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Bermuda Calendar for January 2018 Business Conferences, Conventions & Community Events

Monthly diary for locals and visitors for the first month of this new calendar year

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By Keith Archibald Forbes (see About Us) exclusively for Bermuda Online

Many local business and community organizations have meetings this month. We will gladly show a free hyperlink to them when they reciprocate the courtesy. See our Links and Mentions policy at http://www.bermuda-online.org/links. For another listing of daily events see The Royal Gazette daily newspaper's http://www.royalgazette.com/pdf/twib/twib_calendar.pdf

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January  2018

City of Hamilton crestPublic Holidays. New Year's Day in Bermuda.

Harness racing.

City of Hamilton crest 

Bacardi National Par 3 Golf Tournament. Turtle Hill Golf Club. No entry fee for the tournament, but players are required to qualify in one of the following four categories – Professional; Men; Senior Men (55 years +) and Ladies. The top 10 gross scores plus ties in each category will be eligible to participate. 

The Fairmont Hamilton Princess and the Mid Atlantic Athletic Club (MAAC) annual Fairmont to Fairmont Race. It takes runners on a 7.2-mile course between The Fairmont Hamilton Princess and The Fairmont Southampton and is considered the beginning of the running year, attracting competitors from across the globe. It is used by many runners as the final warm-up for International Race Weekend, which starts on Friday, January 16. The Fairmont to Fairmont Race also includes a competitive walking category, a three-member team relay, and a Junior 3K race. The course takes the competitors from The Fairmont Hamilton Princess Hotel, along Front Street, East Broadway, The Lane, Harbour Road, Burnt House Hill, Middle Road and up The Fairmont Southampton Driveway before finishing at The Fairmont Southampton's Private Beach Club. Harry Mulenga and Ashley Estwanik won last year's  male and female categories. The main draw prize for this race will be a four-night stay at The Fairmont Mayakoba, Mexico, with round-trip JetBlue tickets. There are also prizes for the top male and female finishers of the Junior 3K. The Fairmont to Fairmont Relay Race will award prizes for the top finishers in the male, female, and mixed categories. The adult Fairmont to Fairmont race has prizes for the top male and female finishers in the 16-29, 30-39, 40-49, 50-59, 60 and over, and 70 and over categories. Also winning prizes will be the first male and female walkers as well as the first tourists, and the winning Fairmont employees.

January 12-13. Bermuda International Race and Marathon Weekend. Front Street, City of Hamilton and the National Sports Centre, Frog Lane, Devonshire. Bermuda National Athletics Association. P O Box HM 2156, Hamilton HM JX. Includes Bermuda International Marathon and Bermuda International Half Marathon; Invitational Mile races and Bermuda Triangle Challenge Mile, Front Street; First race in Bermuda Triangle Challenge series; Beat Retreat ceremony performed by the Bermuda Regiment Band accompanied by the Bermuda Islands Drum Corps; Bermuda International 10K and 10K Walk start-National Sports Centre, Devonshire; Second race in Bermuda Triangle Challenge series; Bermuda International Marathon & Bermuda International Half Marathon start, Front Street, Hamilton; Third race in Bermuda Triangle Challenge series. 

Bermuda Festival (evenings). From January through March.

 Bermuda’s Restaurant Weeks.  Exploring Bermuda's food culture. Featuring discount deals at restaurants in the hope of reeling in some business during the slow months of the year. Especially good for budget-minded tourists from the USA not used to regular far higher than in USA restaurant prices. In 2016 45 restaurants have taken on the challenge to provide Bermuda-inspired dishes (see Bermuda Cuisine) in their Restaurants Weeks’ menus. Those offering Bermuda-inspired dishes have increased from 24 to 31. Three-course menus are tiered in three price categories -- $29, $39 or $49. Back this year is the People’s Choice Award, allowing diners to vote for the restaurant they feel best incorporates local food culture in their menus. In 2015, Muse was the People’s Choice Award winner. Individual restaurants show their pricing.

Bermuda Regional Bridge Tournament. Bermuda Bridge Club, held at the Fairmont Southampton Princess Hotel, 101 South Road, Southampton. Seven days of bridge, panel shows and other entertainment. The Bermuda Regional is in a class of its own and introduced in 2013, repeated again in 2016, is Bermuda Gold, a 0-750 games offering gold points. If making offline reservations, ask for the Regional Bridge Rate.

January 13. Bermuda Festival (2018 January-March). International recording artist Heather Nova will perform in tribute to her uncle Jeremy Frith as part of the Bermuda Festival. Ms Nova, along with Christina Frith, will join Kim Dismont Robinson, Patrika Ferguson, Nick Hutchings, Debbie Lombardo and others for The Uniquely Bermudian Musings of Jeremy Frith and Friends. The show will highlight the work of Mr Frith, a celebrated Bermudian poet and musician who died in 2009. Mr Frith received acclaim for his 1996 collection Oh Gawd, I Vish Dis Ig’rance Vud Stop!, which featured a range of poetry and verse about life on the island, largely written in Bermudian vernacular. David Skinner, executive director of the festival, said the tribute had been in the works for a while with the Frith family interested in playing a role. “His family wanted to get involved, but the question was who was going to do what,” Mr Skinner said. “Heather stepped forward as he meant a lot to her. I know that there will be other members of the family in the audience.” The 2018 Bermuda Festival starts on Saturday, with a range of local and international artists on offer and a mix of musical and theatrical performances. “I am hard pressed to point out just one highlight,” Mr Skinner said. “There are a lot of highlights. I think one of the big things about this year’s festival is the high level of Bermudian involvement. It’s something that has been increasing over the years, but this year we are really happy with the number of talented Bermudians involved.” In addition to the tribute to Jeremy Frith, which will feature a range of Bermudian performers and artists, Mr Skinner said several young artists and groups would be competing this Saturday on the festival stage. The festival will include performances by the Cann Sisters, the Bermuda Pipe Band and the Wall Street Band. “We really want to build on that year after year,” he said. “We need to encourage our young artists and we will continue to expand on our youth outreach because there are some wonderfully talented young people in this country. There are just not enough opportunities for them to be showcased.” However, he warned that some performances had already sold out, and others were rapidly approaching that point. We are definitely encouraging people not to wait if they want to see a show,” he said. “There are still some very good seats available for some of the shows, but don’t wait until the last minute or you might not be able to enjoy what you want to see.” The Uniquely Bermudian Musings of Jeremy Frith and Friends will be held in Earl Cameron Theatre in City Hall on January 31. The show begins at 7.30pm, with tickets available online at ptix.bermudafestival.org.  

 World Captive Forum (WCF) 2017. The WCF features delegates from all over the world, including Europe, North America and Latin America. Bermuda’s business chiefs are out in force for this even, last held in Florida in 2016. It includes several speakers from Bermuda including lawyers, regulators and business leaders. They use the event to try and bring new business to Bermuda. The forum’s 2016 location in Florida, plus its 26+ year history, attracted a large number of delegates from the potentially lucrative Latin American region. There has been exponential growth in business from Latin America since 2000 when Bermuda started negotiations to sign a tax information exchange agreement (TIEA) with Mexico — the first agreement between an offshore jurisdiction and a Latin American nation. The TIEA with Mexico had been followed by others with Colombia and Argentina. They do not consider Bermuda a preferential tax regime — a tax haven. Bermuda had made other inroads into the Latin America market. Once the TIEA signed with Brazil comes into effect Bermuda will enjoy the same advantages as Colombia, Mexico and Argentina. Latin America is seen as a region which presents growth opportunities for the Bermuda captive market. Overall, the WCF has served as a good base for Bermuda to showcase its expertise as the largest captive domicile in the world. 

January 31. Bermuda Festival. The Uniquely Bermudian Musings of Jeremy Frith and Friends will be held in Earl Cameron Theatre in City Hall. The show begins at 7.30pm, with tickets available online at ptix.bermudafestival.org.  

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February 2018

Valentine's Day

Valentine's Day

Devonshire Parish crestCoolest month. 

Black History Education month.

February 1-28.  Heart Disease Awareness Month. The City of Hamilton has partnered with the Bermuda Heart Foundation to promote heart health. The city will be hosting the ‘My City Heart’ Instagram contest. Through the contest, people can take a picture with a large heart cut-out that will be placed on the lawn of City Hall. They can then post the picture on Instagram, with the person who earns the most likes winning a prize. Sionna Barton, Marketing and Development Manager at the Bermuda Heart Foundation, said: “This February is Heart Disease Awareness month, and we are encouraging everyone on island to be proactive about their heart health. “A sedentary lifestyle may increase the risk of heart attack almost as much as smoking. We need Bermudians to adapt easy-to-embrace ways to significantly lower their risk of heart disease and improve their heart health. “Get active. You don’t have to join a gym or run in a 5K. Start small by incorporating physical activity into your daily routine more and more: Take the stairs instead of the elevator, park at the farthest end of the parking lot or use your lunch break to take a quick walk.” Meanwhile, mayor Charles Gosling said the corporation was excited to help raise awareness of heart disease, the leading cause of death for men and women in Bermuda. “We sincerely hope that everyone will participate and have some fun while educating themselves and making a difference,” he added.

February 5-8. 32nd Educational Travel Consortium Signature Conference. Expected to bring more than 400 travel planners and tour operators to Bermuda . The conference is expected to pump an estimated $830,000 into the local economy while highlighting the island as a destination. Christi Tucker, business development manager for the BTA, secured the ETC group with assistance from Fairmont Southampton — the event’s host hotel. Ms Tucker said: “This conference is a double win. Not only is the ETC coming to a destination outside the United States for the first time, it’s bringing very influential travel planners out here. These decision-makers are in critical positions to bring more conferences and group travel to Bermuda in the future.” ETC members represent higher education alumni groups, museums, zoos and conservation and cultural organisations, focusing on “experiential travel”. While on the island, attendees will experience Bermuda’s culture first hand, allowing them to better promote Bermuda as a destination. The visit will also result in at least 2,000 room nights for local hotels during the slower shoulder season. This month, Ms Tucker hosted key officials from ETC on a site visit that included time at Carter House with Heritage Bermuda, a collection of historical and cultural organisations in Bermuda. Rick Spurling, chairman of Heritage Bermuda, said: “This extremely important conference will be a major catalyst for tourism in Bermuda. All heritage experience providers in Bermuda from the Gombeys to the museums are dedicated to Bermuda’s fascinating culture and history and can’t wait to tell it and show it — not only next February — but for many years to come.”

PLP Founders Day

Loquats ripen. Loquats can be found on many trees throughout Bermuda, often growing wild.

2016 Bermuda Festival performances.

World Captive Forum (WCF) 201. The WCF features delegates from all over the world, including Europe, North America and Latin America. Bermuda’s business chiefs are out in force for this event. It includes several speakers from Bermuda including lawyers, regulators and business leaders. They use the event to try and bring new business to Bermuda. The forum’s location attracts a large number of delegates from the potentially lucrative Latin American region. There has been exponential growth in business from Latin America since 2000 when Bermuda started negotiations to sign a tax information exchange agreement (TIEA) with Mexico — the first agreement between an offshore jurisdiction and a Latin American nation. The TIEA with Mexico had been followed by others with Colombia and Argentina. They do not consider Bermuda a preferential tax regime — a tax haven. Bermuda had made other inroads into the Latin America market. Latin America is seen as a region which presents growth opportunities for the Bermuda captive market. Overall, the WCF has served as a good base for Bermuda to showcase its expertise as the largest captive domicile in the world. 

February. Bermuda Four Ball Championship. 

Devonshire Parish crest.

January-February. Bermuda’s Restaurant Weeks.  Exploring Bermuda's food culture. Featuring discount deals at restaurants in the hope of reeling in some business during the slow months of the year. In 2016 45 restaurants took on the challenge to provide Bermuda-inspired dishes (see Bermuda Cuisine) in their Restaurants Weeks’ menus. Those offering Bermuda-inspired dishes increased from 24 to 31. Three-course menus are tiered in three price categories -- $29, $39 or $49. Back this year is the People’s Choice Award, allowing diners to vote for the restaurant they feel best incorporates local food culture in their menus. Individual restaurants show their pricing. 

Bermuda Festival performances. 

Second-last Friday in February. Bermuda National Budget Statement Day. Minister of Finance delivers his Annual Budget Speech on next financial year's government income, expenditure, taxes and more.  The fiscal year ends on March 31. The Budget must be passed in Parliament prior to the end of the first quarter of the current financial year. Once MPs have approved the statement and passed the Appropriation Act, the Senate debates the Budget, with a maximum of 22 hours allowed for their detailed discussion on the different headings. Senators have no power to alter the Budget but need to have it approved so it can pass into law by March 31.

Saturday, late  February. Midshipman Dale Ceremony St. Peter's Church, St. George’s. On this day a new marble gravestone was unveiled at the annual commemorative service for Midshipman Richard Sutherland Dale. The ceremony marked the continuation, in 2016, of an 80-year tradition and the 201st anniversary of the death of Midshipman Dale — the last victim of the War of 1812. The original is preserved beneath the new stone. Retired United States Navy Captain John Rodgaard saw the deterioration of Midshipman Dale’s tombstone on a recent visit to Bermuda. He enlisted the support of retired US Navy Captain Vance Morrison, and the US Naval Order, of which both men are members, made a generous donation to The Friends of St Peter’s for a replica of the gravestone. TS Admiral Somers Sea Cadets played an integral part of the unveiling ceremony, having been instructed in the traditional manner of folding a ceremonial US flag. Wreaths were laid by Governor George Fergusson, Linda Rosalik, who represented the US Consul, and Reverend Erskine Simmons, the chairman of The Friends of St Peter’s Church. A special wreath was also sent by Louise Hall Reider, descendant of Scarritt Adams, the originator of the ceremony. Midshipman Dale died in St George’s from wounds incurred in a marine battle during the War of 1812 on February 23, 1815. Eighty-two years ago this month, US Navy Ensign Scarritt Adams arranged for flowers to be placed on the grave and for many years the US Military commemorated Midshipman Dale on the anniversary of his death. This ended when the US Marines left their Bermuda base. However, the tradition was adopted by The Friends of St Peter’s Church, who now gather every year at Midshipman Dale’s gravestone.

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March 2018

Hamilton ParishMarch 1. St. David's Day. (A big day in Wales but not in Bermuda)..

Moth World Championships

March 1-2. Bermuda Festival. "For You---We Dance." Ballet Gala. Earl Cameron Theatre, City Hall, Hamilton..

Bermuda Match Play Championships. Mid Ocean Club.

Bermuda Lawn Tennis Association's Mixed Doubles League starts.

Grey Goose World Par 3 National Championship, Turtle Hill Golf Club.

Hamilton Parish crest 

March 17-25. 21st Annual (in 2018) Bermuda International Film Festival Join forces with the City of Hamilton to hold the event at the Earl Cameron Theatre. Organizers say the partnership with the city will allow them to improve and enhance the festival experience. The event will take place at City Hall - a venue used by BIFF over the last two festivals. Hamilton mayor Charles Gosling said: “The City is delighted to support the 2018 Bermuda International Film Festival. City Hall is an arts center and anything we can do to contribute to the arts in Bermuda will always be considered a win for us. Our City vision is to be a vibrant one and events like the Film Festival serve to fulfill that, whilst at the same time, providing our residents and visitors alike with the chance to experience an event of international standards.” The partnership will allow BIFF to work more closely with Bermudian-based Ad-hoc Service on digital projection and audio at the theatre. BIFF has had problems in the past with the cost and logistics of importing digital projection technology and projectionists. The Bermuda Tourism Authority, the government’s Department of Community and Cultural Affairs, and Bermuda College have been added to the board to reflect the community ownership of the festival and to help work on broadening its appeal. BIFF is hosting a volunteer soirée on Wednesday, November 15, from 5.30pm to 7pm. For more details, e-mail volunteer@biff.bm or call 293-3456.

Bermuda Healthcare Forum. Delegates include more than 100 from overseas along with a dozen accompanying guests. The conference is aimed at buyers for major hospital systems, long-term care facilities physicians groups and health benefits and service providers in the North American market. The conference, to be held at Rosewood Tucker’s Point, will be structured around eight themes designed to address the changing risk landscape in healthcare and feature a variety of industry participants describing how different companies are handling changes. Healthcare is moving to patient-centric care and the changes in reimbursement and integration of providers delivering care are revolutionizing the industry. Ross Webber, chief executive officer of the BDA, will moderate a CEO panel at the conference, which will discuss why companies have domiciled in Bermuda and the benefits for healthcare clients of doing business on the island. Bermuda is regarded as the market of choice for healthcare liability insurance buyers due to the amount of capacity available, a high standard of contract certainty and the ability to create new products in response to market needs. Areas insured include hospitals, senior and long-term care homes, blood and organ banks, assisted living facilities, diagnostic centres, physicians groups and rehabilitation and research centres. Bermudian-based global insurers are able to provide more than $350 million capacity for a single risk and can write lead and excess layers on an insurance programme. The market has a solid track record of claims payments and has retained consistency through all market cycles, as well as providing substantive limits.

March. Harvard’s Hasty Pudding Theatricals is set to return, continuing a 53-year (in 2018) tradition. Casino Evil will be performed at Earl Cameron Theatre at City Hall. This year’s musical production will bring the all-male cast for comedy, singing and the HPT brand of chaos. Formed in 1844, HPT have put together 169 original productions, with Bermuda serving as the last stop on the tour since the 1960s. Amira Weeks, tour manager for HPT, said: “The actors and crew would tell you that our trip to Bermuda is what they most look forward to every year. This year we are especially excited to be staying at the beautiful Elbow Beach resort. First-time Pudding show watchers will be astounded by standout singing, a laugh-out-loud script, colorful and expertly designed costumes and set pieces, and an incredible ten-piece live band. Not to mention, the kick line dance number that ends every show will leave you astonished at how high our all-male cast can kick. It’s a must see.”  HPT first came in 1963, every year since then. Oldest theatrical company in North America. First began as a secret society in 1795. Sponsored annually in the past by the Bermuda Government's Department of Tourism, now replaced by the Bermuda Tourism Authority. Tickets, prices, times and more at phone 295-1727.

Harvard Hasty Pudding Bermuda March 2011

Harvard Hasty Pudding Theatricals Bermuda 2012

March 17. St. Patrick's Day. Celebrated in Bermuda. Emerald Isle Society Dinner Dance and imported Irish entertainment.

 Bermuda Triple Challenge starts. Back, with international pros taking part and a new division for America’s Cup teams to compete. The obstacle race, which raised more than $55,000 for charity last year, has grown by leaps and bounds: participation is up by 30 per cent year over year, according to organizers. Four professional racers from overseas will join local teams in running, jumping, climbing and crawling through three days of challenges around the Island. Matt Novakovich, Juliana Sproles, Brakken Kraker and Val Smith, veterans of the international Spartan Race challenge, will provide this year’s international contingent. Jason Correia, one of the event’s founders, said an elite individual division had been created this year to draw interest from other countries and cater to athletes looking for a pure race experience. “We are also extremely excited for 2016 as we have been awarded Obstacle Course Racing World Championship qualifying status,” Mr Correia said. The top three male and female elite individuals will be eligible to compete in the World Championships.” Reid Robinson, a co-director of the Triple Challenge, said the group had been “blown away by the charitable funds the participants raised in 2015”. Organizers have added extra challenges, as well as invited Anthony Carson, an announcer for the Spartan Race, to emcee all three events. This year’s participants will raise funds for the Reading Clinic, Knowledge Quest, Raleigh Bermuda, Somerset Primary PTA, the Sunshine League, and SCARS. The challenge starts with the Argus Urban Foot Race through the streets of St George’s on Friday, March 18, followed the next morning by the KRYS Global Island Challenge hosted by the Bermuda Regiment. It closes on the Sunday with an assault on Dockyard, the Chubb Royal Challenge. The challenge is sponsored by KRYS Global, Chubb, the Argus Group and the Bermuda Tourism Authority.

March 23 & 24. Bermuda National Moth Championships

March 24. Bermuda National Trust (BNT) Palm Sunday 2018 Walk. 2017 is the 45th in 2018 year of the walk, which promotes appreciation of the National Trust. A good way to see a part of Bermuda not normally seen. There will be hilly parts and the route is not suitable for strollers or dogs. Details on how people can sponsor the walk in support of the Trust are available at bnt.bm. For more information call 236-6483.

March 25-April 1.  International Moth World Championships, with all racing taking place on the Great Sound, the venue for last year’s America’s Cup. The event will showcase some of the sailors that competed in that competition.

Holy Thursday in 2018.

March 30. Good Friday Public Holiday in 2018.

2018 Bermuda Open Golf Tournament, Port Royal Golf Course. Bermuda Golf Association President Craig Brown said that deciding to cancel 2016's Bermuda Open was one of the “hardest decisions” he has had to make. He cited a lack of sponsorship and dwindling resources as the main reasons behind the removal of the association’s flagship event. An event that has diminished considerably in stature during the past decade, the Open suffered from the arrival of the PGA Grand Slam of Golf in Bermuda and the change in the qualifying for the professional tours. With constant changes to the event’s place in the calendar and an ongoing fight to secure funding, the BGA has finally decided that enough is enough. “Over the years, the BGA has needed to make a large financial commitment to stage the Bermuda Open, and given the current financial position of the association, this is no longer a viable option,” Craig Brown, the BGA president, said. “It’s not sustained itself at a level you would expect a national championship to be at. We don’t have the finances, nor do we have the resources to pull something together that we feel warrants that [title].” Although the Open should be the island’s premier golfing event, in reality it has been pushed to the side as the Bermuda Tourism Authority pursues the visitor numbers and exposure that can be gained by supporting events such as the Bermuda Golf Classic, the Gosling’s Invitational and the Nike Golf PGA Team Championship of Canada. These, and a host of other smaller events which have proven to be more sustainable both financially, and in terms of golfer interest, have taken precedence. “It’s been an ongoing struggle for the association to raise the funds, even though we have a good working relationship with the BTA,” Brown said. “It’s been difficult to raise the level of funding that we feel makes it [the Open] attractive [for players] and sustainable for the association, that’s really what it’s about.” Brown hopes the tournament will return bigger and better than it has been before. However, that move will not be rushed and the overriding determination is to provide a tournament that is “of a standard befitting the title”. Preliminary talks with minor tours, such as the PGA Tour Latinoamérica, have reportedly taken place, with the Bermuda Golf Association hoping to find a partnership that will elevate the Open’s standing and secure it a place in an already hectic global schedule. “We’re still in discussions to discover what part of the season we can get the best traction, but it’s also about putting on the right event for Bermuda,” Brown said. “We’ve got big plans, we know where we want to go with it. We know the idea and vision, but we also want a tournament that the whole island can be proud of. “That’s where we are trying to get to, and hopefully we can make it a very strong event.” While the desire is to see the tournament return next year, there is a stronger desire to ensure that it is only brought back when it can meet the high standards that the BGA expect of the event. There is a definite shift to put it back on the calendar for 2017, but again we are committed to getting it back to a standard that we feel will befit a national championship and the island. Everyone involved will have to agree that is the right time to get it back in to the rotation. We are fully committed to preserving the rich history of the Bermuda Open, and we are confident that a collaborative approach will ensure that when the Bermuda Open does return to the calendar it will be a much-improved event of which we can all be proud.”

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April 2018

Paget ParishThroughout April.  Hospitality Month.

Bermuda Public Health Week

April 1. Easter Sunday in 2018. 

Easter Sunday services island-wide.

88th (in 2018) Bermuda International Invitational Race Week. 

City Food Festival. Food lovers are treated to a delightful array of desserts at the opening event.

Bermuda Lawn Tennis Association Langton Junior Tournament. Open tennis, spectators welcome.

Bermuda Open Volleyball Tournament .

Bermuda Lecture & Tours Guided Walks.  Monday-Friday, 8 am to 5 pm.

Bermuda Bridge Club Games. Open to all.  7 Pomander Road, Paget. Phone 441 541 0551.

Bermuda Triple Challenge. 

Cruise ships begin arriving for 2018 season

Harbour Nights festival begins weekly on Wednesday evenings (to October). 

Bermuda Golf Classic, Port Royal Golf Course

The Progressive Labour Party's 54th in 2018 Founders Day and Drum Majors Awards Celebration. 

Paget Parish Crest.

April. Risk Management Society (RIMS) (Annual) 2017 Conference and Exhibition. 

Premier at RIMS

Bermudian business leaders are to hold a special reception at this major insurance industry conference. RIMS continues to find ways to energize its annual conference and deliver impactful educational programming that empowers attendees to better serve their organisations and advance professionally, Bermuda plays an important part in the insurance industry and has been a long-time supporter of Rims initiatives. The invitation-only meeting will be held as Bermuda touts for business at the annual Risk and Insurance Management Society event. Around 200 representatives from the island’s insurance and reinsurance sectors will attend the conference, alongside Government leaders and regulators. The Rims event attracts around 10,000 delegates, including senior executives and risk management professionals, and also features about 400 exhibitors. 

Peppercorn Ceremony.  202nd in 2018. Hundreds gather in King’s Square to watch the annual event. The annual tradition in St George’s is based around Freemasons paying their symbolic rent for the Old State House. Numerous civic leaders are present to watch the treasurer for the Freemasons officially pay the peppercorn rent which is unchanged in two centuries. Festivities include a parade by the Royal Bermuda Regiment. Freemasons represent lodges from several countries, Attended by the Governor and his wife, Premier,, MPs from both sides of the House of Assembly, and the Mayor of St George’s, After his speech, the Governor’s council leave to conduct the annual meeting in the Old State House. Strains of bagpipes echoed through the streets of St George as the town marks one of the oldest traditions in the Island’s history. The passing of a simple, symbolic peppercorn from the Freemasons Lodge to the Accountant General, and the accompanying pomp and ceremony, attracts hundreds of locals and visitors to King’s Square. Bermuda Regiment soldiers stand to attention as the town's Mayor and Bermuda's Governor arrive in a horse-drawn carriage to continue a ritual that dates back to 1816. Within the town are 170 listed buildings, 10 historic monuments, six forts and one unfinished church. The town of St George is an original and in 2000 gained Unesco status.

Easter Classic at the Oceans (Ocean View and Mid Ocean Golf Courses).

April 21. Her Majesty the Queen's actual birthday, 91 in 2017. She is Britain's, Bermuda's and the rest of the British Commonwealth of Nations' longest-ever living sovereign.

Regulatory Compliance Association (RCA) Regulation, Operations and Compliance 2017 Symposium - 7 Symposium - see https://www.rcaonline.org/symposia/regulation-operations-compliance-bermuda/ - at the Fairmont Southampton, which in 2016 attracted more than 250 alternative investment and asset management executives to Bermuda. 

Bermuda Agricultural Show. Bermuda Botanical Gardens. Paget. Annual exhibition that attracts tens of thousands of residents — both young and old — from across the island, and visitors. The Botanical Gardens becomes a hive of activity for three days. The Ag Show has been an institution in Bermuda for generations and almost all Bermudians have fond memories of it. It offers an opportunity for people of all ages and backgrounds to get together, share stories and experiences, and participate in friendly competition. The AG Show Ltd is now a registered charity, established in February 2015  for the purposes of holding the annual agricultural exhibition. The annual Ag Show, sponsored by all British counties in the UK where farming is still a major part of the local economies but is no longer the case in Bermuda, nevertheless welcomes as many as 25,000 attendees in Bermuda over three days and features up to 4,000 exhibitors. Participation in the event includes a large portion of the Island’s population, from seniors who have been attending it since the show’s early days, to schoolchildren and toddlers who get an introduction to things they might not see in their everyday lives. The show will celebrate agriculture, horticulture and animal husbandry. The show has a rich history. Its roots extend back as far as 1843, when then-Governor Major General Sir William Reid encouraged the adoption of agriculture on the island, where principal occupations included shipbuilding and seafaring. The Governor organized an agricultural exhibition with ploughing matches at Mount Langton and the whole colony became interested in farming

April 23. St. George's Day, the flag of England - see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flag_of_St_George -  in the UK. One of Bermuda's Parishes, the Town of St. George and English Admiral Sir George Somers, who founded Bermuda, are named after the saint. St. Peter's Church flies the flag of St. George on this day. Also, today is the 450th anniversary of the birth  of William Shakespeare - see http://www.shakespearesbirthday.org.uk/ whose 1610 "Tempest" was later proved to have been based on the 1609 discovery of Bermuda led by Admiral Sir George Somers. 

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May 2018

Pembroke Parish crestBermuda Power Boat Race. Royal Naval Dockyard. 

 Bermuda Yoga Festival. Grotto Bay Beach Resort 11 Blue Hole Hill, Hamilton, CR04.

Habour Nights in Hamilton, until August 31. Every Wednesday evening. Social event, also features chefs, musicians, Gombeys and more.

Atlantic Rally for Cruisers

 Oyster Regatta Bermuda.

May 9. Antigua to Bermuda Race. Royal Bermuda Yacht Club,  second edition in 2018. The 935-mile offshore race is organised in association with Antigua Sailing Week and is supported by the Bermuda Tourism Authority. Yachts of 40ft and over will be racing under the IRC Rating Rule, MOCRA and the CSA Racing Rule, with the latter amended to permit boats to use their engines, subject to a time penalty. Les Crane, the RBYC  race chairman, said. "The America’s Cup put Bermuda in the spotlight as a superb sailing destination and the Antigua Bermuda Race is designed to carry forward this legacy. The Antigua Bermuda Race gives sailors an opportunity to safely experience about a thousand miles of Atlantic Ocean racing in company, at a time of year when conditions should be ideal.”

Annual Devil’s Isle Paddle Board Challenge.  With the aim of helping highlight plastic pollution in the ocean. In a test of endurance, participants will paddleboard 40 miles around the island, launching from Snorkel Park. It is anticipated that the race could take between six and 13 hours. The event aims to raise funds for the educational component, the SUP’r Kids Paddling Programme, which is also making a return, giving schoolchildren the chance to learn the sport while gaining an understanding of the importance of ocean conservation. Christian Shaw and Gordon Middleton of Plastic Tides, which organizes the event, spoke about the hope of expanding paddleboarding to all public schoolchildren in Bermuda within the next five years. The Devil’s Isle Challenge will attract local and overseas paddleboarders who can form teams of up to eight to paddle around Bermuda, vying for the top spot. Every paddleboarder is asked to raise a minimum of $500 which will go towards the children’ programme.

XL Catlin Bermuda End to End 2018. From 7 am. 31st anniversary in 2018. When it first began, it was a grassroots effort, three fellows challenging their friend to see if they could walk from one end of the island to the other, which at the time was quite unusual. Since its inception, the event has provided more than $5 million to charities through 190 grants. Participants collect pledges and pick which discipline they want to compete in — walking, cycling, swimming, rowing, or paddle boarding. Different course distances are also offered. “In the end, the great thing is that, because of all their endeavors, the charities get the benefit, Bermuda benefits, so all benefit.  For more information, call 292-6992 or visit bermudaendtoend.bm. In 2017 there will be 20 water stops along the route from Kindley Field Road to Gray’s Bay, with participants invited to vote for their favourite water stop. 

Hurricane Preparedness Week will be observed this week, the Ministry of National Security has advised. The Ministry said the event is happening earlier than usual due in part to the increased activity surrounding the America’s Cup and also to coincide with the United States’ hurricane awareness observation. Senator Jeff Baron, the national security minister, convened an Emergency Measures Organisation to review Government’s disaster readiness for the season, which runs from June 1 to November 30. EMO members in attendance included co-chair, Acting Police Commissioner Paul Wright, Deputy Governor Ginny Ferson, and key representatives from the Bermuda Regiment, the Bermuda Police Service, the Bermuda Fire and Rescue Service, the Ministries of Public Works, Tourism Development and Transport, Social Development and Sport and Belco. Matters discussed included the Bermuda Weather Service’s 2017 storm overview, EMO agency readiness and Hurricane Preparedness Week activities. During Hurricane Preparedness Week, the Bermuda Government’s Emergency Broadcast Facility 100.1FM will air from 2pm to 2.30pm, and will feature daily preparedness information

Pembroke Parish 

May 24 Public Holiday.  Bermuda Day and Bermuda Day Parade. 1:30 pm through the streets of Hamilton. Led by the Band and Corps of Drums of the Bermuda Regiment. Half Marathon, an annual extravaganza, half marathon, first swim of the year for locals.

May 2018. Bermuda will host the 2018 Moth World Championships after beating Argentina and Australia in the bid process, the International Moth Class Association announced. The event featuring the foiling Moth dinghy will be held in the Great Sound, venue for the 35th America’s Cup. 

Bermuda Regiment Beats Retreat. City of Hamilton, 9 pm, with Bermuda Islands Pipe Band.

Gombey Competition. 

Open Golf Tournament.

Annual Reunion of Bermuda Volunteer Rifle Corps Overseas Association at Warwick Camp on first Saturday in May. 

Seniors Golf Amateur Championships. 

Saddle Club of Bermuda annual show. 

End-to-End Race by Swan's Running Club.

Bermuda Fitted Dinghy Races. 

Bermuda Guitar Festival (Annual).

June 2018

Sandys Parish crest June 1. Hurricane Season starts. Lasts until November 30.

 Image at right is Sandys Parish.

Annual Habour Nights in Hamilton, until August 31. Every Wednesday evening. Social event, also features chefs, musicians, Gombeys and more.

June 11. Queen's Birthday Parade, Front Street, Hamilton. Always an event for visitors to watch Bermuda's British militia salute Her Majesty for her Official Birthday,  Traffic will be limited on Front Street. The annual parade, held a week earlier this year in Bermuda than the world famous equivalent in London, Trooping of the Colour.  The Governor, Premier, and other VIP guests will in attend.  Begins at 10-1030 am Bermuda time. The public is encouraged to come out and view the event which will feature the pomp and pageantry of the marching units from The Royal Bermuda Regiment, The Royal Bermuda Regiment Band and Corps of Drums, Bermuda Police Service and Bermuda Police Reserves, Bermuda Fire and Rescue Service, Royal Bermuda Regiment Junior Leaders and the Bermuda Sea Cadet Corps.

Saturday, June 16. Trooping the Colour from London. From 10:30 am GMT, Horse Guards Parade. Trooping the Colour, see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trooping_the_Colour celebrates the Sovereign's, Her Majesty the Queen's, official birthday (her actual birthday is on 21 April). (It has traditionally been held in June, for better weather). Televised worldwide over three hours by the BBC London. See the full majesty, military precision, pomp and splendor of the London ceremony at http://www.householddivision.org.uk/trooping-the-colour and at http://www.trooping-the-colour.co.uk/index.htm. Invited guests include all adult members of the Royal Family, some on horseback and/or in military uniforms, British Commonwealth heads of state or their representatives. The ceremony dates back to at least the early 18th century when the colours (flags) of the battalion were carried (or 'trooped') down the ranks so that they could be seen and recognized by the soldiers. The Queen attends in a horse-drawn carriage and the regiments of the Household Division, her personal troops, parade in front of her. Over 1100 soldiers are on parade, plus 200 horses and over 400 musicians. A 41 Gun Royal Salute is fired by the King's Troop, Royal Horse Artillery in Green Park at 1252 hours GMT.

Bermuda Captive Conference.  Fairmont Southampton.  The 13th in 2018 edition of the four-day event. Hot topics at last year’s event included cyber-risk, medical and healthcare, and innovations. Bermuda is the world’s top jurisdiction for captives, with more than 780 on the island. The captives support mostly Fortune 500 companies in the US and generate more than $55 billion in annual gross written premiums. Captive activity remains high, with the size of existing captives growing and cell captives being added. Additionally, organizations including the Bermuda Insurance Management Association, and the Association of Bermuda Insurers and Reinsurers, will be at the conference. Details on the conference can be found at https://bermudacaptiveconference.com.

June 16-19. Bermuda Heroes Weekend and Carnival

June 17. Father's Day (USA, UK, Bermuda).

June 17, 2018 (not 2017). Start of 50th Newport to Bermuda Yacht Race. One of the world's leading blue water races, held every other year, this one in 2016, next in 2018. Newport, Rhode Island to St. David's Head, St. George's. Host club, Royal Bermuda Yacht Club. Sailing Secretary, Royal Bermuda Yacht Club, Point Pleasant Road, Hamilton HM 11, tel 441 294 6716 or email secretary@rbyc.bm. Nearly 2,000 sailors will be racing for Bermuda in the third-biggest Newport to Bermuda competition that the island has hosted. The Newport Bermuda Race is organized by the Cruising Club of America and the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club and sailed almost entirely out of sight of land and across the Gulf Stream. The race consists of five divisions: St David's Lighthouse Division, Gibbs Hill Lighthouse Division, Cruiser Division, Double Handed Division and Spirit of Tradition Division. The St David's Lighthouse Division, for multi-purpose cruising/racing yachts, is the largest division. No boat has been involved in or has more Newport Bermuda Race titles than Carina.  More than 100 prizes are awarded at the traditional ceremony at Bermuda's Government House a week later. Regional Prizes are presented to the top boats hailing from five regions of North America. Twenty-one states from Maine to California are represented in the fleet, with especially strong turnouts from New England and the Chesapeake Bay area. The Premier joined Bermuda Tourism Authority members and others local organisations in support of the historical sailing event. During his trip, Mr Dunkley met with the Mayor of Newport’s Office, as well as attending the traditional Commodore’s Dinner and inspecting the Bermuda boats, including the Spirit of Bermuda. The 635-mile biennial Newport Bermuda Race is the world’s oldest regularly scheduled ocean race. Founded in 1906, the event will be held for the 50th time in 2016, with about 190 yachts competing from around the globe, some from Bermuda.

Bermuda 1-2 Yacht Race

Monday, June 18. Bermuda Public Holiday, National Heroes Day. Honors local heroes and heroines, pioneering men and women who were committed to selfless acts of public service and whose lives were spent devoted to improving the circumstances of our people. They have included Gladys Carlyon de Courcy Morrell, Sir Edward Trenton Richards, Dame Lois Browne-Evans, Dr Edgar Fitzgerald Gordon, Dr Pauulu Kamarakafego, Sir Henry James Tucker, Mary Prince and Sir John Swan in 2016.Sailing enthusiasts will want to watch, ideally from Fort St. Catherine as the best vantage point, the annual Edward Cross Long Distance Comet Race and also the J Class Regatta featuring the original 1930s America's Cup vessels. Various other activities occur on this day. Official induction and proclamation ceremony, 4pm, King’s Square, St George.  Steel pan, Hamilton’s Queen Elizabeth Park.  

Beating Retreat. Royal Naval Dockyard and City of Hamilton. Bermuda Regiment Band. Always popular with visitors and locals alike, this highly entertaining event features military music, popular show tunes, contemporary composers and marching formations by the Bermuda Regiment Band and Corps of Drums and the Bermuda Islands Pipe Band and Dancers. 

Glow worms begin shining in the ocean at night.  

Annual Fish Chowder Festival, St. George's.

Bermuda Billfish Release Cup. Fishing Tournament. 

Long Distance Comet Race (annual). Commences in St George's Harbour and concludes in the Great Sound. 

Bermuda 2018 Rubber Duck Derby. Largest fundraiser of the year for Agape House, our island's only inpatient hospice facility. Every year members of the community are invited to purchase ducks to enter into one of the three races that we hold on Derby Day. Many great prizes are to be won so come on down and cheer your duck on. Duck tickets are sold at Agape House, BELCO and at various grocery stores during the months of April and May as well as on Derby Day. Rubber ducks race between Ordnance Island and White Horse restaurant, Town of St. George. 

Bermuda Amateur Stroke Play Championship. Port Royal Golf Course, 5 Middle Road, Southampton. Men's Division (black tees) and Ladies’ Division (white tees) play a 72-Hole Stroke Play event (gross and net). Spectator admission free. Enquiries: Bermuda Golf Association, 31 Victoria Street, Hamilton HM 10, tel 441 295 9972.  

Round the Island Seagull Race. Sandys Boat Club, 8 Mangrove Bay Road, Somerset, Sandys. This all day event starts and finishes from the Sandys Boat Club and features small boats propelled by old ‘British Seagull’ engines that race each other around the island, circumnavigating in a counter-clockwise direction, to raise money for ‘green’ causes. There are many vantage points around the island from where you can watch them as they race by—your hotel guest services can assist with some suggestions, so come out and watch this annual race!  You can also join the BBQ that takes place at Sandys Boat Club once the race has finished. Admission: Free for spectators. Participants of race: $65.00.  BBQ dinner: $20.00. Rain date: June 22, 2013 at 8:30am. Enquiries: Martine Purssell, Round the Island Seagull Race, tel 441 298 1220. 

Bermuda Fitted Dinghy Races. Island-wide. The Bermuda Fitted Dinghy is probably the only sailing class in the world that allows the skipper to finish a race with fewer crewmen than when he started! These races have provided Bermudians and visitors with many hours of entertainment since 1853. The race season is from May 24 to mid-September.

Bermuda Anglers Club 4-Day International Light Tackle Tournament. Barr's Bay Park, Pitts Bay Road, Pembroke (City of Hamilton). This is an invitational light tackle (12 lbs and 16 lbs) 4-day fishing tournament with three people on each team. Each day, fishing takes place on a boat rotation. Visitors can view the days’ catch at the weigh-ins at Barr's Bay Park from 4:30pm – 6:30pm on the fishing days which are Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. Enquiries: Bermuda Anglers Club, tel 441 293 0875. 

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July 2018

Smith's Parish crest

Smith's Parish crest

July 1. Canada Day. Canada and Bermuda. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canada_Day. A national holiday, Canada Day in 2017 150 years after that celebratory event, celebrates the anniversary of the July 1, 1867 enactment of the Constitution Act, which united the original three separate colonies of Canada. It was also the day the word Canada originated. Originally called Dominion Day, the holiday was renamed in 1982, the year the Canada Act was passed. Celebrations take place throughout Canada, and are also held throughout the world by Canadians living abroad.. Bermuda has many (about 5% of the total number of annual visitors) and a large number of residents from Canada. See our Bermuda's Links with Canada and information about Canada's former military base in Bermuda.

Happy Canada Day

July 4. USA Independence Day National Holiday. Also celebrated in Bermuda among its 2400 or so Bermuda-resident American citizens. (About 80% of the total number of annual visitors are American). See Bermuda and the USA. US Consulate has a fireworks party. Until 1995 the USA had several significant military bases in Bermuda. Thousands of US military personnel were stationed here.

July 4 fireworks

July. Eighth (in 2018) annual Groundswell Lionfish Tournament. Raising awareness of the threat lionfish pose to our endemic species.  Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences. Educates the public about the invasive Indo-Pacific fish as well as helping to reduce, via catches, their numbers in our waters. Organizer is advocacy group Groundswell, which hosts the tournament and helps to generate funds for scientific research and management methods. The idea is to show people that lionfish are a problem and to show them how to catch them, handle them, prepare them and cook them.

Lion fish hunting and eating

Lion fish hunting and eating.

Bermuda Fashion Festival 2018. Bermuda’s premier fashion week event is organized by the City of Hamilton, funded mostly through corporate sponsors and partnerships. For information about the Bermuda Fashion Festival 2016, visit bermudafashionfestival.com. Tickets are on sale from March 1.

Annapolis Bermuda Ocean Race

Newport Bermuda Race.

Bermuda-Hamburg leg of the Atlantic Anniversary Regatta.

6th (in 2018) Annual Habour Nights in Hamilton, until August 31. Every Wednesday evening. Social event, also features chefs, musicians, Gombeys and more.

Bermuda Fitted Dinghy Races. These races have provided Bermudians and visitors with many hours of entertainment since 1853. The race season is from May 24 to mid-September. Contact Royal Hamilton Amateur Dinghy Club. Phone 236-4411.  

Annual Bermuda Big Game Classic (fishing).

King's Square, St. George's  and Front Street, Hamilton. 9 pm. Beat Retreat. Always popular with visitors and locals alike, this highly entertaining event features military music, popular show tunes, contemporary composers and marching formations performed by the Bermuda Regiment Band and Corps of Drums and the Bermuda Island Pipe Band and Dancers.

July 14. Bastille Day. France and Bermuda. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bastille_Day

French Bastille Day

There is quite a sizable French population in Bermuda. See Bermuda's Ties with France. There is also an honorary French Consul and an active local French organization that meets regularly and arranges appropriate functions. L’Alliance Français des Bermudes will be celebrating Bastille Day at Coco Reef today. Proceeds will go to their student programme, which saw five Bermudians awarded part of full scholarships to immersion programmes in the south of France this year. There will be an al fresco dinner, live French music, raffles and door prizes. Those attending are encouraged to wear white. The event starts at 6.30pm with a cash bar and dinner is at 8pm. Tickets cost $85 for members and $95 for non-members.

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August 2018

Southampton ParishAugust 1 to November 30.  Hurricane season.

August 3, 2017. 143rd anniversary of Emancipation Day (First day of Cup Match Public Holiday). Two days of festive Cup Match cricket. In 2017 played at Wellington Oval, St. George's. Bermuda is believed to be the only place in the world where there is a 2-day public holiday for a cricket match. See Public Holidays. Somerset in dark blue and red, St. George's in light blue and dark blue. An annual favorite Bermuda event between these two teams, steeped in tradition and history (since 1902).  Bermuda's leading attraction by far among locals, with plenty of food, music, an occasion for fashionable clothing, revelry and fun. Cricketers are officially the main attraction, with cash prizes for spectacular plays amid thunderous cheers from the crowd and much bravado from the players. The uniquely Bermudian gambling game of Crown and Anchor is much in evidence in the carnival-like atmosphere. Expect heavy road traffic to and from the event. 

August 4. Somers Day. Second Day of Cup Match Holiday. See Public Holidays

Sunday, August 6, 2017. Annual (45th in 2017) Non-Mariners race, Mangrove Bay, Somerset, Sandys Parish. See photo below. First began in August 1964 in Hamilton, Bermuda by amateur non-sailors deliberately launching non-seaworthy and distinctly non-nautical home-made floating in often hilarious un sea-worthy crafts of any type and design. It began as a joke against the well-established and prim sailing clubs of Bermuda and their 1960s sailing correctness. It has been claimed, but this is incorrect on two counts, that a drunken bunch of men were involved. In fact, they were not solely men, single women were instigators too, driven by the maleness-only of the more established sailors. The event was watched with great interest particularly by guests staying at the Bermudiana Hotel (no longer there) with its lovely harbour views and waterfront Waterloo House hotel (also now no longer there), with the latter having virtually a front row seat.  (Both hotels have have been demolished and/or turned into corporate buildings). Nor were the majority drunk, they were sober, just mischievous, boat-less themselves.  Their unorthodox "vessels" were cranked by hand or by pedals or by the wind and were often accompanied by raucous noises, providing much amusement to many residents and visitors at the annual event which became hugely popular.  After one such event had a zany entry almost collide with a cruise ship entering Hamilton Harbor, the Society of Non-Mariners, as the organizers subsequently became, the event was switched to the less-busy but picturesque Mangrove May, hosted by the Sandys Boat Club. The event now includes family frolics, youngsters jumping off "boats" and rocks, mock boat battles, some ingenious unorganized surprises. A fun day for residents and visitors. This year, 2017, the Society of Non-Mariners is inviting all locals and visitors to take part. It will include a few departures from tradition. It will kick off in Mangrove Bay just before noon with the Non-Calypso Pipe Band leading the Non-Committee in parade to Mangrove Bay Beach to observe the construction of this year’s Non-Craft.  From political satire to outrageous costume, there is something to see all the way to the official Non-Prize giving just before 6pm. Those who prefer doing to watching are encouraged to get some friends together and come up with their own Non-Craft.  The rules are pretty easy: if it shouldn’t be floating as a single unit then it probably is a Non-Craft. Departures from tradition include reversing the direction of the Non-Parade and starting it a little earlier, the addition of a few more Non-Events at the dock including a Non-Noodle race, one for boys and one for girls — and the announcement of a Non-Colours art competition for each future Non-Event.  There is an admission cost to the Sandys Boat Club for adults and $2 for those under 18. Adults must be wearing a wristband to purchase beverages and are reminded to bring identification. For more information, visit the Sandys Boat Club’s Facebook page or their website.

Southampton Parish

Non Mariners Race

25th (in 2017) Annual Habour Nights in Hamilton, until August 31. 

Every Wednesday evening. Social event, also features chefs, musicians, Gombeys and more.

Bermuda Beach Tennis Tournament. Horseshoe Bay.

Concert in the Park - Victoria Park in City of Hamilton

Olde Towne Market, St. George's. Every Sunday, 2-6 pm.

Around the Island Boat Race. From and to Ferry Reach.

Bermuda Billfish Tournament.

September 2018

St. George's Parish crest

Public Holidays. Labor Day (USA and Bermuda). Notable days. Patriot Day (USA). Grandparents Day (USA). Rosh Hashanah).  Citizenship Day (USA). Yom Kippur (USA). Swimming ends for many Bermudians until May 24. Soccer season begins, cricket ends.

September Bermuda Captive Conference 2018, expected to surpass last year’s record-setter with 1,000 hotel-room nights booked to date by overseas delegates. 14th year of Bermuda’s largest international business event, Bermuda is the top global captive jurisdiction, home to close to 800 captive insurance companies supporting primarily Fortune 500 corporations in the US and generating over $55 billion in annual gross written premiums. “As well as providing existing captive clients with the tools they need, this conference is a great platform for captive owners and prospective captive audiences to learn about the possibilities and trends.

September  Annual conference exploring trends in the life and annuity industry, hosted by the Bermuda International Long Term Insurers and Reinsurers (Biltir) at the Southampton Princess Hotel.

September. Dive in Festival. Bermuda’s re/insurance community will once again join Lloyd’s of London and cities around the world to promote diversity in the workplace. It will highlight the business case for diverse and inclusive workplaces and for providing practical ideas and inspiration on how to bring about positive change. It will feature events in a record number of 31 locations across the globe. Bermuda, New York, Zurich, and London are among the returning locations where the event will be held. New cities such as Beijing, Glasgow, Johannesburg, San Francisco, Madrid, Perth, Rio de Janeiro, Rome and Miami will also be included. The Bermuda Dive In Festival Committee will welcome elite performance coach Dave Alfred MBE, a pioneer in performance psychology who has worked with some of the biggest names in sports, including the England rugby team in four world cups. Dr Alfred also worked with the British Lions on three tours, as well as the South African rugby team, the England cricket team, and English Premier League football teams Manchester City, Sunderland and Watford. During the festival, Dr Alfred will lead an interactive session, hosted by Argus, titled “No Limits”. Session participants can expect to gain an understanding of his “no limits” philosophy where there is no thought of failure and everyone has the opportunity to reach their fullest potential. Events staged in Bermuda will include discussions on:

September.  Bermuda’s 23rd (in 2018) annual sand sculpture competition takes Horseshoe Bay Beach with a menagerie of creations. Sand castle construction continued until 4pm. Judging and an awards presentation followed for the creators of the winning sculptures. Participants of all ages took to the sands. The eye-catching event, sponsored by the Hamilton Princess Hotel, is always a hit with locals and visitors alike - especially when the weather obliges with a sunny day A total of 46 teams took part in the 2017 event, including five children’s teams, 11 family teams, eight teenager teams and 21 adult teams. 

Bermuda sand sculpture competition

St. George's Parish.

Royal Gazette Wahoo Island fishing tournament. Back for the 52nd time in 2018. About 36 boats and 150 anglers are set to compete in the last big tournament of the season. Robert “Bobby” Rego, one of the organizers, said: “It’s probably the most popular fishing tournament on the island.” It attracts a lot of participants because it is held at the same time every year, focuses on one species and is a Light Tackle Tournament, he explained. “It’s one of the oldest continuous running tournaments. It’s completely open to residents and youngsters, who have to be under 16.” It’s traditionally been a real locals tournament.” The wahoo is a challenging” and great light tackle fish that helped put Bermuda on the map for salt water fishing. It’s powerful — it’s one of the fastest fish in the sea. The inaugural tournament was organized by Mid-Ocean News sports reporter Alan Harman, keen sportsman and former International Game Fish Association representative for Bermuda, Tom Smith, and captain Russell Young. When the Mid-Ocean News closed shop, The Royal Gazette took over sponsorship. The tournament allows anglers to use 12, 16, 20 and 30 pound test lines, with more points awarded per pound on a lighter test line. While the biggest prize goes to the biggest fish, there are also prizes for the different test classes and the boat with the high point score. And the junior angler with the high point fish also receives a prize. With fishing set to start at 7am, the fish have to be brought to the weigh station in Dockyard by 5.30pm. 

Bermuda Jazz Festival at former Royal Naval Dockyard. Glow worms stop shining in the ocean. Last Fitted Dinghy Races until May. Lobster season starts. Annual Wahoo Tournament.  

Bermuda Fitted Dingy Races. Granaway Deep, Warwick, 12:00noon, 1:30pm, 3:00pm.

Olde Towne Market, St. George's. Every Sunday (until late September), 2-6 pm.

Bermuda Regiment Beats Retreat at Dockyard.

Bacardi Cup: Bermuda National Match Racing Championship, Royal Bermuda Yacht Club, Hamilton Harbour, Bermuda. Sailed in International One Design sloops. 

Annual CD&P Grand Prix cycle race, Front Street. Exhilarating competition between some of the world’s best cyclists riding in Bermuda.

September. International Boarding School Fair. 4:30 t0 7:30 pm. Fairmont Hamilton Princess Hotel.

Beat Retreat. Clocktower Parade, Dockyard and Front Street, Hamilton. 9 pm.  Always popular with visitors and locals alike, this highly entertaining event features military music, popular show tunes, contemporary composers and marching formations performed by the Bermuda Regiment Band and Corps of Drums and the Bermuda Island Pipe Band and Dancers.

Bermuda International Long Term Insurers and Reinsurers (BILTIR) hosts its fourth (2017) annual life and annuity conference at the Fairmont Southampton Princess Hotel. Industry chiefs from Europe and North America will join Bermuda-based executives for the meeting. This year’s conference will focus on the EU Solvency II regulations, which will come in to force next year and Bermuda’s ongoing work to comply with the new rules. Other highlights include a presentation by the president of the Society of Actuaries, which has more than 25,000 members in 78 countries. Special sessions will also look at “the future of living longer” and panel discussions featuring industry leaders. BILTIR was set up four years ago to serve as an advocate for the long-term insurance industry.

Hurricane season. From now to November 30.

October 2018

2019, not 2018. The Bermuda Tourism Authority successfully bid to host the Annual Conference of the sport’s governing body World Sailing. The World Sailing Annual Conference is the central meeting point where the strategy of sailing is reviewed, discussed and celebrated. A series of events will take place during the seven-day schedule, including the World Sailing Awards and the eSailing World Championships. 

Statue of Sir George SomersOctober 1-31. Breast Cancer Awareness Month. 19th annual charity drive at Bermuda Cancer and Health Centre (BCHC). After lung cancer, breast cancer accounts for the majority of deaths in women worldwide. It affects one in eight women, according to the Bermuda National Tumor Registry. Breast cancer continues to be the principal cause of cancer for women in Bermuda. Some women are more at risk than others. Understanding these risks, such as family history, are important, in addition to the knowledge that early detection can save lives. BCHC is an American College of Radiology designated Breast Imaging Centre of Excellence that provides more than 9,000 mammograms per year. The registered charity is urging the community to take part in a series of events this month to raise funds and provide women and their families with information about breast health and breast cancer.

City Arts Festival.  Queen Elizabeth Park. Six local artists show their works commissioned by the Corporation of Hamilton, also music and dance performers. 

Annual Gombey Festival.  WER Joell Tennis Stadium.  Doors will open at 5pm, with the festival on Marsh Folly Road starting at 6pm and the finale at around 8.30pm — where in 2016  the peewee Gombeys from each troupe performed for three minutes apiece. The event is held to celebrate Bermuda’s premier folk dancers, the Gombeys, whose dances celebrate a centuries-old Bermudian folk tradition that blends elements of African and Caribbean performance with North American native music and British military drumming. A tradition of dance passed down through the ages since Bermuda was first populated in part by those of African origin. Each year the festival honors an individual who has cultivated and strengthened the traditions of Gombey music and dance. The event was once known as the Gombey Competition, but has evolved into a celebration of a folk tradition that stretches back for centuries. Each troupe has its own distinct history, and the names of drummers and performers who had been influenced by Mr Warner were listed off to drumming, whistles and ecstatic cheers.

 World Alternative Investment Summit. Fairmont Southampton. 

Bermuda Kennel Club Open Dog Shows. Bermuda Botanical Gardens. Also Obedience Trials, Rally Trails.

Old  Town Market. Sundays from 30th October to 18th December, 2 pm to 5:30 pm, Water Street, St. George's. 

Hacker's Cup. 2018  Annual. Autumn golfing tournament pitting celebrities against journalistsThe Nike Golf PGA Team Championship of Canada will return to Bermuda for a second year of competition. Mid Ocean Golf Club will again host the tournament of 104 visiting golfers, who will qualify in events across Canada this summer. The championship forms part of a packed winter of golf for Bermuda, with the Hackers Cup, Gosling’s Invitational, Bermuda Open and Goodwill tournament all scheduled to take place during what that Bermuda Tourism Authority called a “growth year for golf on the island.” Before the Nike Golf event in October there will be a World Pro Sports Championship, an event which has grown out of the partnership between the BTA and the organizers of the Bermuda Golf Classic, NFL Invitational. “Our sales and marketing team is advancing Bermuda as a golf tourism destination,” Bill Hanbury, the BTA chief executive officer, said. “Golf visitors are important because they have a positive impact across the Island’s tourism economy, far beyond just golf courses.” During the early part of this year, the BTA influenced several visitor golf events that improved travel numbers during the quieter months of the year for tourism. Those events include an Executive Women’s Golf Association event, Chris Langford Pairs and the Grey Goose World Par 3 at Turtle Hill Golf Club. “More and more cruise vacationers are disembarking and heading to the golf course,” said Andrew Brooks, the BTA’s director of golf sales and marketing. “And last week I spoke with another college golf coach about the possibility of bringing teams to Bermuda next year for a spring tournament. Cruise golfers and college springtime golfers are two areas where strong growth is happening and we think it is sustainable growth.”

Daylight Saving ends. Following US not UK methodology. 

Fifth (in 2018) annual golf tournament in memory of Tomasz Tabor. The event will help fund Bermuda Hospitality Institute initiatives in the name of the talented chef and golfer, who died in a crash in 2014. The entrance fee is set for individual players or $500 for a team of four and participants can register by e-mail.  For more information, e-mail tomgolfmemorial@gmail.com

Annual Bermuda Convergence.  6th year in 2018

Halloween ‘Spooky Night in Ghost Town’ event in St. George's.

October 31/November 1. Haunted History. Figures from centuries ago resurrected in St George’s for a night of Halloween entertainment, offbeat education and fundraising for the Old Town. The event is hosted by the St George’s Foundation. The World Heritage Centre at Penno’s Wharf will be used for the party, complete with food, drink and live music, as well as historical re-enactments. The funds raised will go toward the management of the Centre, plus the replica of the ship Deliverance. The museum is to acquire new exhibits, while the wooden ship on Ordnance Island is to be developed as a performance platform for youth groups.

From now  to November 30. Hurricane season.

November 2018

Warwick Parish crest

Warwick Parish crest

World Rugby Classic Schedule (annual). National Sports Centre, Devonshire. With former internationals representing their countries in Bermuda-based international competition. All the major Rugby team over 30s will be here including the All Blacks from New Zealand, Australia, Republic of South Africa, UK, Ireland, France, Argentina, etc 10 international matches played during the week but scheduled to allow plenty of time to enjoy Bermuda's beaches, golf courses and other many attractions. This year’s World Rugby Classic looks set to be a star-studded affair with some of the sport’s most decorated names lined up for the tournament. 

13th (in 2018) annual PwC Bermuda/S&P Global Bermuda Reinsurance conference. Hamilton Princess. Disruption and the huge opportunities it’s creating for re/insurers is expected to dominate discussions. The insurance industry forum takes place this year amid a fast-changing market dynamic. After the catastrophic events of 2016, including hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria, re/insurers are facing more than $100 billion of losses and many are predicting that the trend in soft reinsurance pricing is coming to an end. And, owing to the significance and magnitude of the third quarter catastrophes, insurance-linked securities are being tested in a way not yet seen by the ILS market The conference theme, “The Dynamics of Discipline, Diversification & Disruption,” will examine the transformational trends and new threats impacting the industry. Some 200 industry leaders and professionals from Bermuda, the US and Europe are expected to attend the two-day event. Panels will look at opportunities to boost innovation and differentiation, ILS/alternative capital and the growing demand for new and innovative risk-transfer solutions, under insurance, emerging threats like climate, and cyber-risk, Wall Street perspectives, insurtech — as the new normal for re/insurers, and fit for growth strategies for re/insurers. Jeremy Cox, CEO of the Bermuda Monetary Authority, is the keynote speaker. The “View from the Top: Reinsurance CEOs” panel this year includes Marc Grandisson, COO of Arch Capital Group Ltd; Michael McGavick, CEO of XL Group Ltd, and Kevin O’Donnell, CEO of RenaissanceRe Holdings Ltd. Arthur Wightman, PwC Bermuda and Insurance leader, said: “The insurance industry is undergoing fundamental transformation as it comes up against the impact of new technologies, regulation, accelerating shifts in consumer demand and mounting competition from InsurTech players. But in the face of so many disruptive challenges, it’s important not to lose sight of the huge opportunities they’re creating for insurers. “As the most disrupted of any industry, based on PwC’s 20th CEO Survey, the need for re/insurers to be fit enough to stay ahead has never been greater. Only through a strategic focus on cutting bad costs can scarce resources be freed up to invest, allowing re/insurers to grow and compete with new services, products or geographies.” He added: “As we explore in our report, Insurtech: The new normal for (reinsurance, insurtech innovations are helping to strengthen reinsurers’ capabilities in areas ranging from the use of drones for post-catastrophe loss assessments to artificial intelligence, robotics, big data and blockchain. Reinsurers also are providing technical and financial support for a variety of insurtech start-ups, many of them aimed at providing the speed and convenience demanded by millennials and other digital natives. We are pleased to welcome representatives from a number of Silicon Valley insurtech start-ups at Bermuda Reinsurance this year. PwC research shows that as many as 86 per cent of insurance CEOs believe that technology will either completely reshape or have a significant impact on their industry over the next five years.” Matthew Britten, PwC Bermuda Insurance partner, who is moderating the panel Fit for Growth: Reinsurance CFO Perspectives, said: “Re/insurers must have a view of the landscape of tomorrow, a clear strategy and know their differentiating capabilities. The margin for error and opportunity to create returns has never been more compressed, so companies need to be agile in response to these forces. In our view, the ability to optimize cost through the utmost discipline, whether business-as-usual or initiative-driven, needs to be as much a core competency in successful reinsurers as risk selection or capital allocation. Fit for growth is just one framework or way of thinking which can help make the strategic focus on optimizing cost a core part of how a business chooses to play. Reinsurers are coming to see insurtech as a transformational rather than disruptive force and embracing the innovation potential within their businesses. But choosing the right partners and translating new technologies into tangible solutions are the real challenges. Our panel will look at whether insurtechs are really as disruptive as commonly claimed; and how should incumbents react?”

National Audubon Society of USA annual bird count (the Bermuda Audubon Society has participated for 29 years).  

Bermuda Public Holiday (Remembrance Day).  

Bermuda Convergence 2018. Hamilton's Pier 6. Major reinsurance conference. The conference attracts professionals from the booming insurance-linked securities (ILS) industry, including investors, fund managers, major insurance and reinsurance companies and professional services firms. Bermuda has carved out a niche as the top jurisdiction in the ILS sector, with 70 per cent of the world’s total investment.

Thanksgiving Day USA (celebrated in Bermuda at restaurants serving visitors and with Annual American Thanksgiving Day Interfaith Service with US patriotic songs, hymns and readings by the Governor. Organizers include the American Society of Bermuda).

Santa Claus Parade. (late November). Thousands of people line the streets of Hamilton, all hoping to catch a glimpse of Santa Claus. Crowds of adults and children fill the sidewalks as the annual Santa Claus Parade made it’s way through the city. Dozens of floats and hundreds of people, including majorettes, dancers and Gombeys, take part in the festivities.

Old  Town Market.

Late night shopping in St. George's. Saturdays from late November until Christmas Eve.

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December 2018

Captain John SmithBermuda National Trust Christmas Walkabout, 6-9 pm, St. George's. Explore the Old Town, traditionally decorated for Christmas. Wander the narrow streets, visit candlelit historic buildings and mingle with family and friends while enjoying live, festive entertainment and more. Old Rectory, Buckingham, Samaritans' Cottages, Reeve Court Apartment, Reeve Court Archaeology Lab, Bridge House, Bridge House Gallery (BNT membership area), Tucker House and the Globe Hotel will all be open and welcome you in. Parking is at Tiger Bay/Penno's Wharf, St. George's Preparatory School and East End Primary. The Bermuda Police Service will enforce parking only in designated areas. If you would prefer to go by ferry there is an option. Please visit www.bnt.bm to buy ferry tickets to avoid the traffic and hassle. Participating groups will include The Christ Church Warwick Bell Choir; Bermuda School of Music Youth Choir; The Christmas Crackers from BHS; Wine, Women and Song from BMDS; Menuhin Foundation Cello Ensemble; Menuhin Foundation Adult String Ensemble; Clearwater Middle School Choir and Strings; Bermuda School of Music String Orchestra; BSM Suzuki Strings; DanceSations; Jackson School of Performing Arts; In Motion School of Dance; Somerset School of Dance; Bermuda Islands Pipe Band; Leviticus Band; Ensemble "Flutes & Oboe & Clarinets & Sax"; St. George's Preparatory School Choir; Val Sherwood; Eliza Olander; The James Arnold Recorder Ensemble; Kassie Caines & Tony Brannon; Bermuda Guild of Stitchery; and Santa.

Graphic: Captain John Smith

Christmas Boat Parade 2018.  

Christmas Boat Parade

St. George's Santa Parade. 6 pm. Corporation of St. George.

Bermuda Fish Chowder Competition. Ordnance Island, (rain venue Penno's Wharf, St. George's. 

Late Night Shopping. Many stores stay open until 9 pm.

British style Bermuda Musical and Dramatic Society Christmas pantomime, very much a part of the Christmas tradition. It is always a sell-out. Based on the UK pantomime tradition, it has a plot, jokes, political asides, costumes galore and fun.

December 25. Christmas Day in 2017. Public Holiday.

Bermuda Festival tickets available


December 26. Boxing Day. Public Holiday. Bermuda’s Gombey troupes take to the streets for their traditional Boxing Day celebrations. Today, the art form is instantly recognizable for its dance, rhythmic drumming, theatre and symbolically colorful dress — but those who took part were keen to educate about the true meaning of their culture, which harks back to the era of slavery.

December 31

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Bermuda Longtail

line drawing

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Last Updated: January 14, 2018
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