(Top left to right) John Griffith Jr., Shukoi Sprauve, Patrick Hendrickson, Miseal De Lacruz, Dante Mccot and Nekwante Sprauve. (Bottom left to right) Abraham Nunez, Jaco Lewis, Melvin Burgess and Kaleed Powell. Coach Clarence Stephenson stands behind the team.
On Saturday, May 11, Julius E. Sprauve School?s elementary boys basketball team wrapped up a perfect season by winning the Virgin Islands Territorial Championship.
With a perfect season on the line, and having already earned the title of St. Thomas/St. John District Champion, the JESS basketball team beat the undefeated St. Croix District champion team from Claude O. Markoe in two games.
The JESS Seagulls, under the direction of coach Clarence Stephenson, were led by Shukoi Sprauve, who was named the championship game MVP. Shukoi Sprauve scored 27 points and posted 10 rebounds along with five steals in the clinching game.
This is the best finish yet for the JESS Seagulls elementary school basketball team, who made it to the district?s final four before losing last year.
The group continues to improve and the community can only expect more championships to come, explained Coach Stephenson, who has been coaching youth basketball on St. John for six years and been helming the JESS team for one year.
?Last year we made it to the final four and the year before that the Guy Benjamin School team I coached won the district championship,? said Stephenson. ?We?ll be back next year for sure. We have a great program going and the girls and boys teams are going to be great next year.?
All this basketball success on St. John comes despite the lack of a functioning full court on which to practice. The Pine Peace basketball court, which often flooded, is currently under renovation and is not expected to open for several months.
In the meantime, the JESS student athletes have been practicing on the Estate Adrian half-court, but they?re excited for the new court to be finished, Coach Stephenson added.
?They can?t wait for the new court,? he said. ?The kids are really excited.?
JESS Elementary Basketball Coach Stephenson, JESS Athletic Director Lea Richmond and school principal Dionne Wells are extremely proud of these student athletes, who played hard all year!
MKSCHC nurses, doctors and staff pose in front of the island?s health facility during a celebration of National Hospital Week, which also marked 30 years for the health center.
The Myrah Keating Smith Community Health Center opened its doors to St. John patients in 1983 and Eddie Bruce was among those who helped celebrate by providing live music.
On Thursday morning, May 16, Bruce was on hand once again, this time with fellow musicians Michael Sorzano and Koko Pickering, to celebrate the 30th anniversary of MKSCHC.
With several tents erected in the health center parking lot to provide shade, MKSCHC staff took time to recognize those who go the extra mile to help patients and also handed out Years of Service awards to employees of five, 10 and 30 years.
?Behind the success of any great business you will find it is great people who make it work,? said Schneider Regional Medical Center CEO Dr. Bernard Wheatley.
While celebrating MKSCHC?s 30 years of dedicated service to the St. John community, Wheatley looked ahead while sharing remarks with the crowd.
?Not only are we here to celebrate 30 years but to look forward to the next 30 years, too,? said Wheatley. ?We are only as strong as we are united.?
A donation of about $90 a month can help ensure that Carolina Corral can continue to take care of all its donkeys.
While the Saturday, May 11, Second Ever Donkey Softball game in the Coral Bay ball field drew a small crowd who enjoyed donkey rides and games, Carolina Corral owner Dana Bartlett remains in need of financial assistance.
While running her business is difficult enough, Bartlett also cares for island donkeys in need. Whether they have been hit by a car or broken a leg, it?s Bartlett?s phone which rings when a donkey on St. John needs assistance.
?When I get a local call early in the morning, it usually means I?m heading out looking for an injured donkey,? said Bartlett.Although Bartlett always responds to donkeys in need, she?s having trouble keeping them all fed.
?A lot of these donkeys are too young or just can?t be used for rides,? said the Carolina Corral owner. ?But they all eat and that adds up. And that?s even before any medical treatment or needs.?
To help offset those costs, Bartlett is offering an ?Adopt a Donkey? campaign where residents can donate about $90 a month to make sure all those hungry mouths get the food they need.
Bartlett can also use volunteers to help clean and feed the animals, she added.
For more information or to adopt a donkey from Carolina Corral, call Bartlett at 693-5778.
Recent heavy rains brought down a new section of the already eroding area of Centerline Road near the Upper Carolina subdivision turnoff, above. DPW officials are aware of the problem but don?t expect to move ahead with repairs for at least three months.
Heavy rains on Friday, May 10, brought flooding across the territory, but the force of the rain just might have caused the worst damage on St. John.
A section of Centerline Road near the Upper Carolina subdivision turnoff has been deteriorating since the fall of 2010, when Tropical Storm Otto?s deluge undermined the already eroding roadbed.
More than two and a half years later, Department of Public Works has done no work on the area and each heavy rain only erodes the area more and more. Such was the case on Friday night, May 10, when a large section of asphalt crumbled away, further undermining the sole road into and out of Coral Bay.
St. John residents driving past the area last week were warned of the growing danger by a new and larger bright orange barrier which was placed in the damaged road section, joining several orange cones which were placed in the area in 2010. The placing of the orange cones and new barriers is only action DPW officials have taken in the area, and residents should not expect to see any additional improvements to the road before mid-August at the earliest, explained DPW Commissioner Darryl Smalls.
Caneel Bay Resort enjoys a breath-taking location on the north shore of St. John.
Caneel Bay Resort was ranked number eight on the 2013 online ranking of the Top 100 Tennis Resorts.
Tennis aficionados seeking superior play beneath the Caribbean sun should look no further than Caneel Bay, A Rosewood Resort.
The exclusive beachfront resort on St. John, has earned a Gold Medal ranking for being in the top 25 resorts from Tennis Resorts Online.
Caneel Bay made the list at #8 in the 2013 online ranking of the Top 100 Tennis Resorts and Camps. Caneel Bay also took the spot of the top-ranked resort in the Caribbean, #4 for Best Setting, and #2 for Best for Couples. Caneel Bay has been the highest ranking tennis resort in Mexico, Caribbean and the Bahamas since 2005.
?We are honored to be recognized in this way by Tennis Resorts Online and thank all our tennis guests for their kind support,? said Donald Becker, Director of Tennis at Caneel Bay. ?I would also like to thank the owners and managers at Caneel Bay and our entire tennis team who are instrumental in offering the highest standards of service to our guests. I feel this award is a testament to the fact that tennis is a big draw for visitors to the U.S. Virgin Islands.?
Native stone details can be found throughout Villa Coyaba.
Stretch out on the deck of Villa Coyaba, gaze over the infinity edge swimming pool and allow the sound of the surf at Devers Bay below to lull you into a state of blissful relaxation.
This newly constructed villa, with three bedrooms and three and a half bathrooms, is for sale for $4.413 million, explained Islandia Real Estate broker/owner Merry Nash.
Located on a flat lot in Estate Chocolate Hole East, Villa Coyaba is situated to take full advantage of the steady, cooling trade winds.
The home boasts mesmerizing views over Chocolate Hole and along the south shore of St. John to St. Croix while being located just a short drive from the dining, shopping and nightlife of Cruz Bay. The island?s famed North Shore beaches are also only a few minutes drive.
With natural brick and beautiful native stonework, Villa Coyaba combines luxurious details while also nodding to Caribbean history, explained Nash.
?Some of the best features of Villa Coyaba are the two stone, round towers which are based on replicas of old sugar mills,? said the Islandia Real Estate broker/owner.
It will surely be difficult to pull yourself away from the endless water views found just beyond the infinity edge swimming pool overlooking Devers Bay. The expansive pool deck offers plenty of space to lounge about and soak up the tropical sun, or relax in the shade.
?The infinity edge pool overlooking Devers Bay is beautiful,? said Nash. ?You can hear the surf from the pool.?
Inside Villa Coyaba find a large private master suite complete with its own sitting room, office and den. The home also offers two oversized, private guest bedroom pods each with its own dressing area and native stone shower.
The living spaces are centered around a large and elegantly appointed great room. With luxurious dining and living areas as well as high-end furnishings, spending a night in at Villa Coyaba will be a real treat.
The kitchen at Villa Coyaba includes custom hard wood cabinets, plenty of counter space and state of the art, stainless steel appliances. Pull up a chair at the large and inviting breakfast bar and discuss the day?s beach plans.
Enjoy all that St. John and tropical living have to offer at Villa Coyaba. For more information on the home, call Nash at Islandia Real Estate at (340) 776-6666 or on her cell at (340) 642-2246.