We’re one month into hurricane season – again. Think back to the first few weeks after Hurricane Maria. Once we started digging out of our homes our thoughts turned to “How will I survive without power for weeks (which turned out to be months)?” Where can I get gas for the generator? A meal that doesn’t come out of a can?
The coconut telegraph was in full swing for a good six months and rumors spread in every way imaginable. I remember hearing accounts from friends that they could only text, send emails or check Facebook in the wee hours of the morning because that’s when internet traffic was the lightest.
Some businesses, depending upon their location and resources, were up and running faster than others. Most of those that were able to help, did.
So, imagine that you are a Virgin Islands business and a tropical storm or hurricane strikes and leaves us without power. Using social media lets you control the message -not the rumor mill. If your business’ land line is down you can supply an alternate phone number. You can tell your customers when you’re open, when you’re not open, items that you have in full supply and items that are out of stock. Use it to your advantage and you could likely gain new customers simply by being a good neighbor.
On an island this size, when disaster strikes we’re reminded that we’re all in this together. Help each other out by using social media for communicating, sharing and helping your fellow Virgin Islanders.
Jump Up is a quarterly St. Croix event that has something for everyone. Sponsored by the Christiansted Restaurant and Retail Association, downtown Christiansted’s streets are closed and merchants’ doors are open. Typically, a theme associated with each event (last week’s theme was Valentine’s Day). Any time of year, Jump Up is simply a good time. Here are five things not to miss:
Walking up and down the streets of Christiansted you’ll see a food trucks and other non-truck food vendors selling Crucian specialties – pates, roti, johnnycakes. Eat as you stroll or find a curb to sit on as you people watch.
St. Croix is full of artists, many of whom do not have a store front. Jump Up is a great place to find artists exhibiting their wares such as jewelry, prints and clothing.
Steel drum bands
St. Croix has several steelpan groups, comprised of students. The ting-ting-ting of the steelpan is delightful in person, and you’ll surely recognize the songs. Stop for a while and listen…these kids make beautiful music.
No visit to St. Croix is complete without seeing a mocko jumbie up close. While mocko jumbies are not unique to the U.S. Virgin Islands, the Department of Tourism made the mocko jumbie part of its logo. Men standing 12 feet tall wearing colorful costumes are more than just a great photo opportunity. Watch them walk through the crowd with ease. Amazing!
Most of the retail shops in downtown Christiansted stay open late for Jump Up. Make sure that you step off the street to browse or buy – some offer a Jump Up discount.
I enjoy everything about Jump Up, but what I enjoy most is running into friends, meeting new people and getting to know business owners. Jump Up is an event that makes us proud of our community, while showcasing the best of St. Croix.