Friends of Virgin Islands National Park 8th Annual Online Auction is Live

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A Sea Turtle Sail to Buck Island with National Park Expert Thomas Kelley is one of up of the FVINP Auction items up for grabs. 
Photos provided by Friends of Virgin Islands National Park. [hr gap=”1″]

Have you walked the trails in the park in past month? If so, you might have noticed that they are looking a lot better. That is due to the Friends of the Park hiring a full-time trails manager to keep our trails safe and accessible. Mark Gestwicki, a former Peace Corps volunteer, who most recently worked the trails of Maine for the Appalachian Mountain Club, began working on our National Park trails this month.

Over the course of the next year Mark will guide volunteer trail crews from around the nation to assist with maintaining the park. This is just one example of how the Friends raises critical funds to help National Park staff protect, preserve and conserve Virgin Islands National Park.

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You have probably heard the mission of Friends of the Park, “to advance the protection and preservation of the natural and cultural resources of Virgin Islands National Park and to promote the responsible enjoyment of this unique national treasure while educating and inspiring adults and children to be stewards of the environment.” What you may not know is that federal funding for all National Parks has been flat lined since 2005.

Of the 28 programs operated by the Friends, 9 are direct requests from VI NPS.  The Rangers-in-Training summer camp for youth held at VIERS, for example, is funded by the Friends. Through this program, and School Kids in the Park (offered during the school year), the Friends plays a critical role in fostering the next generation of conservationists on St. John. Their belief in the value of preservation of public lands will directly impact how the park is advocated for in the future!

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As a small nonprofit organization, the Friends full-time office staff of five depends on the generosity of the community in many ways – to donate time and money. This holiday season the organization is running an online auction, one of their major fundraising events of the year. This special event has the support of more than a hundred businesses, artisans, and service industry workers who have donated their livelihood to support the work of the Friends.

So this Thanksgiving, consider what you are grateful for on St. John and how your Virgin Islands National Park and its unspoiled beauty play into your appreciation. Then, take a moment to check out the Friends 8th Annual Online Auction.

You can get and give back at the same time! The Friends 8th Annual Online Auction is hosted on the Bidding for Good platform and showcases unique items including villa and hotel stays, jewelry, local art, boat excursions and spa and dining packages at a discount.

The auction will run from November 19, 2016 at 9am EST to December 11, 2016 at 10pm EST, with proceeds going to Friends of Virgin Islands National Park in order to support the projects that preserve, protect and educate in Virgin Islands National Park.

Contact tlovejoy@friendsvinp.org or call (340) 779-4940 with questions.

2016 Auction Items (complete list as of publishing date):

  • Bottle of 2012 White Rock Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon
  • Mango Bliss Spa – 1 hour Massage
  • $100 Gift Certificate to Hook, Line & Sinker Dockside Restaurant
  • 2 Night Stay at Cruz Bay Boutique Hotel (certificate #1)
  • $100 Gift Certificate Vista Mare
  • Private Rum Tasting at Asolare – $200 4 ppl
  • Private Caribbean dinner for 4 with exclusive Chef Shaibu Abdulai catered to your Villa
  • “Marketchat”  Limited Edition Artwork by Lisa Etre
  • Five night stay for up to 5 people in an Eco-Tent at Concordia Eco-Resort, St. John, USVI
  • Fly Fishing Charter for 2 people with Arawak Expeditions
  • $50 Gift Certificate to Bamboula – Mongoose Junction Boutique, St. John
  • Sea Turtle Sail to Buck Island with National Park Expert Thomas Kelley for 2 people
  • $100 Gift Certificate at St. John Spice
  • $50 Gift Certificate to Bamboula – Mongoose Junction Boutique, St. John
  • $100 Gift Certificate to Viva Cantina
  • $100 Gift Certificate for Extra Virgin Bistro on STJ
  • SNUBA St. John Underwater Adventure for 2
  • Fine Dining at Asolare – $150 Gift Certificate
  • Gourmet Delivery for 6 people from Mathayom Private Chefs / St. John Catering
  • Charter or Captain Yourself a 2016 24′ Contender for 6 person with Ocean Runner
  • Helicopter tour with Caribbean Buzz
  • Dinner on St. John Lady Lynsey Sail for 2 guests
  • 7 Nights at A House of Open Arms Cottage for 2 people
  • 2-tank Scuba Diving for two divers with Cruz Bay Watersports
  • “St John Welcome Package” courtesy of Friends of VINP Mongoose Junction Store
  • Charter or Captain Yourself a 2016 24′ Contender, for 6 person with Ocean Runner
  • Explore the BVI’s 2-day Boating Excursion package for 4 with Cruz Bay Watersports
  • Handmade Petroglyph Necklace from Bamboo Studio
  • Zipline Excursion at Tree Limin’ Extreme for 2 people
  • Private Powerboat Charter for 6 – Concept 36 with Seashells Charter
  • Full Day USVI or BVI charter for 6 w/ On the Sea Charters
  • 75 minute Therapeutic Massage with David Borror of Island Massage Company
  • “Mother & Child” Sculpture by artist Mandy Thody
  • $100 Gift Certificate to Sun Dog Cafe
  • Maine Cottage Getaway
  • 2 Nights at The Inn at Tamarind Court  – Queen Standard Suite
  • Dinner at The Terrace for 4 people with Virgin Islands National Park Superintendent!
  • Half-Day Sail for Two on Wayward Sailor
  • 7 Night Stay at Villa ChocoCruz for up to 6 people
  • Kitchen Creole Seven Spice Gift Set
  • Sunset Sail for 2 ppl aboard s/v Cimmarron
  • $100 Gift Certificate to Friends of the Park Store!
  • Romantic “Tulip Tassel” necklace from Caravan Gallery
  • 3 Nights at Hillcrest Guest House for up to 4 people
  • Sunset Sail for up to 6 people aboard s/v Goddess Athena
  • “St John Kids Package” courtesy of Friends of VINP Visitor’s Center Store
  • 40th Anniversary Commemorative Stamp Issue donated by Chuck Weikert
  • 2 Nights at The Ritz-Carlton, St. Thomas
  • Five night stay for 2 in an Eco-Studio at Concordia Eco-Resort, St. John, USVI
  • Sea Glass Creation: Christmas Tree Pendant made by Karen Boddy
  • Full day trip for 4 to Virgin Gorda and the Baths with Cruz Bay Watersports
  • $100 Gift Certificate to Friends of the Park Store
  • $100 gift certificate for Cruz Bay Landing
  • $50 Gift Certificate to Northshore Deli
  • Sunset Sail for 2 on Island Spirit
  • Christian Wheatley Exclusive Panoramic Photo of Magen’s Bay, St Thomas
  • 2 nights & 3 days for 2 plus breakfast – Deluxe Oceanfront at Buccaneer Hotel on St. Croix
  • Tektite Sterling Silver Pendant/Earring Suite with Black Diamond and Tahitian Pearls custom made by Irene Patton, of R & I Patton
  • Sunset Boat Trip Aboard 35′ Island Glacier for up to 6 people with St. John Boat Tours
  • Sunset Boat Trip Aboard 35′ Island Glacier for up to 6 people with St. John Boat Tours
  • 2 Nights at the Marriott Frenchman’s Reef on St. Thomas
  • Ocean Grill Wine Club – 2 tickets
  • 75 minute Therapeutic Massage with David Borror of Island Massage Company
  • Full Day USVI Charter with Island Roots
  • Lattes in Paradise $50 Gift Certificate
  • Lattes in Paradise $50 Gift Certificate
  • St. John Beach Bum – $100 Gift Certificate
  • 5-night stay at Sirenusa 3 BR Luxury Villa Resort
  • $100 Gift Certificate for Waterfront Bistro on St John
  • “Island Survival” gift set:  All-natural products made on St John from Island Massage Company
  • Watercolor on Classic Marine Chart of NYC by local artist Elaine Estern.  Matted & framed.
  • The Longboard – $150 Gift Card
  • Christian Wheatley Exclusive Panoramic Photo of Trunk Bay, St John
  • Full day trip for  4 to Jost van Dyke with Cruz Bay Watersports
  • 7-Night Stay at “On a Clear Day” for up to 8 people
  • 7 Nights at Bombalassy Villa in Great Cruz Bay
  • Sunset Sail for 2 on Island Spirit
  • 1 Hour Lifestyle Photo Session – Lindsay Vann Photography
  • 5 classes with Twerk and Tone
  • Caravan Auto Services $250 Gift Certificate
  • Handcrafted Love Hook Bracelet from Vibe Collection
  • Full Day Sail & Snorkel Adventure for 6 people on unique Mahiya
  • Mangrove Lagoon/Cas Cay Hike & Kayak Tour
  • Honeymoon Beach All Inclusive Full Day Fun Pass for 6 people with VI EcoTours
  • Historic Hassel Island – Kayak, Hike and Snorkel, VI National Park, (3 hours, 8 people) with VI EcoTours
  • 7-night stay at 4-bedroom “White Cottage” villa for up to 8 People
  • 2 Night Stay and 2 dinners at Sandcastle Hotel & Soggy Dollar Bar, Jost Van Dyke
  • 40th Anniversary Commemorative Stamp Issue
  • 7-night stay for 4 people at Sunset Ridge Villas
  • St John to Puerto Rico Round-trip Ferry Transportation for 2, includes San Juan transfer
  • St John to Puerto Rico Round-trip Ferry Transportation for 2, includes San Juan transfer
  • Freediving Course with Gear Rental – AIDA level 1 with Vital Freediving
  • Snuba or Sea Trek Experience  for 2 at Coral World
  • Laser Hair removal with Vanish Advance Skincare
  • Laser Hair removal with Vanish Advance Skincare
  • Laser Hair removal with Vanish Advance Skincare
  • Laser Hair Removal with Vanish Advance Skincare
  • Golf for 4 including cart at Mahogany Run
  • Sadie Sea Sunset Snorkel Cruise for 30 people
  • $250 Gift Certificate to The Captain School USVI
  • $250 Gift Certificate to The Captain School USVI
  • Private Sunset Sail for up to 6 people on Cloud 9
  • Private Sunset Sail on Kekoa for up to 25 people
  • Guided Picnic Snorkel Sail w/ Naturalist for 4 guests on the Lady Lynsey Catamaran
  • PADI Open Water Scuba Certification Course for 2
  • 7 Night Stay at BlueBeards Dec 24-31, 2016
  • Champagne Brunch for 6 at Garden by the Sea (certificate #1)
  • 3D Virtual Tour from Bananaquit Productions
  • VIP Wine Tasting at Clos du Val Winery