80.3 F
Charlotte Amalie
Sunday, June 23, 2024


Amidst naysayers and critics, the organizers of BeachJam '99 pushed on, made it over hurdles and jumped through the necessary hoops to make the event, by anyone's standards, a success.
Steve Bornn, executive producer of BeachJam '99, said CEAP, which stands for Cause Effective Arts Program Inc., met 90 percent of its goals.
"Remember, this project was multi-purposed — to raise money, but also to raise awareness and image."
What about the money end?
"We don't know about the finances yet," Bornn said.
With the tremendous overhead involved in the project, he said they won't know about the money until all the bills come in and are paid.
"But we built the infrastructure necessary to go on with our other projects planned for the rest of the year," Bornn said.
He said a lot of people didn't believe they could do it. He counted among their successes the fact that they proved those people wrong.
"This is a wakeup call to the business community and the philanthropists — the private sector can do these things. We can't wait for the government," he said.
Twenty-four hours after the event there were few signs left that the day before, Magens Bay had hosted an estimated 4,000 people.
There was virtually no garbage on the side of the road, unlike even typical Monday morning following a normal Sunday at the beach.
Bill Grogan, program director for Beachjam, said he made one mistake. At the end of the day-long event, he asked people to pick up their garbage on the way out and put it in the containers that were evident everywhere in the park.
"Next year we'll pass out garbage bags," he said.
As the receptacles filled up, people could only place refuse next to the plastic cans. And they did.
One regular visitor to the island who attended the event said, "An event like this is far more important [for tourism] than an ad in the New York Times."
Proceeds from the event are earmarked for Magens Bay coconut grove and arboretum work. Bornn said the work at the grove has already started.
"We left it in better shape than when we started," Bornn said.

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