VInow Logo
The Virgin Islands Best On-line Guide
Login | Register
Cruise Ship Schedule Ferry Schedule Forum

St. John Community Foundation

February 1st, 2018 – Community Wide Hurricane Recovery Update meeting are being held and facilitated by St. John Community Foundation. They cover assistance, volunteering and offer support for getting back to a new normal. Plus hear about the progress and challenges of community leaders, service providers and work groups. Follow them on facebook to see announcements of future meetings an learn of volunteer opportunities and events. See https://www.facebook.com/StJohnCommunityFoundation/.

January 4th, 2018 – St. John CommUNITY Update

This update is brought to St. Johnians by Love City Strong (LCS), St. John Community Foundation, St. John Angel Network, Coral Bay Community Council, St John Rescue, National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (National VOAD) (VOAD), Love for Love City, Bloomberg USVI Recovery, and Global DIRT.

Happy New Year!

+Free toy giveaway! The Salvation Army, St. Thomas, Usvi will be hosting a Three Kings Day Toy Giveaway TOMORROWFriday, Jan. 5 at 10a-2p. Ages 0-18 are welcome accompanied by an adult.

+St. John Rescue Town Hall Meeting is at 3p on Wed., Jan 10 at the Cleone H. Creque Legislative Conference Room at the St. John Legislature Annex. The public is invited to an open discussion on the conceptual design for the new headquarters and operation base. All residents are encouraged to attend. Contact St. John Rescue at (340) 693-7377 or stjohnrescue@gmail.com.

+Get Trashed will conduct a public clean-up at 10a on Sat., Jan 13. Visit the Get Trashed St. John Facebook page for details.

+Friends of the VI National Park Annual Meeting is 2p at Trunk Bay on Sun., Jan 21. The public is invited to learn accomplishments and plans and to hear talks given by the CEO of the National Wildlife Federation. Free shuttle service will be available from the NPS maintenance parking lot at 1:30p. Contact tlovejoy@friendsvinp.org or visit the Friends VINP store in Mongoose Junction for details. The Park Visitors’ Center is open 8a-4:30p daily.

+The Disaster Recovery Open Community Meeting is on the last Thurs. of every month at 5p on the 3rd level of The Marketplace outside of Sam & Jack’s Deli. The public is encouraged to participate! Follow the Recovery Team and the progress of its Work Groups at http://stjangels.ngo.

+Join the St. John Recovery Choir! St. John School of the Arts will host rehearsals on Thursdays at 5:30-7:30p beginning January 10. Call/text 802-380-0761 to register. No experience necessary and no fees involved.

+VITEMA, the Virgin Islands Territorial Emergency Management Agency may be reached at (340) 774-2244 or 304-227-7686.

+Vessel owners have until Jan 22 to remove boats!

Contact the Vessel Removal Hotline at 340-423-6353 or caribbean_recovery@nps.gov. Vessels not removed by Jan. 23 will be considered debris by the US Coast Guard.

The Coral Bay DRC will close 1/13. The Legislative Annex Building DRC in Cruz Bay will remain open.

The Toll-Free Disaster Assistance Hotline is 1-866-562-5227.

Homeowners and renters have until 1/8 to register with the Small Business Administration (SBA) for low-interest federal loans for disaster-related damages.

Visit FEMA’s Facebook page, FEMA U.S. Virgin Islands, to learn about programs offered.

Call the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-3362 to update application information or ask questions.

Don’t give up! If you receive an ineligibility decision from FEMA, you are encouraged to appeal. Applicants may appeal in writing within 60 days from the date the ineligibility letter was received. Guidelines for appeals can be found in the Applicant’s Handbook sent to everyone who registered with FEMA.

Crisis counselors are available at the Legislative Annex DRC in Cruz Bay 8a-5p Mon.-Fri. and 9a-2p Saturdays for anyone who would like to talk. The Disaster Distress helpline is 1-800-985-5990 for immediate assistance.

Disaster Legal Assistance will be available 10a-12p every Saturday at the DRC in Cruz Bay. Call the USVI Disaster Legal Hotline at 800-310-7029 for free disaster-related legal services.

+FEMA is hiring! A variety of temporary opportunities are available for 160 days or longer. Inquire with the VI Department of Labor 9:30a-1:30p Mon/Wed/Fri at the Legislature Annex building. Check unemployment claim status at (340) 713-3410.

+Power is nearly 95% restored! Report all electricity issues to WAPA’s Call Center 9a-5p at (340) 774-1424.

+Car barge service runs daily departing from the Cruz Bay Moorhead Marine Facility beginning at 6:15a. The last car ferry currently returns from Red Hook at 5p (until it is expanded to 7p beginning Jan. 11). Love City Car Ferries may be reached at 340-998-9597.

Passenger ferry service to Red Hook leaves Cruz Bay every hour on the hour beginning 6a and ending at 7:30p. The return ferry leaves Red Hook at 6:30a, 7:30a, 8a, and every hour on the hour thereafter with the last departure at 8p. Varlack Ventures Inc. ferries may be reached at (340) 513-1244.

+A FREE east-west shuttle is in service. Two safari taxis run concurrently from the Cruz Bay passenger ferry dock and the Coral Bay Fire Station/Calabash Boom. The shuttles make 2 morning trips and 2 trips in the afternoon.

+Clinical & emergency services: Medical services, support, and supplies are provided at the DeCastro clinic.

Immunizations and free flu shots are available 10a-1p the first Thursday of each month at the DeCastro Clinic. Signs are posted to notify of any schedule changes.

The Coral Bay Fire Department has been temporarily relocated to Calabash Boom for building repairs and can be reached by satellite phone at 877-521-0811. Call 911 or (340) 776-9110 for emergencies.

December 6, 2017 – Update

BOAT DEADLINE HAS PASSED
Dec. 1 was the deadline to notify the Coast Guard of vessel salvage/removal intentions. Call the Vessel Owner Notification Hotline at‪ 340-423-6353‬ or email caribbean_recovery@nps.gov. Over 20 boat owners have arranged to have vessels salvaged and returned to them at no cost!

+Coral Bay Bizarre Bazaar! Coral Bay Community Council’s annual potluck fundraiser and meeting will be held in the backyard of Pickles in Paradise in Coral Bay 11a-4p on Sat., Dec. 9 and will feature a swap and trade, Santa’s workshop (children must be accompanied by an adult), vendors, local artists, and more. Volunteers are needed.

+All Island Holiday Party aka “The Prom”! Sun Dog Cafe, St. John VI and the Mongoose Merchants Association are hosting “The Prom” on Sat., Dec. 16 at 9p. Attire is “island fancy” and entertainment includes the VI Strong Band, photo booth, and cash bars. All adults are welcome.

+Holiday benefit! On Dec. 22 at 6p LCS is co-sponsoring a benefit with Dog House Pub St. John and Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits to raise funds for the BBC Electrical lineman who was injured in an incident on St. John in late October.

+The St. John CommUNITY Long-Term Recovery Team will hold its next meeting with the St. John Angel Network organizations and other private and public groups at 5p on Thurs., Dec. 28 outside of Sam & Jacks Deli at The Marketplace. Public involvement is encouraged!

+St. John School of the Arts (SJSA) opened on November 13 with close to 55 students enrolled and 65 classes offered each week. As more families return to St. John, SJSA will be teaching classes and adding those children who want to participate. Please visit http://www.st.johnschoolofthearts.org for more information and to see the entire class schedule.

+Prescription assistance! The Emergency Prescription Assistance Program (EPAP) pays for a 30-day supply of prescription medication for disaster survivors. Benefits can be renewed every 30 days as long as the program is active. Uninsured residents can call Express Scripts at 855-793-7470 to learn if their medication or specific durable medical equipment is covered. Enroll by Jan. 31. Post-storm health tips are available at https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/psa/index.html.

+Disaster Recovery Centers (DRCs) are FEMA assistance centers for individuals, renters, homeowners, and business owners. The DRC in Cruz Bay is at the Legislative Annex building and the Coral Bay DRC is in the Community Council building, hours are 8a-5p.

+The U. S. Army Corps of Engineers reported 90% completion of 194 blue roof installations on St. John! The deadline has passed to register for Operation Blue Roof and the last couple of installations will soon be completed.

+Power returns! For the safety of restoration crews, Virgin Islands Water & Power Authority (W.A.P.A) will not restore electricity to residences unless generators have been shut off and weather heads are undamaged. Report all electricity issues to the Emergency Call Center 9a-5p daily at (340) 774-1424. Safety first! Do NOT fuel generators while hot or running.

+Car barge service runs daily departing from the Cruz Bay Moorhead Marine Facility beginning at 6:15a. The last car ferry currently returns from Red Hook at 5p. The passenger ferry service to Red Hook is leaving Cruz Bay every hour on the hour beginning 6a and ending at 7p. The return ferry leaves Red Hook at 6:30a, 7:30a, 8a, and every hour on the hour thereafter with the last departure at 8p.

+A FREE east-west shuttle is in service. Two safari taxis run concurrently from the Cruz Bay passenger ferry dock and the Coral Bay Fire Station. The shuttle schedule is: 7:30a, 8a, 9a, 10a, 3p, 4p, 5p, and 5:30p. The first and last shuttle trips will be traveling from/to Calabash Boom in Coral Bay.

+Unemployment insurance is available! The USVI Department of Labor is open 9:30a-1:30p Mon/Wed/Fri at the Legislature Annex building. To receive service, bring your ID and Social Security Card. Check claim unemployment claim status by phone at (340) 713-3410. Disaster Unemployment Assistance is extended through Dec. 29.

+Clinical & emergency services: MKS has moved to the DeCastro Building in Cruz Bay. Clinical services, support, and supplies are being offered from the DeCastro clinic (where you get your health card).
Immunizations and free flu shots are available 10a-1p the first Thursday of each month at the DeCastro Clinic. Signs are posted to notify of any schedule changes.
The Coral Bay Fire Department has been temporarily relocated to Calabash Boom as building repairs are being made. The Fire Department in Coral Bay can be reached at 877-521-0811.
Call (340) 776-9110 for emergencies.

Businesses are open with more every day! Chelsea Drug, Cruz Bay Family Practice, St. John Physical Therapy, Canines Cats and Critters, The Animal Care Center, St. John Insurance, Tunick Insurance, St. John Properties, Barefoot Design Group, Estate Lindholm, Unique Island Assets, Pool Guru, St. John Solutions Pest Control, Best Winters Land Surveyors, Computer Express, Connections, Cruz Bay Post Office, Postnet, Big Planet, St. John Hardware, Paradise Lumber, FirstBank, Scotia Bank ATM in Cruz Bay, Merchant Bank, St. John Ice, Starfish Market, Dolphin Market, St. John Market, Pine Peace Market, E-C Service Station, Race Track Station, Caravan Auto, St. John Auto Repair, St. John Car Rental, L&L Jeep Rental, Cool Breeze Car Rental, Slim Man’s Parking, Caribbean Paddle Co., Love City Excursions, Dolphin Water Taxi, Chamber of Commerce, Moses Laundry, Caravan Gallery, Steve Simonson Photo, St. John Printing & Design, Bamboula, Portico, St. John Spice, Friends of the Park Store, Trevor’s Activity Booth, Island Fancy, Just BEach!, St. John Brewers’ Brewtique, SugarBirds, Sun Dog Café, Gecko Gazebo Bar, Ocean Grill, Mongoose Junction, Pink Papaya, Cruz Salon, Papaya Café, Hercules, Chester’s Getaway, Kilroy’s Gaming Center, Sam & Jack’s Deli, Lime Inn, Uncle Joe’s BBQ, Dog House Pub, Cruz Bay Landing, 420 to Center, Extra Virgin, Rhumb Lines, Banana Deck, La Tapa, The Terrace, Island Cork, P & P’s by the Sea, North Shore Deli, The Tap Room, Da Livio, Ronnie’s Pizza, Little Olive, Nella’s Lounge, De’ Coal Pot, Woody’s, Café Roma, Quiet Mon, St. John Scoops, Our Market Smoothies, Skinny Legs, Jolly Dog Trading Co., Wok on the Beach, Coral Bay Caribbean Oasis, Pickles, Calabash Market, Pizzabar in Paradise, and Love City Market in Coral Bay are operational.

+WiFi hotspots in town are near Ronnie’s Pizza, Connections, between the BMV building and the tennis court, and on the 3rd floor of the Marketplace. To prevent slow WiFi speed, please disable automatic app updates.
Look for VINGN-FreePublic or DIRT-FreePublic. No passwords are needed.

+Beaches are reopening! The National Park Service (NPS) announced that Cinnamon Bay, Trunk Bay, Hawksnest and Honeymoon beaches are officially open! NPS asks beach goers to visit only officially reopened National Park beaches while they work to open more. Beaches not yet reopened by NPS may be unsafe due to poor water quality and debris from boats, buildings, and trees. NPS is enforcing beach rules.

November 22, 2017 – All are welcome to a community Thanksgiving Block Party on Thurs., Nov. 23 in Cruz Bay Park with live music! Dinner is at 4p and FREE of charge. Turkey, potatoes, and coleslaw will be provided; please bring a side dish to share and cash for the bar!
+Thanksgiving at 420 to Center! 420 to Center in Cruz Bay is hosting their annual FREE Thanksgiving dinner at 4pm on Thurs., Nov. 23 and invites all to attend. Festive costumes welcome!
+Thanksgiving at Dog House Pub St. John! DHP in Cruz Bay is also open to all to watch football and enjoy a FREE Thanksgiving dinner on Thursday. Please bring either a side dish or canned good donation.
+Thankspiggling at Skinny Legs Coral Bay St. John! All are welcome to enjoy a FREE Thanksgiving dinner at Skinny Legs in Coral Bay on Thurs., Nov. 23 at 4pm.

+Evening in the Courtyard! Mongoose Junction is kicking off the holiday season on Fri., Nov. 24 at 4pm with sales, specials, guest artists, live music and a raffle. Local heroes will be honored at 7pm.

+The St. John CommUNITY Long-Term Recovery Group will hold its next meeting at 5p on Thurs., Nov. 30 in office suite 201 at The Marketplace. (A greeter will be outside Sam & Jacks Deli for guidance.) The public is encouraged to attend and participate! The Long-Term Recovery Group is a collaborative joint partnership of public, private, and governmental agencies. If you would like to support the nonprofit agencies in the Group with a tax-deductible donation, http://stjangels.ngo is now live and ready to receive #GivingTuesday donations.

+Prescription assistance! The Emergency Prescription Assistance Program (EPAP) pays for a 30-day supply of prescription medication for disaster survivors until January 31. Uninsured residents can call Express Scripts at 855-793-7470 to learn if their medication or specific durable medical equipment is covered. Post-storm health tips are at https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/psa/index.html.

+The LCS Donation Station is open through Nov. 29. Stop by the shop next to Dog House Pub in Cruz Bay 9a-12p Mon.-Fri. for retail therapy! Free clothing and shoes are available to all. Donated items are no longer being accepted.

+Disaster Recovery Centers (DRCs) are FEMA assistance centers for individuals, the public, renters, homeowners, and business owners. The DRC in Cruz Bay is at the Legislative Annex building and the Coral Bay DRC is in the Community Council building, hours are 8a-5p Mon.-Sat.

+Apply for FEMA assistance by Dec. 18! Visit www.disasterassistance.gov, call 800-621-FEMA, or sign up 8a-5p at the DRC at the Legislative Annex building in Cruz Bay or the DRC at the Community Council in Coral Bay. Visit FEMA’s Facebook page, FEMA U.S. Virgin Islands, to learn about programs offered.

+Power returns! For the safety of restoration crews, Virgin Islands Water & Power Authority (W.A.P.A) will not restore electricity to residences unless generators have been shut off and weather heads are undamaged. Report all electricity issues to the Emergency Call Center 9a-5p daily at (340) 774-1424. Safety first! Do NOT fuel generators while hot or running.

+Car barge service runs daily departing Cruz Bay starting at 6:15a. Starting this Fri., Nov. 24, car ferry operations will be moved back to the Moorhead Marine Facility! The last car ferry currently returns from Red Hook at 5p.
+The passenger ferry service to Red Hook is leaving Cruz Bay every hour on the hour beginning 6a and currently ending 5p. NEW: Hourly ferry service to Red Hook will be extended to 8p beginning this Sun., Nov. 26! The return ferry leaves Red Hook at 6:30a, 7:30a, 8a, and every hour on the hour thereafter with the last departure at 5:30p.

+A FREE east-west shuttle is in service. Two safari taxis run concurrently from the Cruz Bay passenger ferry dock and the Coral Bay Fire Station. The shuttle schedule is: 7:30a, 8a, 9a, 10a, 3p, 4p, 5p, and 5:30p. The first and last shuttle trips will be traveling from/to Calabash Boom in Coral Bay.

+Unemployment insurance is available! The USVI Department of Labor is open 9:30a-1:30p Mon/Wed/Fri at the Legislature Annex building. To receive service, bring your ID and Social Security Card. Check claim status by phone at (340) 713-3410. Disaster Unemployment Assistance is extended through Dec. 29.

+Clinical & emergency services: MKS has moved to the DeCastro Building in Cruz Bay. Clinical services, support, and supplies are being offered from the DeCastro clinic (where you get your health card) and the Coral Bay Community Council building. The Coral Bay Fire Department has been temporarily relocated to Calabash Boom as building repairs are being made. The Fire Department in Coral Bay can be reached at 877-521-0811. Call (340) 776-9110 for emergencies.

+Help is a phone call away! The Disaster Distress Helpline is available at 1-800-985-5990 for immediate crisis counseling. Free disaster-related legal service is available! Call the US Virgin Islands Disaster Legal Hotline at 800-310-7029.

+Businesses are open with more every day! Chelsea Drug, the health clinic at the Marketplace, St. John Physical Therapy, Canines Cats and Critters, The Animal Care Center, St. John Insurance, Tunick Insurance, St. John Properties, Best Winters Land Surveyors, Computer Express, Connections, Cruz Bay Post Office, Postnet, Big Planet, St. John Hardware, Paradise Lumber, FirstBank, Scotia Bank ATM in Cruz Bay, Merchant Bank, St. John Ice, Starfish Market, Dolphin Market, St. John Market, Pine Peace Market, E-C Service Station, Race Track Station, Caravan Auto, St. John Auto Repair, St. John Car Rental, L&L Jeep Rental, Slim Man’s Parking, Moses Laundry, Steve Simonson Photo, St. John Printing & Design, Bamboula, Pink Papaya, Cruz Salon, Papaya Café, Sun Dog Café, Hercules, Sam & Jack’s Deli, Lime Inn, Uncle Joe’s BBQ, Dog House Pub, Cruz Bay Landing, 420 to Center, Extra Virgin, Rhumb Lines, Banana Deck, Fish Trap, La Tapa, The Terrace, Island Cork, P & P’s by the Sea, North Shore Deli, The Tap Room, Da Livio, Little Olive, De’ Coal Pot, Jolly Dog Trading Co., Wok on the Beach, Coral Bay Caribbean Oasis, Calabash Market, Thirsty Donkey, Pizzabar in Paradise, and Love City Market in Coral Bay are operational.

+WiFi hotspots in town are near Ronnie’s Pizza, Connections, between the BMV building and the tennis court, and on the 3rd floor of the Marketplace. To prevent slow WiFi speed, please disable automatic app updates.
Look for VINGN-FreePublic or DIRT-FreePublic. No passwords are needed.

+St. John School of the Arts is open and offering free on-site and after-school programs. Contact Jenna Fox at info@stjohnschoolofthearts.org or 340-228-2511.

+DPW is removing storm debris from public roads. Move all storm debris within 10 feet of the roadside and sort by debris type. Appliances, electronics, vegetation, and roofing/construction materials must all be separated. If you are not part of an HOA and need help moving debris from a secondary road to a primary road for collection, email mcenright@gmail.com. Do not obstruct the road with debris. Drop off all electronic and hazardous household waste (TVs, computers, paint, oil, gas, batteries, chemicals, etc.) at the MKS ER entrance 7:30a-4p Mon.-Sat. or at the Coral Bay Fire Station 10a-2p this Sun., Nov. 26 only.

+Beaches are reopening! The National Park Service (NPS) announced that Trunk Bay, Hawksnest, and Honeymoon beaches are now officially open! NPS asks beachgoers to visit only officially reopened National Park beaches while they work to open more. Beaches not yet reopened by NPS may be unsafe due to poor water quality and debris from boats, buildings, and trees. NPS is enforcing beach rules; dogs must be leashed, and glass is prohibited on National Park beaches.

+Attention, property owners! If you own a multi-family dwelling that needs repairs and are willing to lease to eligible FEMA hurricane survivors, then you may be interested in the Multi-Family Lease and Repair Program (MLRP), which provides funds to make rental units habitable again and helps displaced residents at the same time. Contact FEMA-USVI-MLR@fema.dhs.gov.

+Attention, boat owners! Dec. 1 is the deadline to notify the Coast Guard of vessel salvage/removal intentions. Call the Vessel Owner Notification Hotline at (340) 423-6353 or email caribbean_recovery@nps.gov. Boat owners may have vessels salvaged and returned to them at no cost!

+For those abroad wanting to help, monetary donations are encouraged over other offers of assistance. Please do not self-deploy or send unsolicited donated items (as we do not have the resources on-hand to manage sorting, inventory, and distribution). Tax-deductible donations may be made to nonprofit organizations supporting St. John’s long-term recovery at http://stjangels.ngo. 

November 15, 2017 – Party Time! All island children and their families are invited to a Kids’ Party 1p-4p this Saturday, Nov. 18 in Cruz Bay Park for games, fun, music, food, crafts, and more! This event is hosted by The Department of Sports Parks and Recreation, VITEMA, Love for Love City, and Bloomberg Philanthropies.

+Thanksgiving in the Park! All are welcome to a community Thanksgiving Block Party on Thurs., Nov. 23 in Cruz Bay Park hosted by Rotary Club of St. John, St. John Angel Network, and St. John Community Foundaton! Dinner is at 4p and FREE of charge. Turkey, potatoes, and coleslaw will be provided; please bring a side dish to share and cash for the bar.

+Thanksgiving at 420! Per tradition, 420 to Center Bar & Grille, St John is hosting their annual FREE Thanksgiving dinner at 4p on Thurs., Nov. 23 and invites all to attend. Festive costumes welcome!

+Meal @ midday! Freshwater Church St. John USVI is serving free lunch at the Fish Trap Restaurant 12p-1p daily. All are welcome.

+Food benefits are available! The Disaster Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (D-SNAP) will provide 2 months of funds for disaster survivors. To apply, bring ID to the DHS office across from the Cruz Bay Fire Station 7a-6p by Sat., Nov. 18.

+Prescription assistance! The Emergency Prescription Assistance Program (EPAP) pays for up to a 30-day supply of prescription medication for disaster survivors through January. Uninsured residents can call Express Scripts at 855-793-7470 to learn if their medication or specific durable medical equipment is covered. Please note that extended wait times and challenging customer service may occur. Post-storm health tips are at https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/psa/index.html.

+The Love City Strong Donation Station is open! Stop by the shop next to Dog House Pub St. John in Cruz Bay 9a-12p Mon.-Fri. for retail therapy! Free clothing and shoes are available to all. Due to an unanticipated high volume of generous donations, items are no longer being accepted at the shop. Thanks to the community for quickly filling this need!

+Disaster Recovery Centers (DRCs) are FEMA assistance centers for individuals, renters, homeowners, and business owners. DRCs are also Operation Blue Roof sign up locations. The DRC in Cruz Bay is at the Legislative Annex building and the Coral Bay DRC is in the Community Council building, hours are 8a-5p Mon.-Sat.

+Apply for FEMA assistance by Dec. 18! Visit www.disasterassistance.gov, call 800-621-FEMA, or sign up 8a-5p at the DRC at the Legislative Annex building in Cruz Bay or the DRC at the Community Council in Coral Bay. Visit FEMA U.S. Virgin Islands to learn about programs offered.

+The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Headquarters (USACE) continues sign-ups for FREE Operation Blue Roof tarp/roofing installation until Thurs., Nov. 23. Residents may sign up 8a-5p at the Legislative Annex building in Cruz Bay or the DRC at the Community Council in Coral Bay. Bring a photo ID, a property tax bill, and a photo of the damaged roof. Visit www.sad.usace.army.mil/Blueroof or call 888-ROOF-BLU. WAPA customers with blue roofs can have electricity restored once assessment by a certified electrician is completed.

+Power returns! For the safety of restoration crews, Virgin Islands Water & Power Authority will not restore electricity to residences unless generators have been shut off and weather heads are undamaged. Report all electricity issues to the Emergency Call Center 9a-5p daily at (340) 774-1424.
Safety first! Remember not to fuel generators while hot or running.

+Car barge service runs daily, with a variable number of trips. Check in at the barge for the daily schedule. The passenger ferry service to Red Hook is leaving Cruz Bay every hour on the hour beginning 6a and ending 5p. The return ferry leaves Red Hook at 6:30a, 7:30a, 8a, and every hour on the hour thereafter with the last departure at 5:30p.

+A FREE east-west shuttle is in service. Two safari taxis run concurrently from the Cruz Bay passenger ferry dock and the Coral Bay Fire Station. The shuttle schedule is: 7:30a, 8a, 9a, 10a, 3p, 4p, 5p, and 5:30p. The first and last shuttle trips will be traveling from/to Calabash Boom in Coral Bay.

+Unemployment insurance is available! The USVI Department of Labor is open 9:30a-1:30p Mon/Wed/Fri at the Legislature Annex building. To receive service, bring your ID and Social Security Card. Check claim status by phone at (340) 713-3410. Disaster Unemployment Assistance is extended through Dec. 29.

+Clinical & emergency services: MKS has moved to the DeCastro Building in Cruz Bay. Clinical services, support, and supplies are being offered from the DeCastro clinic (where you get your health card) and the Coral Bay Community Council building. The Coral Bay Fire Department has been temporarily relocated to Calabash Boom as building repairs are being made. The Fire Department in Coral Bay can be reached at 877-521-0811. Call (340) 776-9110 for emergencies.

+Help is a phone call away! The Disaster Distress Helpline is available at 1-800-985-5990 for immediate crisis counseling.
+Free disaster-related legal service is available! Call the US Virgin Islands Disaster Legal Hotline at 800-310-7029.

+Businesses are open with more every day! Chelsea Drug, the health clinic at the Marketplace, St. John Physical Therapy, Canines Cats & Critters, Animal Care Center of St. John, St. John Insurance, Tunick Insurance, St. John Properties, Computer Express, Connections St. John, Cruz Bay Post Office, Postnet, Big Planet, St.John Hardware, Paradise Lumber, FirstBank, Scotia Bank ATM in Cruz Bay, Merchant Bank, St. John Ice, Starfish Market, Dolphin Market, St. John Markt, Pine Peace Mni Mart, E-C Service Station, Race Track Station, Caravan Auto, St. John Auto Repair, St. John Car Rental, L&L Jeep Rental, Slim Man’s Parking, Moses Laundry, Steve Simonsen Photography, Bamboula St John, Cruz Salon, Papaya Cafe, Pink Papaya, Sun Dog Cafe, St. John VI, Chester’s Getaway, Hercules, Sam & Jack’s Deli, Lime Inn Restaurant, Uncle Joe’s BBQ, Cafe Roma St John, Dog House Pub St. John, Cruz Bay Landing, 420 to Center, Extra Virgin Bistro, Rhumb Lines Restaurant, Banana Deck, La Tapa, St John, USVI, The Terrace, Island Cork, P and P’s By The Sea, North Shore Deli, The Tap Room – St John Brewers, Da Livio, Jolly Dog Trading Co., Wok on the Beach Restaurant, Indigo Grill, Coral Bay Caribbean Oasis, Calabash Market, The Thirsty Donkey, Pizzabar in paradise, and Love City Market in Coral Bay are operational.

+WiFi hotspots in town are near Ronnie’s Pizza, Connections, between the BMV building and the tennis court, and on the 3rd floor of the Marketplace. To prevent slow WiFi speed, please disable automatic app updates.
Look for VINGN-FreePublic or DIRT-FreePublic. No passwords are needed.

+Volunteers are needed to help clear the upper campus of Gifft Hill School. Head to the school for details.
St. John School of the Arts is open and offering free on-site and after-school programs. Contact Jenna Fox at info@stjohnschoolofthearts.org or 340-228-2511.

+DPW is now removing storm debris from public roads.
Move all storm debris within 10 feet of the roadside and sort by debris type. Appliances, electronics, vegetation, and roofing/construction materials must all be separated. If you are not part of an HOA and need help moving debris from a secondary road to a primary road for collection, email mcenright@gmail.com. Do not obstruct the road with debris. Drop off all hazardous household waste (paint, oil, gas, batteries, chemicals, etc.) to the MKS ER entrance 7:30a-4p Mon.-Sat.

+Beaches are reopening! The National Park Service (NPS) announced that Hawksnest and Honeymoon beaches are now officially open! All Caribbean parks remain closed by NPS until further notice to ease the strain on beach, trail and road cleanup. NPS asks beachgoers to visit only officially reopened Virgin Islands National Park beaches while they work to open more. Beaches not yet reopened by NPS may be unsafe due to poor water quality and debris from boats, buildings, and trees. NPS is enforcing beach rules; dogs must be leashed, and glass is prohibited on National Park beaches.

+Attention, property owners! If you own a multi-family dwelling that needs repairs and are willing to lease to eligible FEMA hurricane survivors, then you may be interested in the Multi-Family Lease and Repair Program (MLRP), which provides funds to make rental units habitable again and helps displaced residents at the same time. Contact FEMA-USVI-MLR@fema.dhs.gov.

+Attention, boat owners! Dec. 1 is the deadline to notify the Coast Guard of vessel salvage/removal intentions. Call the Vessel Owner Notification Hotline at (340) 423-6353 or email caribbean_recovery@nps.gov. Provide registration, owner information, vessel location, date of removal, salvage contractor, & DPNR/Coast Guard decal target number (for marked vessels). Boat owners may have vessels salvaged and returned to them for free!

+For those abroad wanting to help, monetary donations are encouraged over other offers of assistance. Recommended charitable organizations are: The St. John Community Foundation, St. John Rescue, Love City Strong, Coral Bay Community Council, The Animal Care Center, VI Relief Fund, and Love for Love City.

November 6, 2017 – It is hard to believe that it has only been two months since two devastating category 5 hurricanes hit our small island paradise. While life on island is challenging there are increasing “windows of wonderful.” Yes, many trees that held on are getting their leaves back and the random burst of flaming red from a surviving flamboyant tree makes you want to cheer. A few resilient business owners have enabled us to have a good meal and welcomed opportunities to interact. Seeing the kids back in their school uniforms going to and from school, even if on limited split schedules, provides some semblance of normalcy. The hardworking selflessness of skilled healthcare professionals, electrical linemen, road clearing and debris removal workers, military and public safety service men and women who have come from all over the mainland states have united us on so many levels.

However, I won’t sugar coat things. There are still massive amounts of downed electrical wires, storm debris and rocky mud slides making the roads hard to traverse. Residents are still picking treasured keepsakes from piles of rubble that they once called home. There is power in some parts of town now, but many homes and businesses cannot be connected because of extraneous damage to the parts needed to link into it, and power to other parts of the island will take months. Jobs and accommodations for visitors have been lost at the Westin for over year, and at Caneel for over two years. Our clinic has been condemned; health and human services are limited. Beaches have to be tested after each rain to determine if they are safe as storm runoff, and water treatment plant challenges pose contamination threats…but as mentioned, there are a multitude of silver linings as we rebuild our island paradise.

So far The St. John Community Foundation has earmarked over $200,000 in unrestricted grants to local organizations, including Gifft Hill School and the Christian Academy who surmounted huge hurdles to open their doors to the St. John youth early in this response phase. Funding has been provided to support organizations such as Island Health and Wellness, Island Green Living, St. John School of the Arts, the Animal Care Center and Dana’s Carolina Coral, The St. John Revolving Fund, Love City Pan Dragons, Coral Bay Community Council who are all directly responding to post hurricane needs, and more are in the pike. We have facilitated funds for Kenny Chesney’s Love For Love City initiatives and written checks to cover well over a million dollars of expenses such as medical supplies, meals, generators, evacuation fight fees and fuel, debris removal, and construction costs as rebuilding homes and businesses is underway.

VOLUNTEERS: While we are grateful for the generous offers of hands-on help, at the moment, Virgin Islands Emergency Management Agency, FEMA, Department of Defense, Army Corps of Engineers, Red Cross, and other national and local disaster response groups on island have a handle on immediate needs. When we say this response effort will take months and even years, and that you will be contacted once public officials and disaster relief organizations have had an opportunity to assess and identify specific unmet needs, please believe us! We respectfully ask that you do not self deploy. Local residents are desperate for work, neighbors are helping neighbors, and we WILL get to the point of being able to organize work projects for volunteers. We are just not there yet.

DONATIONS: While we appreciate the multitude of individual and group initiatives sending supplies, most island non-profits have exhausted their means of receiving, sorting, distributing and storing donations of mixed items and are asking people who want to help to instead consider financial support to one of the many organizations on the ground providing relief efforts. While Donations of supplies have been welcomed, monetary donations will enable us to address unmet needs in specific and direct ways.

You can make your donation to the St. John Community Foundation at http://thestjohnfoundation.org/donate We can direct your donation to any St. John non-profit or you can find links to other organizations at http://thestjohnfoundation.org/…/nonprofit-organization-dir…. Consider contacting them directly for their specific needs.

The St. John Community Foundation is honored to be part of the massive and united effort underway to help island communities and survivors put their lives back together and are working closely with Love City Strong, Kenny Chesney’s Love for Love City, Bloomberg USVI Recovery, St John Rescue and Help.NGO’s Global Disaster Immediate Response Team, Virgin Islands Relief Fund, and Coral Bay Community Council, who are all worthy recipients of your support.

Thank you – two small words packed with sincere & power-filled gratitude

November 5, 2017 – This update is brought to St. Johnians by Love City Strong (LCS), The St. John Community Foundation, Coral Bay Community Council, St John Rescue, Virgin Islands Relief Fund,
National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (National VOAD)(VOAD), Kenny Chesney’s Love for Love City, Bloomberg Philanthropies’ Bloomberg USVI Recovery, and Help.NGO’s Global Disaster Immediate Response Team.

Curfew has been lifted territory-wide as of Oct. 30!

+Town Hall meeting! A public forum on debris removal will be held at 2:30p tomorrow, Monday, Nov. 6 at the Legislature Annex building in Cruz Bay.

+Food benefits are available! The Disaster Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program will provide 2 months of funds for disaster survivors. To apply, bring ID to the DHS office across from the Cruz Bay Fire Station 7a-6p Mon., 11/6 thru Wed., 11/15. (the office will be closed Nov. 10-12).

+Meal @ midday! Freshwater Church is serving free lunch at The Fish Trap 12p-1p daily. All are welcome.

+Disaster Recovery Centers are FEMA assistance centers for renters, homeowners, and small business owners. The DRCs are also where to sign up for Operation Blue Roof. The DRC in Cruz Bay is at the Legislative Annex building and the Coral Bay DRC is in the Community Council building, both are open 8a-5p Mon.-Fri.

+Cruise ships arrive! According to the Department of Tourism (DOT), more than 25 cruise ship calls are scheduled for St. Thomas in November to boost economic activity, generate employment and stimulate recovery efforts.

+Mail service expands! Officials indicated that Sunday operations in post offices throughout the Caribbean will continue for the foreseeable future. Ramped up delivery activities are supported by additional gains made in postal operations this week, including expedited hiring, training, and orientation of more than 400 temporary employees to support mail processing and delivery.

+The LCS Donation Station is open! Stop by the shop next to Dog House Pub in Cruz Bay 9a-12p Mon.-Fri. for retail therapy! Free clothing and shoes are available to all. Donations may be dropped off 12p-2p.

+Power returns! For the safety of restoration crews, WAPA advises residents to shut off standby generators when line crews are restoring electricity nearby. Report all electricity issues such as service interruptions and damaged or down equipment, poles or wires to the Emergency Call Center 9a-5p daily at (340) 774-1424.
WAPA crews removed electrical meters at locations where damage was apparent to either an electrical meter base and/or weather head. Home and business owners are advised to make repairs to their damaged weather heads and/or meter bases as soon as possible. Once crews have reached your neighborhood, those customers who have not had their weather head or meter base repaired, will not have service immediately restored. Additionally, customers and electricians are reminded that it is against the law to remove or otherwise destroy meter seals. If work needs to be done to repair a damaged meter base and/or weather head, contact WAPA’s Emergency Call Center, which operates 7 days/week.

+Prescription assistance is here! The Emergency Prescription Assistance Program pays for prescription medications for disaster survivors. For now, St. Johnians will go to St. Thomas to receive benefits. Uninsured residents can call Express Scripts at 855-793-7470 or visit http://www.phe.gov/Prepared…/planning/…/Pages/formulary.aspx to learn if their medication or specific durable medical equipment is covered. Visit https://www.cdc.gov/disasters/psa/index.html for post-storm health tips.

+Car barge service runs daily, with a variable number of trips. Check in at the barge for the daily schedule. The passenger ferry service to Red Hook is leaving Cruz Bay every hour on the hour beginning 6a and ending 5p. The return ferry leaves Red Hook at 6:30a, 7:30a, 8a, and every hour on the hour thereafter with the last departure at 5:30p.

+A FREE east-west shuttle is in service. Two safari taxis run concurrently from the Cruz Bay passenger ferry dock and the Coral Bay Fire Station. The shuttle schedule is: 7:30a, 8a, 9a, 10a, 3p, 4p, 5p, and 5:30p. The first and last shuttle trips will be traveling from/to Calabash Boom in Coral Bay.

+Unemployment insurance is available! The USVI Department of Labor is open 9:30a-1:30p Mon/Wed/Fri at the Legislature Annex building. All unemployment questions should be directed to the Department of Labor. To receive service, bring your ID and Social Security Card. Check claim status by phone at (340) 713-3410.

+Clinic service: MKS has moved to the DeCastro Building in Cruz Bay. Clinical services, support, and supplies are being offered from the DeCastro clinic (where you get your health card) and the Coral Bay Fire Station.

+Help is a phone call away! The Disaster Distress helpline is available at 1-800-985-5990 for immediate crisis counseling. Free disaster-related legal service is available! Call the US Virgin Islands Disaster Legal Hotline at 800-310-7029.

+Businesses are open with more every day! Chelsea Drug, the health clinic at the Marketplace, St. John Physical Therapy, Canines Cats and Critters, The ACC, St. John Insurance, Tunick Insurance, St. John Properties, Connections, Cruz Bay Post Office, Postnet, Big Planet, St. John Hardware, Paradise Lumber, First Bank, Scotia Bank ATM in Cruz Bay, Merchant Bank, St. John Ice, Starfish Market, Dolphin Market, St. John Market, Pine Peace Market, E&C Service Station, Race Track Station, Caravan Auto, St. John Auto Repair, Moses Laundry, Steve Simonson Photo, Bamboula, Cruz Salon, Papaya Café, Sun Dog Cafe, Chester’s Getaway, Hercules, Sam and Jack’s Deli, the Lime Inn, Uncle Joe’s BBQ, Dog House Pub, Cruz Bay Landing, 420 to Center, Extra Virgin, Rhumb Lines, Banana Deck, Fish Trap, La Tapa, The Terrace, Island Cork, Wok on the Beach, Oasis, Calabash Market, Thirsty Donkey, and Love City Market in Coral Bay are operational.
Virgin Islands Relief Fund and supportive volunteers are making progress rebuilding Pickles and Indigo Grill in Coral Bay. Their mission includes focusing on building a sustainable infrastructure for the future. They are also playing a big role in supply distribution. Thanks, VI Releif!

+Connections has started an in-office version of the St. John Revolving Fund, providing interest-free loans for St. Johnians. Donations are tax-deductible and donors may identify an individual or group they would like to help. Cash and personal checks are accepted.

+WiFi hotspots in town are near Ronnie’s Pizza, Connections, between the BMV building and the tennis court, and on the 3rd floor of the Marketplace. To prevent slow WiFi speed, please disable automatic app updates.
Look for VINGN-FreePublic or DIRT-FreePublic. No passwords are needed.

+The Sprauve school is open! Classes are in session for grades K-5 8a-11a, and 11:30a-4p for grades 6-8. A celebration for all students on island is planned for November 3 at the Sprauve ballfield.
Gifft Hill School is in session from 10a-2p Mon.-Fri. Registration for students is open to all! Anyone can come with their child to register for classes from 8:30a-9:30a. Fees are deferred until further notice. Volunteers are needed for student translators, carpooling, and cleaning.

St. John School of the Arts is open! They are offering free on-site and after school programs. Contact Jenna Fox at info@stjohnschoolofthearts.org or 340-228-2511.

+Love City Pan Dragons has free classes for all! Ages 8–Adult and all experience levels are welcome 2:45p-5p on Fridays and/or 12p-3p on Saturdays between Human Services and the Sports and Rec Building across from the Fire Station in Cruz Bay.

+DPW is now removing storm debris from public roads. Move all storm related debris within 10 feet of the roadside and sort by debris type. Appliances, electronics, vegetation, and roofing/construction materials must all be separated. Do not obstruct the roads with debris.

+All Caribbean parks remain closed by the National Park Service (NPS) until further notice to ease the strain on beach, trail and road cleanup by minimizing foot traffic.
Swim at your own risk! The Surfrider Foundation and Love City Strong (LCS) independently tested beach water quality at 14 beaches and found unsafe levels of E. Coli at Maho Bay Beach (at the pavilion side), Cruz Bay and Great Cruz Bay. Jumbie Beach and Maho Bay Beach (at the parking lot side) also presented medium risk. Detailed results can be seen at https://goo.gl/SKK9ey. Other hazards at St. John beaches include debris from boats, buildings and trees. LCS will continue water quality testing and NPS/DPNR will make official statements regarding water safety. NPS is enforcing beach rules; dogs must be leashed, and glass bottles are prohibited within National Park beaches.

+Attention, property owners! If you own a multi-family dwelling that needs repairs and are willing to lease to eligible FEMA hurricane survivors, then you may be interested in the Multi-Family Lease and Repair Program (MLRP), which provides funds to make rental units habitable again and helps displaced residents at the same time. Contact FEMA-USVI-MLR@fema.dhs.gov.

+Attention, boat owners! Dec. 1 is the deadline to notify the Coast Guard of vessel salvage/removal intentions. Call the Vessel Owner Notification Hotline at (340) 423-6353 or email caribbean_recovery@nps.gov. Provide registration, owner information, vessel location, date of removal, salvage contractor, & DPNR/Coast Guard decal target number (for marked vessels). DPNR is working with FEMA to provide assistance for those needing help with vessel removal.

+The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) continues sign-ups for FREE tarp/roofing installation until Fri., Nov. 23. Residents may sign up 8a-5p at the Legislative Annex building in Cruz Bay or the DRC at the Community Council in Coral Bay. Bring a photo ID, a property tax bill, and, if possible, a photo of the damaged roof. Visit www.sad.usace.army.mil/Blueroof or call 888-ROOF-BLU.

+Apply for FEMA assistance by Dec. 18! Visit www.disasterassistance.gov, call 800-621-FEMA, or sign up 8a-5p at the DRC at the Legislative Annex building in Cruz Bay or the DRC at the Community Council in Coral Bay. Visit FEMA U.S. Virgin Islands, to learn about programs offered.

FEMA’s SBA program is also at the DRCs to help businesses impacted and offers low-interest, long-term disaster loans for physical damage and working capital. Information on the disaster loan program may be obtained by calling SBA’s Customer Service Center at 800-659-2955 (800-877-8339 for the deaf and hard-of-hearing) or by sending an email todisastercustomerservice@sba.gov. Applicants may apply online using the Electronic Loan Application (ELA) via SBA’s secure website at https://disasterloan.sba.gov/ela. Loan applications can be downloaded fromwww.sba.gov/disaster. Completed applications should be returned to a recovery center or mailed to: U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX 76155.

The filing deadline to submit applications for physical property damage is Dec. 18, 2017 for Hurricanes Irma and Maria. The deadline for economic injury applications is June 7, 2018 for Hurricane Irma and June 20, 2018 for Hurricane Maria.

+$41 million in Public Assistance grants reflect our commitment to the recovery effort across the Virgin Islands,” said FEMA Federal Coordinating Officer William Vogel. “We strongly support the territorial government’s priorities of caring for survivors, getting lights turned on throughout the islands and clearing roadways of debris for everyone’s health and safety.” There are over 500 line workers in the territory; and a multitude of FEMA, emergency disaster workers and volunteers; military personnel and insurance adjusters now living with us in the community.

+Senator Millin Young said it is time to start thinking about building a robust economy and called for the repeal of the sin tax bill. “I opposed this tax increase in the beginning, and today, I oppose them again for their negative impact on our economy. We will not recover with more taxes on our businesses. Our businesses need tax relief to jumpstart our economy,” she said.
Additionally, the senator called for property tax Bill No. 32-0030, which seeks to provide relief to property owners who are assessed exorbitant taxes, to be forwarded to the full Senate. “This bill will be impactful for the territory’s residents, especially St. Johnians who pay the most property taxes and get the least government services,” Ms. Millin, who sponsored the legislation, said. “This inequity was shown to us all by the way the central government failed to serve St. Johnians after Hurricane Irma hit.”
On the infrastructure side, the senator has reached out to Tesla and its SolarCity subsidiary to come up with temporary and perhaps long-term solutions to provide energy services to the U.S. Virgin Islands. “As policymakers, we need to identify what is needed to attract such development to our shores,” Ms. Millin Young said.

 

Source: Celia Kalousek, Executive Director of St. John Community Foundation

ST. JOHN OFF THE BEATEN TRACK

Includes 200 full color photos

St. John off the Beaten Track is your guide to the beaches, trails and hidden attractions of St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands. Find quiet beaches, the best snorkeling spots and abandoned sugar estates. Learn about the islands history, geology, culture, people, ecology, plants and animals. National Park trails include detailed maps, information on historic ruins, and description on natural environment along the trails. Off trail adventures are also explored including secluded shorelines, pristine seasonal streams in the mountains (also known on island as guts), fresh water pools, seasonal waterfalls and more.

This is a must have book for every visitor going to St. John, and also for every resident. The information is excellent; you will learn, laugh and be intrigued by the wealth of details shared on the treasures and secrets of exploring St. John.

Order Today: $24.95

ST. JOHN OFF THE BEATEN TRACK

Stay up to date with news from VInow.
Sign up to receive Virgin Islands articles, updates and offers.


Advertise with Us

Join VInow.com Today!

Connect with travelers that are planning vacations right here, right now. More

Virgin Islands Moving Guides

Updated information dedicated to Moving and Living in the USVI.

VI Moving Center

Living in de V.I. DVD

Virgin Islands Shopping

The largest section of Virgin Islands Books & Souvenirs. Start planning today!

VITraders.com

Official Sponsor
Team Virgin Islands