While any time is good to visit our Islands, you are here at a wonderful time of the year to enjoy cool breezes and a calendar filled with awe-inspiring activities.
Cayman has earned the reputation — and rightfully so — as the Culinary Capital of the Caribbean, which we celebrate every January with Cayman Cookout. Always at the helm of this world-class event is internationally renowned chef Eric Ripert. He hosts a weekend of celebrating all things food and wine at one of the premier resorts on Grand Cayman, the Ritz-Carlton. Joining him this year will be other internationally famous chefs including Emeril Lagasse, Clare Smyth, José Andrés and other headliners. If you’re here 15–20 January, join us for an incomparable roster of world-famous chefs, wine experts and spirits blenders. You won’t want to miss the tantalising tastings, vivid demonstrations, tours and awesome meals. I encourage you to be a part of what is truly the Caribbean’s prime epicurean event filled with food, fun and fellowship. If you can’t make it to this foodie event, don’t worry. Cayman has plenty of top-notch restaurants to choose from.
Once you have had your fill of our wonderful cuisine, join us for our Heroes Day ceremony in downtown George Town on 27 January. Each year we honour men and women who have been and are integral to a specific theme that has helped shape our identity.
This year’s is a special celebration as we are commemorating the 60th anniversary of our first written Constitution. That Constitution came into effect on 4 July, 1959, and was the first step toward political advancement for the Cayman Islands, exempting us from the control of the Jamaican legislature.
Since then we have made many constitutional advancements, but on Heroes Day this year we will recognise the Vestrymen and Justices of the Peace — the forerunners of our Legislative Assembly — who brought this significant milestone in the history of the Cayman Islands.
In February, our attention turns to all things agriculture as we celebrate the Agricultural Show on Ash Wednesday, 26 February.
The Agricultural Show has become a generational tradition as families from town and country look forward to the chance to celebrate and reconnect with our agricultural heritage. Thousands of islanders and visitors will spend the day strolling through the Stacy Watler Agricultural Pavilion, marvelling at healthy livestock and fine specimens of pumpkins, peppers, bananas, plantains and callaloo, as well as local handicrafts.
Whether you are here as a first-time visitor, a returning guest, or visiting us for business — I give you a very warm Caymanian welcome. I am glad that you chose to start off your New Year with us. Please enjoy your trip and start making plans to come back again.
The Hon. Alden McLaughlin, MBE, JP, MLA Premier of the Cayman Islands