From the New York Times: “Jimmy Buffett’s Support Helps St. Barts Move Forward”
It has been 40 years since Jimmy Buffett traveled on a whim to the French island often known as St. Barts.
He liked what he saw then from the deck of his sailboat, and he has continued to return: surfing off its beaches, writing books and songs and celebrating many a holiday, including Christmas, which is his birthday.
He is 71 now, as much business mogul as entertainer, branding Margaritaville to sell everything from pool floats to retirement homes.
But he has also used his clout and voice to support St. Barts after Hurricane Irma, sending private planes to help ferry supplies in the early days after the storm and giving a benefit concert in the port of Gustavia in December. He is one of the ambassadors for Les Voiles de Saint Barth, the annual sailing regatta that will take place this month despite the challenges posed by the island’s recovery efforts.
He is in the process of building his latest home on the island and plans to race aboard a friend’s yacht during the regatta. He did this interview from his boat in the Bahamas. It has been condensed and edited for clarity.
Why was it important to you to be involved in this race?
I think anything we can do to make it known that St. Barts is on the way back is good, and as my friend said, “I guess your house will be ready just in time for the next storm.”
And I was going, “Please God, don’t let it be a big one.”
I think there’s a little bit of that apprehension in everybody there who went through Irma but you’ve got to keep moving on forward, breathe in and breathe out and move on. That’s kind of the way I think about it.
Les Voiles de Saint Barth – April 8th – 14th, 2018