“It’s for the kids!” was the mantra that drove the 6th Annual Carriacou Children’s Education Fund benefit staged in Tyrell Bay during the recent Carriacou Regatta. A record-breaking EC $12,700 was collected to support that island’s needy school children. At this milestone, over EC $40,000 has been contributed by locals and visiting cruisers via this benefit, launched during the 2000 Regatta by cruisers who wished to show their appreciation for Carriacou’s friendly hospitality.
The fund-raising got off to a lively start with the ever-popular Welcome Potluck hosted at Tyrell Bay’s Carriacou Yacht Club. Entertainment was provided by a spontaneous guitar sing-along and a concurrent “Dry T-Shirt Contest” (not to be confused with the infamous “wet” variety) in which entrants were judged in categories such as “Bilge-Wear Beyond Belief.”
As various racing classes tacked through the bay, a Beach Fun Day, dominoes tournaments, ongoing craft sales, and cash pledges continued to fill the collection kitty ashore.
As always, the annual Benefit Auction was the highlight of the fundraiser: Auctioneers John Pompa (Second Millennium), Rick Johnston (Panacea) and Jerry Stewart (Bloody Mary) kept the bids—and wisecracks—flying as the crowd snapped up an eclectic yard-sale of items donated by cruisers and landlubbers. On the block were marine electronics, sails; 300 cookies; an inflatable dinghy; paintings; camping gear … even a marine stove!
Local businesses’ generous contributions included a Tyrell Bay Yacht Haul Out package; SCUBA sessions and gear from Arawak Divers, Lumba Dive and Carriacou Silver Diving; Wi-Fi services from Carriacou Wireless; and valuable gift certificates from Turtle Dove Pizzaria and Genevy’s Massage.
A certificate commemorating this year’s Education Fund proceeds was gratefully accepted by Susan Peters, the Social Worker attached to the Ministry of Carriacou and Petit Martinique Affairs. Through Ms. Peters’ ongoing dedication and conscientious management, these funds have supplied scores of needy local children with school uniforms, textbooks, and other educational materials.
Congratulations to the tireless program organizers Melodye and John Pompa for making Tyrell Bay’s social—and socially conscious—activities a runaway success during this year’s Carriacou Regatta. Major kudos go out to Tyrell Bay Haul Out’s management for their loyal support and to the Carriacou Yacht Club. We hope to see you next year!
Marjorie Mowry and Richard Haner are cruising the Caribbean aboard S/V North Stand