September 26, 2012

Children take over Regatta Vava'u for the day

VAVA'U, Kingdom of Tonga - After a fun sailboat race in solid breezes Tuesday, many of the cruisers in the Regatta Vava'u took time Wednesday to attend - and help out - with a Kids' Day that included face painting, costumes, music and, of course, a snazzy parade, complete with an all-Tongan children's band.

The Tongan children had the day off from school for the event and seemed to enjoy the whole thing as much as the hundreds of parents and cruisers who came to watch.

Local Vava'u celebrity and theater owner Billy worked with the children, leading part of the parade with a ukulele. Then the children from various schools put on performances of traditional dances, dressed in traditional garb.

After the end of the Kids' Day festivities, the cruisers retired to the Poolside Cafe for their own afternoon of fun and games and to rehydrate with the beverages of their choice.

Near the wharf area where the children were doing their dances, the inter-island container ship was at the dock, loading and offloading containers. The containers are the main way things are shipped to and from the island.

Thursday will be the second race in the three-race series this week, with a late afternoon around-the-harbor contest. I suspect there will be some amount of hydration involved in that race, too.

Then Friday the cruisers have a longer race scheduled through the islands, ending up at Ano Beach for what's called the Full Moon Party, a combination awards program, beach party, dance-a-thon, and pyrotechnics show.

There will also be a feast with lots of food and drink... lots...

Although the Full Moon Party is almost the grand finale to the Regatta, the next night there will be a traditional Tongan feast offered that many Regatta participants plan to attend, too.

I plan to stay away from the scales for at least a month when I get back from this adventure of feasts, parties, sailboat races and imbibing of hydrating beverages.

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