Local News
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By Cécile Lucot
    Cécile Lucot has been living in St. Barths for 9 years. Originally from Bordeaux, this professional journalist has been the editor-in-chief of St-Barth Magazine for 6 years. She is he press agent for Jeet Singh and his rock group Dragonfly. She writes regularly for regional magazines such as Mer Caraïbes and Tropical, and once or twice a month presents a synthese of the local news on St. Barths Online.
  July 18th, 2003 - #3
  Summer Activities Underway
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  July 14, French “Independence Day” commemorates the storming of the Bastille on July 14, 1789 and the onset of the French Revolution. Many towns in France celebrate with a military parade and a reception at City Hall. St-Barth held its own traditional parade comprised of elected officials, local celebrities, and representatives of the municipal and state police in full-dress uniform. At 10:30am, the procession marched from the former City Hall to the War Memorial. Here the mayor made a short speech recalling the historic elements of this important day, and invited the forty-some people in attendance to join him at City Hall where a cocktail reception awaited them. By nine o’clock in the evening, a large crowd filled the streets of Gustavia to watch the fireworks that went off in the harbor beyond Public. Those who wanted to continue the celebration went over to the commercial dock in Public (since Quay General de Gaulle in Gustavia is under construction until November), where a dance featured the local band, RMI.
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  July 14 also marks the beginning of the islandŐs summer activities. Through August 25, the feast day of Saint Louis, patron saint of Corossol, each neighborhood organizes a weekend of festivities on the beach. Activities include various games for all ages, volleyball tournaments, regattas for traditional island sailboats, and in the late afternoon, dance concerts presented by young girls from the neighborhood before the awards ceremonies, fireworks, and a dance to cap off the evening.
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  Another event traditionally held on a weekend in mid-July is the annual deep-sea fishing tournament organized by Christian Audebert. This year, for the 11th edition, there were 16 boats that participated: three from St-Martin, one from St-Maarten, four from Guadeloupe, one from Martinique, one from Anguilla and one from Florida, plus five from St-Barth. The two-day competition is followed by a picnic at Colombier where the fishermen enjoy the fish caught over the weekend. High seas and steady winds of 25 knots did not make for great fishing. The current record was set in 2000 when Arawak, a boat with from St-Martin, caught a marlin weighing 669 pounds, and remains unbeaten. A total of six marlin, the two largest of which weighed over 400 pounds, were caught, photographed, and released, as per the rules of this “tag and release” tournament.
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  Rain of ashes falls on St-Barth
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  Sunday morning, July 13, St-Barth and St-Martin awoke under a thin later of ash that came from the Soufrière of Montserrat. The ashes came from an eruption that took place Saturday night around 10:30pm. In the late afternoon, winds from the south of 60 kilometers per hour began blowing and carried the ash toward the northern islands of the Antilles. This unusual rain began to fall on Sunday at 3:00am, and continued for over 90 minute. Around 5:00am, the wind changed to the north, carrying the cloud toward the Virgin Islands. A few hours later, the tradewinds from the east returned. But all day Sunday, ashes were still suspended in the air, causing the airport to remain closed, and no planes were able to take off or land. As for the island’s residents, they spent two days cleaning their houses and gardens. The last time that ashes rained on St-Barth was on the morning of August 9, 1997; the Soufrière of Montserrat was the source of that ash as well.
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  More to Come
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  Cécile Lucot
  
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