Yucatan News: Elton John and Devotion
Confirmed! Saturday: April 3, 2010 Sir Elton John To Sing at Chichen Itza
This performance is one that many have been waiting for. This singer-composer-pianist has sold over 250 million records and has had more than 50 hit songs. There is not a generation in the past 40 years that has not had their youth defined by one of his masterpieces. If you miss getting a reserved ticket, we are certain there will be other opportunities to get a ticket between now and the time of the concert. We will keep you informed with all the latest on this exciting event.
Admission: $10,000 pesos, $7,000 pesos, $5,000 pesos, $3,000 pesos, $2,000 pesos and $1,000 pesos.
Reservations: 942-1933 and 942-1931, Dec. 7 – 15, 10:00 AM to 8:00 PM
Note: Reservations can be made with a 25% deposit. Only Mexican credit cards accepted. You can also deposit money into their Bancomer bank account. Call for more info.
Devotion to the Virgin of Guadalupe Growing Beyond Mexico
Father Lorenzo Mex Jimenez has commented on the remarkable growth in the size of the crowds coming to the Guadalupe Chapel in Progreso to pay homage to the Virgin of Guadalupe. This year, Thursday’s fishermen’s march was made by approximately 2,000 people. Then, there were approximately 5,000 pilgrims who arrived either carrying torches or on bicycles on Friday and Saturday – all making their pilgrimage to honor the Virgin of Guadalupe. When they arrived, those who needed a place to stay were put up in the basement of City Hall, at the church, or at Candelaria Ruz Patrón elementary school. The pilgrims were escorted by the Municipal Police and units of the Civil Defense so that there would be no accidents or injuries during their trip. This news comes on the heels of learning that over 5 million people were at the Basilica in Mexico City, which was hailed as the greatest concentration of people ever in Catholic America without any reports of serious incidents. Cyclists carrying an image of the Virgin of Guadalupe left the Basilica in Mexico City on Oct. 3 and, 70 days and 3,000 miles later, celebrated the Day of the Virgin of Guadalupe with thousands of New Yorkers in St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Over 6,000 people participated in the mass alone and then the pilgrims brought the story of the miracles of La Virgen to Central Park, to the streets of Manhattan and to other areas of New York City.
A New Book About Yucatan’s Lebanese History
After the first of the year, we are going to revisit some of our distinct ethnic populations in Yucatan because we recently realized that a number of our new readers are unaware of the wide range of ethnic diversity that exists in this state. On December 17, there is going to be a new book going on sale – and its title is "From Lebanon… What We Remember. Replanting Roots" by Ant. Maria Teresa Cuevas Seba. After having lunch at the Lebanese Club this weekend (see photo above), we became more aware than ever of how alive and well all of our ethnicities are in Yucatan. Lunch, by the way, was a delicious cornucopia of Lebanese specialties. The Restaurant Byblos in the club is open to the public... look for information soon in our Merida Restaurant Listing. By the way, that statue of a man in the photo above is called El Inmigrante, the Immigrant. And according to our host last weekend, the poet Doug Tanoury, it is a replica of a statue that stands above the harbor in Beirut, Lebanon.
Rosas and Xocolate Inauguration
Last Friday night, the new hotel and restaurant Rosas and Xocolate had a grand opening and inauguration. The event was attended by a large crowd of both Yucatecans and expats, and included a visit from the Mayor of Merida and from the woman pictured here with the hotel's owner. That woman is our governor, of course, Yvonne Ortega, and the owner is Carol Kolozs. Speeches were made, of course, and everyone agreed the hotel is off to a good start. We were happy to see that the L'Amandine chocolate store is now stocked with those delicious delicacies and is also open for business.
AFAD’s Fundraiser Was a Success!
The expat and the local Yucatecan community really came through for AFAD at their annual fundraiser. There were approximately 150 people who attended the event and approximately $6,000 pesos were raised on short notice. We look at our own rescued dogs as, today, they are happy and healthy, honestly believing they were “to the manor born” …and then we think of the lonely street dogs of Mexico. We can’t help them all, but we can help those within our reach in Yucatan. Congratulations to everyone who participated in the AFAD fundraiser. And now – on to help at Evolution and then to spay or neuter 1,000 dogs in January!
The Evolucion party is this coming Friday, December 18 from 7:30 to 10 pm at Escuela de Teatro Regional
Calle 59 # 604-B x74 y 76 in the Centro. Admission is only $50 pesos. There will be drinks and botanas, as well as animal-related art. There will be two sketch artists on hand to draw a picture of your favorite pet... bring a photo! Contact Jill Benson firstname.lastname@example.org or Debbie Moore (email@example.com)for tickets. You can also buy them at the door.
Evolucion, a pet shelter in Muna, is a no kill shelter AND a sanctuary for abused animals who have been so damaged through man's cruelty they have no hope of ever being re-homed.
Mayor Nagin’s Trip to Merida
The Mayor of New Orleans was in the city for several days last week, signing a new Sister City agreement with Merida, as well as moderating import-export meetings between Canada, Louisiana, Texas, Florida, and Yucatan. These are important relationships that need to be forged early if we are all to be successful in the new global economy that will include Caribbean nations, as well as other Latin American nations. We hope that Mayor and Mrs. Nagin had a wonderful trip to Merida and we look forward to seeing them return as visitors next time.
Lighting The Way Between Progreso and Merida
Work to put 2,000 new, high-intensity lights on both sides of the highway between Progreso and Merida will begin shortly. Included will be lighting for bridges and pavilions along the road. It is expected that this project will take approximately 4 months and will be completely finished before summer.
Progreso To Have New Outdoor Auditorium
Work has already begun on a 500 seat outdoor auditorium (a stage and bleachers) in Parque Chazaro Perez in Progreso. It is already approximately 20% complete and is expected to be ready for use before the end of January. This area, which is near the pier will do double duty as Progreso’s new fairgrounds.
State Dolphin-Therapy Center In Talks
We have had a dolphin show at the State Fair at X’matkuil for the past three years. We also have a program that assists dolphins that are beached. Now, it looks as if we will get a permanent State Dolphin-Therapy Center in Progreso. The goal is to allow the owners to make a little money giving shows for visitors while, at the same time, using the dolphins in a program to help disabled children throughout the year. There is a long list of disabilities in children that are known to be helped by interaction with dolphins and Yucatan’s commitment to disabled children is strong. If this project goes through, the Dolphin-Therapy Center of Yucatan could be a reality within as little as 6 months.
Kids On The Move: Recycle, Reuse, and Reduce
The students at Candelaria Ruz Patrón, in Progreso, are learning their three “R’s” and making money for their school while they do it. These little ones have become masters at distinguishing different types of waste and ranking what can be done with it. They have colored garbage cans for different kinds of waste and have found companies that purchase each kind. The children themselves are monitoring this program and it is so successful that it is going to soon begin in the elementary schools in Merida. Well done!
Pirate Ship Tours Begin in January
Don’t forget! The pirate ship called “The Lolonois” will begin its regular round trip run from Progreso to Uaymitun and back in January. Blackbeard will be on board, as well as David Jones and other pirates of note. From what we understand, this is going to be a grand pirate show every single day, and sure to please both children and adults.
Cruise Ship Numbers on the Rise!
2010 looks as if it is going to be a very good year! The Carnival Triumph has begun bringing up to 4,000 tourists to Yucatan every other week and the Spanish cruise called the Pacific Dream will begin arriving weekly in late March. This ship will be stopping for provisions and short tourist trips into Progreso as it makes a number of stops throughout the Caribbean.
Odd Bits Of Things We Learned This Week:
• UNAM is running the world’s first pulpo farm is in Sisal.
• UNAM is raising pepino de mar (sea cucumbers) somewhere. No mention of where.
• The head of SAGARPA is interested in helping Yucatan fund research and development of the bald pig industry.
• Yucatan is the second largest producer of turkeys (and all poultry) in Mexico. Yucatan and Chihuahua produce 45% of all turkey consumed in Mexico and we still keep 70% of our turkeys for local consumption.
Urgent News From Wild9 Conference
We just heard from Marti Johnston, with her report on the Wild9 Conference just held in Merida. Throughout the entire day, she heard the President of Mexico and every government agency involved with the environment speak of how important it is to fight climate change by maintaining biospheres, forests, jungles, watersheds, wilderness places and species. Yet, recently, Paul Sanchez-Navarro posted that 8000 hectares of jungle were slated to come down as part of the development plans for the region. We ask that you please send a message to President Calderon through his website: http://contacto.presidencia.gob.mx/contacto/
The following are additional government officials to write to:
Juan Rafael Elvira Quesada
Secretaria del Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales (SEMARNAT)
Secretary of the Environment and Natural Resources
Lateral de Anillo Periférico Sur 4209, 6 Piso,
Fraccionamiento Jardines de la Montana
México, DF CP 14210
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or
Dr. Ernesto Enkerlin Hoeflich
Comisión Nacional de Áreas Naturales Protegidas (CONANP)
National Commission of Natural Protected Areas
Camino al Ajusco No. 200,
Col. Jardines en la Montaña
México, DF CP 14210
Tel. 555-449-7000, 555-449-7001
Fernández Bremauntz Adrian Alfredo
Instituto Nacional de Ecología (INE)(National Institute of Ecology)
Calle: Periférico 5000, Col. Insurgentes Cuicuilco
México, DF CP 04530
Félix González Canto
Gobierno del Estado de Quintana Roo (Governor of the State of Quintana Roo)
Palacio de Gobierno,
Av. 22 de Enero No. 001 Col. Centro
Chetumal, Quintana Roo,
México, CP 77000
Tel: 983-835-0500 Extensión: 1177
Email: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
Journalist for Respuesta
Calle 1ra sur, manzana 227 lote 2, colonia ejidal
Playa del Carmen, Quintana Roo,
Teléfono Diario Respuesta: 984-206-2000
Teléfono Kermith Zapata: 984-132-9751
Email: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
Ing Francisco Javier Días
Secretaria de Desarrollo Urbano y Medio Ambiente (SEDUMA) (Secretary of Urban Development and Environment)
Av. Efraín Aguilar # 418,
Chetumal, Quintana Roo,
Mexico, CP 77000
Tel: 983-832-4108, 129-3317, 129-3318
Fax: numero anterior extensión 138
Email: email@example.com or Moret02qr@hotmail.com
Jorge Luis Córdoba Pech
Alcaldía Tulum (Mayor of Tulum)
Avenida Tulum Oriente entre calle alfa sur y Osiris tour, manzana 1 lote 1 y 3
Tulum, Quintana Roo,
Mexico CP 77780
Below is the message Marti sent... we urge you to send something similar in your own words:
Regarding the Copenhagen conference, and referencing WILD9, I urge you to do all that is in your power to halt the planned destruction of jungle and mangrove in Quintana Roo. Between the mangrove, the underground water beneath the jungle, and the Mesoamerican reef, the far reaching impact of the devastation that will be wrought in the name of development dollars is criminal. Please honor the pledges you made during WILD9, be the visionaries and leaders the world needs at this time.
A concerned world citizen