Tuesday, June 25, 2024

Hol Chan Marine Reserve’s Reef Fest includes educational Trivia Competition


Hol Chan Marine Reserve held its Annual Reef Fest 2024 Primary School Trivia Competition on Wednesday, May 22nd, at the Lions Den in San Pedro Town. The tight competition started at 9:00AM, with the participation of nine contestants from five different schools: Ambergris Caye Elementary School (ACES), San Pedro Roman Catholic School (SPRCS), The Island Academy (TIA), Isla Bonita Elementary School (IBES), and the Holy Cross Anglican School (HCAS). The participants showcased their knowledge of the reef and marine ecosystems.
Contestants who had dedicated themselves to learning about protected areas were tested on coral reefs, the role of mangroves in the ecosystem, protected marine species, and even the laws on lobster and conch’s opening and closing seasons. Their thorough preparation was evident as they answered the questions to the best of their abilities. After the first two rounds, students were given two questions each, with 30 seconds to respond. Despite the pressure, three students entered the third and final round.

At the end of the final round, Ryan Sanchez from IBE took first place, and the grand prize was a laptop, a printer, and a year of paid tuition worth a thousand dollars. Daniel Choc from the SPRCS took second place, taking home a laptop and a two hundred fifty-dollar cash prize. Daniel Estell from TIA took third place, winning a laptop.
The success of the trivia competition was made possible by the generous contributions of the sponsors. Organizers thanked Hon. Andre Perez, Minister of Blue Economy and Disaster Risk Management, Area Representative for Belize Rural South, Tropic Air, Castillo’s Hardware, Bananas on the Beach, Captain Sharks, Quality Poultry Products, Happy Island Bar and Grill, Secret Beach Waterpark, and Wine de Vine. Their support made the event possible and underscored their commitment to marine conservation and education.

The Reef Fest started on Sunday, May 19th, with a Reef Fest Beach day, which took place at the Happy Island Beach Bar and Grill at the Secret Beach Area. The day started at noon with different beach and water competitions, such as sack races, tug-a-war, a swim relay race, a watermelon eating contest, and their annual “Reef Fest Scavenger Hunt,” where contestants found marine treasures around the island and won fabulous cash prizes and giveaways.
First Place winner on the Annual Reef Fest Scavenger Hunt was Esmeralda Chi, who won a three-hundred-dollar cash prize, and second place winner was Kiana Taylor, who won two hundred dollars in cash prize, followed by third place winner Jamaya Taylor, who won a hundred dollars. Winners were given prizes at the Hol Chan Marine Reserve office on Caribeña Street in the Ambergris Caye.

On day two, there was a reef storytelling, “Big Book,” involving the ABC Pre-School, enriching the young minds of San Pedro “La Isla Bonita” with tales of the ocean and its wonders. The following day, the Reef Fest continued its celebration with an online trivia on Tik-Tok asking High School and Primary School students to create a video showcasing the importance of Reducing, Re-use, and Recycling by starting the video saying, “I dah from Belize,” a current trending Tik-Tok Challenge. Voting for the challenge will end on Friday, May 24th, at midday, when contestants with the most likes and winners will be announced the same day. The festival will conclude with the “Annual Reef Fair,” which commences at 9:30AM and occurs at Central Park. With Informational booths, games, competitions, face painting, and the appearance of “Ozzy the Clown.”

Later, at 6:30PM, the day will end with a movie night. Kids are invited to view the Netflix film “Woody the Woodpecker Goes to Camp” for a fun, entertaining night with snacks.
The Annual Reef Fest highlights the importance of Belize’s natural resources, particularly marine assets, and raises awareness of Hol Chan Marine Reserve’s education program. The program involves visiting all the schools on the island throughout the year to teach students about marine life and conservation.

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