Local Artists from Rosarito and Tijuana Do Murals In Greece

Athens is the city where the first “Mexico – Greece Youth Encounter” was carried out. The event is an space to encourage dialog and exchange between young artists from both countries during the month of October.

On an invitation from the Mexican Embassy in Greece, Jaime Carbó, the multi disciplinarian muralist from Rosarito, was invited to paint an urban mural in the Irini subway station. Irini translates as peace from Greek, and its the first station that gives access to the Olympic stadium in Athens.

From Tijuana, Alfredo “Libre” Gutierrez, part of the “Hecho en Mexico” graffiti collective, traveled there and painted a tram along with Carbó.

Gutierrez will also work with a group of migrants to create an sculpture as a token of gratitude towards Greece.

The artwork will be donated to the Attica municipality that has been known for its support and acceptance of migrants.

Development of the new Calimax supermarket started last month and is expected to be finished in January 2019

Que Pasa In Baja?

New Calimax Opening In Puerto Nuevo. Don’t run to the car just yet, the new store is not expected to be open until January of next year, but we have already confirmed that this is the reason dirt is being moved around in the lot between the north and south Puerto Nuevo entrances.

Public records filed in Rosarito City Hall state that the new Calimax will have almost 22,000 square feet of construction, along with 71 parking spaces.

Although no official comment was given from Calimax headquarters in Tijuana, a city government source (who didn’t want to be named) said that the supermarket planned here is not your typical Calimax store, but a more polished version of it that the company only uses in select markets.

The store will be especially helpful for people living or staying on the south part of Rosarito and north of Ensenada, which for now, must travel several miles to the nearest supermarket in Ensenada or Rosarito or just settle buying limited groceries at OXXOs or other local mini markets.

Smoke-free beach in Ensenada. Ensenada city council has unanimously approved yesterday a new rule that will start a procedure to make Playa Hermosa the second tobacco smoke-free beach in Mexico. The first one was San Martin beach in Cozumel but the project is now abandoned in there.

ZOFEMAT (the ones in charge of the federal zone in the beach), will be in charge of certifying the beach before the COFEPRIS (The federal commission for protection against sanitary risks). COFEPRIS is the only authority that can certify a place as “smoke-free”.

Jorge Martinez, local councilman, stated that they will help organize, coordinate and implement the necessary infrastructure for this to happen. He said that signs will be installed on the beach and that a surveillance committee will be formed to enforce the new rule and get the federal certification.

The announcement comes just a few hours after Terra Peninsular stated that in their recent cleaning efforts of local beaches, they were able to gather almost a ton of trash which included 1,495 cigarette butts in just over half a mile of beach. And this wasn’t even in Playa Hermosa, which is the most visited beach in the city.

Hopefully authorities around here will keep the designation longer than San Martin in Cozumel, where now, after only 4 years, people are mostly unaware of its smoke-free designation because no one bothered to replace the decaying signs or have anyone in there to enforce the non-smoking rule.

Gendarmerie back in Baja. Just last week 130 elements of the Federal Police of the “Gendarmerie” Division, were deployed here in Baja mainly in Tijuana and San Quintin.

Juan Carlos Moran, head of the federal police in Baja, stated that the deployment of this group of police was in response to the increased requests from local authorities and the private sector regarding the increasing drug crime problems that have been going on.

Moran said that the Federal Police has been the only one in the country that has been able to increase their perception of trustworthiness and credibility between the population.

The Gendarmerie Division was created in 2014 by president Peña Nieto as part of his security strategy to combat organized crime in Mexico.

It has been widely seen as an effective police force by the general population since these officers are better prepared and better paid than almost all other police forces. In order to be accepted to the force, a candidate needs to have completed a bachelor’s degree.

ATM Bandits Are Back! A new card robbing scheme has been caught on camera recently and there are reports that is being used all over Mexico.

This is the way the scheme works: A person gets close to you while you are using the ATM so he/she can visualize your PIN number while you type it in and leaves.

A second person drops money on the floor near the victim and starts picking it up.

While the victim gets down to help the other person to pick up the money or just gets distracted on what’s going on, a third person removes the card from the ATM hides it and walks away.

In some of the videos, the victims walk to the perpetrators and confront them but when they categorically deny it, the victims just walk over to the ATM again to check if they just didn’t leave the card there.

Of course, the maximum permitted cash is withdrawn from the ATM within minutes of the card theft.

Victims have been, on the majority, women. Be careful out there, check your surroundings when typing your PIN code and don’t get distracted and leave your card unattended at any moment!

Watch out for those mosquitoes. State health authorities, headed by Guillermo Trejo, warned citizens to be aware of possible breeding places for mosquitoes that can transmit dengue fever, zika and chikungunya.

David Ibarra, head of the vectors control program for Baja, stated that all actions taken are merely preventive, as no cases of any of these diseases have been reported yet in the current year.

He did say that because of the present climate change, temperature and humidity has become ideal for the proliferation of the Aedes Aegypti mosquito, which has already increased its population by 30%, although they haven’t been found to carry the diseases.

“It’s important to remember that tires, flower pots and any containers that contain water, are ideal for the proliferation of the mosquito, since it looks for clean water to deposit its eggs”, said Ibarra.

Ibarra also stated that his office has already installed 6,692 mosquito traps around the state and invited everyone to pitch in by not leaving any open containers with water around the house.

Wow! Did You See That Giant In Ensenada?

The largest cruise ship in the Norwegian line dropped anchor in Ensenada’s bay for the first time on Saturday, October 6. It did look big, from wherever you viewed it.

the Norwegian Bliss will set sail from the Port of Los Angeles for a few week long voyages to Cabo San Lucas, Mazatlán and Puerto Vallarta, before squeezing through the Panama Canal to ply the Caribbean route for the winter season.

This past summer it sailed between Seattle Washington and Alaska. It had to wait for low tied to go under the Lions Gate bridge on arrival in Vancouver British Columbia.

The newly built Bliss is Norwegian’s largest cruise ship, and has an onboard go-kart race course, a water park, Broadway theater shows, and a very cool sounding laser tag arena. Some people don’t like such big cruise ships, so there is a separate upscale section, called The Haven that offers quieter, more luxurious accommodations. Away from the unwashed masses, one would presume. Well, we presume.

The big boat can take up to 4,900 passengers, mostly in 170 square foot balcony rooms, but there are 2206 rooms total, in 42 categories on 11 decks. Altogether there are 20 decks It takes about 1700 crew to keep it all organized. Top speed is about 26 miles an hour, and the $920 million ship gets about 3,000 gallons an hour.  That’s 3000 gallons to move the ship 26 miles down the road. Sounds expensive, but with 4000 passengers, that’s only about three quarters of a gallon per person per hour.

Fish Report

Tijuana Bull Ring

There are still a few calico bass in the kelp along with an occasional yellowtail, and you might also stumble across a random bonito school outside in the flats.

Trolling small feathers and/or rapalas remains the best way to locate the schools. Once found, fly-line small sardines or cast chrome jigs like the Colt Sniper for more.

 

Coronado Islands

Heads up: Bracelets are now required to fish within Pacific Island Biosphere Reserve areas, including the Coronado Islands, Todos Santos, and San Martin Island.

You can purchase bracelets for $5 per person per day at Fisherman’s Landing Tackle Shop, Point Loma Sportfishing Tackle Shop, and Dana Landing Market & Fuel Dock. You will need to provide your boat name, boat owner’s name, number of passengers, and dates you will be in the reserve areas, but you don’t need any other special IDs or info to purchase the bracelets. Everyone on board must have a bracelet to enter the Biosphere Reserve.

Biosphere Reserve boundaries are now available on the FishDope Charts (click the “Closures” layer). For more information, please click here.

And for the full Biosphere Reserve Declaration click here.

(may need to refresh a few times to display the document – in Spanish)

 

Offshore

Lower 9 / Coronado Canyon

Jeff Mariani shared a photo of this lunker-sized yellowtail caught just before “Rosa” dumped buckets of rain on Cedros Island.
Jeff Mariani shared a photo of this lunker-sized yellowtail caught just before “Rosa” dumped buckets of rain on Cedros Island.

The area runs from just NW of North Island down the Canyon pretty much all the way south to the 425.

Conditions have been grumpy, but the yellowfin, skipjack, and bonito bite continues. The main zone of fish also slid several more miles to the south and there were a few good kelps below the 9 Mile Bank toward North Island. The yellowfin and skipjack are a few miles to the southwest in the cleaner, warmer water.

For the most part, the best yellowfin are coming from a few kelp paddies that are holding very large schools of tuna. There are also some open-water schools of bonito and skipjack, with a very occasional open-water school of yellowfin either on its own or mixed with skipjack.

It’s taking a lot of chum to get the yellowfin to bite, which favors bigger yachts and sport boats over smaller private boats. You can increase your chum capacity by taking a pass or two of bait into an empty bucket to use for chunk.

Also hang on to your used and dead bait throughout the day to chunk up for later use. Finally, be sure to cast your hook bait right at the same time as you toss a couple pieces of live chum. This will greatly increase your hookup odds.

Most of the yellowfin are in the 8- to 15-pound class but there are a few larger ones up to 30-pounds. The skippies are anywhere from 3- to almost 20l-pounds. Brightly colored feathers continue to be best for the skippies. The yellowfin tend to like the plugs better. Cedar plugs, Rapalas and Halcos are getting the majority of trolled yellowfin. Black/purple is the hot color.

 

Ensenada

Inshore surface action throughout the bay has been a steady pick for bonito, barracuda and a few yellowtail for the few boats fishing recently. However, the almost always reliable go-to bottom fishing assures limits of lingcod, reds, sand bass and rockfish to fill the coolers.

Farther offshore, outside the Islands, the kelp paddies are holding dorado, yellowtail and some yellowfin tuna down deeper in the water column — maybe 50- to 100-feet. Farther offshore, schools of yellowfin can be found (mostly of the smaller variety) with a few up to 30 pounds mixed in.

 

San Quintin

Offshore has been “hit or miss” for most. One day there will be yellowfin tuna and maybe even a dorado or two in the count and then everyone gets fired up and runs outside the 240 and comes up short.

Squirrelly weather, erratic sea-temp, off-color water all seem to get honorable mention for the condition.

So far, the inshore has been much more productive — small to medium yellowtail, and more big bonito that seem to be consistent all up and down the coast now.

 

Cedros Island

While the yellowtail and dorado on the south end high spots has been good, live bait, Rapalas, and surface iron are all working. Calico fishing is fantastic with 75- to 100-fish days not unusual. Plastics and stick bait are your best bet and bring plenty.

Along with wahoo, yellowfin are biting Rapalas at Benitos recently.

However, the recent storms have put the fishing on hold until the water cleans up.

 

Bahia de Los Angeles

Same story here as the several storm systems made their way across the peninsula. Sketchy reports of live bait being tough to come by recently.

Hopefully there will still be a last gasp of dorado before the water temps fall and send them packing down the Sea of Cortez in search of warmer water and bait schools.

The best bet is still going to be some of the rocky outcroppings along the shore line along the shore and around the islands.

Rosarito Calendar Of Events

Every Monday through Thursday, 10 am – 1 pm; Pickleball at Castillos del Mar Hotel, k 29.5. Organized by Robert Canaan. Court fee $3; lessons available at extra cost. BYO paddle and ball. Maximum 8 players per day at this time. Facebook.com/ SuperFunBaja.

Every Sunday 4 pm. Cultural Sundays in the park. Local Mexican and American dancers and musicians.  At the IMAC in Abelardo L. Rodriguez park, west of Banamex. Facebook IMAC Rosarito. Free.

Every Sunday 2 – 4 pm at the IMAC Central Park (behind the Banamex on Juarez) Dancing for seniors. Salsa and merengue (among others) tunes designed to not throw out a hip. www.facebook.com/IMAC Rosarito

Second Sunday of every month, Pet sterilization by the Baja Spay and Neuter Foundation at the Centro de Diagnostico Clinico Vetrinario, ave. Queretaro #2331-3, Col Cacho, Tijuana. 200 pesos, 661-124-3619, or Robin at www.BajaSpayNeuter.org.

Last Sunday of every month, Jewish Chavurah. Gordon Kane – gordonmkane@gmail.com.

Every Monday, 10:45 am, duplicate bridge at Baja Gold Bridge Club, KM 42 at the Rosarito Beach Christian Church. bajagoldcoastbridgeclub@gmail.com.

Every Tuesday – Rotary Club meets at Rosarito Beach Hotel. 664-376-2620.

Every Tuesday 10am to 11am.  Chair Yoga – Rosarito Wellness, Healing, Living at IMAC Park, room 1 in Rosarito (behind Banamex). Improve Balance & Coordination.  Receive all the benefits of yoga in a gentle, Healing, Meditative yoga class where a chair is used for support and balance. Bring water, small towel and comfortable clothing. Instructor: Erendira Abel, Certified Holistic Health Specialist. $5 per class, paid at beginning of month. For registration and location:  (661) 614-6036 Mexico or (619) 632-2965 US. Email: wellnesshealingliving@gmail.com

Every Tuesday. 9:00 am. Board Meeting for Yo Amo Rosarito at Ortega’s Buffet. See what events are under consideration or volunteer to help plan and run upcoming events.

Every Wednesday, 7:30 – 9:00 am; Tai Chi classes with certified instructor Eugenio Encinas at Galeria Fausto Polanco Rosarito. 350 pesos per month. Alyce: 664-368-6733; Alberto: 661-125-9191.

Every Second Wednesday (except December). 10 am. Friends of the Library meeting at main library of IMAC building next to Abelardo Rodríguez Park. Promotes reading and literacy in Rosarito. www.friendsofthelibrary.com.mx. 661-612-3659.

Second and FourthWednesday, 1 pm; Cruz Roja Primo Tapia Bingo at El Pescador Restaurant. 6 games/ 2 cards for $5. Reduced price menu; Jamesphausmann@gmail.com; 1-623-217-9795.

Every Second Wednesday OR the Wednesday prior to the Second Saturday (except December); Flying Samaritan’s General Meeting at Rene’s Casino (k28) at 1:30. Come early and enjoy lunch! www.flyingsamaritansrosarito.org; Susan Smith @ susansmithz@hotmail.com; US: 1-858-240-2360; MX: 661-100-6066.

Every Third Wednesday, 10 am, Meeting of Rosarito Sister Cities at City Hall, Fojadores Room, 2nd floor. Information and RSVP: FRAO@Rosarito.gob.mx.

Every Third Wednesday (except December) 1:00 – 4:00 pm, Flying Samaritan’s Outrageous Bingo at Popotla Jr. Restaurant (across from El Nino), Food and Drink specials; free parking behind restaurant; Six games, 4 cards for $10; Karen: kajomc@yahoo.coojm; (US) 1-818-515-0067l (MX) 664-609-3419.

Every Last Wednesday, 11:30 am, Wellness Wednesday Workshop “Intentionally Aging Gracefully” with Erendira Abel at IMAC a Abelard Rodriguez Park (behind Banamex). $6, and pre-registration is required. Info: wellnesshealingliving@gmail.com; (US) 1-619-737-2453, (MX) 661-614-6036.

Every Thursday. 8:30 am. Local Board of Realtors (APIR) meets at Oceana Grill. Good place for buyers or sellers to find a Realtor

Every Thursday, 10:30 am, Learn Spanish “Naturally” with Erendira Abel at Rosarito Beach Christian Church. $5, and pre-registration is required. Info: wellnesshealingliving@gmail.com; (US) 1-619-737-2453, (MX) 661-614-6036.

Every Second Thursday. 10 am. Cruz Roja Volunteers, Rosarito Chapter General Meeting at Popotla Restaurant. www.cruzrojarosarito.org.mx; President: Mary Moreno, miqueridomx@yahoo.com.

Every Third Thursday. 10 am. General Meeting for FRAO, Foreign Residents Assistance Office. Open to the public. Calafia Hotel.  Speaker’s presentation. FRAO@Rosarito.gob.mx.

Every Fourth Thursday of the month, 12 pm, Baja Babes, the Rosarito Chapter of the Red Hat Society for ladies over 50 monthly luncheon. Each month a different restaurant. margit@prodigy.net.mx.

Every Friday. 4pm.  Spanish class main library, by IMAC, in Abelardo Rodriguez park behind BanaMex. Free but donation appreciated.

Every Saturday, 10:00 am at IMAC Central park. Chess for all ages. www.facebook.com/IMAC Rosarito.

 Every First Saturday. 10 am. United Society of Baja California (USBC) general meeting at Casa Blanca Restaurant, Rosarito Beach Hotel. Good info for the English speaking community of charitable, community service and social organizations. www.unitedsocietyofbaja.org. 661-614-1113.

Every First Saturday. Noon-sundown. Open Studio Art Walk, a free tour of galleries in Rosarito Beach Hotel commercial center. Meet artists at work in their studios. pacothepainter@hotmail.com

Every Third Saturday. 1pm. USBC, United Society of Baja California, monthly potluck dinner, at La Maroma sports bar, across from Burger King. Different theme every month. Usually live entertainment. Free. Membership $20 per year.

Every day but one day at a time AA Grupo Gringo meets daily #16 Mar Meditteraneo (two blocks behind Del Mar Beach Club). Saturday, 3:00; Sunday, Monday, Thursday: 10:00 am; Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday: 6:00 pm.  Additional meetings in Cantamar (just south of the footbridge) Tuesday and Friday, 10:00 am.  661-614-1678.

October 17, Monday, 7 pm; “25 Visions of Rosarito” photographic exhibit opens at CEART. Free. www.icbc.gob.mx; Facebook/ CEART Playas de Rosarito; 661-100-6271.

October 17, Monday, 7 pm; Concert at  CEART Rosarito with Wakuatay, featuring Gaby Medina.. Free. www.icbc.gob.mx; Facebook/ CEART Playas de Rosarito; 661-100-6271.

October 19, Friday, 11 am – 2 pm; Cruz Roja Rosarito Paellafest at Solaza Bar by Chef Enrique Murillo. $15 tickets available at Cruz Roja Rosarito Thrift Store. All monies benefit Cruz Roja Rosarito Hospital.

October 19, Friday, 7 pm; Presentation of Disney’s Animated movie “Coco” at IMAC Rosarito (At central library behind Banamex). Free.

October 19 – 21, Friday – Sunday; “An Act of God” Comedy at the Rosarito Theatre Guild in the Cines Building. Friday: 7 pm; Saturday and Sunday, 2 pm. Reservations and tickets through PayPal at www.rosaritotheatre.org. $15 members; $20, non-members. 664-631-3320.

October 24, Wednesday, 2 pm; Purse Stuffing Party to benefit Hearts of Baja Children’s Homes at Club Marena North Club house. Information: www.HeartsofBaja.com.

October 24, Wednesday, 7 pm; Live concert at CEART Rosarito featuring Baja Bands, Two Souls ofEnsenada, AlternaPlay of Tijuana, and Riflejo de Rosarito. Free. www.icbc.gob.mx; Facebook/ CEART Playas de Rosarito; 661-100-6271.

October 26 – 28, Friday – Sunday; “An Act of God” Comedy at the Rosarito Theatre Guild in the Cines Building. Friday: 7 pm; Saturday and Sunday, 2 pm. Reservations and tickets through PayPal at www.rosaritotheatre.org. $15 members; $20, non-members. 664-631-3320.

October 27, Saturday, 7 pm; 3rd Annual Halloween Costume Contest at Bobby’s By the Sea (k43). Music by Pachuco Blues. Cash prizes for best costumes. 661-114-6278 reservations.

October 27 & 28, Saturday and Sunday, 1 – 10 pm; Katrina Fest 2018 celebrating Mexican traditions. Music, dancing, food ,art, alters, games, and more; Government Building parking lot. Faceboom.com/ Karina Fest 2018.

October 29, Monday, 7 pm; Ballet Oriental: “Mestiza” under the direction of Grinelli Sandoval at CEART Rosarito. Free. www.icbc.gob.mx; Facebook/ CEART Playas de Rosarito; 661-100-6271.

A Farewell to Nelson Denniston

There will be a Celebration of Life potluck for longtime Rosarito resident Nelson Michael Denniston on Saturday, October 27, 1:00 – 4:00 pm at the home of Judy Westphal in Mision Viejo.

Nelson passed away after a brief illness on September 7. Born February 13, 1936, in Brooklyn, New York, Nelson served in the United States Army and saw action in the Korean War. Nelson was married for 52 years to wife, Adele (who preceded him in death). The couple lived in Long Island, NY, and moved to Orange County, California in 1965. Nelson is survived by his sister Ellen, his two children, daughter Vanessa, and son, Rosarito resident Wayne, four grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren.

Nelson built DC-9s and DC-10s for McDonald Douglas before supervising the manufacture of computer chips in the OC. Nelson also worked closely with the Orange County Repertory Company before retiring to Rosarito with Adele in 2005.

While in Rosarito, Nelson kept busy in the community by serving as a volunteer and Board member of many of Rosarito’s charities, including the United Society of Baja California, Flying Samaritans, and Cruz Roja Voluntarios Americanos. He was also a monthly attendee of the FRAO breakfast meetings. I never saw this man without a smile and a cheerful word for me… for everybody. So please come to the potluck with a smile and a cheerful Nelson story to share.

Potluck information: The main dish and dessert will be provided. Please bring a side dish of eight servings to share. A no host bar will feature coffee, soda, beer and wine. Advance RSVP is required. Please contact Jim Henshaw at Jim@Henshaw.com, cell phone 664-748-3949, by October 22.  Directions: KM 50 on  the free road, south of the sand dunes; 49994 Calle San Juan Capistrano in Mision Viejo, south arch. For additional information, please contact Judy Westphal at jawmem@msn.com.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Denniston family at this sorrowful time.

More Than Another Brick in the Wall

Only an invisible line separates the United States from Mexico, and the two countries have lived harmoniously for decades. Recently, the mayor of San Diego declared that the southernmost counties of that city, together with all of northern Baja, are codependent upon each other economically, socially and creatively; he dubbed the region “CaliMex.”

One individual who personifies that union in the most joyous fashion is Enrique Chiu, a resident of Tijuana, originally from Guadalajara; he’s the artist whose work decorates that otherwise hideous tin wall that is supposed to separate our two cultures.

Enrique recently had his work on display at one of Ensenada’s premiere cultural and civic centers, the notoriously famous Riviera. An admirer of his work gave me his contact information, which I pursued with vigorous anticipation.

Enrique painting on the border wall in Playas de Tijuana. Photo by: Noemi Ramirez
Enrique painting on the border wall in Playas de Tijuana.
Photo by: Noemi Ramirez

The man is an artist whose work is so positive and energetic that neither one of the governments dividing our two nations has ever tried to suppress him in any way. His work is nonpartisan, and celebrates the gift of life with colors bright and joyful, with messages that unify disparate cultures and express with uplifting energy the passion and cohesion that unite human beings in a manner that supersedes the spoken language.

Enrique told me that he became interested in art at a very early age. He grew up in Guadalajara, a city rich in culture, a metropolis blessed by museums, a rich history and              an optimistic attitude toward the future.

He traveled to the United States, where he continued to study art, music  and history. Always, during his travels, he expressed his impressions in paintings that caught the spirit of individualism while opening the door to human dignity and respect. His love for life is so contagious that his followers are numbered in the hundreds, if not thousands; his work attracts and energizes children as well as adults. His images are expressions of joie de vivre, “the joy of life,” and to see his work is to feel the happiness and hopefulness of humanity at its best.

From Long Beach, California, to Guadalajara, Mexico, Enrique has opened workshops for children, and encourages everyone, regardless of age, to express him or herself with vigorous and joyous respect and gratitude for the life we have been granted on this magnificent planet.

Enrique Chiu
Enrique Chiu

I was teasing him about his Mexican first name and his Chinese surname, and he responded with the good nature that one would expect from an artist whose life is his work, and whose work brings joy and unity to the human family: he said “I am an artist, altruistic, social and committed to things that can make changes in society.”

He went on further to tell me that he is a Mexican with Chinese and Spanish grandparents. How fortunate are we to have such a unique individual living among us; how beautiful and unifying is his art.

Next time you travel north to the United States, remember that although political differences will always challenge us, art will always unite us. Beauty, passion and joy are gifts that human beings treasure and revere.

Those treasures that we share will allow us to forgive our differences.

When you see Enrique’s art on any one of the panels he has decorated, remember that the man is expressing himself in a manner of peaceful coexistence and a presence of mind that encourages the future of our species in the simplest, purest and most innocent manner; that simplicity and innocence has driven artists throughout human history to create works in whose shadows we shall forever stand in awe.

Enrique Chiu’s love of humanity flows from within his heart to the panels on which he designs his art. Those panels are reminders that although our differences may be many, our similarities are our common bond.

Hearts of Baja Christmas Toy Drive

As the weather cools, thoughts turn to Christmas. C’mon. By now you’ve realized the days are growing shorter, and the stores are filled with Christmas ornaments AND Halloween candy at the same time.

Many children will not be experiencing a very merry Christmas this year. You can help to guarantee they are not forgotten. Hearts of Baja Children’s Network is announcing their “1000 Dolls and Balls” drive to ensure all local children have something to open on Christmas Day. Now, you can donate any new unwrapped toy to the cause (it doesn’t have to be a ball or a doll). Nor does it have to be a toy. Also needed are all sizes of shoes and clothing, as well as blankets. Sure, “throws” are acceptable, but more children can fit under a blanket than under a throw. You can even help out families by donating non-perishable food items.

No time to shop? You may donate money using PayPal, MasterCard or Visa at the Hearts of Baja website, www.Heartsofbaja.com. Simple. Just do it. Feeling generous? Sign up for a monthly donation of $5 or more. You won’t even feel it; just one less Big Mac each month.

All items may be conveniently dropped off at Click-On Mail Room, Surf Brewing, Charly’s Taqueria, Bobby’s by the Sea, Gary’s La Fonda, La Paloma, Café Conrado, Plan B, or the Judith Douglas Spa. I’m sure readers of the Gringo Gazette live pretty close to one of these fine establishments, or have a handy computer on which to donate funds.

Hearts of Baja, partnering with Baja Outreach and Angel and Rosy Lopez, can now reach additional homes and farms in the hills, not previously served. The more happy kids, the better.

Hearts of Baja Children’s Network thanks you very much, in advance, for your generosity. For more information, or to donate, please visit: www.HeartsofBaja.com, or Hearts of Baja Children’s Network on Facebook.

T.G.I. Friday’s Causes Uproar In Tijuana

A bad choice in Halloween decoration caused uproar between clients of the Tijuana location of the american restaurant T.G.I. Friday’s this past week.

Users in social media showed their indignation after pictures of their choice of Halloween decoration, a black bag taped in the shape of a body that was placed on the entrance stairs of the restaurant, went viral.

One Facebook user said he thought that the decoration was in very bad taste, and a bad joke for the thousands of people that have lost a loved one to the growing violence in the area.

Others offered insults and accused the Tijuana location of being insensitive and even idiotic.

Some people said that they didn’t even know it was a decoration and thought that someone had left a dead body in there for real. Unfortunately not an uncommon sight in Baja these days.

After seeing all the controversy generated by the decoration, the restaurant decided to remove the decoration and publish a statement on their Facebook page:

“Friday’s is a franchise, and as every year, for the upcoming Halloween and Day of the Dead celebrations, there was a misunderstanding in one of the decorations we chose for our front door, regarding that we apologize in the name of everyone that works in T.G.I. Friday’s, and specially to the people that were bothered by it, it was not our intention and the decoration was already removed. Thank you for your comments and support.”

This is their original statement (in Spanish):

Photo by Enrique Botello

Baja 1000 Temporarily Suspended: Score International Fined $27K by PROFEPA

Score International was hit with a fine of around $27,000 USD and in order to guarantee the payment of the fine, the permits for the coming Baja 1000 race where suspended.

PROFEPA (The federal agency for the protection of the environment) was the one to fine Score because, they say, the race last year passed through unauthorized protected areas in the “Valle de los Cirios” (That’s the valley south of the city of Ensenada that has huge cacti everywhere).

Valle de los Cirios in Ensenada, a natural protected area.

The agency says race participants destroyed several specimens of protected cacti from the lophocerus schotti species.

Due to this violations, PROFEPA issued a temporary suspension of activities to Score International S. de R.L. de C.V., which effectively suspends their right to do the race until they pay the fine.

In November of 2014, PROFEPA announced that it was fining the Baja 1000 race organizers for about $162,000 USD for the same violations, although there is no public knowledge about the fine being paid or not, since it was contested in court.

 

With information from El Vigia

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