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Coconuts on the Beach, at Coconut Fest 2012
By Renamae A.Symonette
Apr 8, 2012 - 10:25:13 PM

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FREEPORT, Grand Bahama –The 14th Annual Coconut Festival has become a signature event on the community calendar, featuring Authentically Bahamian culture with special emphasis on cuisine, and century’s old social traditions.

Scheduled for April 9th 2012 and locally celebrated as Pelican Point's Homecoming Festival, family friends and guests will descend upon the small seaside village to a feast of coconut dishes such as coconut jimmy, coconut shrimp, barbecue ribs with coconut sauce, coconut rice, coconut tart, and more, as well as a variety of coconut beverages including the famous Bahamian drink gully wash – made of coconut water.

“There will be an ‘everything coconut under the tent’ display” says Cathy Laing, organizing committee spokesperson and Cacique Award Winner in the Authentically Bahamian Handicraft category.

The Grand Bahama Royal Bahamas Police Force ‘Pop Band’ , ‘Avvy’ and ‘Geno D’ will perform throughout the day, and event-goers will participate in uniquely coconut games and fun activities such as coconut eating and barking contests.  Coconut shell crafts and souvenirs such as jams, soap, coconut-scented candles, etc.,will also be available.

The Pelican Point community comprised of less than one hundred residents is located thirty-five miles east of Freeport/Lucaya and remains populated by descendants of the original residents to this day.  The organizing committee headed by members of the Thomas, Laing, Roberts and Cooper families, in partnership with the Ministry of Tourism and corporate sponsors, are committed to keeping their ancient traditions alive.

Monday, April 9, 2012

10:00 am—7:00 Pm


Bahamian Music

10:00 a.m.

Booths are opened

10:00 a.m.

Bahamian Music

11:00 a.m.

Official Opening

1:00 p.m.

Pass the Coconut

1:50 p.m.

Bottle Sucking Contest

2:10 p.m.

Coconut Tart Eating Contest

2:25 p.m.

Coconut Straw Plaiting Demo/Contest

2:30 p.m.

Dance Performance– Freeport       Primary School

3:15 p.m.

Coconut Barking Demonstration

3:15 p.m.

Tug-a-war Contest

3:50 p.m.

Cowbell & Drum Demonstration

4:35 p.m.

Live Entertainment-Avvy

4:45 p.m.

Live Entertainment– Local RBPF Pop Band

5:50 p.m.

Live Entertainment-Geno D

6:00 p.m.

Bahamian Music

7:00 p.m.


Official Opening Ceremony

National Anthem

Lenelle Curry, Shaquell Laing, Mia Rolle


Bishop Lawrence PinderPresident of the Grand Bahama Christian Council


Zachary Bain


Renamae Symonette, Manager of    Product Development M.O.T.


Kenneth RussellMember of Parliament High Rock Constituency

Vote of Thanks

Cathy Laing– committee member

Pelican Point Coconut Festival - A Brief History

Pelican Point, originally Grand Bahama’s most eastern mainland settlement is some 70 miles from the city of Freeport.

It is known for its abundance of coconut trees grown mostly along the seacoaset and for its beautiful beaches. Pelican Point was first settled in the early 1900’s by three brothers, Charlie, Fleming and Paul Lain. They had migrated from High Rock to ‘the Cove’ and then on to Pelican Point. This move was made to cultivate new farmland. At that time, farming (for export) was the main occupation and fishing was second job, mostly to keep the family fed.

The ‘landmark’ coconut trees were first planted by the three brothers, but, most of them were destroyed by the ‘35 hurricane. Approximately 13 persons were killed or went missing and were presumed dead in t his unexpected storm. The coconut trees were replanted and some are still standing today.

By the 1940’s the town had grown and had a school and church that were built by the town’s people. The first school was renovated in the late 1980’s and is now the Benjamin W. Laing Library, named in    honour of the towns long serving schoolteacher. In 1990 the school closed and the students were based to McLean’s Town to attend school.

The Pelican Point Association was founded in 1998, and from this organization the first coconut festival was held as a fundraiser and homecoming for residents and   descendents.


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