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Weather in the World : 30 in Philly with snow, NYC has 20 with snow and freezing rain. 33 in Washington DC with snow and rain, 12 in Toronto and a balmy 7 degrees in Paradise Manitoba.

78 Degrees in Crown Bay St. Thomas.  Under clear skies.
81 %  humidity
Barometric pressure is 30.01 inches
Wind is from East at 9 MPH
No rain at WSTA in the last 24 hours. 

All foster parents are urged to support the annual Valentine Day fundraiser on Thursday, February 14th. Orders can be placed with Ms. Cherlyn Bradford or Hazel Lloyd. For more information call Children and Family Services at 773-5303.

We grow a lot of fruit in the Virgin Islands. A lot of fruit trees are growing in folks backyards. A lot of it goes to waste. What if we organized all that local fruit production and turned it into a business.  That is what the new Virgin Islands Agriculture Development Corporation  and SeJah Farm are planning. Anthony Weekes is bringing together many St Croix players to create a new business opportunity - it's called Virgin Purée and they plan to buy produce from local resident’s backyards and turn it into juice, dried fruit, or frozen fruit, that can be sold locally and in the states. During the agricultural fair on St. Croix this weekend come to the SeJah Farm booth and look for Virgin Purée and help them identify your fruit trees and what can be harvested as part of the program. The whole idea is to stop wasting our home grown fruit and turn it into a product. That means fruit tree owners can make money and we could buy local fruit products too. Weekes says if each Virgin Island resident spent $10 a week on local produce it would mean $55 million circulating in the economy. Your fruit tree in the backyard could be a profit center for you.  Plant more.

Do you own a gun? Maybe it was a gift, or you inherited it from someone else. And you never bothered to register it. Will you go to jail if the police find it? The Virgin Islands Supreme Court addressed that issue in the decision. At issue is David Lopez's conviction for carrying a firearm on his person at a restaurant. He didn’t shoot anyone, he just had it on his person and it was not registered.  He pleaded guilty. It was not used in a crime. He hadn't done anything with it. But the Superior Court sentenced him to two years in jail and a fine of $5,000 and two years probation. Lopez appealed to the Supreme Court and the decided the Superior Court were too harsh. Lopez should have been treated to more lenient standard for possession of a gun since it was not used in a crime. 

Here comes the territory’s new Health Information Network  It’s a secure electronic network that enables healthcare providers like hospitals, health centers, clinics, pharmacies, labs and other medical professionals – to exchange health information for consultations, referrals, sharing and reporting. There will be an Open House – today from 9:30 to 11:30 at Schneider Hospital in the Second Floor Conference Room. Also tomorrow on St Croix Fridayfrom 9:30 to 11:30 a.m at Charles Harwood Clinic.

The Committee on Culture, Historic Preservation, Youth and Recreation, met yesterday to examine act regarding the cadastral and land records in the territory. Some of the land and cadastral documents dating back to the 18th century are disintegrating. Records of historic significance have been lost. The bill requires an assessment of the cadastral and land records in coordination with the Danish and U.S. archives; also a strategic archival plan; and publish the findings every five years. The bill passed. Next stop - the Rules Committee.

Ground breaking yesterday at Margarittaville. The old Renaissance Grand Beach resort is about to undergo a 100 million dollar conversion.  The 290 old hotel rooms will become 262 condos and the whole place will be renewed and emerge as a Jimmy Buffett Margaretville time share complex in conjunction with Whyndam resorts. Most of the buildings will remain, but the are all getting a total make over.  Neighbors of the project say they are delighted the old forlorn structures will undergo renovation. Oh and this means jobs. 125 new jobs.  They are recruiting. Go to this web site 

St. Croix Central High School, will distribute report cards to parents on today until 2:00 PM.  Parents should bring along their child’s sign out form.  call 778-0123, ext. 5500.

Division of personnel says the group health insurance office will be closed territory wide today as the staff attend training. They'll reopen for normal operations Friday morning at eight a.m.

PriceSmart will host the next St. Thomas - St. John Chamber of Commerce Business After Hours on this evening  from 5:30 - 7:30 P.M. at their location. There will be complimentary hors d’oeuvres, door prizes, 50/50 Raffle and The Famous Chamber Cash Bar. We encourage members, guests and potential members to attend!

The Bureau of Internal Revenue wants business owners to know about filing their tax returns, where to file, what forms to file, when to file.  There is a seminar for business owners is at the Small Business Development Center in Nisky Center. St. Thomas THIS EVENING from 6 to 8 PM.

Sts Peter and Paul School food crew are hosting an International night on Sat feb 15 from 4 to 7:00 PM.  The dinner is 12 per person and the food delightes come from all over the world.  That’s Sts Peter and Paul School in the courtyard on Saturday the 15th from 4 to 7:00 PM.

First Lady Cecile de Jongh will host ceremonies to increase public awareness of the Chess in the Parks Initiative. There are new chess tables being installed in eight public parks.  The chess tables were built by My Brother’s Workshop and one is being dedicated today at 3:00 PM at Altona Lagoon St Croix. Look for the new chess tables in Limpritch Park Christiansted , Vincent Mason Pool, Veterans Park & Waterfront locations in Frederiksted. On St. Thomas at Alvin McBean, Emancipation Garden, , also Veterans Park and Lindberg Bay Park.

The Virgin Islands Carnival Cultural Night Committee would like to inform all local schools that there will be a Cultural Madras Wear Competition during Cultural Night on April 23.  For more information about the Cultural Madras Wear Competition, please contact Beverlie Baron, Cultural Night Committee Chairperson, at 228-5033 or 775-6497.

Here comes the Virgin Islands agriculture and food fair opening Saturday. The 43rd annual three-day fair highlights agriculture, food and culture of the Virgin Islands. 54 farmers will display produce and products, 80 food and beverage vendors are on hand, merchants will sell arts and crafts. Every booth has been rented. The fair opens on Saturday at 10 a.m. with opening ceremonies at the tent in the center of the fairgrounds. There are activities from nine a.m. until six p.m. all three days. This year's cooking contest is for the best dumb bread. There's no entry fees and cash prizes will be awarded entries will be accepted on Sunday between eight a.m. and two p.m. Also this year in Olympic competition for agility, the goat scramble, pigeon pea shucking, sugarcane peeling and the farmer's clothes relay. In the CanCaper folks will recycle cans to look like farm animals. Tickets are six dollars for adults four dollars for seniors and three dollars for children. Weekend tickets are available.
At the agricultural fair stop by the Virgin Purée booth and help identify what fruit trees you have and you can be part of their program.

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