Everyone who has ever taken a trip along the south coast of Jamaica should know the Juici Patties Headquarters along the A2 Highway in Toll Gate. It’s the perfect stop for a bathroom break and grabbing food and drink on the go. However, just behind the restaurant is Empowerment Park, a verdant well-tended space which I’ve never noticed before! That’s what happens when you’re hurrying too much in life. I wasn’t hurrying today so I noticed the park and thought I’d share it with you. Much like Emancipation Park in the city of Kingston, Clarendonians no longer have to make the trek to enjoy a similar ambience. Empowerment Park was officially opened on Sunday July 10, 2016 with the aim of promoting peace and providing an opportunity for educational activities and leisure in this side of the island.
As mentioned previously, Empowerment Park is just behind the Juici Patties Headquarters which is found before crossing parish borders into Porus, Manchester. I assume their opening hours would be similar to the restaurant’s which are everyday from 6am to 11pm. A lot of the premises don’t appear to be accessible to the general public unless it’s booked for an event, considering the newspaper article of the park’s debut mentions a football field and area for stageshows which I didn’t find today. Nonetheless, just enough green was available to make me happy.
Time to enjoy the tiny oasis which is Empowerment Park!
As quoted from the Jamaica Observer: “Jukie Chin, chairman and CEO of the company, made it clear that the park is their way of saying thanks to their millions of customers all over the world. Looking ahead, he said the dream will continue with the erection of a museum to showcase Juici’s journey, as well as a netball court.” To that I say thanks to you too. I can really appreciate businesses which not only support national development but also give back to the country in tangible ways. If creating a tiny park for visitors and locals alike to enjoy while taking a rest stop in this side of the island doesn’t equal giving back then I don’t know what is. It should be interesting to see these plans develop over time. I rate Empowerment Park full stars, ☆☆☆☆☆.
(P.S. It felt weird creating a whole new blog post and parish category for this park but hey! There are a few more Clarendon posts to come some time soon this year and give Empowerment Park some company. *Hint hint*: 2018’s bucket list. Also, it’s my mission to document all the nation’s green spaces and after enjoying a good 15 minutes outside here today, it would be remiss of me to leave out a space I really appreciated).
‘Til next time. ✌🏼