Reggae Play Day 2018

A large crowd watches Zion Reggae close out the inaugural Reggae Play Day event, last year in downtown Berlin.

(May 10, 2019) Jah Works and Zion Reggae Band are expected to have people moving to the music Friday evening during the second annual Reggae Play Day in downtown Berlin. 

Sponsored by Ocean 98 radio, the event will take place from 5-9 p.m. on Main Street, with a stage set up near Fins Ale House and Raw Bar on North Main Street.

“Everyone loves reggae,” said Ocean 98 radio personality Big Al Reno.”

Ivy Wells, Berlin’s director of economic and community development, said thousands of people came out to last year’s festival and the same kind of turnout or better is expected this year. 

“It’s very rare that you can go to … a live concert outside and see the likes of ... Jah Works.” “This is the first time we get to have him here in downtown Berlin. Just from Facebook alone, it looks like there’s over 7,000 people that said that they were coming or interested,” she said.

In addition to live music, fans can take advantage of a steel drum demonstration, Jamaican food and a variety of beers from Big Oyster Brewery.

Wells said because Reggae Play Day is happening during Berlin’s Second Friday, the Makers Market artist showcase also will be open on Jefferson and Commerce streets. Attendees also can bring a white T-shirt to tie-dye, she said.

Reggae Play Day is a fundraiser for the Berlin Main Street Program and is derived from the May Day Play Day event Ocean 98 produced for seven years, Wells said.

May Day Play Day featured several local bands playing live music but two years ago, the music changed to reggae and the crowd doubled, she said.

Wells and Reno said the event is weather dependent.

“Hopefully, we see everybody out there and the music’s great, the weather looks like it should be good,” Reno said last Friday.

 “This has turned into one of the eclectic universal family events where music brings everyone together and hopefully we continue to do that,” he said.

Additionally, the radio station will sell a limited edition Reggae Play Day T-shirt, and a portion of the sales will go toward a cash for college campaign for students in Somerset, Worcester and Wicomico counties. 

Ocean 98 will also announce the winner of a new air conditioning unit provided by Arctic Heating and Air Conditioning during the festival. Reno said the station would also give people wristbands from 5-6 p.m. before announcing the winning contestant. 

For more information on the radio station’s contest, visit ocean98.com.

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