It’s here!

Readers will be happy to hear that the Beacon’s new website is now in action. The site is launching today at the same address as before: Besides a brand-new design, the new site offers plenty of bells and whistles: multimedia features, more photography, and expanded breaking news coverage. The Beacon hopes to grow the site in the future, and encourages readers to check it out and provide feedback.




The Beacon office will be closed on Monday for the holiday commemorating the birthday of H. Lavity Stoutt, the territory’s first chief minister. It also will be closed the following Monday, March 14, for the Commonwealth Day holiday. Advertising and editorial deadlines will remain the same for both weeks. Beaconites hope the community will make the most of the days off.


It’s not debatable


A Beaconite covering the annual Leeward Islands Debating Competition was pleased to hear high schoolers speak so eloquently and knowledgeably. She was particularly impressed with the performance of the Elmore Stoutt High School Literary and Debating Society. The ESHS team was the youngest of six teams, whose members were permitted to be as old as 21. Even so, the Virgin Islands team performed remarkably and made it to the semifinals. In a time when the territory’s youths often get a bad rap, the Beaconite thought the debaters were a fine example for other young people to follow. Meanwhile, two other Beaconites got firsthand experience of the competition as judges. On different nights, each was part of a three-person judging panel that decided the winners. Both Beaconites enjoyed the experience very much, and were glad to have been invited to participate.


Rooster theft


Okay, so maybe it’s not the most serious crime ever, but it has to rank as one of the most pathetic. Thieves broke in to the animal pavilion at St. Croix Agrifest 2011 last week and stole “at least five fancy chickens,” according to a Feb. 22 article in the Virgin Islands Daily News. The thieves broke in to the pen during the night of Feb. 20 and stole “mini bantam roosters and Buff-laced Old English gamecocks,” the article stated. One of the gamecocks was supposed to be purchased by a boy who had saved all year to purchase it.

According to, a “virtual barnyard” for poultry fans, Old English gamecocks are “very hardy and excellent foragers. The hens go broody often and make very good mothers.” A Beaconite hopes that United States Virgin Islands police, though busy with the territory’s 61 murders last year, are able track down and prosecute the chicken-nappers.




One Beaconite got to see firsthand the generosity of some residents when she covered an HIV/AIDS fundraiser. People were asked, literally, to dig deep in their pockets to help support the expensive treatment of people living with the virus in the Virgin Islands. VI officials, businesses, and even other reporters answered the call to the tune of $20,000 in donations. Seeing the community come together to support a worthy cause reminded the reporter that in an imperfect world, people are afflicted with an incurable disease, but at least they can rely on others in their community to help.


Haircut needed?


A Beaconite received a gentle hint from a small child that he might be in need of a haircut.  The little girl approached him in a supermarket with a big smile on her face, pointed her finger and said “Jesus!” The Beaconite intends to visit the barber before being mistaken for any less reputable historical figures.