I was disappointed yesterday to learn that Abaco — which, for decades prior to Hurricane Dorian, has generated a significant amount of tourist revenue for the Bahamas — had been all but wiped clean from the Ministry of Tourism’s website. (Presumably in response to the backlash this generated, it now appears to have been partially reinstated.)
Thankfully, Abaconians are far more resilient and resourceful than our Ministry of Tourism gives us credit for. And to paraphrase Mark Twain, the rumours of Abaco’s demise have been greatly exaggerated.
Don’t get me wrong. We’ve suffered a significant setback. And the road to recovery — especially for Marsh Harbour and central Abaco — will be long and difficult.
But the truth is that there are still resorts, rental properties, boat and cart rental agencies, tour guides and attractions open and available to help plan your Abaco vacation. And your friends in Abaco need your support and tourist dollars now more than ever before.
Several times over the years, I’ve written about the importance of Junkanoo to Bahamian culture.
For well over a century, Green Turtle Cay residents have gathered on New Year’s Day to welcome in the coming year by donning colourful costumes and marching through town accompanied by a cacophony of cowbells, whistles and the infectious rhythm of goat-skin drums.
But when Hurricane Dorian devastated Green Turtle Cay this past September, the storm not only destroyed the island’s Junkanoo shack where residents gathered to make costumes and to practice, but it also ruined many existing costumes and instruments.
With so many locals left without homes and jobs, and with so much rebuilding to do, it seemed unlikely they’d want (or be able) to stage a 2020 New Year’s Junkanoo rush.
Thank you to everyone who has helped to make Christmas a little brighter for the people of Abaco. If you’re in Abaco, please feel free to drop by any of these events for some Christmas cheer. All are welcome.
On Man-O-War, a Christmas Sing-A-Long will be held tonight, Wednesday, December 18 at 7pm at the Gospel Chapel.
Two weeks after Hurricane Dorian devastated the northern Bahamas, the 55’ Nordhavn trawler M/V Adventure arrived at Green Turtle Cay to assist with the island’s recovery. Together with a group of friends and volunteers, vessel owners Captain Bradford and Lorraine Carlton quickly established a food kitchen, which they dubbed the Adventure Cafe.
For twelve weeks, Team M/V Adventure has served breakfast and dinner to the entire community. On November 21, the group announced that, since running water and power have been restored to many homes on the cay, they’d be serving their last meal today, December 13th.
Today is Giving Tuesday – a day that encourages people to give, to collaborate and to do good deeds. Which makes it the perfect day to help the thousands of Bahamians who’ve lost their homes and livelihoods to Hurricane Dorian.
Here’s an updated list of organizations who are doing good things for our Bahamian friends and family members displaced or affected by Dorian. Some agencies are matching donations for Giving Tuesday, so your contribution will go even further.
You might assume the images were shot in early September, shortly after Hurricane Dorian. However, they were taken November 24th — nearly three months after the Category 5 devastated the northern Bahamas.
Of the many things for which I am grateful this year, Team M/V Adventure is high on the list. Thanks to them, to the Green Turtle Club and to everyone who’s helping to give Green Turtle Cay a Thanksgiving dinner later this week.
Ok, folks. Here’s the first iteration of my “What’s Open in Abaco” list. It’s amazing the number of Abaco businesses that have reopened in just the past few weeks — and many more are expected back in the weeks and months ahead.