Crewed Yacht Charter Season Launches at U.S. Virgin Islands Charter Yacht Show, Territory’s Extensive Cruising Grounds a Re-Discovered Gem

A robust charter yacht season is officially underway in the U.S. Virgin Islands. That’s the take-home message from the USVI Charter Yacht Show, held November 7 to 10, at IGY Marina’s Yacht Haven Grande St Thomas, and hosted by the Virgin Islands Professional Charter Association (VIPCA) as a fully vaccinated event with COVID-19 protocols in place. Over 100 brokers from the Caribbean, U.S., and Europe attended in person, with an additional 40 virtually, a figure that combines to underscore the Show’s must-do nature for this global charter yacht sales force. Nearly 40 yachts were open for show, a number down from past years yet due to the industry’s success in that many yachts were already out on charter. Solid ongoing sponsor support from local and U.S.-based businesses and the Government of the Virgin Islands provides the firm foundation for the continued growth and success of the charter yacht industry and its economic contribution to the U.S. territory as part of the vibrant marine tourism sector.

Photo: Aeolus, Best Yacht in Show – 56ft – 65ft, L to R: Captain Mayon Hight and Mate Elizabeth Bork. Credit: Kody Zenger.

The Honorable Albert Bryan Jr., Governor of the U.S. Virgin Islands, attended the charter brokers welcome event on November 7th, and made opening remarks:   

“A year and a half ago we made a conscious decision that we were not going to close our shores to sailors. We were going to honor what is in our Virgin Islands national anthem, the Virgin Islands March, to ‘hold out a welcome for one and all’. That attitude has certainly paid off. I’d like to thank all the charter brokers who made last season one of the most amazing seasons on the water. Including, for the first time, charter boats in Christiansted and Frederiksted on St. Croix. Totally amazing,” says Governor Bryan.

Looking ahead, Governor Bryan added, “we are investing in the infrastructure of our blue water economy not only in the charter industry but in fishing and cruising by putting in new ports, new boat launches, and moorings. And we will be putting in a tender pier on St. Croix so charter yachts can not only cruise over but have their passengers come ashore as well as they already enjoy in St. Thomas and St John.”

A ‘Must-Do’ Show

This year’s USVI Charter Yacht Show format provided safe and effective ways for brokers to see the yachts and crews. These included small group tours and meals aboard the yachts, and open-air socially distanced social functions onshore. Real-time videos of the yachts tours and crew interviews gave virtual attendees an up-close view.

“The show offered a great cross-section of the different boats in the fleet for charter. I do not believe there is any substitution for stepping on the boats, meeting the crews, and interacting with all the different industry personnel. Any guest that steps aboard a vessel in the Virgin Islands is about to experience one of the best vacations in the world. The natural beauty, wonderful cuisine, and people really make the Virgin Islands stand out. Additionally, with COVID changing the charter industry, I have been pleasantly surprised with the rediscovery of the USVI’s as a charter destination,” says Nick Cirillo, based in Havre de Grace, MD, owner of Blue Ocean Charters, and winner of the Show’s 2021 Broker of the Year award.

Similarly, says Ann McHorney, chief executive officer and charter broker for Fort Lauderdale, FL-based Select Yachts, “I missed the show last year due to COVID and so it was doubly good to have a chance to reconnect with familiar crews and boats, meet new and catch up with fellow brokers as well. When charter guests come to the Virgin Islands, they want to get on a boat, leave their cares at the dock, have fun, eat well, play, laugh, and enjoy the marine life. That’s just what this fleet offers.”

A Boutique Fleet

The boutique fleet of yachts ranged from 45- to 120-feet in length, and included monohulls and multihulls, power, and sail. Each yacht and its crew together provide a distinct experience such that no two are alike.

“What’s special for us in winning this award is that this is our second season in the term charter industry and first year showing in person. A lot is new and fresh, and we’re still learning, but we work as hard as we can to put forward the best product. It’s nice to have this acknowledgment in the award and it shows we are evolving in the right direction,” says Captain Ish Alexander, who with Chef Julia Malone charter the Lagoon 52, Southern Comfort, and who won Best Yacht in Show in the Up to 55-foot category.

It’s the little things that set the 2021-build Lagoon 65, Aeolus, apart, according to Captain Mayon Hight, who with Chef Therese Gorsich, and Stewardess/Mate, Elizabeth Bork, earned Best Yacht in Show in the 56- to 65-foot category. “We have high-end bath products, water toys like Seabobs and Subwings, and at the end, each guest gets a custom video of highlights of their charter.”

Burn Rate, a 120-foot Palmer Johnson motor yacht, earned Best Yacht in Show in the 66-foot and over category.

“For us, it is an honor to be able to work on Burn Rate and we have a lot of pride in keeping her in mint condition. All the credit goes to the crew for their hard work in keeping that high standard,” says Captain Evert Theron, also speaking for crew Chef Tanya Theron, Stewardess/Mate Karien Koekemoer, Deck Mate, Daan De Beer, and Engineer Louis van Wyk.

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Photo: Burn Rate, Best Yacht in Show – 66ft & Over. Credit Kody Zenger

Over a decade of charter experience among the crew is just one feature that earned Captain Ryan Querry, Chef Dani Querry, and stewardess/mate, Christian Doyle aboard the 2021-launched Lagoon 65 Justified Horizons, the Best Crew Award.

“We leverage our combined talents to offer an experience that is a step above,” says Chef Dani Querry, who adds that they already have 22 weeks of charter on the books for the 2021-2022 season. “We capably handle our jobs individually and we work together well as a team so that no guest is left wanting. Ryan is a dive instructor, I’m the chef, and Christian ties it all together with incredible touches like tablescapes. We are the only 6-cabin Lagoon 65, which means we can take 10 guests. One of our niches is celebrations. We go over the top with decorations and a homemade cake for guests celebrating special occasions.”

Strong Season Ahead

In the last five years, the U.S. Virgin Islands’ charter yacht industry has proved resilient in the face of challenges such as hurricanes and a global pandemic, grown as an economic force, and put the U.S. territory back on the map as an unsurpassed self-contained jewel of a charter yacht destination. Many yachts have near to fully booked seasons, and that season started earlier this year as of November 1. With enhanced marine infrastructure projects slated, the season ahead will further solidify the U.S. Virgin Islands as a prime yacht charter destination in the Caribbean – and World.

“We are looking at an unprecedented number of sailing and charter vacations in the U.S. Virgin Islands, and this year feels like we are prepared for it,” says Dare Blankenhorn, VIPCA president and owner of St. Thomas-based Charter Caribe. “The Government support that we have received has allowed us to focus heavily on developing our products within the territory. Every week, we are seeing infrastructure progress and feel the pace and rhythm of the U.S. Virgin Islands increase. Our goal today is to be grateful for our opportunities, and to take care of the things that matter to all of us… protecting our beautiful environment, creating a healthy balance between tourism and our infrastructure needs, and making sure that everyone is living, working, and experiencing the best aspects of the U.S. Virgin Islands.”

Mark Your Calendar for 2022

For yacht show information from photos to charter resources and an announcement of 2022 yacht show dates, visit: www.vipca.org and www.usviyachtshow.org

Awards and prizes included for each winner a $500 store credit at Harbor Shoppers, amounting to over $4000 between all winners. Also donated as a prize was a Galaxy phone by Viya, STCW basic training course by the Captain School, Ultimate Cabana days for up to six from Lovango Resort and Beach Club, leatherman’s by Budget Marine, oil changes by Multitech Marine, and vouchers to culinary winners from the Ashburton Cookery School & Chefs Academy.

Sponsors of the USVI Charter Yacht show include the USVI Department of Tourism; Yacht Haven Grande; IGY Marinas; Offshore Marine; the Gowrie Group; Catamaran Central; Moe’s Fresh Market; Grey Goose, distributed by West Indies Company; Veuve Clicquot and Captain Morgan, distributed by Bellows International; Parts & Power Ltd., distributor of Northern Lights; Pamlico Group; the Charter Yacht Broker Association; Cardow Jewelers; Harbor Shoppers; and Viya Business Solutions.

SIDEBAR: 2021 USVI CHARTER YACHT SHOW COMPETITION WINNERS

Best Yacht in Show – 66ft & Over

Winner: Burn Rate ◦ Crew: Evert Theron, Tanya Theron, Karien Koekemoer, Daan De Beer, Louis van Wyk

Runner Up: Lady Sharon Gale ◦ Crew: Keith Cressman, Annette Sharpe, Frans Cornelisse, Zara Browne

Best Yacht in Show – 56ft – 65ft

Winner: Aeolus ◦ Crew: Mayon Hight, Therese Gorsich, Elizabeth Bork

Runner Up: Le Reve ◦ Crew: Dirk DeLo, Sandra Anderson

Best Yacht in Show – Up to 55ft

Winner: Southern Comfort ◦ Crew: Ish Alexander, Julia Malone

Runner Up: Sea Dog ◦ Crew: Keagan Steyn, Olivia Boyd

Best Crew in Show

Winner: Justified Horizons ◦ Crew: Ryan Querry, Dani Querry, Christian Doyle 

Runner Up: Aeolus ◦ Crew: Mayon Hight, Therese Gorsich, Elizabeth Bork

Broker of the Year – 2021

Winner: Nick Cirillo, Blue Ocean Charters

Runner Up: Lynne Campbell, Carefree Yacht Charters

Cocktail Mixologist Competition Grey Goose – 2021

Winner: Mixologist: Amy Cann, Let’s Play Too 

Runner Up: Mixologist: Zara Browne, Lady Sharon Gale 

Cocktail Mixologist Competition Captain Morgan – 2021

Winner: Mixologist: Ish Alexander, Southern Comfort

Runner Up: Mixologist: Ryan Querry, Justified Horizons  

Culinary Competition – 2021

Appetizer

1. Tanya Theron, Burn Rate

Main Dish

1. Annette Sharpe, Lady Sharon Gale

2. Dani Querry, Justified Horizons

Dessert

1. Annette Sharpe, Lady Sharon Gale

2. Therese Gorsich, Aeolis

Tied

2. Tanya Theron, Burn Rate

ABOUT VIPCA

VIPCA is the territory’s 501(c)(6) nonprofit marine association, whose purpose is to promote, protect and further the capabilities of charter yachts and the marine businesses that sustain them. Projects and initiatives VIPCA membership supports includes producing a marine directory of local information, technical advice, and resources; improving Customs and Border Protection facilities; facilitating access for charter vessels between the USVI and the Spanish Virgin Islands; compliance guidance; installation of territory-wide new transient moorings; and marine vocational training for V.I. youth under the organization’s charity fiscally sponsored by Community Foundation Virgin Islands (CFVI.net), the Marine Rebuild Fund. 

USVI Small Business Resources November


Helping Businesses Grow and Succeed
BIZBUZZ
Visit us on Facebook, Twitter, Google Business or the USVI Business Hub for updates.

The VI SBDC wants to let our community know that we are available to assist local businesses in the Virgin Islands. St. Thomas/St. John call 340-693-1694 St. Croix call 340-692-4294 email us: info@visbdc.org

UPCOMING WEBINARS
USVIEDA Small Business Resources Webinars
America’s Small Business Development Centers Small Business Resources
U.S. Small Business Administration PR & USVI District
SCORE Training Portal
Stover and Associates November 2021 Trainings
National Veterans Small Business Week

Seminarios en Espanol
U.S. Small Business Administration (Traducir)


VI SBDC Training Webinars

Register Now

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SBA Covid-19 Funding Assistance Click on the specific program below for more information.
Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF)
Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG)
SBA COVID-19/ Coronavirus Financial Relief Options
SBA Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)
Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL)
SBA Debt Relief
SBA-CDC Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers

VI SBDC Mobile App

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USVI Covid-19 Assistance


Tips to Do Right Now to Stay Afloat | USVI SBA Loan Programs Explained 
USVI Guide to Business Resiliency in Times of Disaster
USVI Tips to Prepare for Reopening
USDA Pandemic Response and Safety Grant Program

St. Croix/St. Thomas/St. John
All VI SBDC In-Person events have been postponed until further notice. Please follow us on Facebook for updates on future events.

VI SBDC Partners
U.S. Small Business Administration
The University of the Virgin Islands
United States Virgin Island Economic Development Authority
USVI SCORE Chapter
University of Virgin Islands Research & Technology Park
St. Croix Chamber of Commerce
St. Thomas/St. John Chamber of Commerce
Virgin Islands Department of Licensing and Consumer Affairs

VI Small Business Development Center 8666 Lindberg Bay St. Thomas, Virgin Islands, 00802 Tel: (340) 693-1694   VI Small Business Development Center 6300 Estate Peter’s Rest, Suite 4 St. Croix, VI 00820 Tel: (340) 692-4294

USVI Small Business Resources October


Helping Businesses Grow and Succeed
BIZBUZZ
Visit us on Facebook, Twitter, Google Business or the USVI Business Hub for updates.
The VI SBDC wants to let our community know that we are available to assist local businesses in the Virgin Islands. St. Thomas/St. John call 340-693-1694 St. Croix call 340-692-4294 email us: info@visbdc.org

UPCOMING WEBINARS
USVIEDA Small Business Resources Webinars
America’s Small Business Development Centers Small Business Resources
U.S. Small Business Administration PR & USVI District
SCORE Training Portal
SBA Small Business Week Virtual Summit

Seminarios en Espanol
U.S. Small Business Administration (Traducir)


VI SBDC Training Webinars

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Sign Up Here

Sign Up Here

Sign Up Here

SBA Covid-19 Funding Assistance Click on the specific program below for more information.
Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF)
Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG)
SBA COVID-19/ Coronavirus Financial Relief Options
SBA Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)
Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL)
SBA Debt Relief
SBA-CDC Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers


VI SBDC Mobile App

Click below for your respective device.
Apple
Android

USVI Covid-19 Assistance


Tips to Do Right Now to Stay Afloat | USVI SBA Loan Programs Explained 
USVI Guide to Business Resiliency in Times of Disaster
USVI Tips to Prepare for Reopening
USDA Pandemic Response and Safety Grant Program

St. Croix/St. Thomas/St. John
All VI SBDC In-Person events have been postponed until further notice. Please follow us on Facebook for updates on future events.

VI SBDC Partners
U.S. Small Business Administration
The University of the Virgin Islands
United States Virgin Island Economic Development Authority
USVI SCORE Chapter
University of Virgin Islands Research & Technology Park
St. Croix Chamber of Commerce
St. Thomas/St. John Chamber of Commerce
Virgin Islands Department of Licensing and Consumer Affairs

VI Small Business Development Center 8666 Lindberg Bay St. Thomas, Virgin Islands, 00802 Tel: (340) 693-1694   VI Small Business Development Center 6300 Estate Peter’s Rest, Suite 4 St. Croix, VI 00820 Tel: (340) 692-4294

USVI Small Business Resources September



Helping Businesses Grow and Succeed
BIZBUZZ
Visit us on Facebook, Twitter, Google Business or the USVI Business Hub for updates.

The VI SBDC wants to let our community know that we are available to assist local businesses in the Virgin Islands. St. Thomas/St. John call 340-693-1694 St. Croix call 340-692-4294 email us: info@visbdc.org

UPCOMING WEBINARS
USVIEDA Small Business Resources Webinars
America’s Small Business Development Centers Small Business Resources
U.S. Small Business Administration PR & USVI District
SCORE Training Portal
SBA Small Business Week Virtual Summit

Seminarios en Espanol
U.S. Small Business Administration (Traducir)

VI SBDC Training Webinars

Register Now

Sign Up Here

Sign Up Here

SBA Covid-19 Funding Assistance
Click on the specific program below for more information.
Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF)
Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG)
SBA COVID-19/ Coronavirus Financial Relief Options
SBA Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)
Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL)
SBA Debt Relief SBA-CDC Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers


USVI Small Business Hub

Tutorials on Startup Space for USVI
Overview of Startup Space
Register for Startup Space
Update Profile

USVI Covid-19 Assistance


Tips to Do Right Now to Stay Afloat | USVI SBA Loan Programs Explained 
USVI Guide to Business Resiliency in Times of Disaster
USVI Tips to Prepare for Reopening

St. Croix/St. Thomas/St. John
All VI SBDC In-Person events have been postponed until further notice. Please follow us on Facebook for updates on future events.

VI SBDC Partners
U.S. Small Business Administration
The University of the Virgin Islands
United States Virgin Island Economic Development Authority
USVI SCORE Chapter
University of Virgin Islands Research & Technology Park
St. Croix Chamber of Commerce
St. Thomas/St. John Chamber of Commerce
Virgin Islands Department of Licensing and Consumer Affairs

VI Small Business Development Center 8666 Lindberg Bay St. Thomas, Virgin Islands, 00802 Tel: (340) 693-1694   VI Small Business Development Center 6300 Estate Peter’s Rest, Suite 4 St. Croix, VI 00820 Tel: (340) 692-4294

Haiti Recovery: Help Restore Lives Through Tourism

Haiti Recovery: Help Restore Lives Through Tourism
-Hundreds of tourism workers lives and livelihoods were severely impacted and homes destroyed by the recent earthquake
-Ten of Haiti’s hotels suffered major damage from the recent earthquake
-Repairing the damage and getting people back to work is key to a sustained recovery
-You can make a difference….as so many of you did in the past

Donate Today!

When the earthquake disaster struck Haiti ten years ago and Hurricane Matthew several years after, many of you responded to the call for help. As a result, the Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA) and the CHTA Education Foundation (CHTAEF), working with Haiti’s hotel and tourism association, were able to help rebuild the nation’s Tourism and Hospitality Training Institute and trained 77 young Haitians to become chefs and managers in hotels throughout Haiti, the Caribbean and worldwide.  

Your support helped to change lives! Once again we need to respond to the call to support our tourism brothers and sisters.  

How Can You Help?
CHTA, in cooperation with the CHTAEF, is working with the Global Tourism Resilience and Crisis Management Center (GTRCMC) and the Association Touristique d’Haïti (ATH) to identify how best to provide recovery support for our tourism colleagues in Haiti. International donor organizations are on the ground providing immediate and emergency assistance. We want to be there for the long-haul. Our aim is to focus on the long-term recovery, helping to restore tourism and reshape lives. Here’s how you can help…  

Donate Today by Clicking Here &
• Strategically Placing and Sharing the Fundraising QR code for quick and easy processing of donations, available by clicking here
• Encouraging Employee and Vendor Contributions
• Inviting Guests and Customers to contribute through your website and social media sites and with opt-in donations on billings, when checking in and checking out  

CHTAEF Auction Hotel Room Donations – help CHTAEF to convert donated room stays to cash. CHTAEF’s Haiti support will be directed towards education and training activities. To register your room donation, please send an email to foundation@caribbeanhotelandtourism.com.  

We know these are difficult times for many of us and invite you to do whatever you can and to ask your colleagues, guests and friends and lovers of Haiti and the Caribbean to heed to the call for help. No matter the amount, it will help us to make a difference.  

Donate Today!

Tropical Treasure Hunt Creates Custom On-Site Team Building for Antilles Staff while Following Covid-19 Safety Protocols!

The Antilles VI staff of 60+ teachers and administrators recently enjoyed a secret agent themed team building event that has been over a year in the making. Antilles had a Tropical Treasure Hunt planned for their staff in 2020, but due to Covid-19, they needed to wait. Fast forward to August 2021 and the event was able to move forward. The staff was broken into teams of six. Teams participated in four friendly competitions that allowed staff to get out of their comfort zone while having fun. These secret agent themed competitions included archery tag (with foam tip arrows and safety masks), a blind folded maze with actual laser beams and smoke machines, Tropical Treasure Hunt’s exclusively licensed augmented reality secret agent game, as well as a spy themed improv acting contest with trained and amateur actors as the judges. To succeed in these competitions, staff members had to demonstrate strong critical thinking skills, time management, communication, teamwork and creativity.

 
Click for video highlights!
Click for pictures of the competitions!

Is your team interested in an onsite team building experience? Leave it to Tropical Treasure Hunt, St. Thomas’s premier team building company. They partner with your leaders to ensure the competitions match the professional development competencies that your organization values. Tropical Treasure Hunt’s leadership has over eight years of experience in the Talent Management industry with helping organizations improve their employee engagement. They use best practices to ensure a high quality and memorable experience.

  
Not ready for in person activities or want to include staff that is in the states? Tropical Treasure Hunt also offers remote team building strategies games with two different themes (secret agent and murder mystery). They can customize these games to reflect your organization including branded themes and logos. Their platform can help make any training program more immersive!


Click for brief video ad of their remote team building


Why are developmental activities such as team building events so critical to the bottom line of your business? They help make team members feel valued, and empirical evidence shows that team building improves morale and team performance. Now more than ever, we need to keep team members engaged.  According to a recent Gallup analysis, 48% of America’s working population is actively job searching or watching for new opportunitiesThe U.S. has reached a record-high quit rate and a record-high number of unfilled positions.

Tropical Treasure Hunt is proud to have created team building events for the following organizations on St. Thomas. Among others they include (Click for review):
·  VI Housing Finance Authority

·   Montessori VI Staff 

·   All Saints Cathedral School 

·  Tunick Insurance 

·  FirstBank VI

·   Marriott Frenchman’s Cove leadership team

·  WTJX Channel 12 

·  International Capital & Management Company

·  Infinite Possibilities (non profit)


You can reach out to Tropical Treasure Hunt to start planning your next event by emailing info@tropicaltreasurehunt.com or calling 786-296-8800.

USVI Small Business Resources September


Helping Businesses Grow and Succeed
BIZBUZZ
Visit us on Facebook, Twitter, Google Business or the USVI Business Hub for updates.
The VI SBDC wants to let our community know that we are available to assist local businesses in the Virgin Islands. St. Thomas/St. John call 340-693-1694 St. Croix call 340-692-4294 email us: info@visbdc.org

UPCOMING WEBINARS
USVIEDA Small Business Resources Webinars
America’s Small Business Development Centers
Small Business Resources
U.S. Small Business Administration PR & USVI District
Seminarios en Espanol
U.S. Small Business Administration (Traducir)


VI SBDC Training Webinars

Register Now


Sign Up Here

SBA Covid-19 Funding Assistance Click on the specific program below for more information.
Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF)
Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG)
SBA COVID-19/ Coronavirus Financial Relief Options
SBA Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)
Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL)
SBA Debt Relief
SBA-CDC Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers


USVI Small Business Hub

Tutorials on Startup Space for USVI
Overview of Startup Space
Register for Startup Space
Update Profile


USVI Covid-19 Assistance


Tips to Do Right Now to Stay Afloat | USVI SBA Loan Programs Explained 
USVI Guide to Business Resiliency in Times of Disaster
USVI Tips to Prepare for Reopening

St. Croix/St. Thomas/St. John
All VI SBDC In-Person events have been postponed until further notice. Please follow us on Facebook for updates on future events.

VI SBDC Partners
U.S. Small Business Administration
The University of the Virgin Islands
United States Virgin Island Economic Development Authority
USVI SCORE Chapter
University of Virgin Islands Research & Technology Park
St. Croix Chamber of Commerce
St. Thomas/St. John Chamber of Commerce
Virgin Islands Department of Licensing and Consumer Affairs

VI Small Business Development Center 8666 Lindberg Bay St. Thomas, Virgin Islands, 00802 Tel: (340) 693-1694
VI Small Business Development Center 6300 Estate Peter’s Rest, Suite 4 St. Croix, VI 00820 Tel: (340) 692-4294

UVI
The Virgin Islands Small Business Development Center (VI SBDC) is partially funded by the U.S. Small Business Administration. Such funding does not constitute an expressed or implied endorsement of any of the co-sponsors or participants’ opinions, products or services. VI SBDC is committed to the policy of providing equal opportunity for all persons. All VI SBDC programs and services are extended to the public on a non-discriminatory basis. Language assistance services are available for limited English proficient individuals. Reasonable Accommodations for persons with disabilities will be made if requested at least two weeks in advance. Join Our Mailing List

Survey on Sargassum in the Caribbean: Incidence, Impacts and Management

Do you live or work in the Greater Caribbean region? Do you have experience with fisheries, tourism, recreation, or other coastal businesses? Do you have knowledge of coastal management? Have you experienced any seaweed or other algae blooms in the Caribbean?

If you answered YES to any of these questions, we want to hear from you!

Our team of researchers is conducting a survey to learn more about how Sargassum events and related management strategies impact people who live or work in the Caribbean region. As someone with strong ties to the Caribbean region, your participation will be valuable for us whether or not you have seen or experienced seaweed events in your area.

The survey should take about 15 minutes to complete. Click on this link to take the survey: https://uri.co1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_4NLhaRYdjDAMI0S (available in English, Spanish, and French)

Please forward this survey to colleagues and friends who might be willing to share their thoughts on resource management, coastal businesses, or Sargassum. For more information on the project, visit our project website: https://web.uri.edu/maf/2021/06/30/saragassum/; feel free to reach out to me or other team members with thoughts or questions – we would love to hear from you.

Thank you,

————————————————————–

¿Usted vive o trabaja en la región del Gran Caribe? ¿Tiene experiencia con pesca, pesquerías, turismo, recreación acuática, otros negocios costeros, y/o el manejo de la costa y sus recursos? ¿Ha tenido contacto con floraciones de sargazo o algún otro evento de floración de algas en el Caribe?

Si su respuesta a cualquiera de las anteriores es “”, quisiéramos aprender de sus experiencias y perspectivas a través de esta encuesta!

Nosotros somos científicos estamos llevando a cabo un estudio sobre el impacto de las floraciones de sargazo en el Caribe. Nos interesa saber cómo las floraciones de sargazo y el manejo de éstas afectan a la gente que vive o trabaja en las costas caribeñas. La participación de usted en nuestro estudio será muy valiosa para nosotros, haya o no haya tenido experiencia directa con sargazo, dada su conexión a las regiones costeras del Caribe.

Completar esta encuesta debe de tomar alrededor de 15 minutos de sus tiempo. Haga clic en este enlace para realizar la encuesta: https://uri.co1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_4NLhaRYdjDAMI0S

Le agradeceríamos si usted quisiera compartir esta encuesta con sus colegas o conocidos quienes podrían compartir sus experiencias con nosotros. Para más información, favor de visitar la página web de nuestra investigación: https://web.uri.edu/maf/2021/06/30/saragassum/. Siéntase en libertad de comunicarse conmigo o cualquier otro miembro de nuestro equipo, nos gustaría mucho saber de usted.

Muchas gracias,

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Vivez-vous ou travaillez-vous dans la Grande Région Caraïbe ? Avez-vous de l’expérience avec la pêche, le tourisme, les loisirs ou d’autres entreprises côtières ? Avez-vous des connaissances en gestion côtière ? Avez-vous connu des proliférations d’algues dans les Caraïbes ?

Si vous avez répondu OUI à l’une de ces questions, votre témoignage nous intéresse !

Notre groupe de chercheurs mène une enquête sur les personnes qui vivent ou travaillent dans la région des Caraïbes, pour en savoir plus sur l’impact des arrivages de sargasses et des stratégies de gestion associées. En tant que personne ayant des liens étroits avec la région des Caraïbes, votre participation nous sera précieuse, que vous ayez ou non vu ou connu des proliférations sur les algues dans votre région.

L’enquête devrait prendre environ 15 minutes à remplir. Cliquez sur ce lien pour répondre au sondage : https://uri.co1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_4NLhaRYdjDAMI0S.

Veuillez transmettre ce sondage à vos collègues et amis qui pourraient être intéressés à partager leurs réflexions sur la gestion des ressources, les entreprises côtières ou les sargasses. Pour plus d’informations sur le projet, visitez le site Web de notre projet: https://web.uri.edu/maf/2021/06/30/saragassum/, et n’hésitez pas à me contacter ou à tout autre membre du groupe de recherche si vous avez des idées ou des questions – nous aimerions avoir de vos Nouvelles.

Merci,

ARPA Funding Opportunities

U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo announced six programs, collectively called Investing in America’s Communities, that the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) will execute to equitably invest the $3 billion it received from President Biden’s American Rescue Plan. 

This EDA investment is the largest economic development initiative from the Department of Commerce in decades and will help communities across the country build back better. 

Investing in America’s Communities includes:  

Build Back Better Regional Challenge ($1 billion) will capitalize on American ingenuity and American workers by providing a transformational investment to regions across the country to revitalize their economies. 

Good Jobs Challenge ($500 million) is designed to help get Americans back in good-paying jobs. The program will develop and strengthen regional workforce training systems and sector-based partnerships with a focus on programs targeted at women, people of color and historically underserved communities. 

Economic Adjustment Assistance ($500 million) grants will help hundreds of communities across the nation plan, build, innovate, and put people back to work through projects tailored to meet local needs.   

Indigenous Communities ($100 million) program will work hand-in-hand with Tribal Governments and Indigenous communities to develop and execute economic development projects they need to recover from the pandemic and build economies for the future.  

Travel, Tourism and Outdoor Recreation ($750 million) program will focus on revitalizing the hard-hit travel, tourism, and outdoor recreation industries and accelerate the recovery of communities that rely on these sectors.   

Statewide Planning, Research and Networks ($90 million) grants include funding for state planning efforts as well as grants to build Communities of Practice to extend technical assistance to support EDA’s work with grantees.   

The application process is now open. Deadlines vary based on program. 

For those who are ready to dig into our specific programs we have a number of opportunities over the next few weeks. 

To register for a webinar, click on the links below: 

Coal Communities Commitment Webinar 

Thursday, August 5 – 2 p.m. EDT 

Research & Networks Webinar 

Friday, August 6 – 2 p.m. EDT 

Economic Adjustment Assistance Webinar 

Monday, August 9 – 2 p.m. EDT 

Indigenous Communities Webinar 

Tuesday, August 10 – 2 p.m. EDT 

Good Jobs Challenge Webinar 

Thursday, August 12 – 2 p.m. EDT 

For past webinars, check EDA’s YouTube channel.

For more informationvisit www.eda.gov/ARPA for the latest news on EDA’s implementation plans. 

Sign up for the EDA newsletter and follow EDA on social media: InstagramTwitterLinkedInFacebook and YouTube

If you have any further questions, please reach out to Janelle Schindler by email: jschindler@eda.gov  or phone: 202-400-0662.

USVI Small Business Resources August


Helping Businesses Grow and Succeed
BIZBUZZ
Visit us on Facebook, Twitter, Google Business or the USVI Business Hub for updates.

The VI SBDC wants to let our community know that we are available to assist local businesses in the Virgin Islands. St. Thomas/St. John call 340-693-1694 St. Croix call 340-692-4294 email us: info@visbdc.org

UPCOMING WEBINARS
USVIEDA Small Business Resources Webinars
America’s Small Business Development Centers Small Business Resources
U.S. Small Business Administration PR & USVI District Seminarios en Espanol
U.S. Small Business Administration (Traducir)

Prestamo de Desastre por Dano Eonomico Wednesday, August 4 @ 1:00 pm AST
Manejando Presupuesto en Tiempos de Pandemia Thursday, August 5 @ 10:00 am AST
Programas de Exportacion de SBA Thursday, August 5 @ 2:00 pm AST

VI SBDC Training Webinars Register Now Sign Up Here Register Here

SBA Covid-19 Funding Assistance Click on the specific program below for more information.
Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF)
Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG)
SBA COVID-19/ Coronavirus Financial Relief Options
SBA Paycheck Protection Program (PPP)
Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL)
SBA Debt Relief SBA-CDC Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers

Shuttered Venue Operations Grant Download this Document

USVI Small Business Hub
Tutorials on Startup Space for USVI
Overview of Startup Space Register for Startup Space
Update Profile

USVI Covid-19 Assistance

Tips to Do Right Now to Stay Afloat | USVI SBA Loan Programs Explained 
USVI Guide to Business Resiliency in Times of Disaster
USVI Tips to Prepare for Reopening

St. Croix/St. Thomas/St. John All VI SBDC In-Person events have been postponed until further notice. Please follow us on Facebook for updates on future events.

VI SBDC Partners U.S. Small Business Administration The University of the Virgin Islands United States Virgin Island Economic Development Authority USVI SCORE Chapter University of Virgin Islands Research & Technology Park St. Croix Chamber of Commerce
St. Thomas/St. John Chamber of Commerce Virgin Islands Department of Licensing and Consumer Affairs

VI Small Business Development Center No. 2 John Brewers Bay St. Thomas, Virgin Islands, 00802 Tel: (340) 693-1694  
VI Small Business Development Center 6300 Estate Peter’s Rest, Suite 4 St. Croix, VI 00820 Tel: (340) 692-4294