Information Officer II
Dept. of Information & Public Relations
Telephone: 468- 2740
Cultural and familiar ties were at the centre of the 46th annual USVI-BVI Friendship Day on October 18 on the island of St Thomas, United States Virgin Islands.
Premier of the Virgin Islands, Honourable Andrew Fahie led a delegation to the festivities that were held under the theme, “46th Sapphire Celebration of Camaraderie, Community & Culture”.
Premier Fahie encouraged Virgin Islanders to use their knowledge and education to make vital improvements across the Territories.
“The solutions need to improve the Virgin Islands are within its people. We are intelligent, inspirational, innovative and important which are characteristics that were given to us by our ancestors.”
The event was reflective of the friendship and mutual respect, cultural identity, ancestral connections, and familial ties which bind both Territories.
Governor of the Virgin Islands of the United States, Hon. Albert Bryan Jr, charged listeners to continue to make investments in the future of the Virgin Islands.
Quoting the Greek proverb, Governor Bryan said, “Progress is made when old men plant trees in whose shade they know they shall never sit”, adding that it’s imperative that we continue to foster the fruits of tomorrow and continue to make investments in the future of the Virgin Islands.
Premier Fahie and Governor Bryan exchanged gifts on behalf of the people of Territories, while Lieutenant Governor Tregenza Roach and Acting Deputy Premier Honourable Kye Rymer, and USVI Senate President Novelle E. Francis Jr. and Speaker of the House of Assembly Honourable Julian Willock also exchanged gifts.
Patrons enjoyed various local cultural presentations through music and dance, Virgin Islands cuisines and were given gift bags with snacks and crafts native to Virgin Islands culture. BVI-USVI Friendship Day has been celebrated since 1972 as an opportunity for BVI-USVI Governments and the entire Virgin Islands community to appreciate and reflect on the close ties which bind the neighbouring Territories and its people.
The observance was designed to strengthen and build upon that bond of friendship, highlighting the commonalities, the shared history and the shared culture of Virgin Islanders.
Over the years, the day has evolved into a more relaxed cultural celebration reflective of true friendship, as the two territories alternate hosting the annual celebration.