Monday, Oct. 10 will mark a public holiday celebrating the close relationship of the Virgin Islands with Puerto Rico and the importance of Puerto Ricans and their cultural contributions to the USVI.
Almost 60 years ago, leadership from the Department of Education came to a consensus that Columbus Day, on which the mainland marks the discovery of the Western World, would be appropriate for the territory to commemorate “the solidarity of Americans in the Caribbean.” This sentiment ultimately resulted in the passage of Act 1076 by the Virgin Islands Legislature, and the legislation was signed by Gov. Ralph E. Paiewonsky on Feb. 20, 1964. VI/PR Friendship Day is declared each year on the second Monday of October and coordinates with Hispanic Heritage Month.
“As a third generation Puerto-Crucian, born on St. Croix, raised on St. John, with family roots in Puerto Rico through my father, I am honored to be serving in the Legislature and have this opportunity to celebrate VI/PR Friendship Day. It is a blessing to use this platform to raise awareness about the connection between two territories, both of which I share deep ties,” Sen. Bolques said.