a festival-affiliated Beach Jam on St. Croix, the largest of the three islands which lies 38 miles south of St. Thomas, just 18 minutes away by seaplane.

This much-anticipated concert has traditionally attracted high-caliber performers such as Natalie Cole, Earth Wind and Fire, KC and the Sunshine Band, Stephanie Mills, Cameo, The Gap Band and The Whispers. This year’s featured musical artists will be announced by Sinbad closer to the event’s date.

Held for the first time on U.S. soil, the famous festival is expected to draw more than 7,000 revelers to the U.S. Virgin Islands and contribute an estimated $20 million to the local and travel economies. Host destinations in years past have included St. Martin, Jamaica and, most recently, Aruba. The U.S. Virgin Islands was selected as this year´s host after a competitive site selection process that included many other Caribbean islands.

“The U.S. Virgin Islands opened their arms to us as soon as we landed on this wonderful island. Governor Turnbull came forward from day one and said, ‘How do we help you make this happen?’ You cannot know how much easier and more effective this makes our job. The excitement I feel about this year´s festival could be likened to what a child feels the night before Christmas- thrilled and full of joy,” said Sinbad. “I must also give thanks and kudos to the USVI Department of Tourism, the Hotel Association, the USVI Film Office and the Chamber of Commerce, as well as the islanders themselves for making us feel welcomed – not just in speech, but also by their actions. The only thing left for me to say is, May The Funk Begin!”

Governor of the U.S. Virgin Islands Charles W. Turnbull applauds Sinbad’s choice. “We are very happy to welcome the Kmart Presents . . . Sinbad’s Soul Music Festival to our home. Both the public and private sectors of our community worked very hard to bring this prestigious festival to the USVI, and we know that our visitors and guests will enjoy the hospitality of this American Paradise in the Caribbean,” said Gov. Turnbull. “We’ve always known that our islands are the most fun place to be in the Caribbean,” said USVI Tourism Commissioner Clement “Cain” Magras. “Sinbad knows that St. Thomas, St. John and St. Croix are the best places to party and that’s why he selected the U.S. Virgin Islands for his famous music festival.”

Sinbad’s Soul Music Festival won the prestigious NAACP Image Award consecutively for two years in the `Most Outstanding Variety Series/Special´ category. The Kmart Presents . . . Sinbad’s Soul Music Festival will be taped as a television special for Pay-Per-View to air in June 1999.

Major sponsors for the 1999 Kmart Presents . . . Sinbad’s Soul Music Festival are: The Government of the U.S. Virgin Islands, American Airlines, and

Co-host hotels are the Marriott Frenchman´s Reef Beach Resort and the Renaissance Grand Beach Resort. Wyndham Sugar Bay Beach Club & Resort and McLaughlin Anderson Villas are the Primary Hotels. Secondary hotels providing accommodations for festival goers include Esysian Beach Resort, The Westin Resort – St. John, and Holiday Inn Windward Passage Hotel.

Other participating hotels include Best Western Carib Beach Resort, Best Western Emerald Beach Resort, Bluebeard’s Beach Club & Villas, Bluebeard’s Castle, Bolongo Bay Beach Club & Villas, Island Beachcomber, Point Pleasant Resort, The Ritz -Carlton;St. Thomas, Sapphire Beach Resort & Marina and Secret Harbor Beach Resort & Villas. The U.S. Virgin Islands is an English-speaking American Territory located in the Caribbean Sea. The USVI is comprised of four major islands: St. Croix, St. John, St. Thomas and the newest, Water Island, as well as about 50 other smaller islands and cays. Virgin Islanders are American citizens and use the American dollar. The U.S. Virgin Islands has continued to be one of the most popular Caribbean vacation destinations in the world for several decades, making tourism the territory´s number-one industry. Just a 2 1/2 hour flight from Miami and a 3 1/2 hour flight from New York, the USVI is visited by almost two million tourists each year. With crystal-clear turquoise waters, white-sand beaches, friendly residents, excellent dining, world-class shopping, year-round warm weather and a multitude of fun-filled activities available, the USVI is truly America’s Paradise.

For additional information about Kmart Presents . . . Sinbad’s Soul Music Festival, call 800-266-SOUL or visit Sinbad’s official festival website at For travel packages call 888-SOUL-JAM. For more information about the U.S. Virgin Islands, call 800-372-USVI.