The Jolly Dog was born in the aftermath of the volcanic eruptions on Montserrat West Indies, I had lived there since 1989, running a family garment manufacturing, screen printing and retail operation. In 1995, the long dormant Soufriere Hills volcano rumbled to life and changed everything. Ongoing hysteria, panic, and general chaos forced my evacuation off of Montserrat for good in Oct of 1995. Having been a visitor of St. John since the early 70’s, it was quickly identified that as our new island home.
With little notice (4 Hours) Evacuation orders were issued for Plymouth, there was little time to gather a “Go" bag, My Dog Apollo (My 110 Pound Rotweiler Sheppard Mix) and the necessities for our ocean voyage. No airplane would take Apollo off island, so our last remaining option was passage on the SV Avontuer, a working down island cargo schooner. The Captain wanted to leave asap...With new evacuation orders coming into effect by days end… so it was now or never.
The voyage was itself chaotic and stressful, we nearly ran aground entering Bassterre harbor in St. Kitts at daybreak. We were forced to endure daysOf quarantine in St. Martin while paperwork was completed. Eventually the green light to embark on the final leg to St Thomas, and ultimately Coral bay, was given, and it felt great to be in safe harbor.
The US Virgin Islands had just been thru Hurricane Marilyn in 1995, and although things were not perfect, they were a lot better than where the volcano we had just fled. In honor of Apollo's seafaring voyage, I designed him a T-shirt with a Dog Skull and Crossbones, The Jolly Dog, In 1996. The first Jolly Dog store opened at Shipwreck Landing in the Fall of 1997. There have been several others since then. 27 Years later you can find us at Isola Shoppes, on the waterfront in Coral Bay, St. John. JOLLY DOG TRADING Co , opened at this location In March of 2017, and expanded in March of 2021. We also launched our sister jewelry store, Zemi Island Designs in February of 2019 and expanded Fall of 2022. We love our beautiful home on the water, and invite you to come check out our stores the next time your are on island
WHAT WE DO:
Jolly Dog Trading Co. in Coral Bay, St. John, US Virgin Islands, is a charming and eclectic retail destination. With its laid-back island vibe, the store offers a diverse selection of locally designed and crafted products, including t-shirts, headwear, local artwork, jewelry, beachwear, and souvenirs. Visitors can soak in the island spirit while browsing through Jolly Dog’s unique and vibrant collection. The friendly staff adds to the welcoming atmosphere, making it a must-visit spot for locals and tourists looking for a memorable shopping .