World Oceans Day celebrated

Dragon Bay celebrated World Oceans
Day with a range of activities this week.

Each year, 8 June was officially
declared to be. It first happened in 2009 to honour the world’s oceans,
celebrate the products and marine life the oceans provide and to appreciate the
oceans’ intrinsic value.

Dragon Bay developer Mike Ryan,
from the inception of the Dragon Bay project, said that he has been committed
to preserving the pristine marine environment that surrounds Cayman. Joining
him in this commitment was one of Dragon Bay’s first partners – the Ocean
Futures Society led by Jean-Michel Cousteau.

The mission of the Ocean Futures
Society, according to a press release from Dragon Bay, is to inspire and
educate people around the world to act responsibly for the protection of the
ocean.

The result of this successful
partnership is the Ambassadors of the Environment programme at The
Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman that attracts both children and adults in the
exploration and education of the Cayman Islands’ marine ecology and conservation
practices and ideologies, explained Mr. Ryan.

“We are all a part of the living
world and the oceans that connect us all. Similarly, everything at Dragon Bay
is connected to and by Cayman’s waters – which provide us with a wondrous array
of adventures and inspire us with their natural beauty,” he said.

Connection

Because of Dragon Bay’s vital
connection to the water, said the release, the community celebrated World
Oceans Day in a number of ways.

Recognised marine biologist Holly
Lohuis of the Ocean Futures Society will be at The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman
as a featured speaker at Afternoon Tea at the Silver Palm Lounge on Saturday,
12 June, discussing the world’s oceans and how we can help protect them.

With a degree from the University
of California in Santa Barbara, Ms Lohuis has been diving around the world with
Jean-Michel Cousteau for more than a decade. A key member of the Ocean Futures
Society expedition team, she acts as a liaison between the team and scientists
and is responsible for confirming the factual accuracy of the content of Ocean
Futures Society documentaries.

Also a marine educator, Ms Lohuis
has taught thousands of children and adults about the wonders and fragility of
the aquatic environment and the importance of protecting them for future
generations. For her educational outreach efforts, she was honoured in 2009
with the Hall of Fame award from the San Juan School district in her hometown
of Sacramento, California.

Joining Ms Lohuis as a featured
speaker at the afternoon tea will be Bradley Johnson of the Cayman Islands
Department of the Environment, who will give a presentation on the Little
Cayman-based Grouper Moon Project – dedicated to the conservation of the endangered
Grouper.

Ambassadors

Ms Lohuis will also lead the
Ambassadors of the Environment Adventure Series on Saturday, 12 June from
9:30am to 1:00pm. Catering to children aged four to seven, the programme will
focus on preserving the world’s oceans. Top science students from all Government
Primary Schools on Grand Cayman have been invited to attend the programme, also
sponsored by Dragon Bay.

Culinary

Blue by Eric Ripert at The
Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman is using its culinary influence as the only
5-Diamond restaurant in the Caribbean to promote the use of sustainable fish by
creating a special six-course tasting menu to celebrate World Oceans Day.

Blue has called upon the talents of
Chef de Cuisine Luis Lujan to showcase sustainable fish combined with the
inimitable flavours of the Caribbean for the exclusive World Oceans Day tasting
menu.

It follows the Seafood Watch
recommendations proposed by the Monterey Bay Aquarium and was  featured for the entire week of World Oceans
Day from Monday, 7 June through Saturday, 12 June. The ingredients include
mainly indigenous fish from Cayman waters as well as local ingredients from
sustainable farms on island and in the US.

Guests choosing the World Oceans
Day menu also have the option to sample a wine pairing selected by Blue’s Head
Sommelier Kristian Netis from biodynamic or sustainable wineries around the
world.

Green behaviour

In addition to the World Oceans Day
observance, the Dragon Bay developer is gradually encouraging homeowners and
guests to gradually adopt new “green” behaviours in a commitment to establish
ongoing eco-friendly practices. The 360-acre luxury resort community has implemented
an aggressive programme eliminating the use of Styrofoam and plastic bottles
while also recycling paper and batteries.

“In order to create a culture of
conservation, and make a substantial difference, we have to establish
involvement from all of our residents and guests alike,” Mr. Ryan said.

Further activities and programmes
are planned throughout the year, encouraging Dragon Bay owners and staff to
become a part of this culture of conservation. The Dragon Bay Foundation will
be established in 2010 to allow local residents, Dragon Bay owners and guests
to support projects aimed at maintaining a healthy environment throughout the
Cayman Islands. These initiatives are focused on reducing waste, recycling,
replanting of mangroves and supporting efforts of other agencies working to
protect local wildlife and their natural surroundings.

Plans for the remainder of the year
include National Threatened Species Day on 7 September, World Habitat Day in
October, National Recycling Week in November and International Volunteers Day
in December.

For more information on Dragon Bay,
visit www.dragonbaycayman.com

To make reservations at Blue By
Eric Ripert for the World Oceans Day tasting menu, to attend Afternoon Tea on
Saturday, 12 June or to book space in the special World Oceans Day edition of
the Ambassadors Adventure Series, please call The Ritz-Carlton, Grand Cayman on
943-9000.

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