U.S. VIRGIN ISLANDS – The U.S. Virgin Islands is mourning the loss of one of its cultural icons, Lena Schulterbrandt, long recognized as a champion of the tradition and heritage of her home island of St. Croix.
Ian Turnbull, Director of the Department of Tourism’s Division of Festivals, said Mrs. Schulterbrandt was to be honored during this year’s Crucian Christmas Festival.
“Instead we now sadly mourn her passing and convey our condolences to her family, her loved ones and her legion of fans and followers,” said Turnbull.
The posthumous tribute to Mrs. Schulterbrandt will complement the festival’s theme: “What a sight to see: music, culture and pageantry”.
“Our plans to recognize such a grand figure during Cultural Night and to honor her contributions and her efforts to inspire our youth to be more involved in our heritage will continue, albeit posthumously,” added Shamari Haynes, Assistant Director of the Division of Festivals for St. Croix, who recalled Mrs. Schulterbrandt’s important work with the tourism department’s greeter’s program.
Haynes hailed Mrs. Schulterbrandt as a dedicated advocate for the preservation of Crucian culture and the development of culinary arts.
The schedule for this year’s Crucian Christmas Festival – one of three major annual cultural events celebrated throughout the Virgin Islands – has undergone a revival. Festivities will be held between December 6, 2019 and January 5, 2020.
St. Croix’s renowned musical group Stanley and The Ten Sleepless Knights will also be honored on its 50th anniversary in the music business. In honor of the group, the carnival village has been named “Stanleyville” this year.