Principal Symra Dee Brown and the Ulla F. Muller Elementary School hosted Tourism Commissioner Beverly Nicholson-Doty on May 31 for the school’s annual Tourism Day celebration. The special event saw the Muller campus transformed into exciting tourist destinations around St. Thomas.

According to Brown, the fun and educational activity is held to instill the importance of tourism in students.

“Every year, we recognize tourism day because we know that it is a very important industry, our premier industry, and so we call for the students to dress like tourists and to understand what the industry is about,” she said. To do this, Brown pointed out that in past years guest speakers were invited to give presentations on tourism.

This year, however, the school pulled out all the stops and greeted Nicholson-Doty and a delegation of Tourism officials with dancers donning vibrant headdresses, steel pan music by the Muller Panatics, conch shell blowing, cultural dancing by the Muller Bamboula Dancers & Drummers, a Moko Jumbie, Maypole plaiting, local sweet treats and more.

Brown guided the group to each destination, which included stops at the Muller Market that featured local herbs and spices, a chat with the folkloric Cow Foot Lady, visits to a museum featuring local artifacts, a stop at the Muller Seaquarium, a chat with the Boys Read Club and the Progressive Girls’ Club, and a storytelling station. At several of the stops, students gave brief oral presentations to showcase their knowledge of Virgin Islands’ history and culture.

Nicholson-Doty offered high praise for the effort.

“I am so humbled and honored today to see our young people that have embraced tourism, but even more importantly is how they infuse our culture and our history, in terms of what we can offer to our visitors,” she said.

Nicholson-Doty added, “I think this is what we should and must showcase about what is special to our destination. It tells you that there is hope for our future, the fact that our young people are capable of so much.”

The entire Muller student body, faculty and staff contributed to the overwhelming success of the event.