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zemis

Zemis

The Taino believe everything in the universe is interconnected and spiritually alive. They view the Earth as a flat disk suspended between the cosmos above and the watery underworld below. The realms are connected by a supernatural shaft rising from the bottom of the underworld, passing through a hole in the center of the Earth and extending upward to the heavens.

The souls of the dead live in the otherworld. They are ruled by the Zemi Maquetaurie Guayaba, Lord of the Land of the Dead. The Zemis of the underworld are often made in the form of night flying creatures, such as bats or owls. (The second Zemi, found at the Cinnamon Bay site, bears the image of a bat.) These creatures are regarded as the messengers of the Dead.

In the book, Memory of Fire: Genesis, Eduardo Galeano writes:

“He who made the sun and the moon warned the Tainos to watch out for the dead.

“In the daytime the dead hid themselves and ate guavas, but at night they went out for a stroll and challenged the living. Dead men offered duels and dead women, love. In the duels they vanished at will; and at the climax of love the lover found himself with nothing in his arms. Before accepting a duel with a man or lying down with a woman, one should feel the belly with one’s hand, because the dead have no navels.”

Another Taino myth speaks about bats:

“When time was yet in the cradle, there was no uglier creature in the world than the bat.

“The bat went up to heaven to look for God. He didn’t say, “I’m bored with being hideous. Give me colored feathers.

“No. He said, “Please give me feathers, I’m dying of cold.

“But God had not a single feather left over.

“’Each bird will give you a feather,’ he decided.

“Thus the bat got the white feather of the dove and the green one of the parrot, the iridescent one of the hummingbird, the pink one of the flamingo, the red of the cardinal’s tuft and the blue of the kingfisher’s back, the clayey one of the eagle’s wing, and the sun feather that burns in the breast of the toucan.

“The bat, luxuriant with colors and softness, moved between earth and clouds. Wherever he went, the air became pleasant and the birds dumb with admiration. According to the Zapotec peoples, the rainbow was born of the echo of his flight.

“Vanity puffed out his chest. He acquired a disdainful look and made insulting remarks.

“The birds called a meeting. Together they flew up to God. ‘The bat makes fun of us,’ they complained. ‘And what’s more, we feel cold for lack of the feathers he took.’

“Next day, when the bat shook his feathers in full flight, he suddenly became naked. A rain of feathers fell to earth.

“He is still searching for them. Blind and ugly, enemy of the light, he lives hidden in caves. He goes out in pursuit of the lost feathers after night has fallen and flies very fast, never stopping because it shames him to be seen.”

The Zemis of the cosmos, such as the creator and lord of the cassava, Yúcahu, and his mother, Atabey, bring the Taino successful harvests, fertility and good health. Zemis could also reside in the natural world of trees, mountains, rivers, caves and communities. Destructive Zemis from the nether world could cause droughts, illness and natural disaster. The Zemi, Guabancex, lady of the winds, controls hurricanes aided by her two assistants, Guataubá, herald of hurricane force winds, and Coatrisquie, the god of floodwaters.

In addition to the fabrication of idols, Taino artisans carved symbolic pictures on rocks found in areas of obvious spiritual significance. Such petroglyphs exist at Reef Bay on St. John, along the side of a fresh water pool and on the platform cliffs of Congo Cay. It is believed that these carvings represent the natural spirits that resided in these places.

The Taino used sacred psychoactive herbs to communicate with Zemis and spirits of ancestors in an elaborate ritual called the Cohoba ceremony. Caciques (chiefs) and bohutí (shamans) with sufficient spiritual power used this ceremony to heal the sick, predict the future and to ensure the well being of the community. The participants fast before beginning the ceremony. They then cause themselves to regurgitate by inserting a ritual instrument in their throat. Once purged they inhale the cohoba from an intricately carved vessel equipped with snuffing tubes, which are placed in the nostrils. The cacique or bohutí could then leave the natural world through the hole in the center of the Earth and enter the supernatural shaft which connecting the realms of the universe.

The Spanish were repelled by the Taino religion and believed the Zemis to be Satanic in nature. They are said to have burned hundreds of cotton Zemis and to have destroyed countless works of Taino religious art. As a result of severe persecution by the Spanish, surviving Tainos went underground, meeting in secret to carry on their traditions.

St. John and Virgin Islands News

FIT Act presents huge opportunity for Virgin Islands
May 21, 2014 | By Barbara Vergetis Lundin

U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI) Governor John deJongh has signed the Feed-In-Tariff (FIT) Act into law, allowing residents to build renewable energy projects and sell all of the electricity to the local utility.

Currently, the USVI is almost entirely dependent on imported fossil fuels and retail electric rates average over $0.50 per kilowatt-hour. Through the feed-in tariff, the Water and Power Authority (WAPA) will purchase up to 15 MW of local renewables, paying less than WAPA’s avoided wholesale cost at around $0.26 per kilowatt-hour. Renewable energy generators will enter a power purchase agreement with WAPA lasting between 10 and 30 years.

While the feed-in tariff marks a significant step toward cleaner, more affordable and more reliable power on the USVI, Craig Barshinger, a USVI Senator and author of the Feed-In Tariff Act, believes this is just the beginning in a larger effort to modernize the USVI’s power grid…. read more

REI Adventures Announces New Volunteer Trip to the U.S. Virgin Islands

REI Adventures has just announced their new trips for 2015, including a Volunteer Vacation in the Virgin Islands.

On this new tour travelers will work with National Park Service rangers on maintenance projects in the U.S. Virgin Islands National Park on St. John.

For ten days volunteers will work from 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM clearing debris, fixing trails, and removing vegetation in a tropical locale. Then, they will be rewarded with 2 well-earned days off to snorkel, swim, or just hang out and relax.

This twelve day tour starts at $1,950 per person (based on double occupancy) including all meals, accommodations in group lodging, guide leadership, all van and ferry transportation, gratuities, and park entrance fees.

The 12-day Volunteer Vacation in the Virgin Islands trip is set to depart on Nov. 2, 2014, April 5, 2015, and Nov. 1, 2015.

Check out all the details at rei.com

USVI wins Optimist Cup at BVI Dinghy Championships
By Dean Greenaway (Special to the Daily News)
Published: May 21, 2014

TORTOLA – The annual BVI Dinghy Championships wrapped up two days of competitive racing Sunday that also included the final leg of the Virgin Islands Sailing Triple Crown – which began with races on St. Croix and St. Thomas.

Teddy Nocolosi of St. Thomas, who was the overall winner in the Optimist Red Fleet, led his team to the VI Optimist Cup.

The BVI Dinghy Championships also attracted participants from Antigua, St. Maarten, St. John and St. Croix.

“This was great because we had light air conditions and this is most likely what we’ll have in the North American Championships in Mexico in July, so it was a great training toward that regatta,” St. Thomas coach Agustin Resano said. “I’m glad it was like that. I also liked that the fleet was competitive, unlike last year when we had three top sailors way ahead of the rest, this year was more compact, so it showed a lot of improvement from the bottom all the way up.”… read more

St. John Live Music Schedule

Banana Deck
Steel Pan by Lemuel Samuels
7:00 – 9:00
340-693-5055

Barefoot Cowboy Lounge
Ike
6:30 -9:30
340-201-1236

Beach Bar
John Gazi
9:00
777-4220

Concordia
Wayne Clendenin and Pamela Love
4:30 – 6:30
340-693-5855

High Tide
Erin Hart
5:00 – 8:00
340-714-6169

Inn at Tamarind Court
Brother Nature
6:30 – 9:30
340-776-6378

Island Blues
Gann – Solo guitar
7:00 – 10:00
340-776-6800

Miss Lucy’s
Rich & Greg
6:00 – 9:00
340-693-5244

Morgan’s Mango
James Anderson
6:30 – 9:30
340-693-8141

Ocean Grill
Chris Carsel
6:00 – 9:00
340-693-3304

Pickles
T-Bird
6:00 – 8:00
340-776-6908

Skinny Legs
Lauren Jones
6:00 – 9:00
340-779-4982

Spyglass
James Milne
5:00 – 8:00
340-776-1100

See Weekly Schedule

St. John Weather

Isolated showers. Mostly sunny, with a high near 82. East wind around 16 mph. Chance of precipitation is 20%.

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Seaplanes in the USVISeaborne was not the first commercial seaplane service to operate in the Virgin Islands. That distinction belongs to Antilles Air Boats, started by flying ace, renowned test pilot and author Charlie Blair in 1964.

Charlie Blair distinguished himself, among countless other achievements, by flying his scarlet-red P-51 Mustang, named Excalibur III, non-stop from New York to London in 1951.­ In May of that same year Charlie Blair made the first solo flight over the North Pole delivering personally through the cockpit window a letter addressed to Santa Claus from his son, Chris. Excalibur III is now on permanent display at the National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C.

In 1968, Charlie Blair married the famous movie actress Maureen O’Hara and the couple lived on St. Croix.

By 1977, Antilles Air Boats, with a fleet of 23 amphibious aircraft including 19 Grumman Goose seaplanes, was making more than 100 flights a day, carrying some 250,000 passengers a year. Virgin Islanders often referred to Antilles Airboats as “The Streetcar Line of the Virgin Islands.”

Charlie Blair died in 1978 when the Grumman Goose he was piloting developed engine trouble and crashed between St. Croix and St. Thomas. (Excerpted from St. Thomas USVI)

Between 1967 and 1995 there was seaplane service between Cruz Bay and San Juan, St. Thomas, St. Croix and Tortola. What is now used as the Virgin Islands National Park boat launch once housed the ramp, rustic offices and ground facilities for Antilles Airboats, a seaplane company that lost its planes to Hurricane Hugo in 1989.

Afterwards, other companies took over, until they too lost their aircraft to a hurricane. This time it was Hurricane Marilyn in 1995. After that, the National Park announced that it would no longer lease the seaplane ramp and that wonderful scheduled seaplane service that at one time enabled visitors to change planes in San Juan and fly directly to Cruz Bay is no more. (Excerpted from St. John Off the Beaten Track)

St. John Live Music Schedule

Banana Deck
Steel Pan by Lemuel Samuels
7:00 – 9:00
340-693-5055

Barefoot Cowboy Lounge
Ike
6:30 -9:30
340-201-1236

Concordia
Wayne Clendenin and Pamela Love
4:30 – 6:30
340-693-5855

High Tide
Erin Hart
5:00 – 8:00
340-714-6169

Inn at Tamarind Court
Brother Nature
6:30 – 9:30
340-776-6378

Island Blues
Gann – Solo guitar
7:00 – 10:00
340-776-6800

Miss Lucy’s
Rich & Greg
6:00 – 9:00
340-693-5244

Morgan’s Mango
James Anderson
6:30 – 9:30
340-693-8141

Ocean Grill
Chris Carsel
6:00 – 9:00
340-693-3304

Pickles
T-Bird
6:00 – 8:00
340-776-6908

Skinny Legs
Lauren Jones
6:00 – 9:00
340-779-4982

Spyglass
James Milne
5:00 – 8:00
340-776-1100

See Weekly Schedule

St. John News

Murder in Coral Bay: A Tale of St. John by Wilson Roberts

Murder disrupts the calm of Coral Bay on St. John in the United States Virgin Islands. One of the world’s most unique communities, it is a place where many people are known by nicknames, their birth names often buried in life histories some-such as the woman known only as X-would rather forget. Robert Palmer, once a husband, father and physician from the hills of Western Massachusetts, staggered by the sudden breakup of his marriage, finds work as a bartender at Dante’s Landing, a restaurant and bar at the edge of the water. The Landing is a haven for many of Coral Bay’s inhabitants and Robert is quickly accepted as one of them. On his first day at the Landing he is befriended by Bethany Wren, whose rosy image veils a troubled and troubling past. The murder of a loud and abusive tourist outside Dante’s Landing is the first of three violent deaths. A corrupt police sergeant investigating the murders is as much a threat as the unknown murderer to the peace of Coral Bay, a laughing, singing, dancing, drinking, hard-working, sailing, swimming, fishing, eating and loving corner of St. John. Murder in Coral Bay is the story of how Robert, native St. Johnian Moonie, and Dante, owner of the Landing, find the murderer despite the ineptness and corruption of members of the Virgin Islands Police Department. Rich in descriptions of character and place, readers who know Coral Bay will find that Murder in Coral Bay will remind them of why they love this rare and lovely community. Readers who have yet to visit will find themselves drawn to discover it on their own. Wilson Roberts has published six previous novels with Wilder Publications. The Cold Dark Heart of the World; Incident on Tuckerman Court; The Serpent and the Hummingbird; Borrowed Trouble; Poet’s Seat, and All That Endures. Order at Amazon.com

St. John Weather

Scattered showers and thunderstorms, then periods of showers and possibly a thunderstorm after noon. High near 78. East wind 10 to 17 mph. Chance of precipitation is 80%. New rainfall amounts between a half and three quarters of an inch possible.

THIS HAZARDOUS WEATHER OUTLOOK IS FOR THE U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS AND THE ADJACENT COASTAL WATERS.

DAY ONE…TODAY AND TONIGHT

SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS WILL ONCE AGAIN DEVELOP AFTER MID-MORNING AND WILL BE CAPABLE OF PRODUCING MODERATE TO LOCALLY HEAVY RAINFALL AND OCCASIONAL LIGHTNING ACROSS THE ISLANDS AND ADJACENT WATERS.

DAYS TWO THROUGH SEVEN…FRIDAY THROUGH WEDNESDAY

AN UPPER LEVEL TROUGH OVER THE AREA WILL CONTINUE TO DEEPEN TODAY FORMING A CLOSED LOW NORTH OF OUR AREA BEGINNING TONIGHT. AS IT DOES SO…THE ATMOSPHERE WILL BECOME MORE HUMID AND UNSTABLE WITH SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS BECOMING MORE NUMEROUS AND INTENSE ESPECIALLY ON FRIDAY. MODERATE TO LOCALLY HEAVY RAINFALL…GUSTY WINDS AND LIGHTNING CAN BE EXPECTED WITH THE STRONGEST STORMS. THIS WET AND ACTIVE WEATHER PATTERN IS FORECAST TO CONTINUE THROUGH AT LEAST THE WEEKEND.

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St. John Events

Skinny Legs

Derby Day
Derby Day party and wear your fanciest hat! Join the fun! Party starts around 3:30 and the race is around 6 p.m.
Live Music After the Race

St. John Live Music Schedule

Aqua Bistro
Lauren Jones
3:30 – 6:30
776-5336

Castaway’s
Brother Nature
340-777-3316

High Tide
Jason Laurence Jones
5:00 – 8:00
340-714-6169

Ocean Grill
T-Bird
6:00 – 9:00
340-693-3304

Rhumb Lines
Lauren
7:00 – 10:00
340-776-0303

Skinny Legs
Hot Club of Coral Bay
6:00
340-779-4982

See Weekly Schedule

St. John Weather

Scattered showers, mainly before 1pm. Mostly sunny, with a high near 78. East wind around 17 mph. Chance of precipitation is 30%. New precipitation amounts of less than a tenth of an inch possible.

High Surf Advisory

MODERATE NORTH NORTHEAST SWELLS WILL CONTINUE TO AFFECT THE ATLANTIC COASTLINE OF PUERTO RICO…CULEBRA AND THE NORTHERN VIRGIN ISLANDS THROUGH TODAY RESULTING IN SIGNIFICANT BREAKING WAVE ACTION AND RIP CURRENTS.

…HIGH SURF ADVISORY REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 6 PM AST THIS EVENING…

* WAVES AND SURF: 5 TO 7 FEET IN NORTH NORTHEAST SWELLS WITH BREAKING WAVES OF 9 TO 12 FEET.

* TIMING: THROUGH SATURDAY.

* IMPACTS: ROUGH SURF CONDITIONS WITH SCATTERED RIP CURRENTS AND MODERATE TO LARGE WAVES IN THE SURF ZONE.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS…

A HIGH SURF ADVISORY MEANS THAT HIGH SURF WILL AFFECT BEACHES IN THE ADVISORY AREA…PRODUCING RIP CURRENTS AND LOCALIZED BEACH EROSION.

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Snorkeling the seagrass beds between the beach and the swim buoys at Big Maho has become one of my favorite snorkels, especially if you want to see turtles. Keep in mind that this will not be like snorkeling over a coral reef where there is almost guaranteed to be constant activity. You’ll need a little patience. I snorkeled there with friends last week who wanted to see turtles and they were disappointed. In addition to the tarpon and green turtle you see in the video, we observed southern stingrays, conch, starfish and a remora swimming back and forth along the hull of a moored catamaran.

St. John Events

Skinny Legs hosts the Commodore Cup

Fund Raiser for KATS (Kids at Sea)
Skippers Meeting 6:30
Two Days of sailing (Saturday and Sunday)

St. John Live Music Schedule

Aqua Bistro
Steven Sloan
5:30 – 8:30
340-776-5336

Barefoot Cowboy Lounge
T-Bird
7:00 – 9:00
340-201-1236

Beach Bar
Locals on the 8s
9:00
340-777-4220

Castaway’s
Mikey P
9:00
Dance Party
11:00
340-777-3316

Cinnamon Bay
Eddie Bruce – Drumming
6:30 -8:30
340-776-6330

High Tide
Mikey P
5:00 – 8:00
340-714-6169

Island Blues
Brother Nature
8:00
340-776-6800

Morgan’s Mango
Lauren
6:30 – 9:30
340-693-8141

Ocean Grill
Rascio on Steel Pan
6:30 – 9:30
340-693-3304

Rhumb Lines
Erin Hart
7:00 – 10:00
340-776-0303

Shipwreck Landing
Tropical Sounds
6:30 – 9:30
340-693-5640

Skinny Legs
Chris Carsel
6:00
340-779-4982

Spyglass
James Milne
5:00 – 8:00
340-776-1100

Virgin Fire
Aussie Guitars
The David T Carter Duo
6:00 – 9:00
340-779-4982

See Weekly Schedule

St. John and Virgin Islands News

‘Best J’ouvert In Years,’ Community Says
By James Gardner — May 2, 2014

From the time the steel pan tramp started at 4 a.m. until the bands started winding down at 10 a.m., all anyone could talk about was how great this year’s J’ouvert celebrations were.

Facebook posts from residents all across the community began coming in early, as steel pan and other groups began moving up Veterans Drive before the sun even peeked over the hills. DJ Avalanche hit the ground around 4 a.m. with one of the bigger J’ouvert troupes, Carnival Kaleidoscope, while the bigger bands – Cool Session, Triple K, Volume and Poizon – began making their way up the route around 6.

As usual, this year’s festivities brought out residents of all ages, decked out in their finest – or skimpiest – attire. J’ouvert is one of the only celebrations in the territory where anyone can wear anything and get away with it, and this year was no exception: from young men wearing sparkling gold shorts to older women gyrating down the street in wigs, fishnet stockings and crop tops, there was no shortage of eye-popping costumes…. Read more

St. John Weather

Isolated showers. Sunny, with a high near 78. East wind 14 to 16 mph. Chance of precipitation is 10%.

COASTAL HAZARD MESSAGE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE SAN JUAN PR

…ROUGH SURF CONDITIONS EXPECTED TODAY AND SATURDAY…

MODERATE NORTH NORTHEAST SWELLS WILL AFFECT THE ATLANTIC COASTLINE OF PUERTO RICO…CULEBRA AND THE NORTHERN VIRGIN ISLANDS THIS AFTERNOON THROUGH SATURDAY RESULTING IN SIGNIFICANT BREAKING WAVE ACTION AND RIP CURRENTS.

…HIGH SURF ADVISORY IN EFFECT FROM 11 AM THIS MORNING TO 6 PM AST SATURDAY…

* WAVES AND SURF: 5 TO 6 FEET IN NORTH NORTHEAST SWELLS WITH BREAKING WAVES OF 9 TO 12 FEET.

* TIMING: LATER TODAY THROUGH SATURDAY.

* IMPACTS: ROUGH SURF CONDITIONS WITH SCATTERED RIP CURRENTS AND

MODERATE TO LARGE WAVES IN THE SURF ZONE.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS…

A HIGH SURF ADVISORY MEANS THAT HIGH SURF WILL AFFECT BEACHES IN

THE ADVISORY AREA…PRODUCING RIP CURRENTS AND LOCALIZED BEACH

HTTP://WWW.WEATHER.GOV/SANJUAN

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St. Thomas Carnival

Photo by Don Hebert

Everybody Love de Carnival

Everybody love de Carnival,
No don’t stop de Carnival,
Do as you like, but leave my Carnival,
All West Indians love their Carnival,
Everybody bound to have their fun,
No rain at all can stop d­e Carnival,
Not even hurricanes can stop de Carnival,
because all de Creole dey love their Carnival.

- Don’t Stop the Carnival by Duke of Iron

St. Thomas Carnival History

Adolph “Ding” Sixto was said to be the driving force behind St. Thomas’ first carnival in 1912 by convincing the Main Street merchants to sponsor the affair which he would be economically, culturally and socially beneficial.

The Carnival King arrived at King’s Wharf on a boat and then was carried to Rothschild Francis Square (Market Square) in a horse-drawn carriage for the coronation of the Carnival Queen. A parade marched from there to Emancipation Garden, where games, such as climbing the greased pole, the bag race and catching the greased pig, were played by both youngsters and adults.

A second carnival was held in 1914, with the celebrations lasting two days.

The advent of World War I, with its devastating effect on the shipping economy of St. Thomas, halted what was becoming an annual tradition until 1952, when carnival was formally revived. Since then, the carnival has been celebrated on an annual basis, taking place during the last two weeks of April. The St. Thomas Carnival is now the second largest carnival in the Caribbean, topped only by the island of Trinidad.

Carnival features include music by popular calypso, scratch and steel drum bands, Moko Jumbies, a Children’s Carnival with games and amusement park rides, and local foods.

Excepted form “St. Thomas” by Gerald Singer

St. Thomas Carnival Schedule

April 30, Wednesday – Cultural Fair: Charles’ and Joe’s Flamboyant Garden, honoring Charles and Joseph Leonard 8 a.m. — Emancipation Garden

May 1, Thursday 12:30 a.m. Roas-A-Time (J’ouvert) Warm up — Roas-a-Time — Fort Christian Parking Lot; Roas-A-Time at 4 a.m. — Veterans’ Drive

May 2, Friday 10 a.m. Children’s Parade, Grand Marshal Alfred “Chubby” Lockhart Jr. — Rothschild Francis Square to Lionel Roberts Stadium

May 3, Saturday 10 a.m. Adults’ Parade, Grand Marshal Lubin V. “Butch” Roberts — Western Cemetery to Lionel Roberts Stadium; Fireworks at 9 p.m. — Charlotte Amalie harbor; Calypso Spectakula/Last Lap at 10 p.m. to 3 a.m. — Fort Christian Parking Lot

St. John and Virgin Islands News

These Friends Quit Their Jobs And Started Brewing Beer In Paradise
The Huffington Post | by Catherine Pearson

After graduating from the University of Vermont in 1999, friends Chirag Vyas and Kevin Chipman did what most college grads do: They started looking for jobs. Vyas moved to California and took a position as a support scientist with NASA. Chipman got a job as a physical therapist with an acute care hospital in Boston.

Two years later, they took what they thought would be a brief pause to evaluate their career trajectories. Chipman had recently visited St. John, in the U.S. Virgin Islands, and suggested they head there for a bit. They thought it would be “essentially, just one last little ‘hurrah’ before we got into the rest of our lives,” Chipman told The Huffington Post. They gave their notice and bought one-way tickets. They were both 23 at the time.

A Rough Start

Upon arriving in St. John, the duo began looking for employment. But it was the off-season, and soon after the Sept. 11 attacks to boot, so the local economy was slow.

“Money was running out. We ended up living on a sailboat, because it was the cheapest option,” Vyas told HuffPost. “It didn’t have any electricity or running water or a working head, but we managed to make it work for about a month.”

“The boat sucked,” Chipman added. “We laughed ourselves to sleep.”…read more

St. John Live Music Schedule

Barefoot Cowboy Lounge
Ike
6:30 -9:30
340-201-1236

Castaway’s
Karaoke Night
9:00
340-777-3316

Coconut Coast
St. John Flutes
5:30 -7:00
340-776-6944

Cruz Bay Landing
T-Bird
5:00 – 8:00
340-776-6908

High Tide
Lemuel Callwood Steel Pan
4:00 – 6:00
340-714-6169

Ocean Grill
David Laabs
6:30 – 9:30
340-693-3304

Pickles
Michael Beason Open Mic
6:00 – 9:00
340-776-6908

>Rhumb Lines
Shane Meade & the Sound
7:00 – 10:00
340-776-0303

Shipwreck
Chris Carsel
7:00 – 10:00
340-693-5640

Virgin Fire
Gypsy Jazz
Hot Club of Coral Bay
6:00 -9:00
340-779-4982

See Weekly Schedule

St. John Weather

Isolated showers, with thunderstorms also possible after noon. Mostly sunny, with a high near 78. East wind 14 to 16 mph. Chance of precipitation is 20%.

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virgin islands sunset

Sunset over St. Thomas

St. John and Virgin Islands News

New ferries still not carrying passengers
By ALDETH LEWIN (Daily News Staff)
Published: April 22, 2014

ST. THOMAS – Coast Guard inspectors have begun to conduct some drills on the Cruz Bay I, a necessary step in getting the vessel – one of two new government-owned ferries – ready to begin taking passengers between St. Thomas and St. John.

The Cruz Bay I, along with the Red Hook I, have been sitting idle since they were delivered to the territory in November.

The boats were built in Louisiana and received their U.S. Coast Guard Certificate of Inspection prior to arriving on St. Thomas. However, before they can begin operating in the territory, they must pass a “new to zone” inspection.

In addition to the final Coast Guard inspections, the management contracts between the franchise operators – Varlack Ventures and Transportation Services – and the V.I. government still need to be finalized….

…Rumors have been circulating throughout the community that the franchisees are not happy about the arrangement….

…Transportation Services General Manager Kenrick Augustus told The Daily News earlier this month that he is confident that the management contract will be executed shortly and the ferryboats will be put in service….

Delrise Varlack, general manager of Varlack Ventures, declined to comment for this story…. read entire article

Fitch Affirms Virgin Islands WAPA’s Sr. and Sub Lien Bonds; Outlook to Stable

NEW YORK — Fitch Ratings has affirmed the following ratings for the U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI) Water and Power Authority (WAPA):
–$142,350,000 electric system revenue bonds, series 2012A, 2010A, 2010B, 2010C, 2003 at ‘BB’;
–$106,395,000 electric system subordinated revenue bonds, series 2007A, 2012B, 2012C at ‘BB-’.
The Rating Outlook is revised to Stable from Negative. … read more

St. John Live Music Schedule

Barefoot Cowboy Lounge
Ike
6:30 -9:30
340-201-1236

Castaway’s
Karaoke Night
9:00
340-777-3316

Coconut Coast
St. John Flutes
5:30 -7:00
340-776-6944

Cruz Bay Landing
T-Bird
5:00 – 8:00
340-776-6908

High Tide
Lemuel Callwood Steel Pan
4:00 – 6:00
340-714-6169

Ocean Grill
David Laabs
6:30 – 9:30
340-693-3304

Pickles
Michael Beason Open Mic
6:00 – 9:00
340-776-6908

Rhumb Lines
Shane Meade & the Sound
7:00 – 10:00
340-776-0303

>Shipwreck
Chris Carsel
7:00 – 10:00
340-693-5640

Virgin Fire
Gypsy Jazz
Hot Club of Coral Bay
6:00 -9:00
340-779-4982

See Weekly Schedule

St. John Weather

Isolated showers. Mostly sunny, with a high near 80. Southeast wind 6 to 9 mph. Chance of precipitation is 10%

Update me when site is updated

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remora

Remora at Maho Bay

I always love snorkeling Maho Bay, especially over the seagrass beds. There just about always something interesting to see. This time there was this remora that just swam back and forth along the hull of a big motor cat. Maybe it thought the boat was a whale.

Remoras, sometimes called shark suckers or whale suckers, have special fins near the top of their heads that they use to create suction and they like to use this feature to stick on larger marine animals like wales, sharks, rays and turtles or may even attach to divers or small boats.

Once their attached to something, they can control the amount of suction by sliding either forward or backwards. Backwards increases the suction and forwards releases it. So if one ever attaches itself to you, push it forwards to get it off you.

There is some debate as to the reason that the remora exhibits this behavior. Some say it is to get at leftover pieces of their host’s prey, and others say it is to have a prime location to eat their hosts feces. Both items have been found in remoras stomachs.

St. John and Virgin Islands News

Read a cool article about Tony Snell who many might remember from his establishment “The Last Resort” on Belamy Cay.

St. John Live Music Schedule

Barefoot Cowboy Lounge
Erin Hart
6:30 – 9:30
340-201-1236

Castaway’s
Karaoke Night
9:00
340-777-3316

High Tide
Chris Carsel
6:00 9:00
340-714-6169

Inn at Tamarind Court
Steel Pan
6:30
340-776-6378

Island Blues
Karaoke
8:00
340-776-6800

La Tapa
Sambacombo
6:30 – 9:30
340-693-7755

Morgan’s Mango
Greg Kinslow
6:30 – 9:30
340-693-8141

Ocean Grill
Lauren Jones
6:00 – 9:00
340-693-3304

See Weekly Schedule

St. John Weather

Isolated showers. Mostly sunny, with a high near 81. Southeast wind around 11 mph. Chance of precipitation is 20%.

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anchor

Denis Bay Anchor

anchor

Anchor at Hurricane Hole

About six weeks ago I posted some photos and the location of a old large anchor now resting in Hurricane Hole. There is a similar sized anchor lying just off the old pier at Denis Bay, but in this case only one of the flukes is exposed.

St. John Live Music Schedule

Aqua Bistro
Matt Mitruk
5:30 – 8:30
340-776 5336

Concordia
Open Mic with Johnny B & Lauren
3:30 – 5:30
340-693-5855

Cruz Bay Landing
Chris Carsel
5:00 – 8:00
340-776-6908

Ocean Grill
Rascio on Steel Pan
6:30 – 9:30
340-693-3304

Shipwreck Landing
Hot Club of Coral Bay
6:30 – 9:30
340-693-5640

Virgin Fire
Instrumental Jazz
Rich Greengold & Greg Jones
6:00 – 9:00
340-779-4982

See Weekly Schedule

St. John Weather

Isolated showers. Sunny, with a high near 78. East wind around 16 mph. Chance of precipitation is 20%.

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lovango cay

lovango mapLovango Cay lies just north of St. John. It is about a mile long and about a third of a mile wide.

Lovango has been inhabited, farmed and grazed for many years. When the United States bought the then Danish West Indies, there was a public school on the island.

The island was once a popular stopping over point for fisherman coming from Jost Van Dyke and is now the site of several homes.

The island serves as a roosting location for seabirds.

There is a popular but doubtful rumor concerning how Lovango Cay got its name. According to the story, there was once a brothel on the island and sailors would “love and go.” Actually Lovango and the adjacent islands, Mingo, to the east and Congo to the north were named after sections of Africa from which slaves were brought to the islands.

St. John Live Music Schedule

Aqua Bistro
Lauren Jones
3:30 – 6:30
776-5336

Castaway’s
Brother Nature
340-777-3316

High Tide
Jason Laurence Jones
5:00 – 8:00
340-714-6169

Ocean Grill
T-Bird
6:00 – 9:00
340-693-3304

Rhumb Lines
Lauren
7:00 – 10:00
340-776-0303

Skinny Legs
Hot Club of Coral Bay
6:00
340-779-4982

See Weekly Schedule

St. John Weather

Scattered showers. Partly sunny, with a high near 78. East wind around 23 mph. Chance of precipitation is 50%. New precipitation amounts between a tenth and quarter of an inch possible.

HAZARDOUS WEATHER OUTLOOK FOR THE U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS AND THE ADJACENT COASTAL WATERS

TODAY AND TONIGHT – BREEZY TO LOCALLY WINDY CONDITIONS WILL CONTINUE TO PRODUCE SEAS OF 6 TO 8 FEET ACROSS MOST OF THE WATERS. THIS WILL RESULT IN CHOPPY AND HAZARDOUS MARINE CONDITIONS TODAY. IN ADDITION…ONSHORE WINDS WILL INCREASE THE RISK OF RIP CURRENTS.

SUNDAY THROUGH FRIDAY – CHOPPY AND HAZARDOUS MARINE CONDITIONS WILL CONTINUE THROUGH AT LEAST SUNDAY MORNING. LOCALLY STRONG WINDS WILL BE CAPABLE OF PRODUCING RIP CURRENTS ESPECIALLY ALONG THE WINDWARD COASTS.

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henley cay
Henley CayHenley Cay was once known as Women’s Cay because during the slave revolt of 1733, surviving white women and children were placed there to await rescue and transportation to St. Thomas. The surviving white men made Durloe’s plantation at Caneel Bay their stronghold, which they succeeded in defending against the rebels.

In the 1940s and 1950s, Henley, Ramgoat and Rata Cays (The Durloe Cays) were owned by Roger Humphrey, the Marine commandant of the Virgin Islands during World War II. He built the concrete storehouse whose ruins are presently found on Henley Cay. In 1947 Humprey’s son, a navy pilot, flew his aircraft over Henley Cay. He apparently was executing some air acrobatics, which he miscalculated, flew too low, crashed into the cay and died. This was the first time a plane had crashed anywhere near St. John. The wreckage of the plane can still be seen on top of the island.

After his son’s death Humphrey lost interest in further development of Henley and rarely returned there. In 1948, he rented Henley Cay to Robert and Nancy Gibney, the parents of the present owners of Gibney Beach, who lived there for about a year before building their permanent home at Hawksnest.

St. John and Virgin Islands News

Advocates Voice Benefits of Marijuana Law Forum
By Carol Buchanan — April 18, 2014

If the 200 people at the University of the Virgin Islands Great Hall could have held a binding official vote Wednesday night, marijuana in all its forms would be legal.

Sen. Terrence “Positive” Nelson, along with Gustav James and Tafari Tzaddi, hosted what was called an “intellectual discussion on marijuana reform” for the Virgin Islands.

Although words of caution about how legalizations should come about, especially about how legalization would affect children, the overwhelming feeling of the panel and the audience appeared to be that the prohibition of marijuana use was not working.

When panelist Ras Bobby, an herbalist, said, “Fireburn on prohibition,” his words were greeted with cheers from the audience…. read more

Roberto Tapia, Angelo Hill Sentenced for Drug Conspiracy
By James Gardner — April 18, 2014

Former Department of Planning and Natural Resources Chief Environmental Enforcement Officer Roberto Tapia was sentenced in District Court on Thursday to 70 months in prison for drug trafficking. Former Police Sgt. Angelo Hill, a codefendent in the case, was sentenced to 21 months in prison…. read more

St. John Live Music Schedule

Aqua Bistro
Steven Sloan
5:30 – 8:30
340-776-5336

Beach Bar
Brother Nature
9:00
340-777-4220

Castaway’s
Mikey P
9:00
Dance Party
11:00
340-777-3316

Barefoot Cowboy Lounge
T-Bird
7:00 – 9:00
340-201-1236

Cinnamon Bay
Eddie Bruce – Drumming
6:30 -8:30
340-776-6330

High Tide
Mikey P
5:00 – 8:00
340-714-6169

Island Blues
Brother Nature
8:00
340-776-6800

Morgan’s Mango
Lauren
6:30 – 9:30
340-693-8141

Ocean Grill
Rascio on Steel Pan
6:30 – 9:30
340-693-3304

Rhumb Lines
Erin Hart
7:00 – 10:00
340-776-0303

Shipwreck Landing
Tropical Sounds
6:30 – 9:30
340-693-5640

Skinny Legs
Chris Carsel
6:00
340-779-4982

Spyglass
James Milne
5:00 – 8:00
340-776-1100

Virgin Fire
Aussie Guitars
The David T Carter Duo
6:00 – 9:00
340-779-4982

See Weekly Schedule

St. John Weather

Scattered showers. Mostly sunny, with a high near 78. East wind 22 to 24 mph, with gusts as high as 34 mph. Chance of precipitation is 50%. New precipitation amounts of less than a tenth of an inch possible.

HAZARDOUS WEATHER OUTLOOK FOR THE U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS AND THE ADJACENT COASTAL WATERS.

DAY ONE…TODAY AND TONIGHT: BREEZY TO LOCALLY WINDY CONDITIONS WILL CONTINUE TO PRODUCE SEAS OF 6 TO 8 FEET ACROSS MOST OF THE WATERS. THIS WILL RESULT IN CHOPPY AND HAZARDOUS MARINE CONDITIONS TODAY. IN ADDITION…WINDS PERPENDICULAR TO THE COAST WILL INCREASE THE RISK OF RIP CURRENTS.

DAYS TWO THROUGH SEVEN…SATURDAY THROUGH THURSDAY: CHOPPY AND HAZARDOUS MARINE CONDITIONS WILL CONTINUE THROUGH THE END OF THE WEEK. LOCALLY STRONG WINDS WILL BE CAPABLE OF PRODUCING RIP CURRENTS ESPECIALLY ALONG THE WINDWARD COASTS.

 

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Brought to you by Gerald Singer, St. John US Virgin Islands (USVI)