Pirates pillage and plunder on Cayman Brac

“The pirates are coming.”

It’s a phrase that may strike fear into the hearts of those traversing the high seas, but on Cayman Brac, the red carpet was rolled out for the swashbuckling buccaneers over the weekend.

The national Pirates Week festival kicked off with the Las Tortugas and Bloody Bay Buccaneers pirates pillaging Cayman Brac and igniting a festive fever with residents there.

The festivities on Grand Cayman are set to begin Thursday evening.

The weekend of activities on the Brac started Friday night with events at Captain’s Table and La Esperanza Bar and Restaurant, which saw the pirates party the night away.

On Saturday, Cayman Brac held its Heritage Day activities at Heritage House in North East Bay.

Residents and visitors were treated to live entertainment from Musical Crew members Irving Hernandez and Johnny Johnson. A variety of traditional Caymanian dishes including turtle stew and conch stew were on the menu, as well as a selection of handmade crafts.

From left, Leroy Brown, Keino Daly, Nicolas Watson, Phillip Smith and Kirk Watson show off their rope tying skills.

Cayman Islands Fire Service personnel and Public Works joined forces to demonstrate the traditional method of thatch-rope laying. Saskia Edwards, programme manager for Cayman Brac Heritage House, said the thatch strands were twisted by Annelee Ebanks ahead of Saturday’s event.

She said she was pleased by the reception of those in attendance, as rope making has been an important part of Cayman Brac history and culture from as early as 1910.

“Thatch rope laying was a part of our history and culture. From the sale of thatch rope, a lot of people would have been able to buy their necessities like flour, sugar and kerosene oil.

So, it shows how it’s a strong part of our heritage,” Edwards said.

The Heritage Day fun was followed by a parade of floats. The centerpiece, a ship called Brac Pearl, was created in a collaboration between the Cayman Brac Public Works Department and District Administration.

Pirates on parade.

The lead volunteer of Cayman Brac Pirates Week Committee, Amber Tatum, said she was pleased by the overall response from the craft and food vendors, participants and supporters.

“Now that we have completed this year’s event, we are looking forward to even greater support from the community as we plan for 2020’s festivities,” Tatum said.