On Saturday, March 15, Great Harbour, Jost van Dyke was crowded with over 75 boats from neighboring Islands coming to party and celebrate 40 years of Foxy’s bar: 1968 to 2008!
Following on Sunday at a Gala Brunch, more than 100 invited guests filled the banquet room to roast and toast the icon of Jost van Dyke. For 40 years Foxy Callwood has entertained the never-ending stream of sailors and tourists with his big white eyes, wide black grins and unique blend of earthy calypsos.
Many stories remembered the early beginnings of the bar which consisted of palm fronds and “sticks from the forest”. Today Foxy’s is a substantial two story structure consisting of open air tables, two well-stocked bars and an intimate gift shop. The banquet room above the extensive kitchen overlooks an area once a swamp—today the boat yard for Foxy’s beloved sloop project.
Built in traditional style with keel uppermost, the Island sloop Endeavour was recently rolled over and now rests in the center of Foxy’s “estate” ready for topsides finishing. The modern day sloop project is the heart of the Jost van Dyke Preservation Society and has attracted interest and funds from around the world including a donated engine from Volvo. Much of the work has been completed by the youth of BVI schools.
Several speeches included accolades to Foxy’s unending but uniquely independent contributions to BVI tourism. Typical is his support for 34 years of wooden boat regattas held here every year in May (As long as there is one wooden boat in the BVI, there will be a regatta, says Foxy). Today his passion drives the Preservation Society which represents a dream come true and will continue to keep Jost van Dyke a special place in the BVI.
As the Mimosas and Bloody Marys flowed freely, the stories got more unrepeatable until more champagne appeared for the official toasts, which seemed never ending. Clearly, it was Foxy and Tessa’s day with Foxy unable to contain his dancing spirit as the band played a blend of island rock and old standards.
In his responses Foxy alluded to his style of independent hard work in the BVI, commenting that even today there was no representation from the island fathers. But he gracefully ate his own words when the ex Premier, Dr Orlando Smith arrived shortly thereafter to thank him for his friendship and historic contribution to the BVI.
Mike Kirk is a retired Engineer from the corporate world and long time sailor who loves sailboat racing of all kinds. He has sailed dinghies in England and the US, and now races actively on a J120 in the Caribbean circuit. He and his wife Di live in Brewers Bay Tortola.