They Thought They Could Do it and They Did!

In my travels I have never experienced a community so involved in helping one another old/young, native/foreigner, human/animal…as Rosarito, and the communities at its borders.

One such group is Mujeres Para Mujeres (Women for Women), established March 16, 2018. About 50 ladies attended the inaugural gathering and continue to meet on the 8th of every even-numbered month with “Potlucks for a Purpose.” The times and days of the week vary in order to allow everyone  to attend, allowing for those who may have monthly meetings at scheduling conflicts.

I met with Board members Carol Council, Mary Contreras, Valerie Russell, and Barbara Acosta for an update of how the organization was progressing. These four met about a year ago in an effort to find ways that women could share their talents and skills and empower other women. The goal was to be of service and support “with” people, not “at” people; creating and extending relationships for a better community. “More can be helped if more become involved.”

They explained that Women for Women is a multicultural organization dedicated to “meeting the needs of girls and women in Baja,” with the target populations of teenagers, single mothers, victims of domestic violence, and those just striving to improve their lives. They seek  “to empower women to use their voices, acquire new skills, maximize their education, support other women, learn trades, and start businesses.”

On October 16, 2019 the Casa de Mujeres opened its blue door on Paseo de los Heroes in Santa Anita, south of La Mision. The Casa is open Mondays and Fridays from 10:00 am – 2:00 pm.

Several 6-week classes are currently being offered, with more under consideration. Every encounter is valuable. A six-week Self Esteem class led by Joanna Wood started with 13 signups and only three show-ups. Of these three only one lady finished, but this singular student declared, “This class saved my life.” By using the tools she had learned, “I feel happier, healthier, and more peaceful now than ever.”

Most classes suggest a 20 peso donation, but the fee is waived for those who cannot afford the payment. English class with Rita Gullickson is at 10:30 on Mondays, with ladies learning English through simple conversation. The Women’s Creativity Circle meets Fridays at 9:30 for Movement with Laura Mandala an Arts (painting, drawing, collage, writing…) at 10:30 with Sue McDevitt. Classes are mostly in Spanish.

A Sewing Program connected to Casa del Sol Naciente and run by Rosa Martinez is offered to those actually seeking a career in sewing and fashion; it’s a 2-year, 6-days a week intense sewing program. Information and scholarships are available through MPM or email rosamartinez77@gmail.com.

MPM’s Home Health Care program, led by Mary Simmons, is partnered with Rosarito Beach Christian Church. This 8-week course provides skills for the home health care workers who aid those who prefer to stay home during illness.. Tuition is $100. Anyone wishing to provide a scholarship should contact Mary Simmons.

Mujeres Para Mujeres is starting a microfinance program, with the committee chaired by Karen Cebreros. They are currently researching ways in which to provide microloans to women for entrepreneurial and educational ventures. MPM has partnered with VIA International, which has positive experience in micro-lending with 100% payback of microloans worldwide. Helping to fund this program are Greeting Cards by Rhonda, on sale at Baja Mail in Puerto del Valle, near La Mision. The cards may be customized for particular occasions.

For more information, MPM cordially invites you to their next gathering, a cookie exchange Sunday, December 8th at 3:30 pm at La Jolla Condos (km29, across the boulevard from Fat Cat Restaurant). Bring three dozen cookies to exchange. Membership is not a prerequisite.  For additional details, contact ValerieMRussell@yahoo.com.

March 8th will be the 1st anniversary of MPM and elections for next year’s Board will be held. The group is always seeking new energetic members, Mexican and expat, especially from the northern area of Rosarito. I know many of us have been giving generously of our time and funds, especially after the spate of fires Rosarito has experienced, but please consider sharing your talents with this fine group of ladies. Do you have any ideas for a class or a workshop that would benefit local ladies? They are currently seeking a Membership Coordinator, Volunteer Coordinator, Development Director, and Grant Writer… and a dozen folding chairs.

Donations or memberships may be paid through PayPal at MujeresParaMujeres2019@gmail.com. MPM is close to achieving their US 501(c)(3) non-profit status, making all donations tax-deductible. For information on any of the programs, classes, greeting cards, etc., please visit the Facebook page “Mujeres Para Mujeres Group” or phone 646-978-7507.

Consider coming out of retirement for this great cause. Gentlemen are welcome
too!

Rosarito Calendar of Events

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 the Titanic Room of the Calafia Hotel. Useful info for the English speaking community of charitable, community service, and social organizations. www.unitedsocietyofbaja.org. 664-748-3949.

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

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.

November 28, Thursday; Happy Thanksgiving! See our special article on our website www.ggnorth.com.

November 29, Friday, 4 pm; Wine & Design at De Colores Ceramic Studio (k 40) Create a customizable ornament. Starts at $10 for all supplies. $5 holds reservation at https://decolores-mexico.cojm. 661-104-0022.

November 29 & 30, Friday & Saturday, December 1st, Sunday, 10 am – 8 pm; Rosarito Crystal and Gem Show at Hotel Calafia (km 35.5). Gems, minerals & fossils; show, buy and sell. Admission: $3.  664-444-9527.

November 30, Saturday, 9 am – 1 pm; Lecture and Practice about Taoist Arts by Zi Xiao. Chinese traditional culture & history; bioenergetics healing arts; Taoist meditation. Venustiano Carranza, Primo Tapia, Mision Viejo. 646-189-7470; qigong_w.bc@hotmail.com.

November 30, Saturday, 12:30 – 3:30 pm; Harvest Jamboree and Holiday Food Drive at Vista Hermosa Resort (k43). All musicians welcome to join the jam to fight hunger. Acoustic, blues, country, bluegrass, and Americana. Non-perishable food items and donations. Proceeds to support Hearts of Baja. www.BAHsociety.com.

December 1, Sunday, 1 – 4 pm; Tempest Trading Holiday Concert and Art Bazaar (k 40.5). Music by Rosarito’s Academia de Musica Allegro. Local artists, craftspeople, and confectioners. 661-688-1161.

December 4, Wednesday, 1 pm; Flying Samaritans White Elephant Gift Swap & Luncheon at Las Rocas Resort. Minimum value: $10. Donation $20. RSVP Susan: susansmithz@hotmail.com or 858-240-2360 or 662-200-6066

December 6, Friday, 5 – 8 pm; A Very Merry Diva’s Christmas Party, holiday food drive and fundraiser to benefit Blues Against Hunger Society at Pavilion Restaurant, featuring Brigette Rios Purdy. $18 show with holiday menu available. Tickets at Pavilion Restaurant or online at www.BAHSociety.com.

December 6 & 7, Friday 7 pm, & Saturday 4 pm; The Kumiai Theatre Company presents El Jugete del Ano (Toy of the Year), at CEART Rosarito. Free. 661-100-6338. Facebook/ CEART Rosarito.

December 7, Saturday, 10 am – 5 pm; Friends of the Library Annual Home Tour for the Holidays. Includes homes with “year-round architectural style.” All proceeds benefit Rosarito Reads program and the Bookmobile. Full tour: $35; North or South tours $20 each. Tickets at Click-on, Mail Express & Xtras, or online at www.friendsofthelibrary.com.mx.

December 7, Saturday, 12 pm; 1st Annual Barra Vieja Art and Beer Festival featuring more than 20 local exhibitors. K 47 next to the fire station in Primo Tapia. Free entry. Food, craft beers, art, live music and more.

December 8, Sunday, 2 pm; A Taste of Black Cross Wines at Black Cross Vineyard. $5 entry. Complimentary tasting. Wine, food, and more. Facebook.com/ Black Cross Wines.

December 8, Sunday, 6 pm; Blanca Navidad (“White Christmas”) Concert at IMAC Rosarito (behind CitiBanamex). All of your Christmas music favorites performed by the Academy of Music de Allegro. $100 pesos. Facebook.com/ IMAC Rosarito.

December 11th, 2019 2:30-3:30 pm Watch your step! Fall Prevention In Seniors. Join us for this FREE conference at  SerenCenter Rosarito. Cookies & coffee will be served to all guests. RSVP: 1800 030 0070 or info@serenacare.net

Where To Spend Thanksgiving in Rosarito?

November 28, Thursday; Thanksgiving dinner at Vista Hermosa Resort. Three seatings: 2 – 4:40, 5 – 7:30 & 8 – 10pm. Turkey with ALL the sides, pumpkin pie, one glass champagne. Live music 5:30 – 8:30. Reservations required, 661-114-6278; www.vistahermosaresort.com.

November 28, Thursday; Thanksgiving at Happy Hour Bar & Restaurant (k 43.5). All-you-can-eat turkey buffet with all the fixings, plus one glass champagne or wine. $11.95. Reservations: 661-613-2043.

November 28, Thursday, from 3 pm; Thanksgiving at Los Amigos Sports Bar & Grill (k 30). $13 includes turkey with all the fixings, including one glass of wine & pie. Pre-pay by November 26 to ensure a seat. Music by Eloy Miron. Now accepts credit cards. 661-120-3639.

November 28, Thursday, from 3 pm; Thanksgiving at Popotla Restaurant & Bar (k 34). Includes turkey and all the fixings. Reservations: 1-619-373-8895 or 661-612-1505.

November 28, Thursday, from 3 pm; Thanksgiving at Ruben’s Restaurant and Steakhouse. Turkey with all the fixings, including pie. $13.75. Happy hour 3 – 6 pm. Facebook/ Ruben’s Steakhouse.

November 28, Thursday, 4 pm; Thanksgiving at Susanna’s Restaurant. $25 prepaid. Reservations strongly suggested. 661-613-1187. Facebook/ Susanna’s Restaurant in Rosarito.

November 28 & 29, Thursday and Friday, 12 – 10 pm; Thanksgiving at Rosarito Beach Hotel. $19.90; “Early Bird” dinner (before 6 pm) $17.90. Three courser dinner includes Turkey and all fixings, with pie. Reservations: 1-800-343-8582 or 661-612-1111 x 11365; www.rosaritobeachhotel.com.

Rene’s Casino Shut Down Over Lack Of Permits

On October 7, the Directorate of Inspection, Verification, and Ordination of Public Roads implemented an operation in the four casinos in Rosarito to verify whether they had municipal permits to operate.

During the operation in Rene’s Casino, those in charge assured they had the documentation in order, but they never presented it, so the city inspectors proceeded to close it.

Later, federal inspectors from the Department of Justice (PGR), trough the Federal Public Ministry, proceeded to place seals on the doors corresponding to the closure because they didn’t even have the operating permits granted by the Federal Government through the “Secretaría de Governacion” or Office for Domestic Affairs.

More than a month after the closure, the owners have not shown the required documentation, so the establishment has remained closed.

City Hall Secretary, Manuel González Araujo, explained that if a business of this type does not have the proper permit issued by the Federal Government through the Office for Domestic Affairs, it cannot access other municipal permits, including the sale of alcoholic beverages. He also mentioned that during the operation, this turned out to be the only casino without the corresponding federal permits.

The big question here is how could they operate for years without having the proper permits.

 

SOURCE: Ecos de Rosarito
Photo: Gringo Gazette
Rewritten in English by Alondra Arce

Rosarito Calendar of Events

November 14, Thursday, 5 pm; Tragic to Magic Happy Dog fundraiser at Los Amigos Bar & Restaurant. $20 includes dinner and cocktail. Entertainment and karaoke begins at 7 pm.

November 16, Saturday, 12:30 – 3:30 pm; Harvest Jamboree and Holiday Food Drive at Vista Hermosa Resort (k43). All musicians welcome to join the jam to fight hunger. Acoustic, blues, country, bluegrass, and Americana. Non-perishable food items and donations. Proceeds to support Hearts of Baja. www.BAHsociety.com.

November 16, Saturday, 1 pm; USBC Thanksgiving Potluck luncheon at La Maroma Bar. Members free/ Guests $5, plus dish to serve 8. Must sign up by November 14. RSVP: BajaMaggie2@yahoo.com; 1-619-997-0824.

November 16, Saturday, 6 pm; Rosarito Beach Hotel presents Viva la Revolution! With mariachi, folklorico, and entertainment by Sonora con Dinamita. $190 pesos, includes buffet. 661-612-1126 or 01-800-265-2322. www.rosaritobeachhotel.com.

November 16 & 17, Saturday & Sunday, 12 – 10 pm; Katrina Fest at IMAC Rosarito (behind CitiBanamex). Live entertainment all day. Facebook/ IMAC Rosarito.

November 19, Tuesday, 3 pm; Hearts of Baja 4th Annual Toy Drive at Splash Restaurant. Entrance with unwrapped toy or $10. Buffet included. www.heartsofbaja.com.

November 22, Friday, 5 pm; Cenando Numero 5 dining event at Baja California Center. Tickets: $500 pesos at www.eventbrite.com.  Tastings from local area hosted by CEMDI Metropolitano. Facebook/ CEMDI, 661-613-1382.

November 23, Saturday, 12:30 – 3:30 pm; Harvest Jamboree and Holiday Food Drive at Vista Hermosa Resort (k43). All musicians welcome to join the jam to fight hunger. Acoustic, blues, country, bluegrass, and Americana. Non-perishable food items and donations. Proceeds to support Hearts of Baja. www.BAHsociety.com.

November 28, Thursday, Thanksgiving! Please see the special Thanksgiving section next issue.

 

Every Wednesday, 10:30 am – 12 pm; Speak Spanish Naturally with Erendira Abel at IMAC Library. eabel@bajaexpatservices.pro.

Every Wednesday, 10am – 12pm; Adult painting class at IMAC Rosarito in the main park. Bilingual instructor. 200 peso registration/ 300 pesos per month. IMACRosarito@gmail.com; Facebook/imacrosarito.

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 CEART Rosarito. Promotes reading and literacy in Rosarito. www.friendsofthelibrary.com.mx. 661-612-3659.

Every Third Wednesday of the Month (except December), Flying Samaritan’s General Meeting at Villas Del Mar (k 31.5). www.flyingsamaritansrosarito.org;  Susansmithz@hotmail.com; 1-858-234-2360; 661-100-6066.

Every Third Wednesday (except December) 1:00 – 4:00 pm, Flying Samaritan’s Outrageous Bingo at Popotla Jr. Restaurant (across from El Nido – formerly California Fresh), 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.

Second and Fourth Wednesday, 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 other Thursday 12 pm; Baja Wordsmiths Writing group meets at L’Estancia Restaurant (turn at the wooden water wheel). Bring something to write with. RSVP to Facebook.com/ Baja Wordsmiths for date.

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 Second Thursday. 10 am. Cruz Roja Volunteers, Rosarito Chapter General Meeting NOW at Beach Comber Rest. . 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 Friday, 12 – 2 pm; Adult painting class at IMAC Rosarito in the main park. Bilingual instructor. 200 pesos registration/ 300 pesos monthly. IMAC Rosarito@gmail.com; Facebook/imacrosarito.

Every Monday and Friday (that is NOT a Mexican holiday) 11 am – 1 pm; Free beginner and intermediate Spanish Classes at the Palacio Municpal, through the FRAO office. Contact Liz for information: 661-614-9600, ext. 1080, or email: frao@rosarito.gob.mx.

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 the Titanic Room of the Calafia Hotel. Good info for the English speaking community of charitable, community service and social organizations. www.unitedsocietyofbaja.org. 664-748-3949.

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.

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 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.

Dolls and Balls Toy Drive

The Heart of Baja annual 1000 Dolls and Balls toy drive has started! 1000 dolls, balls, and other toys are needed to help children of all ages enjoy Christmas, Donations will go to the children of local orphanages, and those on ranches, farms, and in the hills.

You may drop unwrapped gifts at Charly’s Place (k 37.5); Los Amigo’s Restaurant (k 30); Judith Douglas Spa (k 40); Click-on Mailroom (k 40.5); Vista Hermosa (k 43 – formerly Bobby’s by the Sea); La Paloma (k 28); Chubbies Restaurant; and Mata Ashta (San Antonio del Mar). You may even schedule a pick-up by calling 442-273-7348. If you don’t have the time or inclination to shop, donations may be made online at www.heartsofbaja.com. Remember, this is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt charity, so all cash donations are tax-deductible on your US tax returns.

Do you shop on Amazon? Instead of going to Amazon.com, go to smile.amazon.com and enter “Hearts of Baja Children’s Homes Network” into your chosen charity. A percentage of your purchases will go to Hearts of Baja! How easy is that? Especially if you were going to order toys from Amazon anyway. Let’s help Rosarito’s children have a Merry Christmas!

Pulling Together After the Fires

In October, fires ran rampant through areas of northern Baja. Several areas of Rosarito were hit hard. This article will focus on re-building operations that have come to my attention as of the first week of November. There may have been additional fires, and certainly more sources of relief that haven’t yet come to light. But here’s what we know as of this writing:

We’ve already heard numerous accounts of individual suffering due to the tragic fires, so we need not reiterate those tragedies. Our focus here is to shed light on sources of relief and recovery.

The two main fire areas were in Rosarito in the Ejido Morelos/ Santa Anita del Mar area, about three miles east of the Rosarito Beach Hotel, where 20 – 30 homes burned. The other primary location is in La Mision, where approximately 40 homes burned, many of which were owned by expats.

One big difference is that most of the less fortunate Mexican homeowners do not carry home insurance, so when the home and/or car is destroyed they are left with nothing. Most of them work for mere pesos to begin with, and In many cases the fires destroyed their means and implements of income, such as food preparation utensils or house-cleaning supplies.

Here are the Facebook organizations that have come to my attention as of the Gringo Gazette publication deadline:

KSitas – on Facebook and www.ksitas.org; a 501c3 non-profit organization. Funds may be donated to https://ksitas.org/bajacampaigns. 100% of the money donated will go to building supplies and labor for rebuilding homes.

Colectivo Surf Brew Company (above White Horse Liquors) and local artist Jaime Carbo spearheaded this group. An auction of some of Jaime’s artwork is scheduled to aid the rebuilding effort. The first house is nearly finished, at a cost of about $6000 (USD). Their website is an excellent source of relief efforts.

Facebook: Baja Fire Victims – Led by Jackie Alameda (Of Baja Blues Fest) and Lisa Marlott, their group is working to rebuild 30 homes. They’re appealing to the public for food items, toiletries, diapers, building materials, medical supplies, blankets and sleeping bags. www.gofundme.com/f/baja-fire-Victims is their website. For more Information please call: 1-858-790-2380.

Facebook: La Mision Fire Relief Fund – and https://openarmsmexico.org. Led by Daniel and Heidi Elizarraraz, Directors. You may donate at the website through PayPal or with a credit card. Checks may be sent to Open Arms, PO Box 6605, Chula Vista, CA 91909. All donations are tax-deductible. Phone: 1-619-882-9001 or 01152-646-255-0858. Check their website for information on how to donate.

Kumiai Fire Relief Drive – to help our indigenous “first people” in the hills. Needed are non-perishable food, water, clothes, blankets, toiletries, wood, pet feed and cash. Drop off points are at Kumeyaay Community College, Monday-Friday, 10 am – 4 pm and Saturday / Sunday 10 am – 2 pm. Manzanita Activity Center Monday – Friday 10 am – 2 pm, and Viejas Recreational Center, Monday – Friday 8 am – 8 pm. Contact Martha Rodriguez 760-445-7726 for information. Also Grace Sesma, 720-363-6034, and Brooke Baines, US 1-619-519-8264.

I must caution you about Go Fund Me pages where you are not personally knowledgeable of the person in charge. These may be used for good or for evil purposes. If you know the person or group hosting the page, by all means feel free to contribute, but tragedy attracts creeps who take advantage of the situation for their own personal enrichment. Make sure you know your money is being used for the purpose you intended.

There will certainly be more groups forthcoming. Please share through your social media, or by personal reference. Much help is needed. You may also take donations of clothing, household goods, etc. to the local Cruz Roja Thrift Stores in Rosarito and Primo Tapia, which help our community year-round.

Thank you so much for your support of the community.

Photo by: Alejandro Zepeda

Civil Protection Reveals the Total Damage Caused by the Fires

More than 21,000 acres were burned by the wildfires in different places around the Ensenada and Playas de Rosarito municipalities. Affecting mostly bushland and scrubland zones.

According to the civil protection office, the southern part of Rosarito was the most affected, mainly Santa Anita, Alisitos, El Morro, Villas San Pedro and La Mision, which left one dead person, as well as the loss of several livestock animals due to the strong Santa Ana winds.

Other affected areas in Rosarito were Morelos neighborhood, Lomas Altas I and II, El Aguajito, Huahuatay, and Constitución. The fires left a total of 41 burned houses in southern Rosarito and another 15 in the city. Meanwhile in Ensenada, a total of 53 houses were consumed by fire and unfortunately, two people died.

City official Julio Obregón Angulo, also reported that 76 persons were left homeless, so they are living temporally with their friends or family. He also commented that both civil protection and the firefighters remain alert under the possibility of more fires. In the meantime, they are asking the community for their support in being careful not to throw cigarettes butts, make bonfires or throw garbage outside of trash cans, they are also asking everyone to call 911 in case they watch any wildfires as soon as possible to stop them from spreading.

 

SOURCES: El VigiaEcos de Rosarito

Photo by: Alejandro Zepeda

Rewritten in English for the Gringo Gazette North by Alondra Arce

Fins Up! It’s 5:00 o’clock Somewhere

There is a new social club coming to Rosarito and Ensenada. Many of you may already qualify for membership even if you don’t know it. If you have a “laid back” attitude, you enjoy having fun with people who are a lot like you, and escaping to the beach is your lifetime goal (and let’s face it…we are HERE aren’t we?) then you just might be a Parrot Head.

No, I didn’t just insult your intelligence. Baja’s two newest Parrot Head Clubs (yes, there IS such a thing) are submitting their charter applications this November for inclusion into the Parrot Heads in Paradise Inc., which was created back in 1994.

Now, these clubs are not just another excuse to party. But as Chapters President Larry Norman explained to me, their tag line is “Party with a purpose.” And we can “party with a purpose while supporting our community and have fun doing it!” Over the last 16 years, Parrot Head Clubs have contributed $53.5 million to charitable organizations all over the world, and members have donated 4.2 million volunteer hours to their communities.

Larry described the Club’s Mission Statement is to “promote friendship and organized activities for people that share an affection for the tropical spirit of singer-songwriter Jimmy Buffett, and a desire to contribute to the betterment of our community and environment through a variety of volunteer efforts.” Just think, with all of the post-fire labor we all have been doing, those hours can be made part of our local Parrot Head charitable experience. The principle charities that will be supported by the Rosarito and Ensenada chapters are Hearts of Baja and Blues Against Hunger Society, which are charities near and dear to our hearts.

The first organizational meeting for the Ensenada chapter is 4 pm on November 12 at the Hotel Coral and Marina and in Rosarito November 14 at the Club at Number 18, Pikin Zip Line Park at 4 pm. Both meetings will be followed by a free three-hour concert by Mike Nash, one of Nashville’s top artists. Don’t worry if you miss the first meetings. The Parrot Head clubs will meet every month on the first Tuesday in Ensenada and first Thursday in Rosarito, with “It’s 5 o’clock” social hours to follow. Concerts will be performed every three months.

Mike Nash has played with Jimmy Buffet, Charlie Daniels, and Lynyrd Skynrd, to drop just a few names. He tours the United States, including Alaska, ever year in his motor home. Larry convinced him to come down to Baja as long as he was going to be in San Diego on his Stay Thirsty 2020 Winter Tour anyway.

I visited the Rosarito Chapter clubhouse, which is in Larry’s home and has been renovated into a club atmosphere complete with two indoor bars, comfy concert seating, fully stocked kitchen for food at the events, and (for sunnier weather) an outdoor bandstand with a beautiful ocean backdrop.

Membership is $20, and Larry hopes to have 40 Charter Members signed up during these first two meetings. But don’t worry if you miss the meetings as they will meet every month. Contact Larry at larrynormanctc@gmail.com or at US 1-619-554-2438 with any questions you have or to RSVP.  In time Larry would like to see more Parrot Head Clubs in Baja than in California (which has 6).

Some of you may still be asking “So why ‘Parrot Head?’” Originally it was said to be as “Dead Heads” followed the Grateful Dead, Buffet fans followed the message of Buffet’s music. For some reason unclear to me, these fans took to wearing stuffed parrots on their heads at concerts. So if this story has you humming “Margaritaville” right now, you just might be a Parrot Head.

Baja Burns!

Wildfires have been a common sight in Baja for years, but we had never seen something as extreme as what has been going on for the last couple days.

Severe heat and dry Santa Ana winds have caused dry vegetation to burn.

4 people have been reported dead, 2 in Tecate, 1 in Tijuana, and another one in Rosarito. Almost 100 houses have been lost to the fires, most of them yesterday, which was the day that had the worst Santa Ana winds condition.

About 50 families were evacuated from Real Del Mar, which was impressively affected by the fire.

Incredible enough, two persons were detained for causing fires that, in one case, resulted in one death. One was detained in Rosarito and another one in Tijuana.

For a couple of hours on Friday, both the toll road and the free road were closed because of the fires that were making driving there dangerous.

Authorities are recommending drinking lots of water to and of course avoid being near fires, sometimes it doesn’t look as bad until its too late.

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