Thanksgiving in Palau 2009- A HUGE success!!!

Hello again! We just wanted to take a few minutes to write about what an awesome time we had this past Thanksgiving in Palau. This amazing trip has been in the works for over 5 years and we were finally able to make it happen. Leaving from LAX on November 20th, Margo and 50 Kids Sea Camp travelers made the long trek to Palau. Although the flight was the longest most of these families had ever been on, the decision is unanimous- the trip was totally worth it. Palau is the stuff dreams are made of. Emerald green islands atop crystal blue waters. A diver’s paradise. Something to definately be thankful for- just in time for Thanksgiving.

The flight landed in Koror late at night, but Kids Sea Camp was greated by dancers and a beautiful welcome banner. Each person got a handmade lei placed around their neck. They were taken to the Palau Royal Resort to rest up for the next day’s activities. With a delicious breakfast in their stomachs, KSC families took a trip out to jellyfish lake. They were able to swim with these non-stinging jellyfish making it an experience they will never forget. At 6:00 PM an opening ceremony was held at Sea Passion hotel. It included performances by native dancers and also had a very important guest in attendance. The President of Palau- Johnson Toribiong- came to spend time with all of the kids and gave an unforgettable speech. He spoke about the world’s first ever shark sanctuary and told the kids that they are the protectors of the ocean. They are our future.

Kids Sea Camp families enjoyed diving at some of the best sites in the world, such as the Blue Corner & German Channel. They went to a place called the Milky Way where they covered themselves with mud, which was way better than any spa treatment. They also got the chance to dive and snorkel where they got to see WWII wreck sites. It was an amazing learning experience for all.  Kids and adults all got the chance to paint with world renowned artist Ron “Rogest” Steven. You can see some of their painitings in the Kids Sea Camp photo gallery. Just a few facts about this trip:*Palau is the ninth country selected to host Kids Sea Camp*Sam’s Tours has been working to secure Kids Sea Camp for over 5 years*We are going to Palau again in 2010- Nov. 19-27th*In 2010, Kids Sea Camp will be celebreating it’s 10 year anniversary and Sam’s Tours will be celebrating their 20th. Later in the week, an article by Bernadette H. Carreon appeared in the local newspaper, Palau Horizon. I have included the contents of the article below:

Margo addressing the Kids Sea Camp families and President of Palau

 “He said that this is about the children, that we see our future in the eyes of the children,” Peyton said.  am is for kids age 4-7;  PADI Seal Team; This program is for kids age 8 and up; PADI Junior Open Water; This program is for kids age 10-14; PADI Open Water; This program is for kids and adults age 15 and up; PADI Jr. Advanced Open Water; This program is for kids 12 and up and provides a depth of 65 feet.

The program will be divided into PADI snorkel and SASY training; this progr

Dermot Keane, General Manager of Sam’s Tours and one of the sponsors of the event said the program is “to bring new people into the dive industry.”

 Manta Ray[Kids Sea Camp] has been to locations such as Florida, Bahamas, Fiji, Bonaire and Galapagos.Keane added that aside from the fun-filled activities, there is also the education component of the program which is marine education and ocean environment.

He said the Camp “will be a great exposure for Palau as a tourist destination.”Peyton said [Kids Sea Camp] will celebrate its 10th anniversary in Palau next year.

The other sponsors of the event are Continental Micronesia Airlines, which flew the kids to Palau for free, Palau Royal Resort which is one of the major sponsors and Sea Passion Hotel 

We are already taking bookings for our 2010 Palau trip and although space is going quickly, we do still have some space available for you and your family to join us as we return to the 8th wonder of the world! You will get  to dive wrecks, go for a swim in the jellyfish lake and spend Thanksgiving with your family and the friends you have made throughout the week. This is an amazing opportunity. And don’t forget that kids fly free to Palau on Continental Airlines! Thanks to Palau Royal Resort, Continental Airlines, and Sam’s Tours for making this such a wonderful week.

We also want to congratulate Andre Simmons and Zachary Sittler for earning their PADI Jr. Open Water certifications! Welcome to our underwater world!!!

Blue Corner

At Jellyfish Lake
At Jellyfish Lake