Jolly Harbour Valentine's Regatta and Rum Festival 2013 kicked off with a gathering of sailors, sponsors, and guests on the waterfront at the Westpoint Bar on Thursday.
Hon. John Maginley, Minister of Tourism for Antigua and Barbuda with the Jolly Harbour Valentine’s Regatta & Rum Festival Founding Partners and Event Sponsors
'We are proud to be exposing a different side of Antigua', said the Hon. John Maginley, Minister of Tourism for Antigua and Barbuda, as the throng of sailors, sponsors and guests gathered on the waterfront at the Westpoint Bar in Jolly Harbour on Thursday evening to celebrate the start of the 20th Anniversary of the Jolly Harbour Valentine's Regatta and Rum Festival.
Minister Maginley marked the opening of the event by welcoming the owners and their crews, highlighting the importance of the event for Jolly Harbour and for the whole of Antigua. 'We welcome Jolly Harbour to the annual list of prestige sailing events held here on the Island,' says Minister Maginley. 'We have worked very hard over the last six or seven years to focus on the yachting industry, making it even more appealing to come here. The event has a truly Antiguan flavour and continues our efforts to showcase Antigua to our visitors.'
Racing begins tomorrow in the waters off Jolly Harbour with about 30 boats taking part. Head of Marketing and Sponsorship, Alison Sly-Adams, explains 'So many people have put an incredible amount of their time and enthusiasm into this event to make it possible. We are expecting some very competitive sailing and you can feel a real buzz on the dockside too.'
During the Welcome Party the event's seven supporting rum brands, from the corners of the Caribbean, were sampled by the guests. On offer were Appleton Estate, Angostura, Bacardi, Mount Gay Rum, English Harbour Rum, Rhum Clement and El Dorado. Later in the evening the party was thrown open to everyone else who wanted to join in.
'We are so grateful for the involvement of the local and regional sponsors who have worked together with us to add their support,' adds Alison. 'They include founding partners Jolly Harbour Marina Village, Budget Marine, Jolly Harbour Marina, Jolly Harbour Yacht Club, Jolly Harbour Merchants' Association and Jolly Harbour Homeowners' Association. We couldn't do without Antigua and Barbuda Ministry of Tourism, Seahawk Paints, Pineapple Rentals, Townhouse Megastore, Digicel, Outdoor World Yamaha and Takumi.'
Daily reports will be issued to media on Friday eighth, Saturday ninth and Sunday 10th February. Bulletins will also be available on Facebook at Jolly Harbour Regatta Facebook
For more information and updates visit: Jolly Harbour Regatta