By BRENT STUBBS
Senior Sports Reporter
HAVING christened them at the St Valentine's Day Massacre in Montagu Bay in February, Bahamian Brewery and Beer Company is now taking its four new sculling boats to the Rock Sound Homecoming Celebrations in Eleuthera over the Easter holiday weekend.
On Good Friday, marketing manager Lynden Johnson said they intend to showcase the four boats (Sands Beer, Strong Back Stout, Sands Light and High Rock) - named after the company's products and built by Sheldon Gibson - to a visiting group of 50 persons from South Carolina who will participate in a demonstration race.
And starting 2pm Saturday, local residents will get the chance to compete in the 'Sands Man in the Boat' sculling race that will offer trophies and Sands beer products to the winners.
"This time, we will only have one man in the boat sculling," Johnson said. "They will get the opportunity to be eligible to compete in the 'Sands Man in the Boat' overall championship that will take place in Grand Bahama at Taino Beach later in the year."
Since launching the boats in Montagu Bay, Johnson said they have received favourable responses from the public and they are eager to take the competition to Eleuthera for the first in a series of competitions that will be staged during the course of the year, either at the homecomings or the various regattas.
"This has been extremely positive, everybody has been calling us and they have been in touch with the Rock Sound Homecoming Committee for the 'Sands Man in the Boat' race," Johnson said. "So we've had an overwhelming support and a lot of people are eager to get out on the water and to see if they can scull in the boats. We expect that we will have a much stronger turnout of competitors in Rock Sound than we did in Nassau.
"Persons on the Family Islands are still sculling and so this will be a very interesting opportunity for us to see how they perform in the new boats."
At the completion of the Rock Sound Homecoming, Johnson said they intend to move to the annual National Family Island Regatta that is slated to be held in beautiful Elizabeth Harbour, Exuma, at the end of the month.
"We're extremely pleased with how the event is catching on," Johnson said. "Sculling is still a big part of our lives because when there wasn't the speed or motor boats, persons were using the boats to scull.
"We know that there are a lot of young people who are eager to get involved in the sport, but there are still a lot of the older folks who knew what it was like to scull in them so we are looking forward to blending the two this weekend."
Berkeley Williamson, the general manager at Bahamian Beer, said he was proud to be a part of the Bahamian Brewery and Beer Company and he's even more thrilled that they are going back to their roots by taking the sculling competition to the Family Islands.
"We're equally excited that we are going back to Eleuthera to kick off the campaign during the Easter holiday weekend at the Rock Sound Homecoming," Williamson said.