Governor Declares Administrative Leave for St. Thomas Carnival

Faces of Carnival – May 2, 2015. Credit: David Knight Jr

Gov. Albert Bryan Jr. has declared administrative days for government employees in the St. Thomas-St. John District and one territory-wide administrative day to “encourage greater participation in the food fair and to enhance the celebration of the Virgin Islands Carnival for all residents and visitors.”

This annual celebration provides a tremendous economic boost to the local economy and helps to promote greater understanding and appreciation of Carnival and V.I. culture worldwide. “As the world becomes increasingly digital, it’s important to remember that many people are experiencing our traditions and tidbits of our heritage thousands of miles away from our shores,” Bryan said. “Capturing the true essence and spirit of our Carnival celebrations and festivals will inevitably shape the identity of the Virgin Islands for the world to see.”

The St. Thomas Carnival has become one of the region’s top festivals, attracting thousands of people to the island over the years; the island has also been Airbnb’s top destination in the Caribbean since 2018, making the new booking-solution a welcome addition to the territory’s tourism product and a tremendous boost to the territory’s economy.

The governor has granted non-essential employees residing in the St. Thomas/St. John District administrative leave for:
Wednesday, May 1 — Food, Arts and Crafts Fair Day – from noon to 5 p.m.
Thursday, May 2 — J’ouvert from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Bryan also granted one administrative day for non-essential government employees, territory-wide:
Friday, May 3 — Children’s Parade Day from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

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Caribbean butterflies flutter down Main Street. The smiles never stopped. (Gerard Sperry photo)
Revelers during a previous St. Thomas Carnival in April. (Gerard Sperry photo)

The leave granted above shall not apply to essential employees and employees on a regular or rotating shift. Employees on annual or sick leave immediately or immediately following the time period administrative leave is granted will not receive administrative leave. Future leave will not be substituted for employees who are considered essential and/or whose shift happens to fall on a day in which other employees are granted administrative leave

As residents and visitors observe the traditions and heritage of the Virgin Islands, Gov. Bryan asks that residents partake in cultural activities, art, foods and music that binds the territory’s rich culture together. Through their music, food, storytelling and art, Virgin Islanders can breathe new life and meaning into traditions that will be passed down to future generations.