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Thursday, March 27, 2008

NOAA Coral Reef Watch Launches Online Tutorial About Coral Reefs and Satellite Technology

If you’ve ever wondered how a satellite measures the temperature of the ocean’s surface from 850 kilometers above the earth, or you have never heard of the Degree Heating Weeks concept, then the new online tool from NOAA’s Coral Reef Watch will help educate you.

NOAA Coral Reef Watch just announced they’ve launched an online tutorial that takes their readers through coral bleaching, satellite technology, as well as how satellite data is used to monitor for the conditions that cause coral bleaching.  Readers will also find hands-on exercises to test themselves on what they’ve learned and also illustrate where to find data on the NOAA web site.

The main audience is coral reef managers and scientists, who need to know when corals they manage or study are at risk for bleaching.  However, NOAA has also tried to use non-technical language so the resource will be useful for students and teachers—or anyone else who wants to learn more about coral reefs and satellite technology. The lessons are tied to the U.S. National Science Education standards for use in the classroom.

To learn more about this valuable tool, click here(Source:  MINA)

Posted by Susan Davis on March 27, 2008 at 2:53pm AST
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Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Final Program is Announced for Bonaire Heineken Jazz Festival 2008

For the fourth consecutive year, the Bonaire Heineken Jazz Festival 2008 will be held from May 22 to 25, 2008 and it promises to be another huge success. 

The festival will be opened by the Lt. Governor on May 22 with a “Jazz and Poetry” presentation in Fort Oranje. The evening will start off with local “Poets and Musicians”, followed by the main act which will be presented by the well known Izaline Calister and her trio. Izaline will perform her personal musical style, which is a mixture of jazz and the music of her native Curacao.

The second evening, May 23, will be held at Plaza Resort and will start with the Bonaire Studentband, strengthened by other professional musicians from the Festival.  Last year this band “stole the show” with a fantastic performance.  After the Studentband, Frankie Yanga’s Quintet, “Footsteps Ahead”, will perform, with local percussionist Boy Janga and a Cuban saxophonist. The main act this evening will again be performed by Izaline Calister, this time with her full band of nine musicians.

The third evening will also be held at the Plaza Resort and will start with local band, the Jon Hilgers Blues Band, called Tin Foil. This performance will be followed by the Venezulean Jazz band Empatia, led by prize winning Pablo Gil, composer, saxophonist, and flutist.  The main act this third evening will be by Willie Martines with his “La Familia Sextet” playing “New York Style Latin Jazz.” Willie is a professional drummer, percussionist, and singer, and he and his band regularly play at the Lennox Lounge in New York City.

The fourth and final day of the Festival, May 25, will be held at the Divi Flamingo Resort with a Jazz Brunch where festival musicians and local jazz artists will hold a rousing jam session while guests can enjoy a wonderful lunch. Last year this jazz brunch was one of the highlights of the Festival.

Scott Katzev, a Philadelphia saxophonist whose family owns a home on Bonaire, will perform as guest soloist with several of the bands during the Festival, including the Studentband and Tin Foil.

During the Jazz Festival there will be an art exposition at Kas di Arte sponsored by the Bonaire Jazz Foundation. The exposition will open on May 21 at 5:00 PM with live jazz. The expositions on May 22 and 23 will also be accompanied by local jazz groups and guest players from 5:00 PM until 7:00 PM.

Starting times on Thursday, Friday and Saturday will be 7:30 PM and events will end around midnight. The Jazz brunch will start at 11:30 AM. Entrance fees are kept low due to generous sponsoring by many of Bonaire’s businesses. Entrance fee for the first evening at Fort Oranje with “Jazz and Poetry” will be NAFl 10.00 (USD $5.62) and for the main concerts on Friday and Saturday the entrance will cost NAFl 30.00 (USD $16.86) for each or NAFl 50.00 (USD $ 28.09) for both nights. A ticket to the Jazz Brunch will cost NAFl 45.00 (USD $25.00) and will include the buffet lunch.

The main sponsors for the Festival are Heineken, RE/MAX Bonaire Homes, Littman’s Jewelers, Rocargo, Maduro & Curiel’s Bank (Bonaire), Plaza Resort, Divi Flamingo Resort, Caribbean Laundry, Notaris Maartense, John Russel Insurance, MultiFunction Management, Playa Trading, and Telbo.  (Source:  Bonaire Jazz Foundation)

Posted by Susan Davis on March 26, 2008 at 10:45am AST
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Tuesday, March 25, 2008

CIEE Lecture Tonight (Tuesday, March 25, 2008) Entitled Dolphin Societies, Mysteries and Puzzles

There has been a last-minute lecture scheduled for tonight, Tuesday, March 25th, 2008 at the CIEE Research Station Bonaire entitled Dolphin Societies:  Mysteries and Puzzles, presented by Dr. Daniela Maldini.

Dr. Maldini is on Bonaire this semester teaching a course in Marine Conservation Biology at CIEE; she specializes in marine mammals.

The lecture will begin at 7:30 PM, is free of cost, and everyone is welcome.  The CIEE Research Station is located at Kaya Gobernador Debrot 21, on the main road between Kralendijk and Harbour Village Resort, next to the Seaside Apartments.  (Source:  CIEE)

Posted by Susan Davis on March 25, 2008 at 1:27pm AST
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Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Sixth Annual Special Olympics Bonaire Walk-a-Thon Will Be Held March 30, 2008

Another fun, annual event, the Special Olympics Bonaire Walk-a-Thon garners more participants each year.  Both visitors who are on island on March 30th, as well as locals, can participate.

As in past years, the Walk-a-Thon will leave from the slaves huts in the south, and the course will be 30 kilometers, ending in Rincon.  Participants can walk, roller-blade, run, ride a bike, or cover the route in whatever manner they wish.  There will be a total of eight water stops en route.  It will begin at 5:00 AM and the entry fee is FL 25.00 (USD $14.04), and includes an event t-shirt and cap, as well as refreshments en route.  For additional information, contact Claire Sealy at 786-5454 or Chio Semeleer at (09) 540-6840.  (Source:  Special Olympics Bonaire)

Posted by Susan Davis on March 19, 2008 at 3:18pm AST
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Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Dive Friends Welcomes Dive Inn as their Fourth Location on Bonaire and Offers Opening Special

Dive Friends Bonaire just announced that last Wednesday, March 12, 2008, Dive Inn Bonaire officially became the fourth location of Dive Friends Bonaire.  The company welcomes this newest facility to its family of dive facilities, and feels Dive Inn will complement the existing three dive stores at Dive Friends Yellow Sub, Dive Friends Port Bonaire, Dive Friends Hamlet Oasis, as well as the two retail stores in Kralendijk.

Dive Friends Dive Inn will re-open on April 1st, 2008, after completing a metamorphosis to join the Dive Friends group.  During the first two days, April 1st and 2nd, the store will hold a huge second-hand-gear sale, with deals on BCDs, regulators, masks, and wetsuits, as well as other diving-related items.  After these sale days, the store will reopen for regular diving business, including diving packages and courses.

Dive Friends Dive Inn special location on the southern end of the oceanfront promenade adds to the already excellent coverage, as the four dive shops in the Dive Friends group make it easy for their divers to pickup or drop off tanks at any location during their visit. Dive Friends Port Bonaire can service those on the southern end of the island, Dive Friends Hamlet Oasis can assist those on the north end of the island, and the two ocean promenade locations (Dive Friends Yellow Sub, to the north, and Dive Friends Dive Inn, to the south) can serve those staying in or around Kralendijk.

Dive Friends has agreed to honor all existing reservations.  Those with existing reservations are asked to reconfirm their plans with Dive Friends by sending an e-mail to diveinn@dive-friends-bonaire.com, so that all existing reservations can be transferred correctly.

During May and June, 2008, Dive Friends Bonaire is offering a Dive Friends Dive Inn Opening Special.  Any diver booking a six-day unlimited air dive package will receive it at the special price of $99.00 per person (sales tax not included), instead of the normal price of $114.00 per person.  Additionally, each diver is then eligible for a free upgrade to Nitrox (32%), as well as a free guided dive to the Wreck of the Hilma Hooker.  Advanced reservations are necessary to receive this special price, and the special is open to divers at any of Dive Friends Bonaire’s four locations. (Source:  Dive Friends Bonaire)

Posted by Susan Davis on March 18, 2008 at 2:33pm AST
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Monday, March 17, 2008

Upcoming Presentation on Bonaire’s Coral Reefs

Dr. Robert Steneck, a professor of marine sciences at the University of Maine, and his team are completing a research project and will present their findings in a presentation entitled, “A Report on the Status of Coral Reefs of Bonaire in 2007.”

This presentation will summarize five years of research on Bonaire in such different areas as abundance of corals, abundance of algae, trends of distribution, abundance of carnivorous and herbivorous reef fish, coral recruitment, and impact of traditional fishing methods, among other items.

The presentation will take place in Captain Don’s Habitat conference room at 7:00 PM on Thursday, March, 20th, 2008, and all are invited to attend.  (Source:  Bonaire National Marine Park)

Note Update April 1, 2008:  A copy of Dr. Steneck’s final report on his monitoring work on Bonaire can by found online by clicking here (in PDF format). (Source:  Bonaire National Marine Park)

Posted by Susan Davis on March 17, 2008 at 4:06pm AST
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Friday, March 14, 2008

Delta Air Lines Announces Bonaire Summer Schedule

Delta Air Lines has announced that due to a “strong Saturday demand” that the aircraft operating between Atlanta and Bonaire will be upgraded from a 737-800 with 16 first class and 124 coach seats to a 757 with 24 first class and 159 coach seats. The upgraded equipment will be in the systems on March 22 and cover the summer schedule.

Concurrently, due to very low booking levels, Delta Air Lines has announced that they have made the determination to cancel the Wednesday flights that were scheduled for the summer (June 11 through August 13). The flights will come out of the system on March 22.  Delta has provided the following information concerning re-accommodating customers:

“Generally, if there is alternate service within a day or so, the customers may be moved to those dates.  In this instance, since there was not alternate service in an acceptable time frame, the PNRs were canceled [UN’d].  GDS PNRs are automatically sent the UN message during sked change/reaccom and it is their responsibility to handle.  Direct DL Reservations, whether group or non-group, are placed on urgent queues and the agency and/or customer is called by DL.”

During the re-accommodation process, Aruba will be offered as an alternate.  (Source:  TCB-NY)

Posted by Susan Davis on March 14, 2008 at 12:11pm AST
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Wednesday, March 12, 2008

30th Annual Kite Flying Competition is April 6th, 2008

Each spring brings the windy season, and each windy season brings the Kontest di Fli, or Kite Flying Contest, a long-standing tradition on Bonaire.  Now in its 30th year, this year’s competition will be held on Sunday, April 6th, 2008.

The contest will be held in the Juventus field, located behind Kooyman’s.  It begins as early as 9:00 AM, and will go most of the day.  This year the event welcomes participants from Curacao.  There will be prizes for the smallest, strangest, most beautiful, the biggest, and the most original kites.  A grand prize will also be awarded.  Since all kites are home-made, it’s a fun event to watch and photograph, as well as to participate.  Music will be provided by HB Disco, and there will be booths selling foods, drinks, and other items.

Those interested in participating can sign up at Flamingo Bookstore on Kaya Grandi.  Entry fee is FL 3.50 (about USD $2.00) per child, or FL 7.50 (about USD $4.20) per adult.  Thanks go to sponsors:  Santa Barbara Development Company, WEB, Flamingo Bookstore, and Maduro & Curiel’s Bank (Bonaire).  (Source:  Extra)

Posted by Susan Davis on March 12, 2008 at 1:45pm AST
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Monday, March 10, 2008

American Airlines Announces Spring Fare Sale that Includes Bonaire

American Airlines has just announced a Caribbean and Mexico Fare Sale for travel valid from April 1st through May 22nd, 2008, if booked and ticketed prior to March 18th, 2008.

Sample roundtrip fares shown on the American Airlines web site show the following:  Chicago-Bonaire:  $373.00, Los Angeles-Bonaire:  $466.00, Dallas-Bonaire:  $373.00, Miami-Bonaire:  $441.00, New York La Guardia-Bonaire:  $408.00.  Restrictions do apply, and stopovers en-route of more than 24 hours are not allowed.  For more information, visit their web site by clicking here(Source:  American Airlines Web Site)

Posted by Susan Davis on March 10, 2008 at 8:23am AST
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Thursday, March 06, 2008

Bonaire Affair’s 2008 Maps of Bonaire Are Now Available on their Web Site

Bonaire Affair’s maps of the island of Bonaire and its towns have become very popular in the past few years, as they accurately portray the island, its dive sites, highlights, restaurants, hotels, and other important services for tourists.  Although the print version comes out in December/January each year and is available free of charge around the island, those who have not yet arrived on-island can still use the Internet version for planning their vacations in advance of their arrival.

Bonaire Affair’s web site is located at www.bonaireislandmap.com.  Viewers may choose between a full island map, or individual town maps, including a great map of Kralendijk.

To view information about providers of services such as hotels, car and scooter rentals, activities, shopping, real estate, etc., you may either click on the text links at the bottom of the map pages, or click on the map itself to expand it to a large version.  (Please be patient, as the map is quite large and may take a moment or two to download.) Once you are on the full size map, you may scroll right or left and up or down to find the area in which you have an interest.  Or, simply click right on the headings on the enlarged maps, as they will also produce a list of providers.

The 2008 version of the maps is the third on-line version.  (Source:  Bonaire Affair)

Posted by Susan Davis on March 06, 2008 at 11:03am AST
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