Four cruising sailboats took out 29 young people ages 7 to 15, plus a few parents and teachers, for a two hour sail—and came back with the same number.
A few cruisers anchored around Prickly Bay and Hog Island have been volunteering Saturday mornings with the Mt. Airy Young Readers group, working on reading and literacy skills, a valuable community program led by Jeanne and Everest Pascal of Mt Airy. On Saturday, Sept. 13 the group was invited to Prickly Bay to be taken for a sail on Wild Cat, a 38 foot catamaran (thanks Pam and Chris), Blue Tang, a 42 foot Halberg Rassey (thanks Guy, assisted by Kevin, another cruiser), Debonair, a 30 foot cutter (thanks Larry and Deborah), and Veleda IV, an Ontario 32 foot sloop (thanks Aubrey and Judy).
Extra life jackets and refreshments were provided by several other area cruisers. The group was returned by dinghy to the public beach near the Calabash resort in Prickly Bay where all enjoyed swimming and the picnic goodies. The children were entertained by Jeanne with a spelling quiz on nautical terms. A large nautical Word Find puzzle was made up by Judy Millard of Veleda IV, for the kids to work on at home, and it will be reviewed on a few Saturday morning activities.
There is a large cruising community at anchor, or in the several marinas in the bays on the south end of Grenada with far more boats at anchor than in the marinas. A recent count of boats in Mount Hartman Bay, Clarkes Court Bay, Hog Island, Prickly Bay, the Lagoon, and north of Grand Anse beach indicated there were over 170 boats at anchor, and 50 in the various marinas (Clarkes Court, Whisper Cove, Phare Blue, Martin’s, and Prickly Bay Marinas). These figures do not include the many boats on the hard in Grenada Marine or Spice Island Marine, or the boats in the Grenada Yacht Club, Port Louis, or True Blue.
Considering that each boat with liveaboards would spend on the average $5,000 EC a month; that would be an economic benefit to Grenada of 220 X 5,000 =$1,100,000 EC monthly. This amount goes directly into the local economy. In addition, this benefit is maximized by cruisers staying in Grenada throughout the hurricane season, a time when cruise ship and other tourist income for the island is reduced in the off season. After all, tourism is a mainstay of the Grenada economy.
The cruisers appreciate the hospitality of Grenada and are happy to participate in and contribute to the social and economic life of this enjoyable island.
Report and photos submitted by Aubrey Millard, Veleda IV