CIDA’s first ‘Old Fashion Program’ a success

CIDA Grand Bahama Board members from left to right are Lorine Miller

The Cat Island Development Association (Grand Bahama) recently hosted its first ‘Old Fashion Program’ at The Bahamas Union of Teachers (BUT) Building with the incomparable David Wallace serving as the master of ceremonies.


Emily Strachan-McKinney, CIDA vice president revealed the event was an outstanding success that promoted togetherness as well as introduce attendees and descendants of Cat Island to old fashioned, family-oriented and a culturally rich entertainment experience.


“The Old Fashion Programme truly was a smashing success as Mr. Wallace kept attendees rolling with gut-busting laughter thanks to his comedic genius throughout the evening.


“The CIDA organized the event specifically to provide the Grand Bahama community with a taste of what life was like on Cat Island, hence it was imperative that we ensured the entertainment had an authentic old fashioned flair.


“Every element of the event reflected life on the island when life was carefree and everyone happily participated and all the families celebrated a spirit of togetherness


“Family ties were definitely strong during the era when I grew up on Cat Island as well as community ties were intact and everyone respected each other while enjoying a sense of belonging.


“Certainly times have changed and that connectedness has somehow dissipated from our communities particularly in The Bahamas’ capital (Nassau, New Providence) and the second city (Freeport, Grand Bahama) we have lost so much hence the CIDA though it best to promote, old fashioned family-oriented events to bring us together as a people, remind us of our once cherished values, which would hopeful reconnect us,” said Strachan-McKinney.


Tons of delicious Cat Island treats were on sale including down home Benny cake, coconut tarts, cassava bread and flour cake among other items.


Funds derived from the ‘Old Fashion Programme’ will be used by the CIDA to put on the 3rd Annual Senior Citizens’ Spelling Bee, which was won by 74-year-old Naomi Astwood and showcase the amazing spelling and phonetic recall prowess of the Grand Bahama’s precious pearls.


“Definitely, I must commend Mr. Wallace for sustaining suspense, fun and laughter throughout the ‘Old Fashion Program’ and really getting the crowd involved in the singing of old fashioned songs, playing creative instruments (rake ‘n’ saw, spoons ‘n’ scrub board, gourd shakers, drumming the tub etc.,) and dancing the heel ‘n’ toe, conch-style, sponge-a-move and sculling.


“The old fashioned treats disappeared quickly and everyone in attendance enjoyed the program so much so that they have encouraged the CIDA to put on this particular event on a quarterly basis, as it certainly showcased our true culture.



“Again funds raised during the ‘Old Fashion Program’ would be used for the promotion of the CIDA’s Third Annual Senior Citizens’ Spelling Bee that we want to kick up a notch by providing our winners with a trip to New Providence to pay a courtesy call on the Governor General of The Bahama Dame Marguerite Pindling whereby they can be showcased to the entire nation and this event is just one way we will attempt to acquire those necessary funding along with other events.


“I would like to thank the Grand Bahama community for supporting all of the CIDA events as well as the patriotic descendants of Cat Island that came out and helped to introduce their children, grandchildren and great grandchildren to the amazing culture and values that are unique to our island and the old fashioned way of life that continues to be respected by our elders,” said Strachan-McKinney.


For more information regarding the Cat Island Development Association of Grand Bahama (CIDA) and upcoming and initiatives spearheaded by the organization please send an email to, or telephone 443-3164/443-7756 or visit Facebook at


Published  Tuesday, March 28, 2017 


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