Las Tortugas galleon to feature in Pirates Week parade

A highlight of the popular Pirates Week float parade this Saturday, will be a colourful Spanish galleon, built by The Pirates of the Cayman Islands, a press release said.

The group, who have been actively involved in tourism promotions and charity work in Cayman for many years, has named the project, sponsored by Dean’s Cleaning Services, The Galleon Project.

Designed by Orneil Galbraith, and built by Robert Bodden, with all the pirates helping, the galleon is 30 feet long and features a bow made of plopnut wood – the very hard local material used for catboat ribs in early Cayman. The wood was gathered from the bush area behind Durty Reid’s and moulded into the shape of the bow. The boat also features a mahogany cabin door.

Two months in the making, she has been christened Las Tortugas.

Mr. Galbraith said the idea was to build the boat substantially enough so that it could last for several years as an integral part of the float parade, which follows the landing pageant at 3pm, Hog Sty Bay.

With the likes of Darvin Ebanks, Leroy Bodden, Duke Tibbetts, Robert Bodden, Orneil Galbraith, John Ferguson, Kirk Davis, Linda Galer, and several others, the Cayman Pirates have been entertaining crowds at the landing pageant and float parade for many years.

Every year, they combine with the Seattle Seafair Pirates and other devotees from North America who come down for the landing.

Growing in enthusiasm, the Cayman group is now on the edge of forming a non-profit organization to become involved in charity work and community activities year-round.

‘We’ve been doing a lot of tourism-related work over the years, including trips overseas with the Department of Tourism to promote Pirates Week,’ said Darvin Ebanks.

‘Now we want to get officially organized and develop the community side.’

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