The City of Miramar was recently graced by the presence of Track & Field legend and celebrated Olympian, Usain Bolt. The visit marked the grand unveiling of a sculpture capturing his likeness, the inaugural piece in the City’s Art-in-Public-Places program, located at the Ansin Sports Complex. The idea of honoring Bolt with a statue was conceived by Vice Mayor Alexandra P. Davis. She emphasized, “Beyond inspiring our residents, this statue of Usain Bolt will undoubtedly become a magnet for visitors. As admirers flock to view this masterpiece, they will encounter the rich tapestry and vibrancy of our city, amplifying tourism and providing economic boost to our local businesses. This statue stands as a testament to our dedication to excellence, sportsmanship, and the grandeur of human accomplishment.”
The festive series of events commenced with a banquet on Friday, graced by dignitaries from the Jamaican Government, including Ms. Olivia “Babsy” Grange, Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, along with members of the Jamaica Amateur Athletics Association (JAAA). The entertainment-filled banquet, highlighted by performances from comedian Johnny Daley, singer Nadine Sutherland, and poet Sharon Corinthian, also featured a silent auction to support two worthy causes: the Usain Bolt Foundation and Do the Right Thing of Miramar, Inc. Cherished memorabilia from Bolt’s illustrious career were auctioned to eager fans.
Saturday’s proceedings saw hundreds of supporters converging to meet Bolt. He generously hosted a mini-training session, imparting wisdom about the nuances of racing to emerging track stars, including Special Olympics hopefuls.
Though the Ansin Sports Complex momentarily echoed with sirens, signaling nearby lightning activity, the spectators remained resolute in their enthusiasm to witness the grand reveal of the statue symbolizing the iconic Lightning Bolt. Their patience was rewarded as Bolt, visibly moved, appreciated the exquisite creation by renowned sculptor, Basil Watson. In honor of the occasion, Dr. Usain Bolt was bestowed with a proclamation declaring July 14, 2023, as Usain Bolt Day in Miramar by Mayor Wayne M. Messam, followed by the presentation of the City’s keys. Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz graced the occasion with her remarks.
The event concluded with a press interaction, where the media, both local and international, probed Bolt about his legendary journey. Humbly receiving the community’s adoration, he asserted, “Faith in oneself and relentless determination are imperative. Despite the challenges, when you consistently nurture your talent, the results are rewarding.”