Tag Archives: st john school of the arts

St. John Lobster Hunt 1933

Caribbean Spiny Lobster, Panulirus argus

A Lobster Hunt on St. John in 1933
When we left New York, we were told we would go soft in the tropics…but two months after landing at Cruz Bay, we were healthier, harder, and infinitely more serene people than we had ever been before.There was nothing softening about a lobster hunt on the reefs. Landlord Davis, on one of his visits, put us up to it and then retired with a book and a bottle of rum while we, with the Sewer boys, piled in a rowboat and made for the shallows on the other side of the bay. A brilliant moon shone down on a gently heaving sea, and we could see the rollers breaking white over the reefs where the lobsters came. A full moon makes a fairyland anywhere, but in the trade winds the effect seems more marked, and we agreed that, even if we got no lobster, it would be worthwhile.

Drawing the boat out on the nearest beach, we gathered at the beginning of the reef, and commenced an activity sufficiently picturesque to make any artist catch his breath and sufficiently sporting to warm the heart of anyone who like to see the hunted creature get a little better than an even break. We spread out fanwise, carrying lanterns and flashlights, and waded into the warm, shallow water that covered the jagged coral of the reef. The coral was brown with sea growths and the lobsters, consequently, very hard to see. In addition, the reef was honeycombed with sea eggs, round black affairs from whose cores extend long, black spines that are very sharp and armed with microscopic barbs whose removal from an injured foot is a hospital job. I am afraid that Bet and I paid far more attention to the sea eggs than we did to the possible lobsters but, when the boys started one, the six of us plunged after it in a splashing, headlong pursuit that lasted several minutes. The lobster took refuge in its color protection again, but one of the boys immediately put a forked stick over its back and held it until another one, with what seemed incredible courage to us, seized the lobster in his hands, and bore it ashore in triumph. From tip to tip, the grotesque creature was nearly three feet long and, to add to our awe, one of the boys announced that he was small.

After another hour of stumbling about among the sea eggs and sharp coral, we cornered one more, and returned home soaking wet, with our canvas shoes torn to rags, but satisfied that we had found still another way to make the island take the place of a canning factory in a town we had never seen.

From Escape to the Tropics by Desmond and Bet Holdbridge, published in 1937

SHEL: Sarah, Violin, Hannah, Piano, Eva, Mandolin, Liza, Drums

 St John School of the Arts
St. John School of the Arts presents: SHEL or Sisters Sarah, Hannah, Eva and Liza were born within five years of each other. Nestled within SHEL’s enveloping sound, wisps of folk revival, vaudeville, renaissance fairs and steam-punk esthetic blur around one another. Tracks such as “Tuscany” borrow liberally from their classical training, yet there’s nothing ponderous or unapproachable about them. “The Wise Old Owl” showcases their daring, fanciful vocal arrangements. They revel in strong dynamics, so a single song like “Stained” can grow from airy lace to a driving, white-water rush. They are richly feminine, but they don’t shy from covering Led Zeppelin’s “The Battle of Evermore.” Above all, there’s variety and creativity. Pure acoustic tone is best when it’s best, but if an electric mandolin or special effect is called for, they let the song dictate the production

St. John Live Music Schedule

Banana Deck
Steel Pan by Lemuel Samuels
6:00 – 9:00

Beach Bar

Wayne Clendenin and Pamela Love
4 :30 – 6:30

High Tide
Island Girl
Happy Hour 4:00 – 7:00

Inn at Tamarind Court
Brother Nature

Island Blues
Gann – Solo guitar
7:00 – 10:00

Morgan’s Mango
James Anderson
6:30 – 9:30

Ocean Grill
Chris Carsel
6:30 – 9:30

Skinny Legs
Lauren Jones
6:00 – 9:00

James Milne
5:00 – 8:00

St. John Weather

Isolated showers before 8am. Sunny, with a high near 75. East wind 16 to 18 mph. Chance of precipitation is 10%.

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St. John Backtime

St. John Virgin Islands History
J Robert Oppenheimer and Carl Frank

St. John Backtime Photo
The above photo was taken at the original Oppenheimer House on Gibney Beach in the 1960s. Pictured in the photo are J. Robert Oppenheimer in the center, Carl Frank on the right wearing a hat and a gentleman dressed in long pants and long-sleeved shirt who I can’t identify. Dr. Oppenheimer was the head of the Manhattan Project and has been called “the father of the atomic bomb. Carl Frank was the founder of Holiday Homes and the husband of Sis Frank who founded the St. John School of the Arts.

St. John News

Port Authority puts in place rules for Cruz Bay taxis
By JENNY KANE (Daily News Staff)
Published: December 3, 2013

ST. THOMAS – The rules have changed for pick-ups and drop-offs of visitors just getting off the ferry and stepping onto St. John.

Starting this week, taxi drivers are taking turns using the parking lot that greets visitors once they arrive at the dock in Cruz Bay.

Previously, the parking lot had been controlled by the St. John Taxi Association, though it now is in the hands of the V.I. Port Authority.

Port Authority Executive Director Carlton Dowe laid out the new rules for taxi drivers on Friday, though the rules did not go into effect until Sunday. He could not be reached Monday for comment.

“It’s going excellent,” said one taxi driver, Spencer Joseph.

All 162 drivers who have taxi medallions, or permits from the V.I. Taxicab Commission, now are entitled to the use of the 13 parking spaces in the lot.

However, it is not a free-for-all.

The spaces are to be used by 40 drivers daily, and those 40 drivers only. Of the pool of 162 drivers, all of them will have their day during a four-day rotation. All drivers who use the spaces will be required to pay $10 daily for unlimited parking, pick-up and drop-off from 6 a.m. to midnight.

When the rotation ends, it will begin again the next day. Because only 13 spaces are available at the main lot, the Port Authority will provide excess parking at Enighed Pond nearby.

The 40 drivers will share the spaces….

… Not everyone is happy about the new rules.

Some of the local villa owners were upset to hear that they were no longer allowed to greet their guests at the dock. Instead, the Port Authority is expected to find a place near the dock for them to wait while a “dispatcher” greets guests and takes them to their hosts.

The “dispatcher” is a new position created by the Port Authority, Wheatley said, though she did not know how much the position paid or who was hired during the weekend.

“We think it’s terribly unfair,” said Bob Malarcane, who helps manage Star Villas, owned by his wife. “The taxi owners can do whatever. We’re upset.”

Villa owners also were surprised to find out that they too will have to pay $10 to pick up or drop off their guests, though they will not be allowed to use the parking spaces…. read entire article

Beach Bar

Karaoke Night

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

High Tide
Steel Pan
Happy Hour 4:00 – 7:00

Rhumb Lines
Shane Meade & the Sound
7:00 – 10:00

Chris Carsel
6:30 – 9:30

See Weekly Schedule

St. John Weather

Scattered showers and thunderstorms
Partly sunny, with a high near 83
East wind 11 to 13 mph
Chance of precipitation is 50%. New rainfall amounts between a tenth and quarter of an inch, except higher amounts possible in thunderstorms.


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St. John Trails: Rustenberg

St. John Virgin Islands Trails: Rustenberg
Rustenberg Horsemill Wall
Rustenberg Trail Map

Estate Rustenberg Ruins
For those of you who would like to experience a St. John Off the Beaten Track experience, but would rather not exert themselves too much, a visit to the Rustenberg ruins would be an ideal choice. It’s a short walk along a level trail shaded by aromatic bay rum trees. The ruins are extensive and beautiful in their natural surroundings.

To get there, park across from the Cinnamon Bay trailhead on Centerline Road and walk up the road west, towards Cruz Bay, where you should find the trailhead, which may be more or less obvious depending on climatic conditions. Another alternative is to enter the forest about 50 yards or so and walk uphill until you reach the trail on the ridge and go left on the trail until you get to the ruins.

See more Rustenberg photos

St. John Film Society Press Release

Queen of the Sun

What the Bees are Telling Us
Directed by Taggart Siegel:  83 minutes,  Documentary

Free Film, Presented by the St. John Film Societey

Tomorrow, Tuesday, May 1, 2012, 7:30 pm
St. John School of the Arts, Cruz Bay

This full length feature documentary is a a profound, alternative look at the global bee crisis. Taking us on a journey through the catastrophic disappearance of bees and the mysterious world of the beehive, this engaging and ultimately uplifting film weaves an unusual and dramatic story of the heartfelt struggles of beekeepers, scientists and philosophers including Michael Pollan, Gunther Hauk and Vandana Shiva.

This film takes us on a pilgrimage around the world, 10,000 years of beekeeping is unveiled, highlighting how our historic and sacred relationship with bees has been lost due to highly mechanized industrial practices. The film goes on to reveal both the problems and the solutions in renewing a culture in balance with nature.

Join Mr. Smalls and other St. John bee keepers and learn about these wonderful insects that provide us with sweet honey and more.

Read more about the film on the website: http://www.queenofthesun.com

St. John Live Music Schedule Monday 4/30

High Tide – Mikey P- 8:00 – 11:00 – 714-6169
La Tapa – Samba Combo – 6:30 – 9:30 – 693-8141
Maho Bay Camp – Open Mic with Lauren – 6:30
Ocean Grill – Chris Carsel – 6:30 – 9:00 – 693-3304

Weekly Schedule

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St. John Film Society – Press Release

St. John Film Society presents:

Concrete, Steel and Paint

Tuesday, February 7, 2012
7:30 pm at St. John School of the Arts, Cruz Bay

Directed by Cindy Burstein and Tony Heriza
55 minutes, 2009, Documentary

When men in a Pennsylvania state prison join with victims of crime to create a mural about healing, their views on punishment, remorse and forgiveness collide.  Finding consensus is not easy, but as the participants move through the creative process, mistrust gives way to genuine moments of human contact and common purpose.

This complex story raises important questions about crime, justice and reconciliation, and dramatically illustrates how art can facilitate dialogue about difficult issues.


TONY HERIZA Since co-founding the Community Media Workshop in Dayton, Ohio in 1974, Tony Heriza has been involved in many aspects of media for social change: producing, editing, teaching and working with community organizations. His work has been broadcast nationally on PBS and featured in many festivals. He is now the Director of Educational Outreach for the American Friends Service Committee and teaches documentary film at U Penn / Philadelphia.  Along with his co-producer, Cindy Burstein, he is an active member of the New Day Film distribution co-operative.

JANE GOLDEN As a young artist Jane  was initially hired by former Mayor Wilson Goode to help combat the graffiti crisis plaguing the city. She reached out to graffiti writers to help turn their destructive energies into creative ones.  Under the direction of Golden, the Mural Arts Program has become the nation’s largest mural program earning Philadelphia international recognition as the“City of Murals.”  The Mural Arts Program has created more than 3,000 murals.  In addition, Golden has developed art education and workforce development programs that serve youth and adult offenders at area prisons, detention centers, and residential placement facilities, utilizing the power of art to break the cycle of crime and violence in Philadelphia’s communities and sparking a national dialogue based on the concept of restorative justice. In addition to leading the Mural Arts Program, Golden has been an adjunct professor at the University of Pennsylvania and a guest instructor at Princeton University. Golden holds a Master of Fine Arts from the Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University, and degrees in Fine Arts and Political Science from Stanford University.


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St. John Film Press Release: What’s Organic About Organic

Tuesday, December 6, 2011, 7:30 PM, St. John School of the Arts, Cruz Bay, St. John USVI
St. John Film is proud to present our next ‘On Screen/In Person’ screening of a thought provoking 59-minute documentary directed by Shelley Rogers with co-producer Marty Mesh.

What’s Organic About ‘Organic’ illustrates that ‘organic food’ extends well beyond personal choice and into the realm of social responsibility.  It delves into the debates that arose when the grassroots agricultural movement: organic farming, evolved into a booming international market, and reveals what’s at stake in creating and maintaining meaningful standards for organic production.

Each of the film’s characters is intimately connected to the organic world; they’re farmers, activists, and scientists. While many folks can easily endorse ‘organic’, the film takes the discussion beyond just shopping for another eco-label. As we glimpse into the lives of the film characters, we see how organic agriculture has the potential to solve many of our environmental and health problems. The film explores how organic farming can be used as a soil and air protection system, a healthy solution to toxic pollution, and an innovative means to combat global warming.

As the film moves from farm fields to government meetings and industry trade shows, we see how our health, the health of our planet, and the agricultural needs of our society are all intimately connected.  The film is a call to action, compelling us to look forward, towards a new vision for our culture and encourages us to ask, “How can we eat with an ecological consciousness?”

The post film discussion promises to be equally engaging with both the director Shelley Rogers and co-producer Marty Mesh present to provide personal insights into the filming process and to answer questions on the organic food movement.  In addition, Josephine and Hugo Roller from Josephine’s Organic Greens will be on hand to lend a local perspective on organic farming.

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St. John Film Society Press Release



TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 1, 2011 at 7:30 PM, St. John School of the Arts, Cruz Bay
St. John Film Society launches its ‘On Screen/In Person’ screening series with a lively 55 minute documentary directed by Klaus Schneyder and produced by Angela Viscido, which celebrates the incredible art form of making music using only the human body. The evening is sure to arouse the Beatboxer in all of us, and especially in Virgin Islands musicians looking to perfect their personal style of the ‘Human Beatbox’.

Beatboxing started as part of the Hip Hop movement in the late 1970’s stemming from the hardship of poverty and lack of instruments.  A pioneer was inspired to imitate drum rhythms and musical instruments with his mouth – his brilliance creating the term ‘Human Beatbox’. Hip Hop artists picked up on the approach which is now a global
phenomenon fueled in part from the sharing of Beatboxing knowledge and styles via websites and internet tutorials.

The film documents the history and evolution of this incredible art form starting with its genesis within Hip Hop culture and its use in various musical fields in countries across the world.  Four generations later, Beatboxing has become a multilingual, diverse and technically complex form of expression.  The documentary features artists from New York, California, Florida, Spain, Netherlands, United Kingdom, Belgium, Canada, Austria and Germany, who demonstrate their amazing techniques.

Our post film discussion will be led by Producer Angela Viscido, who will provide personal insight into the documentary filming, the people in it and the future of Beatboxing as a legitimate, sustainable musical format.


All screenings take place at the St. John School of the Arts in Cruz Bay, 7:30 pm.

For more information about upcoming films, St. John Film Society or to become a Film Society member visit: http://www.stjohnfilm.com

*On Screen/In Person is made possible by Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation through the generous support of the National Endowment for the Arts’ Regional Touring Program and the Virgin Island Council of the Arts. St. John Community Foundation is our fiscal sponsor.

The mission of St. John Film is to inspire a positive appreciation for the history, culture and environment of our US Virgin Islands by establishing a free monthly film series open to and for the benefit of our local community.  We present independent films that celebrate the human spirit with a focus on the Caribbean.

Media Contact:  Kathy Guidi

St. John Film Society www.stjohnfilm.com
Please respond to this email address: *stjviff@gmail.com*
Contact phone: *340-201-9919*

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