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Friday, February 29, 2008

Bonaire Island Government Stipulates Fish Reserve Areas

The Executive Council of Bonaire took the decision to install two areas of fish reserves in the Bonaire Marine Park.  The two areas are between Playa Chachacha going southward to the marina at Plaza Resort, as well as Punt’i Waya (the north end of Hato) going southward to the marina at Harbour Village Resort.  Effective immediately, it is prohibited to fish in these areas.

The creation of these reserve areas is part of the government’s nature management plan and are part of the marine park which STINAPA administers.  During 2007, STINAPA, together with a section of the nature managment area of DROB, investigated the idea of the reserves with scientists, local fishermen, and other involved entities.

The rangers of the Bonaire National Marine Park will be supervising and patrolling the new fish reserves.  As in the past, other areas within the marine park are unaffected, such as between Karpata and Bopec and the area of Playa Frans to Boka Slagbaai.

The creation of these fish reserves was based upon the fact that, during past years, the local Bonaire fishermen noted less fish were available and that the fish caught were smaller in size than those caught only ten years ago. This same phenomenon was also experienced in St. Lucia, where local fisherman found more fish, and larger fish, only after the creation of fish reserves.  The reserves provide fish with areas where they can reproduce and grow to larger sizes without disturbance. (Source:  Bonaire Island Government)

Posted by Susan Davis on February 29, 2008 at 10:55am AST
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Thursday, February 28, 2008

Annual Bonaire Wave Challenge is Scheduled for March 15 and 16, 2008

This annual event is fun for both participants and spectators.  Always held during Bonaire’s windy season, the Wave Challenge pits visiting sailors against Bonaire’s local pros and amateurs.  The event takes place at Cai on Lac Bay, and it’s fun to watch the windsurfers catapult off huge waves for some impressive aerobatics.

Images of last year’s event are available on the Bonaire Insider Photo Gallery by clicking here

This year’s event is hosted and directed by Elvis Martinus of Bonaire Windsurf Place, and heats will run from 11:00 AM through to 5:00 PM both days.  Thanks go to the current sponsors:  Bonaire Seaside Apartments, Fast Forward/Ellen Faller, AB Car Rental, Antillean Wine Company, The Island Supplier, Divi Flamingo Beach Resort and Casino, Caribbean Wind & Sun Vacations, Jibe City, and Bonaire Windsurf Place.  (Source:  Caribbean Wind & Sun Vacations)

Note Update March 15, 2008: This event has been postponed.  No further information is available.

Posted by Susan Davis on February 28, 2008 at 1:40pm AST
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Wednesday, February 27, 2008

La Huerta is a New Outlet for Fresh Fruits and Vegetables on Bonaire

Just before the close of 2007, a new store opened its doors on Kaya Grandi in Kralendijk.  La Huerta is a new source for fresh fruits and vegetables, including more exotic tropical fruits.

Managed by owner/operators Luciano and Juan Pablo, La Huerta offers tourists and residents high quality fruit and vegetables.  They receive weekly deliveries of fresh produce, and additionally, every two weeks they receive a shipment from Colombia which may include such exotic fruits and vegetables as the star fruit, baby bok choy, pitaya (cactus fruit, or sometimes called the apple cactus), or guava.  The store has become very popular during the past two months, and in many cases, their stock goes out the door as quickly as it comes in, so it pays to call ahead for information as to what they currently have in stock.

Both Luciano and Juan Pablo are very service-oriented, and try to take as much time as possible with the customers, explaining the different fruits and vegetables and how they can be used.  La Huerta is located in a bright, vegetable green building, just north of Kralendijk, at Kaya Grandi #81.  Their phone number is 717-3141.  (Source:  Bonaire Insider reporter)

Note Update September 1, 2008: We regret to inform that La Huerta had to close its doors.  Unfortunately, the freight costs of importing high quality fruits and vegetables became too high with the increasing fuel costs.  (Source:  Bonaire Insider reporter)

Posted by Susan Davis on February 27, 2008 at 1:52pm AST
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Monday, February 25, 2008

Patagonia Restaurant Offers Live Music Each Thursday With Latin and Jazz Rhythms

In addition to the live entertainment available each Sunday at Patagonia Restaurant, also Andreina and the Latin Trio play from 7:00 PM to 10:00 PM each Thursday night.

Many locals and visiting tourists alike will remember Andreina from past performances, as she and her band are now very popular.  Offering a nice backdrop to Patagonia’s dinner service, Andreina sings both favorites and classics with a smooth, Latin jazz beat.  Additional information about Patagonia Restaurant’s live musical entertainment is available by visiting their web site by clicking here.  Reservations are always recommended for either lunch or dinner.  (Source:  Patagonia Restaurant)

Posted by Susan Davis on February 25, 2008 at 4:51pm AST
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Thursday, February 21, 2008

Museum Mangazina di Rei Offers Open House on Saturday, February 23, 2008

Once again this year, the Mangazina di Rei will hold an open house on this Saturday, with a variety of events and demonstrations from 9:00 AM until 5:00 PM.

During the day, there will be music, story-telling, guided tours of the museum, demonstrations on how to cut the harvest maishi, along with local food.  To reserve your spot for dining, call Edith Strauss Mercera at 717-4060 or 786-4643. 

Mangazina di Rei is the second oldest stone building on Bonaire, and was originally used to store provisions for the government slaves.  The structure has been completely restored.  The Mangazina features an open-air museum of historic houses and a botanical garden, and is an important part of the history of Rincon and her people.  (Source:  Extra)

Posted by Susan Davis on February 21, 2008 at 7:58am AST
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Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Golden Reef Inn Now Offers Full-Service Photographic Services

Golden Reef Inn has just announced that is has partnered with Fish-Eye Photo to provide the inn’s guests with a full line of photographic services.

Services include digital underwater imaging, either photography or video), equipment, and accessory rentals.  PADI photography or video specialty courses are available.

To learn more about new packages that include photography, contact Golden Reef Inn by clicking here.  Group Rates available.  (Source:  Golden Reef Inn)

Posted by Susan Davis on February 20, 2008 at 4:08pm AST
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Friday, February 15, 2008

Next CIEE Lecture Series Features Bonaire’s Own Captain Don

Over the past several months, CIEE (The Council on International Educational Exchange) has been offering several free, public lectures on various nature and environmental issues.  The series will continue this Tuesday, February 19, 2008 at 7:30 PM, featuring a Bonaire legend, Captain Don Stewart.

Don’s lecture is entitled, “The Rings to a Shangri-La”, and he promises that not only will environmental issues be covered, but it will be entertaining, too.  The presentation will meander through a medley of forty exciting vignettes and is illustrated with over 110 period photographs.  And in Don’s infamous words, “It’s guaranteed to be 85% true.”

CIEE Research Station Bonaire is located on Kaya Gobernador Debrot 21, on the main road between Kralendijk and Harbour Village Resort, next to the Seaside Apartments.  The lecture is open to the public and admission is free.  (Source:  CIEE Bonaire)

Posted by Susan Davis on February 15, 2008 at 4:47pm AST
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Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Sand Dollar and Bonaire Dive and Adventure Host Bonaire’s First Annual Fish ID Challenge

Sand Dollar Condominium Resort and Bonaire Dive and Adventure have teamed up to host the First Annual Fish ID Challenge from August 9 - 16 and August 16 -23, 2008 in conjunction with fish identification experts Patti and Scott Chandler of ReefNet, Inc.

During these two weeks, participants will enjoy multimedia Fish ID seminars, receive custom Fish ID guides and other gifts, and local Bonaire naturalist, Jerry Ligon, along with ReefNet’s Patti and Scott will lead guided shore dives on Bari Reef.  Participants will be further challenged with the goal of locating a “fish du jour” which will be posted on a daily “Wanted Poster.” At each week’s end, prizes will be awarded for the guest(s) who accumulate the most points for daily fish sightings. Guests will be encouraged to participate in a cumulative weekly fish sighting tally that will be updated daily to illustrate the vast representation of fish that can be found in Bonaire’s calm waters. 

Advanced registration for the Fish ID Challenge is required prior to June 15, 2008 at a fee of $100 per person per week for Sand Dollar guests and $150 per person per week for Bonaire visitors staying elsewhere. 

For additional information, click here to view the press release (in PDF format).  For reservations please contact your favorite dive travel professional or contact Sand Dollar Condominium Resort at 1-800-288-4773 or via email by clicking here or visit their web site by clicking here(Source:  Sand Dollar Condominium Resort)

Posted by Susan Davis on February 13, 2008 at 10:23am AST
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Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Additional Changes in Street Closures in Coming Weeks Due to Cruise Ships in Bonaire’s Port

This coming Wednesday, February 13, 2008, both the Crown Princess and the Summit will be in Kralendijk’s port.  Both piers, Town Pier (North Pier) and the Customs Pier (South Pier) will be in use during this day.  The Crown Princess will arrive at 8:00 AM and will depart at 5:00 PM.  The Summit will visit from 1:00 PM until 7:00 PM. There are five additional occasions in the coming weeks when both piers will be in use, and road closures will occur.

In connection with this, the previously published scheduled of street closures has been amended.  Instead, the following areas will be closed to any traffic not holding a required permit on February 13, February 20, March 5, March 12, March 19, and March 25:

1) The entrance to the parking lot next to Bestuurscollege (Government House).

2) Kaya Grandi will be closed.

3) The road by Karel’s Beach Bar.

4) The road by the Customs Pier (South Pier).

For those who require additional information, it is suggested they contact either Mr. Robert Evertsz or Mr. Rolando Marin at the TCB, phone 717-8322.  The Tourist Corporation Bonaire apologizes for any inconvenience this situation causes.

To view the TCB release in Papiamentu, click here(Source:  TCB Bonaire)

Posted by Susan Davis on February 12, 2008 at 11:16am AST
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Support Bonaire, Inc. Grants Over US$48,000 to Bonaire Charities in 2007

Support Bonaire, Inc., a U.S. non-profit organization created to help support Bonaire’s non-profit social and environmental efforts announced that its 2007 grants to various Bonaire non-profit organizations was US$48,913.90. Funding for Support Bonaire’s grants comes solely from individual donors who select from one of a series of special projects Support Bonaire has created to focus on particular needs on Bonaire. 

In some cases, donors may also request that Support Bonaire apply some part of their donation to their favorite charitable effort on Bonaire, a request that the Board of Directors of Support Bonaire typically honors.

During 2007, the top recipient of grants from Support Bonaire was the Bonaire Donkey Sanctuary, thanks to several sizable donations by American donors to the Support Bonaire Donkey Sanctuary Project. Sea Turtle Conservation Bonaire, Unicollege, and the Lac Bay Monitoring project run by the non-profit Progressive Environmental Solutions organization were the next largest recipients of grants from Support Bonaire.

Other educational and nature organizations also benefited from the largess of donors to Support Bonaire. These organizations included STINAPA, the Bonaire Marine Park, the Bonaire Animal Shelter, the Accolade Foundation, Fundashon pa Bon Koraal, and the Zuster Maria Hoppner Foundation which cares for abused children and children from troubled homes.

While the amount of money distributed may seem like a lot of money, it is minor compared to the funding needs of many of Bonaire’s non-profit organizations, and donors of past years are encouraged to donate again this year and support their favorite charitable project on Bonaire.

The Board of Directors of Support Bonaire, Inc. has also announced that the Sea Monitor project has been added to the list of pre-approved funding projects. The Support Bonaire Sea Monitor project has been active on Bonaire since September 2007, and involves the installation and monitoring of sensors which monitor water quality and other aspects of water as a way of determining what impact run off and sewage is having on Bonaire’s waters. More information about this project is available at the Support Bonaire web site at http://www.SupportBonaire.org.

A majority of the donations to Support Bonaire to support these varied causes mentioned above were donated on-line, via the Internet, at the Support Bonaire web site – www.SupportBonaire.org – where donations by credit card are accepted. 100% of all donations go directly to the target charities on Bonaire, as a small endowment received by Support Bonaire, Inc. some years ago is used to cover all administrative expenses. The Board of Directors of Support Bonaire, Inc. is composed entirely of volunteers, including island residents Jake Richter, Andy Uhr, and Linda Richter, as well as long-time Bonaire home owner and U.S. resident Ann Dederer, without whom Support Bonaire could not continue to operate. The web site space and operation is donated by Stroke of Color, Inc., a U.S. company. All of these contributions of time and resources keep operational costs to a minimum and allow for donated funds to be used 100% for projects on Bonaire.

It should be stressed that Support Bonaire, Inc. itself does not have funds to use to fund grants on Bonaire, but instead relies on American individual and corporate donors to provide funding for specific non-profit projects on Bonaire. Support Bonaire’s special non-profit charity status in the United States permits the organization to accept donations and fund non-profit efforts on Bonaire while allowing American donors to get a deduction on their taxes in the United States.

Support Bonaire, Inc. is an organization dedicated to helping fund non-profit environmental and social projects on the Dutch Caribbean island of Bonaire, by being a U.S. Internal Revenue Service-approved non-profit organization, which in turn allows donors to take a tax deduction on funds they donate to Support Bonaire, Inc. Support Bonaire, Inc.’s virtual offices can be found at http://www.SupportBonaire.org, and an on-line discussion group for the organization is located by clicking here. The organization’s mailing address for monetary donations and other paper correspondence is PMB #340, 2525 Arapahoe Avenue, Suite E4, Boulder, Colorado 80302, U.S.A. Voice mail can be left at +1-303-484-4646, and FAXes can be sent to the same number. Contact via e-mail is preferred, at info@SupportBonaire.org(Source:  Support Bonaire, Inc.)

Posted by Susan Davis on February 12, 2008 at 10:42am AST
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