PHILIPSBURG, St. Maarten – The Rotary Club of Sint Maarten celebrated its 45th anniversary with a special dinner celebration at Moomba Restaurant in Maho on Thursday, March 29, 2017. To commemorate the occasion the Rotary Club awarded a Paul Harris Fellow to its only remaining charter member, Richard Gibson. Mr. Gibson accepted the award and recounted several of his memories from the early days of Rotary on Sint Maarten. Mr. Gibson went onto say, "It has been a pleasure to be a Rotarian for all of these years. Our Club and Rotary has accomplished so much good on the island because of what we have accomplished together. I look forward to being here for the next 45 years."
The Paul Harris Fellow is recognition of exceptional service and a tribute to a person whose life demonstrates a shared purpose with the objectives of the Rotary Foundation of Rotary International of world peace and international understanding.
President of the Rotary Club of Sint Maarten, Henna Budhrani added, “Rotary service helps the people of our community in more ways than we realize. Tonight I am honored to be President as we welcome members from all 4 of our St. Maarten/St. Martin clubs to celebrate 45 years of Rotary service in St. Maarten, which began with our very own Mother club.
PHILIPSBURG, St. Maarten – on Monday, the 27th of March, the last batch of T-shirts that give access to the Lighted Parade 2017, reached Sint Maarten. This was announced earlier today by Carnival Event organizer Rio Productions.
The shirts are being sold at a rapid pace, and are expected to be completely sold out by Thursday, March 30th 2017. President of Rio Productions, Mrs. Brenda Wathey, explained: “the T-shirt sales went much faster this year due to our special collaboration with both NBA and Soggy Dollar Bar. They both have an enormous crowd, and utilized all modern media channels to reach out to their followers. In addition to that, Chippie and Caribbean Liquors and Tobacco, made ongoing efforts to reach out to their loyal customers, by offering them special packages on the T-shirts”.
PHILIPSBURG, St. Maarten - Over the weekend the calypsonians have been busy rehearsing for the upcoming NAGICO Calypso eliminations scheduled for Friday, March 31st under the tent at Port De Plaisance.
During the rehearsal sessions the calypsonians took time to pull the numbers that determines the line up of the competition.
Rehearsals continue on Monday (today) at 7.00 pm and Tuesday and Thursday at 4.30 pm at the home of the band leader in Cole Bay and not at the John Larmonie Center as was previously announced.
D Orchestra is the band charged with providing the musical accompaniment for the calypsonians.
In the eliminations on Friday, each calypsonian will render one song on which they will be judged on their lyrical contents, their presentation, the rendition and melody of the song. The songs must be original, never sang in a previous competition and released after May 2016.
HAPPY BAY, St. Maarten - Festival lovers then had a choice to continue at various night venues which included Sky Beach, Tantra, 3 Amigos, Refuge and Dirty Sanchez.
This year, the Festival launched their first a On Sunday, the 24-hour festival that continued for 5 days came to an end as the SXM Festival closed to over 3,000 festival goers at Happy Bay.
Over 3,000 festival goers arrived on the island to attend the second edition of SXM Festival that took place from March 15 – 19 at various locations on both sides of the island. The Sun Raise event which took place from 5am to noon at Layla’s continued at the main day time venue on Happy Bay from 12 noon to 12 mid-nightnnual SXM Festival Boat Party which took place on Friday. This sold out event featured three top international DJs that took festival goers on an adventurous cruise.
On Saturday the exclusive Villa Party took place at Sandy Line Villas where over 800 VIP festival lovers enjoyed the unique cascading pool designs overlooking one of our beautiful beaches while enjoying the sounds from three top international DJs.
Rolando Brison, Director of Tourism commented, “I must say that I am very pleased with what I’ve witnessed over the last week with the large number of people who have chosen St. Maarten/ Saint Martin as a new place to fall in love with. It was described to me by many of the festival goers who travelled to the destination that it was not actually traveling but that it was a pilgrimage for them. I’ve met people who have travelled from as far as Saudi Arabia, Tokyo and of course the west coast of America, the latter being a very important market that we wish to attract in the future.” He continues “I would like to express my sincere congratulations to the organizers for putting this amazing event together. I can only imagine, seeing the product for myself, the immense amount of work that went into promoting and realizing this event. I would also like to thank all the sponsors that came to support the event to make this a reality. We look forward to seeing SXM Festival as our major music event for the island year after year.”
Private shuttle driver Jeffrey Jeffers was part of the SXM Festival transportation team along with 20 other young local men and women. He quoted “I got to meet a lot of new people who are planning on coming back to the island. I gave out about 300 contact cards to tourists who enjoyed our services; our locals are profiting from the festival as well.”
“I enjoyed the SXM Festival, I enjoyed making money and my costumers enjoyed themselves! There was a good a variety between taxi, busses and shuttles were everyone can profit from. The Festival is good for us and should happen twice a year.” said Julliet, driver of taxi 370.
“We loved it! St Maarten is beautiful and safe. The crowd was great, the sound was great. The locals were so nice and courteous. The villa parties were unbelievable. The weather 28 and sunny every day. We will come again!” – said Jeramie, a festival lover from Ontario, Canada
PHILIPSBURG, St. Maaten - The SXM Festival opened their week long activities on Wednesday with the opening of their main event at Happy Bay and their first night event at Refuge. On Thursday, their extended line up was able to cater to the over two thousand travelers that have already arrived at our destination with many more expected to arrive on Friday and Saturday.
Happy Bay Beach is one of Saint Martin’s best kept secrets – a stunning, secluded stretch of azure water, golden sands and lush jungle that can normally only be accessed by foot or boat.
POND ISLAND, St. Maarten – Show promoters are bringing back some of the more popular performers of the annual TelCell Night of the Hit Makers, mega dance event for the past four years, so that they can make the 5th year of the event the most unforgettable yet.
Promoter, Berteaux “Mr. Rude” Fleming of Xtratight Entertainment, says bringing in this year’s line-up of musical talent is the least he can do to thank the thousands of music and dance fans who have supported him and made the event so special – even to a regional audience.
Included in that line up are: Impact Band, Kai formerly known as Carimi, Jean Marc Ferdinand, Claudius Philips, Farmer Nappy and the queen of bacchanal Destra
“I have gone into the archives and I have picked out the best of the best who are guaranteed to set the dance floor in the Festival Village on fire with a big party atmosphere,” stated “Mr. Rude” during a press conference at the Festival Village as he starts to build up the hype for the April 28th Carnival event.
POND ISLAND, St. Maarten – St. Maarten Carnival Main Sponsor, TelCell, has once again put to poster the faces of persons who play a big part in the island’s premier cultural event.
These faces will be gracing TelCell’s colourful “I Am Carnival” posters throughout the Carnival season, appearing on lampposts, vehicles, in the festival village and throughout the Philipsburg area.
The “I Am Carnival” posters first made their appearance during carnival and proved to be very successful as a way of spotlighting individuals in the community who make special contributions to the annual carnival event.
“In January this year we set out to get some new faces by launching a “Who is Carnival” Facebook campaign giving everyone a chance to nominate their own important persons who they would like to see on our posters,” said TelEm Group Manager, Marketing & Sales Grisha Marten.
PHILIPSBURG, St. Maarten - The Airport saw an unprecedented number of visitors arriving today specifically for the SXM Festival event, a lifestyle and house music event being held on the island that has sold just over 3000 tickets internationally. In collaboration with SXM Airport, the organizers of the event were able to set up an on-site box office where the hundreds of festival goers are able to check-in for the event and pick up their passes. Due to the large number of attendees that were at the airport box office, some chose to carry on to the hotel and grab their passes later at Happy Bay or other venues, though the gesture of being able to get your passes as soon you come off the plane was very appreciated.
"This is the first festival I've ever been to where I was able to get my pass right off the plane, that's pretty cool!" said Ivan, a festival goer from San Francisco who arrived on Wednesday. "Many more are expected to arrive between today and Saturday, but we think by today the first thousand people should have arrived," commented Julian Prince, director of the festival and president of two bunch palms foundation that organizes the event, "We are very thankful to SXM Airport for giving the guests a unique way to be welcomed to the island, and we already see everyone is so happy to arrive at this beautiful island."
Set on the paradise island of Saint-Martin/Sint Maarten, featuring the crème of intertional DJs and electronic music talent, SXM Festival prides itself upon drawing the most discerning crowd of music lovers.
COLOMBIER, Saint Martin – On Saturday March 4th, Minister Jacobs attended the Arrowroot Jollification in Colombier, French Saint Martin. The Association de Nature Valley Colombier organized the event, whereby the plucking, washing and pounding of arrowroot was on display.
Mr. Gilbert Gibs has been a part of the Colombier community for most of his life, and has been invested in keeping the arrowroot tradition alive. Mr. Gibs, has been very active in the renewed interest in the growing and cultivating of arrowroot together with other male family members and friends. He explained to Minister Jacobs the process by which arrowroot grows, once the smaller pieces picked are planted back in the ground. Mr. Gibs also explained that the younger generation needs to get involved and learn the process, as Mr. Gibs and his fellow farmers are aging and can no longer dig and pound the arrowroot as before.
The younger generation needs to be motivated to be more involved when it comes to maintaining our heritage. “While arrowroot is a product we can always purchase in the store, the mere fact that we can produce it right here on St. Martin is a cultural tradition of our heritage we must keep alive,” Minister Jacobs said.
PHILIPSBURG, St. Maarten - The 2017 NAGICO Calypso eliminations are slated for Friday, March 31st under the tent at Port de Plaisance, starting at 8.00 pm sharp.
Some 20 calypsonians will be participating in this year's elimination, of which ten will "graduate" to the calypso finals on April 20th in the carnival village.
Along with some new faces to the calypso arena, such as Lady Righteous and Doctor Ray, some veterans calypsonians will grace the stage in an attempt
to dethrone the reigning Monarch, Shakiya, St. Maarten's first female calypso monarch.
There is also a chance to see father and son competing, as the Mighty Calix (Carlyle Rogers) takes to the stage while his son Young Calix The Protégé, (Rummini Rogers) competes in the same contest on the same stage.
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