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#513568 - 05/06/16 12:30 PM 11th Annual Northern Belize Reef Week 2016  
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 57,364
Marty Offline
Marty  Offline
May 16-22 in San Pedro

The San Pedro Sports Committee and Hol Chan Marine Reserve is inviting the island community to participate in the 11th Annual Northern Reef Week. A series of sporting activities have been organized in an effort to promote the conservation of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef.

The week will begin with the ‘Swim to the Reef’ race on Monday, May 18th at 6AM. The race will start at the Amigo’s dock, and will be followed by a Lionfish Tournament. Registered team will have all day to catch lionfish with weigh-ins starting at 4PM at Estel’s Dine by the Sea Restaurant.

To close off the week, a kayak race around the island will be held on Sunday, May 22nd. The race will start at the Boca del Rio Park at 8AM. Registration fees are $50 per team. The final event is a triathlon, which will take place also on Sunday, May 22nd at the Boca del Rio Park at 10AM.

A Coastal Clean-up is also being held on Tuesday, May 19th. All persons interested in joining can contact Hol Chan Marine Reserve for further details.T

To register for any of the above events contact Hol Chan Marine Reserve office at 226-2247, or visit their office on Caribeña Street or contact SPTC Sports Coordinator Kent “Bob” Gabourel at 604-9013.

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Under the theme, “Make a Difference; Protect our Environment”, the Hol Chan Marine Reserve, Belize Fisheries Department, the San Pedro Town Council along with the San Pedro Tour Guide association have organized the 11th annual Northern Belize REEF WEEK. Mark your calendars – May 16th through the 22nd.

Monday May 16th - Swim to the Reef – 6:00AM –All participants will meet up at Amigos del Mar dock for swim off time at 6AM. This is NOT a competition, so even if you’re not registered, you can still just show up and do the swim. Snorkeling gear is welcomed for this event.

On Tuesday May 17th – is the annual Ambergris Caye Coastal Clean Up. This activity starts at 8:30am. All residents and businesses, especially those located on the beach side are invited to participate in this activity. All garbage along the beach side and water ways are going to be collected and taken to the municipal dock, from which location, the Town Council will be picking it up and ferrying it to the Official garbage dump site. Grand Caribe Belize staff will be in full force – assuring that our beaches are spotless.

Wednesday May 18th – Trivia Competition – 9:30AM at the Paradise Theatre

Thursday May 19th – The Reef Fair commences at 9:30AM at the House of Culture. This event will be highlighting Everything REEF!

Friday May 20th – SAGA Lionfish Cook Off – The Venue for this event is yet to be announced. What is certain though; is that there will be a wide variety of delectably prepared Lion fish for you to sample.

Sunday May 22nd – Boca del Rio park will be the place to be. The first activity of this day is the Kayak Race around the south portion of the island. The race starts at 8:00AM at the Boca del Rio Park. The route will take kayakers through the waterways to the back of the island, south bound, to the southern-most tip, and then east bound to the front of the island, where they make their way north back to the Boca del Rio Park.

At 10AM, both juniors as well as seasoned athletes are invited to compete in the annual Iron Man Triathlon. This activity includes a Swim, Bike, Run, commencing and ending at the Boca Del Rio.

All these activities are opened to visitors, residents and locals. Everyone is welcomed to join the activities and make this year’s event an even bigger success than the preceding years.

For more information about Belize Reef Week 2016, feel free to stop by our concierge office or call 226-2247 and contact Ms Mariela Archer at the Hol Chan Marine Reserve office.

#513701 - 05/12/16 12:48 PM Re: 11th Annual Northern Belize Reef Week 2016 [Re: Marty]  
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 57,364
Marty Offline
Marty  Offline

Reef Week 2016 Lionfish Tournament and Coastal Cleanup

Get your teams ready and sign up for the Northern Belize Reef Week 2016 Lionfish Tournament!!!!

Get your garbage bags ready on Tuesday May 17th @ 8:30 am, and lets clean up our coastline...all trash bags will compiled at the municipal dock!!!

#513796 - 05/17/16 01:00 PM Re: 11th Annual Northern Belize Reef Week 2016 [Re: Marty]  
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 57,364
Marty Offline
Marty  Offline

Swim to the reef

The 11th annual Northern Belize Reef Week kicked off on Monday, May 16th with an early 6AM swim to the reef. The full week features a variety of events, ranging from Lionfish Tournaments to clean -up campaigns to Kayak Races, all in an effort to create awareness of our marine ecosystem.

In the opening event, around 15 swimmers took on the challenge and swam to the reef and back. According to The San Pedro Town Council’s Sports Coordinator Kent ‘Bob’ Gabourel, the race was not about competing, but to raise awareness on the need to protect the reef system. Participants swam at their own pace, and many of them even wore their snorkelling gear in order to make it an enjoyable swim.

At the end of the race, all swimmers were acknowledged for their participation and encouraged to continue taking part in the events of the reef week. Organizers are emphasizing the continued preservation of the reef, as it contributes to the livelihood of island residents. The different activities throughout the week were constant reminders to seek ways to better conserve our reef system.

Click here to read the rest of the article and see more photos in the San Pedro Sun

#513799 - 05/18/16 05:22 AM Re: 11th Annual Northern Belize Reef Week 2016 [Re: Marty]  
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 57,364
Marty Offline
Marty  Offline

Lion Fish Excitement During Reef Week

What better way to celebrate the Belize Barrier Reef, creating awareness and protecting it than by a massive hunting of Lion Fish which are so detrimental to the health of our reef. This was the purpose for Hol Chan Marine Reserve in San Pedro in organizing a Lion Fish Tournament as part of its Reef Week activities.

Only four out of an initial seven boats were able to participate in the tournament, but it was enough to kill and rid our reef of over 300 invasive Lion Fish that pose a threat to the marine life on the coral reef.

Dive Bar/Sea Star Tours captured the $1,000 cash prize by catching the most fish, 175 of them and also won 15 gallons of fuel by capturing the largest Lion Fish that measured 39cm long. Bringing in the smallest fish was Belize Diving Adventure. Everette Anderson and his team could not make it out at sea to compete but he managed to snap an 8.5cm small Lion Fish at one of the neighboring docks of his dive shop. His entry counted and won him 15 gallons of fuel.

Everette Anderson of Belize Diving Adventures with his mini lion fish

Click here to read the rest of the article and see more photos in the Ambergris Today

#513847 - 05/20/16 04:53 AM Re: 11th Annual Northern Belize Reef Week 2016 [Re: Marty]  
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 57,364
Marty Offline
Marty  Offline

Reef Week Fair Bringing Smiles to Community

Packed with so much information in such a small space, the Reef Fair held today, Thursday, May 19, 2016, in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize, shows the great effort of Hol Chan Marine Reserve in creating awareness for the protection of the Belize Reef. The fair is part of the Reef Week activities taking place this week on the island. Information and activity booths open to the public included a live touch tank to interact with star fish, information from MarAlliance, Oceana Belize, Blackadore Caye, Hol Chan Marine Reserve, Belize Fisheries Department, Department of Environment and even Saga Humane Society. Island Schools, in particular, took advantage of the Reef Fair to send their students to learn more about the reef and how to protect it.

Also taking advantage of Reef Week is the San Pedro House of Culture that has dedicated an exhibit to local fishermen and the importance of the reef to the development of Ambergris Caye.

Click here to read the rest of the article and see more photos in the Ambergris Today

#513866 - 05/21/16 05:35 AM Re: 11th Annual Northern Belize Reef Week 2016 [Re: Marty]  
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 57,364
Marty Offline
Marty  Offline

Marine Fair 2016

It was a long hot day but the Reef Week 2016 Marine Fair was a success. Organizations who took the time to come out and share their message with the students of San Pedro. Hol Chan wants to thank all those who participated, The Department of Environment, Solid Waste Management, OCEANA, Sea to Shore Alliance, Saga Humane Society, MarAlliance, and the Belize Fisheries Department. Also thanks to The San Pedro House of Culture for hosting the event at their compound.

Click photos for more pictures!

Coastal Clean Up 2016

As part of Reef Week the Hol Chan staff went out to clean up the entrance to the river at Boca Del Rio. We all enjoy the water, so lets keep it clean by picking up our trash when we visit the beach so it odes not end up in the water.

Click photos for more pictures!

#513867 - 05/21/16 05:40 AM Re: 11th Annual Northern Belize Reef Week 2016 [Re: Marty]  
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 57,364
Marty Offline
Marty  Offline

Island students participate in Reef Trivia Contest

The Hol Chan Marine Reserve held its 11th annual Reef Trivia Contest at the San Pedro House of Culture on Wednesday, May 18th. The program commenced at 9:30AM and seven students from Island Academy, Ambergris Caye Elementary School (ACES), New Horizon Seventh Day Adventist School (NHSDAS), and Caye Caulker Roman Catholic School (CCRC) participated in the contest. The purpose of the competition serves to test each contestant’s knowledge about reef conservation, marine ecosystems, and protected areas through education.

In round one, Yari Flores (ACES), Matilde Carillo (NHSDAS), Mia Gonzalez (Island Academy), Lupita Aldana (CCRC), Edward Polanco (ACES), Astrid Ruiv (NHSDAS), and Ethan Ancona (Island Academy), were asked one basic question about corals, sea turtles, and sea grass question by Mariela Archer, Environmental Educator at Hol Chan Marine Reserve. Judging the contest were Cecilia Guerrero, Nidia Chacon, and Shakera Arnold.

After students offered their responses, a puppet show performance took to the stage while judges made their final decision. Since there was no tie-breaker, the judges announced the winners of the contest. New Horizon’s Astrid Ruiv was the lucky first place winner, and she took the grand prize of a roundtrip ticket courtesy of Tropic Air, a 7” Samsung Galaxy Tablet, a backpack filled with school supplies, an engraved trophy, and $600 will be donated to her school. In second place, Island Academy’s Ethan Ancona also received a 7” Samsung Galaxy Tablet, a backpack filled with school supplies, and an engraved trophy. In third place, ACES Edward Polanco to a prize of a backpack filled with school supplies and a $50 gift certificate to A&R. All eliminated contestants who participated were given a t-shirt from Hol Chan. All winning students were awarded their prizes at Hol Chan’s Reef Fair on Thursday, May 19th.

Click here to read the rest of the article and see more photos in the San Pedro Sun

Kayak Race highlights 11th Annual Northern Reef Week

The 11th Annual Northern Reef Week ended with a spectacular kayak race, which saw nine teams paddling around the island on Sunday, May 22nd. Junior and senior kayakers alike took to the channel heading south of Ambergris Caye on the leeward side, racing for their chance to claim the first place title, while bringing awareness to conservation of the barrier reef.

The race took kayakers along the back of the island, through thick mangrove wetlands and through a small channel that connects the lagoon with the sea all the way down the southern tip of Ambergris Caye. Upon entering the Caribbean Sea, the teams struggled as they paddled against the current along the island’s shoreline. For most of the race, the leading teams stuck together saving energies for the last sprint to the finishing line.

In the last minutes of the race, competitors began separating from each other as the finish line came into view in the horizon. In a fast sprint, Team Sea Monsters crossed the finish line to glory. Afterwards each winning team was given their respective prizes. In the Juniors category, second place went to Team Do It Boys, comprised of Joseph Pineda and Brayan Bradley, who received $100. First place went for Team Buff Kids, comprised of Kyron Vasquez and Brayan Averdado, who walked away with a cash prize of $100.

Click here to read the rest of the article and see more photos in the San Pedro Sun

The Great Kayak Race Reef Week Ambergris Caye Belize

My friend Jack and I went out to support our Friends Cindy Viga and Lara Goldman in the Kayak Race. We were also there to support Emil Teck and his mom Angelica Teck. Lara was helping get them a kayak that morning and how I leaned that Amil was challenging himself to do the race, he has Spina bifida. What an inspiration.

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