2nd annual PAYS Dominica Yachting Festival set to begin on March 23rd

The highly anticipated 2nd Annual PAYS Dominica Yachting Festival organized by Portsmouth Association for Yacht Security (PAYS) and United States of America (USA) based Offshore Passages Opportunities (OPO) in partnership with the Ministry of Tourism (MOT) of the Government of the Commonwealth of Dominica (GOCD), is scheduled to take place from Saturday 23rd to Sunday 31st March 2024 at Prince Rupert Bay, Portsmouth, Dominica.

This year’s PAYS Dominica Yachting Festival which is being held with the theme “Bringing yachters back together again in 2024” promises to be exciting and includes a packed programme that is expected to attract many yachters from near and far and Dominicans from all corners of the island. This year’s theme captures the desire of yachters, chief among the being OPO Founder, Hank Schmitt to return to Dominica to enjoy the many things to see and do in the Nature Island. His websites (www.sailo.com/ www.sailopo.com/dominica) encapsulates the very essence of Dominica that draws so many yachters to our shores.

The programme includes a welcome reception and Creole jazz-themed party on Saturday the 23rd March 2024 that includes speeches by officials, food and drink, music, and dancing. There is also a Special Appreciation Dinner, Awards Ceremony, and, Cultural Entertainment Night on Saturday 30th March 2024. This event is a major highlight of the PAYS Dominica Yachting Festival as several persons will be recognized for their commitments and contribution to the local yachting sector.

The Farewell Barbecue scheduled for Sunday 31st March 2024 is a fundraiser and is open to all yachters. Other activities include Sunday and Wednesday barbecue dinners, a lion fish dinner, and island tours, hiking tours, history tours, cooking tours among others. There will be a games night including a fundraiser jackpot bingo, and a sip and paint event along with an art auction.

The Yachting Festival will also feature a Buy Dominica “Love Local” Market at PAYS, undertaken in collaboration with the Dominica Export Import Agency (DEXIA) featuring authentic Dominican products and services. Participating yachters will engage in community and environmental voluntary services including projects such as removal of the Invasive and Predatory Lion Fish during the organized Lion Fish Hunt, a painting project, distribution of grocery hampers, tree planting in partnership with Forestry, Wildlife and Parks Division (FWPD), and beach clean-up in partnership with Portsmouth Town Council (PTC).

The highly anticipated Toucarie Seafood Lime which was a blast during the 2023 Yachting Festival is expected to draw much attention from the yachters who are looking forward to participating in this year’s seafood lime.

Perhaps the most exciting event to mark this year’s Yachting Festival is the Open Class Fun Race sponsored by OPO and which takes place from Prince Rupert Bay, Portsmouth to Mero Beach on Tuesday 26 th March 2024. While in Mero the participating yachters will engage in beach activities and tours to nearby attractions. Since the yachters will overnight in Mero, they will get an opportunity to interact with the residents of Mero, enjoy dinner and party the Mero

The return race to Portsmouth on Wednesday 27 th March 2027 will culminate with the signature PAYS Wednesday Night Barbecue during which prizes will be given to the participants and winners of the PAYS Dominica Yachting Festival Open Class Fun Race. The Portsmouth Association for Yacht Security (PAYS) is anticipating the usual support and collaboration of Dominica’s privates sector as well as the public sector, since we believe that the yachting industry yet to be fully tapped into has tremendous socio-economic growth potential and will continue to contribute to sustainable livelihoods and employment and economic opportunities for impacted communities in particular and Dominica in general.


DAY ONE: Saturday 23rd March 2024

8:00am Registration of yachts all day. Includes complimentary Rum Punch and DJ Music at PAYS.

9:00am Buy Dominica “Love Local” Vendors Market at PAYS.
7:00pm Welcome Reception and Creole Jazz Party at Cabrits Cruise Ship Berth.
DAY TWO: Sunday 24 th March 2024
8:00am Palm Sunday Church Services.
9:00am Buy Dominica “Love Local” Vendors Market at PAYS.
9:00am Lion Fish Hunt with Island Dive Operations.
10:00am Kayaking the Waitukubuli Sea Trail.
10:00am Kenneth Gussie Cultural Tour of Portsmouth.
2:00pm Cabrits National Park/ Fort Shirley Historical Tour by Dr Lennox Honychurch –Dominican Historian.

7:00pm Sunday Barbecue Dinner with Music and Dancing at PAYS.


DAY THREE: Monday 25 th March 2024

9:00am Lion Fish Hunt with Island Dive Operations.
9:00am Full Day Syndicate Tour (with Lunch) visitng Syndicate Nature Trail, Parrot Habitat, Milton Waterfalls, and Free-Up Farm.

4:00pm Skipper’s Briefing at PAYS for Open Class Fun Races
7:00pm Lion Fish Dinner, Movie, Music and Dancing at PAYS.
DAY FOUR: Tuesday 26 th March 2024
9:00am Open Class Fun Race (Leg 1) from Portsmouth to Mero
3:00pm Beach Activities at Mero Beach including Beach Volley Ball
7:00pm Dinner, Entertainment, Music and Dancing at Mero Beach.

DAY FIVE: Wednesday 27 th March 2024

9:00am Open Class Fun Race (Leg 2) from Mero to Portsmouth
3:00pm Indian River Row Boat Tour, and Bush Bar Lime at the Indian River Bush Bar, Restaurant, and Tropical Gardens.

7:00pm Wednesday Barbecue Dinner and Open Class Fun Race Prize Giving, Music and Dancing at PAYS.


DAY SIX: Thursday 28 th March 2024

9:00am Full Day Northern Treasures Tour (with lunch) visiting Cold Soufriere, Bwa Neff Waterfalls, Calibishie Red Rocks, Chocolate Factory, Gin Distillery, and Paradise Valley Garden and Nursery.

7:00pm Games Night (Jackpot Bingo) at the PAYS.


DAY SEVEN: Friday 29 th March 2024

9:00am Voluntary Service Day includes

(1) Painting Project.

(2) Food Hampers Distribution Project.

(3) Tree Planting Project,

(4) Beach Clean Up Project.

Time TBA Good Friday Mass at the Portsmouth Roman Catholic Church
7:00pm Toucarie Bay Seafood Lime

DAY EIGHT: Saturday 30 th March 2024
7:00am Saturday Morning Portsmouth Market and Local Cooking Tour Experience at PAYS.
9:00am Buy Dominica “Love Local” Vendors Market at PAYS.
3:00pm Sip and Paint Event and Art Auction at PAYS.
7:00pm Special Appreciation Dinner, Awards Ceremony, and, Cultural Entertainment Night at

Cabrits Cruise Ship Berth.

DAY NINE: Sunday 31 st March 2024
8:00am Easter Sunday Church Services
9:00am Buy Dominica “Love Local” Vendors Market at PAYS.
7:00pm Farewell Sunday Barbecue with Music and Dancing at PAYS.

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