The Seychelles islands have drawn the curtain on another edition of SUBIOS, the Seychelles Festival of the Sea, after three days of fun and educational-orientated activities, which took place at the popular Beau Vallon beachfront, the Golden Mile of the island of Mahe.
This year’s edition of SUBIOS, the Seychelles Festival of the Sea, was being held from November 23-25, under the theme “People and the Ocean – Striving for a Sustainable Partnership.”
The event kicked off with the prize-giving ceremony of the SUBIOS Art and Creative Writing Competition, which has over the years promoted conservation and the education of the marine environment by way of schools showcasing their knowledge and skills through art and creative writing. The ceremony was held on of the launching of the event, Friday, November 23, 2012, at the Seychelles National Library.
The prize-giving ceremony started with the Minister for Education, Mrs. Macsuzy Mondon, launching the exhibition that showcased the work of the school children in which they have expressed their artistic and creative skills of the underwater world.
Prizes were then awarded to all the winners, from primary to post-secondary institutions. Independent Primary and Beau Vallon Secondary schools were voted the best schools to celebrate and capture the essence of the underwater festival.
Later in the evening, the 2012 SUBIOS, the Seychelles Festival of the Sea, was officially opened by the Seychelles Minister for Tourism and Culture, Alain St.Ange, along with the Seychelles Tourism Board CEO, Elsia Grandcourt, in an open-air ceremony at the Beau Vallon beachfront itself.
In line with Minister St.Ange’s opening address, the Seychelles Tourism Board’s CEO, Elsia Grandcourt, opening remarks of the Festival of the Sea said SUBIOS must be celebrated as a permanent event as SUBIOS has played and continues to play a significant role in sensitizing the public about marine life.
“It gives me great pleasure to welcome you all to the launch of another SUBIOS and to once again be part of this important event that celebrates the seas that surround us and our beautiful but fragile marine world which we must constantly be reminded, we must take great pains to respect and conserve, because it is our lifeline to the future and the future of our children,” said Mrs. Elsia Grandcourt.
On the same note, Minister St.Ange’s official address, touched on the vital role of SUBIOS, the Seychelles Festival of the Sea, that sensitized Seychellois and visitors to the grandeur of the magnificent ocean that surrounds the islands and also the beautiful marine heritage which inspires.
“SUBIOS, our Festival of the Sea, with its long legacy of sensitizing our population to the wonders of the sea, as well as to the challenges involved in protecting our marine world for generations to come, is an apt time for us to reflect on the changing world we live in. On those challenges we continue to face and commit ourselves both individually and as a nation to making the changes we need to make, and adapting in the ways we must in order to live in greater harmony with the forces of nature which here in Seychelles, manifest themselves most prominently as part and parcel of the mighty Indian Ocean,” Minister St.Ange said.
Minister St.Ange also thanked the visitors who had traveled all the way to Seychelles to be part of the event, as well as all partners for becoming the official sponsors for SUBIOS, the Seychelles Festival of the Sea.
Minister St.Ange also expressed his gratitude towards Mr. Peter Sinon, the Minister of National Resources and Industry, and Mrs. Macsuzy Mondon, the Minister of Education, for being present at the Official Opening Ceremony of the 2012 SUBIOS, the Seychelles Festival of the Sea. “Your presence is really appreciated. The Tourism Board Staff is honored by your presence, and the public at large is happy to see you here amongst them at the annual events organized for Seychelles,” Minister St.Ange said.
Following the official opening, the festivities, kick started at 7:00 pm by a thrilling performance of a cabaret, a show by local group Zez livening-up the evening, as well as a music extravaganza performed by one of the local DJs.
The opening ceremony also included the screening of the SUBIOS, Seychelles Festival of the Sea, DVD.
Saturday proved to be even more of revelry with the unending challenges, organized as part of the activities of the SUBIOS festival itinerary and the staging of a horde of fun activities for the children.
Amid the various activities included were the SUBIOS Man & Woman triathlon and the SUBIOS Virtual Treasure Hunt Competition, followed by the prize-giving ceremony where Minister Rolph Payet, the Minister for the Environment and Energy was joined by Minister St.Ange and Tourism Board CEO, Elsia Grandcourt, to award the prizes to the many winners.
The last day was a more of a fun fair for all to enjoy with more music from the DJ until the event came to its official close at 6:00 pm by Minister St.Ange, accompanied by CEO of the Seychelles Tourism Board, Elsia Grandcourt.
In Minster St.Ange’s closing address, he took the opportunity to thank Mrs. Grandcourt and her team for their hard work and everyone who had participated in SUBIOS 2012.
“Having listened to members of the public, sharing their ideas of how they would like to see SUBIOS 2013, we will take all your suggestions on board and put in place a committee to oversee next year’s event, because we want to see SUBIOS, our Festival of the Sea, continue and grow as an annual event. This is why it is important to take everything that I have heard on board,” said Minister St.Ange, “Already we can announce that one of your ideas has been accepted by Minister Peter Sinon, and next year, there will be a traditional bottom fishing competition, where the fishermen from all ages and in any boat, large or small, will be able to participate in the competition. We will also be putting more emphasis on the underwater photo and film competition. and more emphasis will also be placed on the Art and Creative Writing Competition for our younger generation,” Minister Alain St.Ange added.
Minister St.Ange also thanked members of the public and, as well as all the Kiosks holders for their support and efforts they have made to ensure the success of the event.
The closing of the 2012 SUBIOS, Seychelles Festival of the Sea also set the stage for the announcement of the 2013 theme of next year’s event, which is “Seychelles: Sustaining Life in the Sea of Change’. The rendezvous for the next SUBIOS, the Seychelles Festival of the Sea has been set for 22 and 24 November, 2013.
Seychelles is a founding member of the International Coalition of Tourism Partners (ICTP).