October 5th Update from Jenn 

October 5th Update from Jenn  1

Happy Thursday everyone!

Thank you for all of the comments yesterday regarding the topics you’d like to know about here on St. John. I was able to read almost all of them, and I plan to start tackling that list this morning.

A few questions I can answer now:

  • A good portion of the road to Maho Bay was washed out. You can drive North Shore Road to the west end of the beach. At that point, the road is blocked due to debris. My guess is that the clearing stopped there due to the washed out road, but that is simply a guess.
  • I saw a baby spotted eagle ray swimming along the shore yesterday at Maho. We also saw at least four turtles pop their heads up. All great news! There was a decent amount of debris floating in the water.
  • The beach at Maho is much wider as the majority, if not all, of the sea grape trees that lined the beach are either gone or fallen due to the storms.
  • The roadway at the east end of the beach, near the larger parking lot, is now a good 18 inches or so from the sand.
  • We do not have the status of Caneel Bay at this time.
  • The Westin has cancelled reservations through June 2018.
  • A few restaurants are hoping to open in the near future. We will not report the names until they are ready.
  • There still in no mail delivery.
  • There is obviously still no power.
  • We’re heading out to Coral Bay today. We will have answers on your Coral Bay questions soon.
  • Most importantly, people are working hard. We want you all to come back as soon as possible, but the island needs to be ready. Today, it’s not ready. But it will be. Soon come.

For those of you who are not on Facebook, here is a pic we shared yesterday of Trunk Bay. Again, thank you all for loving this island.

October 5th Update from Jenn  2

58 thoughts on “October 5th Update from Jenn ”

  1. Glad to see your back. Your doing a great job as always. Your reporting keeps the eyes and ears on STJ for all of us that love the island and it’s people and otherwise would not any information on the “daily happenings of St. John”. Can you also include an update of the East End when you get a chance?

  2. We love St. John. We stayed at Westin in May of this year. We brought all the grandchildren so they could enjoy our very favorite place on earth. Oh yes, we will be back!

    Two questions:
    How is Slim. We love him!
    How is woody’s.

  3. Jenn,
    You are one brave soul being there with no electricity. You’re definitely walking the walk not just talking the talk.
    Also would like to know if Coral Bay governor Rupert Marsh is OK.
    Susan B.

  4. Hi.. I am looking for any information on a local named Mary who works at cinnamon bay at the front desk… We all love her we go to cinnamon bay every year and was wondering how she made out and if we could do anything for her.
    Thanks
    Robin Lescord

    • Are you referring to Mary Athanase? She lost her house. Please search her son Derek Athanase on FB for details …assuming this is same Mary I may be wrong : )

  5. Thank you so much for your updates. They are so appreciated.
    I wish you and all of the SJ islanders well.
    God Bless & Take Care
    And YES …. when the island is ready, we will return! ❤

  6. When you are in Coral Bay could you check on Bevi Melius, owner of Pickles Deli. I heard she is okay but I can’t get in touch with her. Today is her birthday! Wish her a HB from her loving cousin,” Jewel”!

  7. Hi Jen, so glad you are able to be back on the island. I can’t even imagine the PTSD you must be experiencing. My wife and I have been traveling to St. John for probably about 10 years. We feel it is our heart’s home. It is a beautiful and magical place. It is where I proposed and we we promised we would be together for the rest of our lives. I have always admired anyone who has figured out how to make a living and be able to stay on the island. So congratulations!
    Anyway, we are booked in January for a place called paper moon. It is owned by Steve Haluszka. I have made several attempts to contact Steve without success. Paper moon is in the Johnsonville estates in the calabash boom area. If you happen to learn anything about Steve or paper moon could you let me know? Also do you think St. John would even be ready for tourists in January?
    My email is [email protected]. Phone is 9785004377. Or you can pm me on fb.
    We have donated to St. John rescue. We so look forward to returning to our “home “. If there is anything else you need, please let me know.

    • That looks like overlooking Cinnamon Bay, with Maho the 2nd bay. If it is a new photo, it looks like some green is popping out. Looking at on the ground photo shoots on North Shore and Coral Bay took my breath away; it will be a long haul, but when things turn green at least not quite as hard to look at.

  8. Behind what is left of the Thirsty Donkey in Little Plantation, Coral Bay, is a concrete basement with a blue tarp. My friend, Carol Bagley is hunkered down there. She’ll give you a great interview about what’s not happening for the people on that side of the island and her wonderful cat friends on the mainland.

    • Just so you know, we own The Thirsty Donkey and will be back tomorrow to start rebuilding. One of our first tasks will be to check on Carol and Andy. They are great friends to us!

      • Greg, I’m so happy to hear that you are going to rebuild! I met you and your wife (Karen?) in May and was at your place at least 3 times that week. Loved your food, drinks, service and smiling faces every time I was there. To paraphrase “If you (re)build it, they will come!” Stay strong you two!

      • We love her too and were planning to hop over to St John the end of November on our cruise. Such a tragedy for a beautiful island. Say hi to her as our calls have been hit or miss. Good luck with a quick rebuild. We tourists are coming back.

  9. Can you update the conditions at Cruz Bay? We are scheduled to visit in February and need to make a decision by the end of this month. Is the beach Ok to swim? roads passable?

    • Be prepared….this is truly heartbreaking. https://vimeo.com/236350582 You can copy and paste if it doesn’t open. This was sent to me the other day. This was the first I saw anything out of Coral Bay. I don’t even think I was breathing while I watched this. I had to watch several times because there were so many tears.

    • I am sure the National Park will have them cleaned up by then. They want tourist back asap. The blue water has already returned. New leaves are growing and flowers are blooming. The National Guard is helping so much as well. Cruz bay is making great progress, per my niece, who lives in Coral Bay. I speak with her a few times a week. Restaurants are opening back up.. Grocery stores are up and running. Power will be restored to Cruz Bay soon. Joe’s BBQ & Woody’s recently just opened. Longboard has been open since day 1 serving free meals. Also, one other, I can’t recall the name. Things will be real good by February. The island needs people like you to help them survive. It won’t be perfect, but I hope your plans don’t change.

  10. First, thank you for this. We were on island during Irma and experienced first-hand the destruction before Maria’s arrival. Only half of our home is habitable and have a renter on the usable floor. With the poor communication still, this is my lifeline to what is happening there and check every day along with the other Virgin Islands papers.

    I was wondering about getting through to East End and if there is any news on the residents there.

    Thanks again for all you are doing- not being there is tough too…
    Back soon…

  11. Thanks for the updates. The photo of Trunk Bay literally made me cry. Had a planned vacation in December that we obviously had to cancel. Was supposed to celebrate our 15th anniversary on that beach. The beach we got married on. Thank you for the updates. Will be back as soon as possible!!!

  12. Hello Jenn, thank you so much for your updates, also when in Coral Bay if you could get any answers regarding if anyone has found Peter’s “Angel’s Rest” would be appreciated we renewed our wedding vows 5 years ago celebrating at the time 25 years, so sad anyhow glad you are back on our beautiful jewel and we look forward to coming back as soon as the island is ready for us. Stay safe and Godspeed..

  13. Some have asked for photos of hurricane aftermath.
    Yelena Rogers who is a photographer has captured the devastation. Her website has many pics. I just happened upon her beautiful work of many photos.
    I do not know her, but you will see what you probably don’t want to see.

  14. Do you know anything about a man by the name of Evan. He gave us a wonderful tour of the island and was so knowledgeable. We were staying at the Westin. Hope he and his family are all okay.

  15. Jenn,
    Thank you for your continuous updates. Can you let me know about Cinnamon Bay? Are any cottages unharmed? How can we help them? Also, Great Salt Pond and Ram Head Trail (we got engaged here!)
    Thank you so much ❤️

    • Sadly, it was destroyed!! I am not sure when they will rebuild. I am not sure how you can directly help them. Kenny Chesney’s website has a great fund for the people of St. John. This info comes from my niece, who lives in Coral Bay.

  16. Jenn,
    Thanks for all the info you offer….my wife Leigh and I were close to purchasing a house on STJ prior to Irma and still love and miss the island…trying to come help when I am off of work but now that the Red Cross is pulling out we want to find an organized relief effort that we might join when we are there….do you have any suggestions….our first available week was last week but couldn’t get anything set up or confirmed flights….next available is Dec 5…..I am a doc (of sorts….Radiologist) and Leigh a nurse but are primarily interested in helping doing whatever needs to be done….any assistance you or anyone else can give us would be appreciated….we LOVE STJ like many others and want to help in more than just a financial way….Thanks
    Spence

  17. I hope you can push beyond Coral Bay to East End. Reports about Coral Bay have been sketchy, but East End has been a black hole.

  18. Jen……you have done a great job keeping everyone informed on what’s happening in St John….keep up the great work ….

  19. Thanks for the update Jenn, I know that SJ will be up and running again as a new and good thing in a year or so and until then it will be difficult for people rebuilding. What I would be interested in knowing is how well the big estates fared, like half moon house on the South side. It was built to be oh so strong and independent. Did it live up to the builders intent? How about Villa Andara and those other Dreekets bay places? They were new construction, are they now in Dreekets bay? How about Catherineberg, and Peter Bay? Those big expensive piles. Are they now piles. Just wondering if building strong under the existing building codes will work or does anyone wanting to build need to build for the second coming? I know these kinds of questions may seem of little consequence now but after the beginning will come the day after the beginning and a time of renewal.

  20. You are doing a great job. You are providing information I cannot find anywhere else. We have been coming to St John for over thirty years. St johnians have bounced back fro Hugo & Marilyn; we will bounce back from this.
    Thanks again
    Tim

  21. Got Westin email too. Bummed out about reservations cancelled through June 2018. But it also stated they weren’t accepting any NEW reservations at the resort through December 31, 2018. Sounds like they are preparing us owners for a full 2018 yearlong shutdown. I hope that doesn’t happen. Good luck down there! I hope businesses and jobs rebound sooner!

  22. I have been following News of St John for some time My heart breaks when I see the devastation of heaven on earth I love St John as many do and can only hope and pray for everyone on the island. We plan to sail the BVI and St. John in May Do you know if there are mooring balls intact and how the national park is doing. I saw that Westin is closed till June. Do you know if Caneel bay will be open then. Any information is truly appreciated. Thank you for all the information you have sent to us. St John is my happy place I can’t wait to come back
    Ruth

  23. Thank you so much for these updates. I stayed at Mayo Bay Campgrounds many, many times until they closed a few years ago. Unforgettable experiences, memories, people I met, St. John is my favorite island and always in my heart and Spirit! A magical place! I was heartbroken when I heard the news last month, but I am a bit relieved by your reports, the vegetation slowly coming back, the resilience of the People. I pray for you all, the sea life and the island itself! Please let us know the best way to help. Did give to the St. John Community Foundation last month, but what else can we do? Thanks, again!
    Marsha

  24. Thanks for all the updates. We will hopefully be there in Feb and Mar this year. 25 years of loving STJ. Over 70, but our foursome bring you some help. Will check later for things to bring or send. Come on USPS. Keep up the good work. Love to all.

  25. HI Jenn, There are talkers and doers, and you are a doer. We are thankful for you. We cannot wait to come back to St. John when ready..

  26. If I want to volunteer on St. John for approx 10 days in February what reputable organization(s) should I contact. Not sure how to begin this process. Please advise Thank you

  27. Are there organizations that could use volunteers to help rebuild during January or February? Are there any links I can go to? We have been visiting Coral Bay for the last 15 years and would like to help bring the island back.

  28. Most of my friends were connected to the inn at tamarind court. Stephanie, Nancy, Craig, strawhat Dave and Suzy, anybody got a pic from there. So hard to come to grips with what has happened. Many tears and fears. I modified the famous “journey” song and sing it daily. When the lights go down in love city, and the sun shines on Cruz bay. Oh I want to be there in love city. Oh oh oh. So you say, your lonely, well my friend im lonely too. I wanna go back to love city by cruz bay. Oh oh oh!!!!!!!

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