Friends of VINP Kicks Off Season with Full Lineup of Events, Seminars and Hikes

Delroy “Ital” Anthony will hold a seminar on the traditional uses of plants in the USVI on Nov. 4 at the Friends of Virgin Islands National Park Volunteer Camp at Cinnamon Bay. (Source photo by Amy H. Roberts)

With some 275 events, seminars, boat trips and hikes already on the 2022/23 schedule, Friends of Virgin Islands National Park is looking forward to engaging community and visitors with the park.

This season the community and park visitors can sign up for everything from drumming at Cinnamon, baking at Annaberg, exploring Leinster Bay and the Network to Freedom, hiking Ram Head, and turtle talks at Maho.

The popular Reef Bay Hike, led by a ranger or Friends member that includes a boat pickup at the bottom, is also back. Larger events include the upcoming Paddle the Park standup paddle board race at Maho Bay Beach on Nov. 13.

The full lineup, which kicks off at 10 a.m. Nov. 4 with a seminar with Delroy “Ital” Anthony on the traditional uses of plants in the USVI at the Friends Volunteer Camp at Cinnamon Bay, can be found on the Friends website.

“Encouraging our community and visitors to our island to explore and engage in the park is integral to our mission,” said Tonia Lovejoy, executive director, Friends of Virgin Islands National Park, in a press release announcing the new lineup.

“We are blessed to have natural and cultural resources on our doorstep that are awe inspiring and joyful. These activities expose people to these gifts as well as encourage them to be educated and responsible caretakers,” said Lovejoy.

Beyond the scheduled events, Friends has already hosted 10 school groups this year, expects to start up regular Learn To Swim sessions every Saturday morning at Cinnamon Bay Beach in December, and will add other seminars throughout the season.  In addition, the volunteer trail crew walk up program on Tuesdays and Thursdays kicks off on Nov. 22.

Most of the events offered by Friends are free with donations or membership suggested to help fund them. The Reef Bay Hike, Marine Exploration Trip, and larger events have ticket and registration fees to cover costs and/or provide some fundraising revenue to support the work the Friends does.

To learn about more about these happenings, follow Friends of Virgin Islands on facebook or instagram, or visit their website at