October 6th Update from Jenn

October 6th Update from Jenn 1Hello everyone, it’s Friday. I don’t have too much to say today. Irma struck one month ago – September 6th. Over the last month, St. John has come a long way. As I mentioned the other day, some of the island’s beauty is coming back. We have some new leaves and growth sprouting up around the island. It’s a beautiful sight. I was able to take a quick swim at Hawksnest yesterday afternoon. That was lovely. But we still have a long road ahead of us.

The island is simply not ready for tourists yet. And yes, I understand that I will have some property owners who do not appreciate that statement. But that is the consensus here on the island. We need time. The island needs to heal. The majority of this island, if not all of us, rely on tourism. We need tourism to thrive. We need you all to come back. But the island is simply not ready for it at this time.

However there is hope. The goal here is to have power restored to the entire island – yes 100 percent of the island – by Christmas. Coral Bay may be running on a generator for a bit, according to those in charge, but it too will have power. Again, this is a goal and not a definitive statement. But it gives me hope (which is literally my middle name).

To end on a happy note because positivity is key, I cannot stress enough how hard people are working here on island. And they are working together, cohesively. It’s a beautiful sight, even more beautiful than the new leaves.

We will likely take the weekend off. I hope you all have a great one. Chat soon. -Jenn

PS: I took the pic above this morning.

52 thoughts on “October 6th Update from Jenn”

  1. Thanks Jenn and support to all St Johnnians working so hard to rebuild their homes in paradise in its new incarnation. Love seeing the pic with Gallows Point in the background.

  2. Jenn,
    Thanks so much for your continued reporting of the recovery.
    I loved the picture today of Cruz Bay beach with the bright green new leaves.
    Going back several years, before Wharfside etc. some of us thought that Cruz Bay beach was one of the prettiest, as pretty as Hawksnest or Dennis bay.
    It is now easy to overlook with all that surrounds it,but is still beautiful.
    Thanks again,
    Steve Ingle

  3. Thank you so much for the updates! Can’t tell you how much it means to know how things are going there. Love the picture today!! Like most, we can’t wait to get back to St John but completely understand the need to wait. We promise to use the time wisely for donations to the amazing organizations working so hard and will continue to ask news and radio to keep up the links so others can do the same. Thank you again and can’t wait to get back to where we really want to be!! Enjoy the weekend!

  4. Was wondering how Survivan (St John Yacht charters) is doing? I know his boat sank and they are working on fixing it but haven’t seen any updated pics. Not sure if he or anyone has insurance to help with rebuilding?

  5. Jenn, thank you for letting us know how things are going….it’s hard to imagine…being without power, the daily necessities we take for granted….and starting over from scratch without modern amenities….I pray for you and the island daily….it’s a place of beauty and serenity for me….and the people have warm hearts and love in their souls….God’s blessings to all

  6. Now that a lot of the junk boats that littered the harbors are gone, the government shouldn’t allow the floating homeless camps to return. They’re a blight on the island

  7. Happy Friday Jenn! Thank you so much for today’s update! Your photograph is so encouraging! Your honesty is appreciated as far as people returning to visit. We will keep up with the island’s progress through your daily posts! Have a great weekend!

  8. Hi..Has anyone been in the water snorkling? Was there damage to the coral reefs mangroves etc?
    Are the fish still there? You can rebuild the homes, businesses and vegetation will grow back amd some replanted but the oceans are a little different. Just hoping for the best.

  9. Jen,
    Thanks for keeping us somewhat in touch with the island. It’s so good to see boats floating on the waters.
    Love to Love City, H

  10. Thank you for the updates on our beautiful island and it’s wonderful people. As a family we have been blessed to visit the isand 3 times. The island and it’s warm, welcoming people gave my anxious son peace. Gave me back my son completely for one week each year. It is a place where my entire family was relaxed, engaged, and joyful. We can’t wait to return and help give back to a place that has given me so much! Stay strong St John!!

  11. That is a great shot of your front porch this morning! As everyone agrees, thank you for your daily updates. I hope you and Charlie are enduring the daily challenges with renewed hope and vigor. Can’t keep Love City down. Have a restful weekend.

  12. Looking forward to hearing from you on the appropriate time to make our way back.also,please keep us up to date on any businesses that have online sales capabilities,so that we can support them

  13. Thank you Jenn for the optimistic picture and for your generous updates. I had my picture taken in that spot on my trip last March. Electricity for Christmas! What a gift that would be. Enjoy your weekend. Looking forward to hearing more from you as
    St. John comes back to life.

  14. So greatful for your updates! My husband and I are praying for all of you and St. John! We will come down as soon as you are all ready!

  15. Thank you so much for your continued updates. It makes this whole ordeal a bit more manageable. Enjoy your break and when the time is right, we WILL be back! I think many of us were reminded just how special a place St. John is through this… and we will be there for you all that we can be, every step of the way, if only in spirit right now. Now is the time for the residents to make their way and find their new normal. I know all the folks that follow you will continue to contribute what they can, when they can financially and then one sweet day, we will feel the joy of that car barge ride over. Prayers and blessing going up for everyone on island. Constantly sending good vibes and lots of love! #stjohnstrong #riseup #lovecity

  16. Thanks for the only news we get from on-island sources. While sad to see my favorite place in the world so devastated, I know everyone is doing there best to restore “normalcy” on the rock! When I am able to return, I will. And appreciate every grain of sand, drop of salt water and blossom of color!

  17. Jenn, it’s always a pleasure to read your updates. It’s wonderful to have someone first hand explaining what
    you see for all of us stateside and keeping us informed.
    Thank you!

  18. Hi Jenn – so glad you are back on island. Honestly I was worried you wouldn’t return. Love the picture. Thank you for sharing.

      • Thanks for your update. My wife and I are 35 your visitors to St John . We are trying to find out how to help with not canceled our airline tickets to the island for Christmas however we don’t know if there is a place to stay it’s been hard to communicate with this new Cinnamon Bay management. It’s not clear if they will be open. George and Marla OK

  19. Thanks, Jenn. We have been thinking of you and the island since we first saw your video the day the storm hit. Glad to see that there is some light at the end of the dark tunnel. Let us know when we can return! We will be back!

  20. Very comforting hearing the symbolic news that green is beginning to rise again from the devastated landscape. We have vacationed on St John 16 times. It feels like our second home. It’s very frustrating not being able to be there to help with whatever. Looking forward to our next visit, whenever it can be.

  21. Hello Jenn,
    You say you are not ready for tourists.
    Do you mean the island is not ready for tourists, or that the inhabitants are not ready to see tourists?
    If there are some rental homes that are ready to rent, then the owners may need to rent them in order to pay the mortgage on that home.
    I don’t see how someone renting a house and eating in one of the few restaurants that are open would be disturbing. Please explain what you mean by your statement.
    Just seeking to understand.
    Thank you,
    Janet

    • The island itself is not ready. And the national park is closed. I would absolutely love to see tourists but it’s just not the time yet. I’ll have more on this next week. Thanks so much for reading Janet.

  22. Hi Jenn,
    I’ve been anxiously following your updates and have helped as much as I could financially. So glad to hear of everyone’s strength. My friend is an expert carpenter and we’ve been thinking of ways to come to SJ to help rebuild. Looking into finding a boat to live on and work to help reconstruct SJ. Let me anyone is hiring exceptional help.

  23. Appreciate your updates, I read every one. I appreciate the need to heal and get to the new normal. We look forward to that day to return.

  24. Thank you so much for taking the time to do this. You are greatly appreciated! We have/had plans to be there early January and have not heard anything yet. Based on what I am reading… I’m not optimistic, but even if those plans fall through— I WILL BE BACK!! Stay strong and keep up the great work!

  25. Thank you so much for your updates. The strength, resilience and sense of community of the citizens of St John is inspiring. Keeping you all in my prayers

  26. My wife and I have visited St. John five times over the years, and it is our “happy place”! During the storm, I worried for the safety and well-being of everyone who makes their home on the island, and I’m very glad to see that you’re on the road to recovery. I appreciate these updates, as news of the island is very hard to come by. Know that there are so many people out there who’re thinking of you!

  27. Hi Jenn. Thank you for the updates! Quick question. If the beaches and National Park are closed how were you able to go for a swim? It is at your own discretion? Just trying to get clarification as there seems to be a lot of conflicting information.

  28. Jenn

    The National Park remains closed. What can everyone who loves St John due to push/urge/cajole the National Park Service to devote more resources to repair the park and getvit open faster? To hire more locals to help in the rebuilding? They have the resources but not the urgency.

  29. Thank you so much, Jenn, for keeping us in touch with our paradise. We are seniors who did not discover St. John until our mid-sixties. We now are looking forward to our eighth consecutive visit next March. For the 2nd year we will share our time with our daughter and son-in-law who fell in love as hard as we did on their first visit last Spring . We all know we will be in for a different experience than our past seven visits, but we are still excited to return, as long as the island is ready for us. We love hands on work, so it will not be difficult for us to trade snorkel gear for tool belts.

    One question I have for you – you mentioned in another response that the Nat’l Park is not yet open. Does that mean that the roads through the park are closed? We have always stayed in Coral Bay and plan to do so in March (the place we rent was spared major damage and is able to accomodate us when we come). Is one able, or will one be able by March to get to Coral Bay via Center Line Road? I know an answer is pure speculation at this point, but are we foolish to hope it will be possible to return for our yearly “fix”? We live in the New York snow belt and we need you badly by March!!

    Thanks again for keeping us informed and for your refreshing and much appreciated positive attitude.

  30. My cousin works for the National Park Service in a park in Virginia. They sent him down to Key West, Florida to help with the clean up there and are putting him up in a nice hotel there. Why aren’t they sending crews of helpers to STJ? A huge crew could get the park open in less than a month.

  31. Jenn,Understandably St John’s tourist sector is not fully operational. The island is still on generator power and many of the tourrrist services are still regrouping. Tourist expecting full-service will be very disappointed. On the other hand, visitors willing to lend a hand with the clean-up should be encouraged. Left unattended the mounds of debris on land and along the shoreline pose a significant eviromental and health hazard. While the the NP facilities and services aren’t operational the beaches are becoming more and more accessible. for example this weekend there is an open call for trail and beach clean-up at solomon, followed by a volleyball picnic at Cinnamon. The visitor/volunteer will bring a small but needed income stream to property owners and businesses and should be embraced in the same generous spirit that these folks are offering thier time and money. Please reconsider your stance on discouraging visitors.

    • This is not only my stance; it is also the stance of Love City Strong and Love for Love City Foundation. We want tourists back. We want volunteers. Just not today. Soon, but not today. But I do appreciate your comments.

  32. I am glad things are coming along. You are all so strong and positive, I am sure St. John will be back to to normal soon. Our very favorite place in the world. Thank you for the update!

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