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Local Folk Shine at Carnival Time

April 22, 2005 –– Although royalty reigns supreme over main event at St. Thomas Carnival, the names of common folk are prominent in other events.
This year, the Cultural Fair, April 27, will be named Jambi's Marketplace in honor of Lucien "Jambi" Samuel Jr. The St. Thomas farmer developed the Green Thumb Sustainable Farm and is a member of We Grow Food Inc.
Samuel started farming in 1983 at the University of the Virgin Islands Cooperative Extensive Service Ujamaa Organic Training Program. He continued his education through other Cooperative Extension workshops at UVI and in North Carolina.
He won numerous awards at local agricultural fairs, and was named Farmer of the Year in 2001 at the annual Bordeaux Rastafari Agriculture and Cultural Food Fair. He also won prizes at the Carnival Cultural Fair in 2001, 2002 and 2004.
Samuel appears on St. Thomas/St. John Cable TV's Island Showcase in a segment about farming.
Former Sen. Clement "Cain" Magras will serve as grand marshal of the April 30 Adult Parade.
"It's an honor after 25 years in Carnival," he said.
By day, he's the associate director in the federal grants program at the Office of Management and Budget, but in his free time, he designs and makes costumes for the Eagles Carnival Troupe and other Carnival participants.
Many of his costumes were worn by prize winners. They included the late Gene Cerge as genie on a flying carpet, the tidal wave, Anansi the spider, the swarm of the killer bees, and the golden king. He also constructed prize-winning King and Queen of the Band costumes for the Rising Stars Steel Orchestra.
"Over the years, we won seven King of the Band titles and five Queen of the Band titles," Magras said
Additionally, his costumes were worn by Carnival queens and Ms. Universe contestants from the Virgin Islands.
In Magras' only appearance at the King of the Band contest in 1989, he won the title with a tribute to Cerge, who was his long-time friend. Magras wore a costume he called diamonds are forever.
Magras also gives credit to his team, Louis "Tiny" Greaux, Millicent, Gagliani, Elmo Lanclos, Dhalia Magras, and his three children, Jason, Jody and Jessica.
He was named a tradition bearer by the Smithsonian Institution's Folklife Festival for his costume making and cultural story telling skills.
Carol A. Rhymer will serve as marshal of the April 29 Children's Parade.
Rhymer has participated in the Children's Parade for the past 15 years with troupes named Little Mr. And Ms. Carol's Day Care Center and Little fun Bunnies Carnival Troupe. They were first place winners several times.
She also was a member of the Eagles Carnival Troupe from 1976 until 1994. She was Queen of the Band in 1973.
Rhymer is now a member of the Fun Lovers Carnival Troupe, and was named Queen of the Band in 1997 and 1998.
She has served as chaperone for the Ms. Annas Retreat Pageant and St. John's July 4th Celebration Prince and Princess pageants and Ms. Lockhart Elementary School pageants.
She has also judged many pageants.
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