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4/1/2012 to 4/10/2012
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April 10, 2012

CLICK HERE for the full Belize Weekly Weather Report

Last night's TV news on Channel 7 and Channel 7
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials

The San Pedro Sun

Pancake Brunch with the Easter Bunny a Hopping Success!
On Saturday morning April 7th the San Pedro Lions Club hosted a Pancake Brunch with the Easter Bunny. What promises to be an annual event, the crowd of pancake lovers and holiday fun lined up to enjoy a morning full of food, games, activities and of course the Easter Bunny. Everyone devoured delicious pancakes, sausage, orange slices and juice, with the highlight choosing from a variety of toppings. With chocolate syrup, Nuttela, sprinkles, butter, strawberry jam, shredded coconut and maple syrup to pick from, some children indulged in them all! Locals and tourists to La Isla enjoyed socializing together and the Easter Bunny entertained the crowd while posing for photos with the jubilant children. Activities included colouring, bobbing for Easter Eggs, face painting and Egg in Spoon races.

Misc Belizean Sources

Belize Bank Requiring I.D. Updates
I received my Belize Bank statement today dated March 15 (they switched to the 15th recently). Inside was a glossy customer insert. They are informing customers that they must visit their bank branch by May 31st, 2012 to provide identification proofs. This is stated to be required under the 2008 Money Laundering & Terrorism Act and the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter Financing of Terrorism Guidelines of 2010. Customers are to provide: 1. Belize Social Security card (preferred) or 2. Passport; and utility bill with your name and residential address (issued not more than three months) If the information is not provided "local regulation" requires the bank to "terminate a client relationship." If you are "unable to come into the Bank, or if you require additional information, please contact the nearest Belize Bank branch."

Belize makes Top 19 list of top retirement havens
Retire well overseas In the U.S. today, the discussion about retirement orbits around how much less of it we're all going to have. As the cost of everything from health care to food swells, incomes, pensions and nest eggs erode, leaving baby boomers fewer and fewer options for retirement in this country. But if you look at the right places beyond our borders today, you'll find you have more good choices than ever for a comfortable -- even pampered – retirement. In any one of our top 19 havens for 2012, a lifestyle well beyond your reach in the United States could be yours for pennies on the dollar. In this, our annual Global Retirement Index, we bring you the top choices available on the planet today. From beachfront hideaways to arts-rich colonial cities, from cosmopolitan capitals to small highland villages, there's an overseas haven to fit your fantasy -- and your budget. We measure only the very best havens against one another. So the country last on our list is still the 19th best in the world. The top 19 (in order) are, for varying reasons, Ecuador, Panama, Mexico, Malaysia, Colombia, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Spain, Thailand, Honduras, Uruguay, Italy, Brazil, Ireland, France, Costa Rica, Belize, Chile and the Dominican Republic. Read on to find out what makes each of them special.

Film Auditions In Cayo
I am hearing that some film production company is holding auditions tomorrow at Hode's in San Ignacio. Director Matt Klinck is planning to make a student "haunted expedition" adventure film in Belize. His one "big" film is "Hank & Mike," a standard raunch-filled comedy, available on Netflix via steaming by the way.... They are looking for boys and girls up to 24 that speak Kriol.

PHOTOS: Garcia Sisters Gift Shop in San Antonio
The Garcia Sisters gift shop - also a Mayan Museum and clinic - is located just outside of San Antonio. You can find most everything there. From slate carvings, which they do very well, to jewelry, thay have it. They also do herbal workshops, and traditional Mayan ceremonies. Call them at 669.4023 for more information.

VIDEO: Barefoot Skinny @ Lucky 5


My FAVORITE Street Food in San Pedro, Belize: Pupusas at Waraguma
Despite the fact that the pupusa is an El Salvadorean dish, if I was the head of the Belize Tourism Board, I would make it mandatory that all visitors to the island sample a pupusa on each trip to Ambergris Caye. Perhaps a stamp in your passport to give you a 25% discount on your exit fees at the airport would be in order. This food is that good. (You could get another discount for BBQ chicken with rice and beans and potato salad...but I'll work on the specifics). There are a few places that make pupusas but my favorite is Waraguma (it is at the southern end of Middle Street). They make these delicious little stuffed corn pancakes on the street from 5pm until about 9pm and for lunch and all afternoon, they cook them in the kitchen. Here are the flavors:

Now the work begins on Belize
Its cold here because it has to be. Home in Maine, the weather is seasonably frigid with wisps of snow and rain. It suits the mood as a finish to the three months I toured in Belize. I have to have contrast from the bright, saturated colors of the oceans and bush. I have to have perspective on the richness of the environment. The gray of the trees and sky is the only color that would suffice. Its nature’s way to provide me with balance. I loved Belize. The country, the food and its people unfolded to me in ways I would not have expected. I have a massive body of notes, photographs, and anecdotes that sit next to me in my yet-to-be-unpacked suitcase, a hard drive, and crammed within in my head. Now the work begins, and I digest what it means to have been a “Road Warrior.” The Road Warrior Program was the brainchild of a writer in New York, named Julie Schweitert Collazo. She helped develop a partnership with the Belize Tourism Board to bring writers and photographers to the country for three-months stints over the course of one year. The objective: the promote the country utilizing social media platforms. The outcome? Four journalists, each publishing online and in print, each of us crafting stories and presentations for a global audience.

International Sources

Lighthouse Reef Trumps Politics
Edwards said she has been thinking of leaving the statehouse for the past three years. She said it’s become increasingly difficult to balance her work in the statehouse with her family foundation, which is dedicated to the preservation of coral reefs around the world. "I’ve been trying to split my attention between the two for the last couple of years," she said. "But the nonprofit needs my attention now more than ever." The Lighthouse Reef Conservation Institute is a non-profit conservation, education and research organization hoping to merge the Advertisement oft-conflicting aspects of commerce, community and conservation in a model of sustainability on an atoll of six cayes about 45 miles off the coast of Belize. It is one of just four atolls in the entire western hemisphere with a coral reef ecosystem, which stretches 27 miles in length and is about eight miles wide. Her whole family is involved in the foundation, which is creating what it is calling The Lighthouse Reef Model for Resilience and Sustainability.

Mission trip to Belize
Seven members of First Presbyterian Church of Oak Ridge spent a week last month providing medical care and preparing through partnerships to make available more clean water to people in Belize. Their medical and water missions are related because both are keys to improving health in the Central American country, where the annual income per person is barely over $4,000. The seven members -- Dale, Chuck, and Ashley Hadden; David and Mary Mullins, Peggy Bertrand and Dan Terpstra -- will give a report and slide show on their mission trip at 6:15 p.m. Wednesday in Room 102 of the church's Activity building after the church's Wednesday night dinner. "We helped staff a medical clinic for two days in Armenia, our adopted village," said Dale Hadden, a nurse practitioner. "We saw 104 patients and gave out ordinary medication that most families in Armenia cannot afford but that most Americans can. "We helped older people with severe arthritis by simply giving them aspirin or Tylenol," she continued. “Sixty percent of the patients we treated were children. A third of them had head lice or intestinal parasites. We identified one girl with a congenital heart defect. She was taken to Belmopan, the capital of Belize, for an initial evaluation."

Designer Rebecca Stirm wins Mission Catwalk challenge with Belize-inspired design
Drawing on the Hispanic and Mayan influences in her country, 18 year-old Belizean fashion designer Rebecca Stirm emerged the winner in a culture-inspired challenge in the second episode of Caribbean fashion designer reality series Mission Catwalk, filmed in Kingston Jamaica. Stirm and 14 other designers were instructed by host and executive-producer Keneea Linton-George to “create an outfit that reflects the style and culture” of their individual countries joined by “the common thread of independence.” The designers, who were given pointers from Season One winner Shenna Carby, had to apply their creativity within a short time frame and on a US$20 budget. “I wanted a lot of material, so I looked in the curtain section,” said Rebecca. “I was able to get a lot of this very, very light; airy fabric for a little bit of money since we were on a tight budget. I added embroidery to give it some detail and intricacy.” “Beautiful, dramatic, tasteful, stylish-I can feel the culture,” said Linton-George about Rebecca’s dress which also impressed judges -Jamaica Observer Lifestyle Editor, Novia McDonald Whyte; menswear designer Carlton Brown and guest judge, Trinidadian actress Nadia Khan.

Actun Tunichil Muknal, Maya Branding
Foundation of Mayan society and philosophy was their spiritual way of life. They believed the underworld is holy and that’s where performance of many important and sacred ceremonies occurred many years ago. Today, we are able to see numerous ancient offerings Mayan’s left behind. These include artifacts, pottery, carvings, skeletons of sacrificial victims, cathedral-like halls and much more. I have recently visited Actun Tunichil Muknal’s “Cave of the Stone Sepulcher” – described as one of the most remarkable caves in the Maya Lowland, located in the beautiful Belizean Rainforest. It is believed Mayan’s first entered the cave during the early classic period (300­­­­­­–600AD). The ATM Cave is a wet cave ­­­you enter by swimming at first, then walk, climb or scramble over rocks and stones, through ankle-to-neck high water, before reaching the dry part of the cave. Dry chamber is a maze you must scramble in order to reach the so-called cathedral-like main hall, filled with artifacts, astonishing bloodletting altars and sacrificial human remains. These precious items are over a thousand years old, and haven’t been touched or removed. It’s somewhat a “living museum.” One of the things that amazed me most and a reason I wanted to share this story with you are pictures enclosed. Take a look at the very first two photos – these were Mayan logos. Branding seems to have existed even 300-­600AD. Today we are faced with about 1500 brands on a daily basis and it’s impressive to know how people, even so long ago, tried to distinguish “their products.” If you ever visit Belize, this adventure is a must. Any similar stories to share?

The Belize Zoo makes someone's day
I love zoos. My aunt Kathy took us to the zoo in Omaha (a fantastic zoo) probably once a week during the summers when we were young. When I was in kindergarten or first grade, we went on a field trip to the zoo. The teacher got turned around and I ended up leading the group to the next animal. I have visited zoos throughout the world. Seeing hippos mate and searching for Snowflake, the albino gorilla in Barcelona (he had died a few weeks earlier). Following a troop of kangaroos around Ireland's Fota Wildlife park, where the (non-lethal) animals roam freely. Seeing an okapi for the first time in St. Louis. Exploring the back rooms in the aquarium in Omaha when my Dad did a catering event. The confused kids questioning their parents after witnessing an elephant masturbate at the National Zoo. So, you would think I'd have gone to the Belize Zoo before today. It's not that I haven't tried to go to the zoo, but somehow something always came up. I was scheduled to do a night tour of the zoo (lots of nocturnal animals) but Hurricane Richard closed the zoo for a few months. Whenever guests visited me, I would send them to the zoo on their own since it was easily accessible while I was at work. Another night zoo trip was canceled. Two trips were rained out. My mom broke her arm. We went to the Rio On pools instead. It got to the point that it felt like I was cursed and would never make it.

April 9, 2012

Last night's TV news on Channel 7 and Channel 7
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials

The San Pedro Sun

CZMAI discuss National Coastal Zone Management Plan
The Coastal Zone Management Authority and Institute (CZMAI) hosted a public consultation on Thursday, March 29th where they discussed various sections of the Belize Integrated Coastal Zone Management Plan. Mandated under Coastal Zone Management Act, the plan determines the suitability of coastal land use and outlines recommendations for sustainable development along the entire coastal zone in Belize. While still in its consultation stage, when completed the management plan will include the first three kilometers inland from the coastline of Belize and all cayes. The Integrated Management plan is divided into ten areas and looks at three scenarios of development over a 15 year period. One of the ten areas is Ambergris Caye and encompasses the entire island and flats around, mangroves swamps, inland lagoons, the reef directly in front of the island and the seabed around the caye. According to the Chief Executive Officer of CZMAI Vincent Gillett, Ambergris Caye is a little ahead of other areas since the San Pedro Master Plan will be integrated into the Belize Integrated Coastal Zone Management Plan. According to Gillett, there are important factors for Ambergris Caye being considered in terms of development, tourism inflows, increase in population, impacts of development, degradation of critical habitat, plan of resource use and available infrastructure and planned development.

Misc Belizean Sources

VIDEO: Impromtu Day Sail Charter
From San Pedro to Hol Chan, Coral Gardens, Caye Caulker- The Split. A great day aboard Impromtu comes to an end at sunset. Thanks for sailing with us come back and see us here on the Belize Barrier Reef.

VIDEO: Impromtu Private Charter Dive
Join Wade, Lauren, Beth and Josh as they Day Sail To Caye Caulker aboard Ecologic Divers 50' luxury catamaran Impromtu. We stop at Hol Cham Marine Reserve for a dive with Spotted Eagle Rays, Turtles, Sting Ray and more. Hol Chan, Mayan defintion, Little Channel has 160 species of fish which have been identified here.

VIDEO: Private Charter Impromtu
Aboard the 50' luxury catamaran Impromtu for a day sail to Caye Caulker with stops at Hol Chan Marine Reserve. Come aboard and have a look

VIDEO: 84th Annual Belize Cycling Classic Finish Line - 2012
The Finishing of the 84th Annual Belize Cross Country Cycling Classic. Finally Belizean, Giovanni Choto, Brandon Cattouse and Darnel Barrow has disrutpted the 6 year winning streak by foreign riders and has won 1st, 2nd and 3rd respectively.

PHOTOS: Rumors Resort's Easter Egg Hunt
Happy Easter! Rumors Resort had an Easter egg hunt today. "Our Easter Egg Hunt was truly fun-filled. It was a pleasure putting up smiled on the faces of all the kids who showed up. They really did enjoy it. We hereby Thanks the sponsorship of Recinos Imports, San Cas Distributors & Rick Paley for making this event possible and memorable for the kids of our community. THANK YOU SO MUCH."


Two very different birthday celebrations
My birthday was yesterday, and I chose one of my very favorite places to go for dinner here on Ambergris Caye, Aji. Neither Barry nor I had any desire to go into town, since we knew it would be packed with tourists and locals partying like crazy for Easter weekend. Every now and then we enjoy that type of atmosphere, but those times are few and far between as we've gotten older. Normally we prefer quiet and peaceful to noisy and rowdy -- maybe we get that from living in the woods on acreage for so many years. Aji definitely provided the quiet and peaceful setting we craved, and it was a perfect night with gentle ocean breezes and no bugs. An added plus is that we can so easily walk there as it's just a couple hundred yards up the beach from our condo. And since I didn't have to ride my bike to get there, I could wear a dress.

Scratching the Surface on Easter Saturday: Lion's Den, The Hotel, Palapa Bar and Dancing to Sinkronia at Wet Willy's
Yesterday, Easter Saturday, might have been the most happening day of the year in a town where something is always happening. There were tons of beach parties, DJs, visiting performers, bands, fundraisers...with all of these choices...where does one begin? The choice was easy. The Pancake Breakfast at the Lion's Den. Plus, it was my only chance to see the Easter Bunny. Warning: This post is almost as long as my day! The event was scheduled from 10am to 1pm. I arrived at 11:30am (normally considered "right on time" in Belize) to find that most of the kids had already been there and left. They ate their candy, got their prizes, posed with the bunny, inhaled their pancakes and had their faces painted by Melody. Apparently, there was a huge line to get in at 10 and the breakfast was a screaming success. Oh well...the Easter Bunny was just wrapping up her shift and had to take a phone call. Wait one second...that's Mel Spain wearing that heavy felted suit as the temperature neared 90. That is dedication.

Easter on Caye Caulker 2012
This year’s Easters festivities were far the best that I have ever experienced in all my many years on this beautiful island. It was a combination of factors … both the Split’s entertainment and Easter Temptation were excellent, the energy on Caye Caulker was a positive one and all were here to have fun, not to give trouble. The police presence was a positive and well organized and of course, the those whose responsibility was to keep our island clean worked hard at doing that!! The Lobsterfest Committee need to be applauded for their Easter Temptation leaving us to only wonder how good this year’s Lobsterfest will be!!! The venue was attractively put together, the line up kept everyone dancing all weekend long and their selection of games innovative and onlookers enjoyed them immensely. Raggamuffin sponsored the cash prize for the greasy pole – Ish did a fantastic job at the ‘bottom man’ but unfortunately his team was not the eventual winners. The Split were not to be defeated and the new beach had three tents, a second Heinekan bar and even additional toilets for the event. This was definitely the location to be during the day yesterday as Electosounds played for the island – the surrounding water acting as a fantastic way to beat the heat whilst enjoy the party!

April 8, 2012

Last night's TV news on Channel 7 and Channel 7
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials

The San Pedro Sun

San Pedro Traffic Control Committee commences Traffic Safety Campaign
With the number of motor vehicles on Ambergris Caye in the thousands, the new San Pedro Traffic Control Committee SPTCC has embarked on an ambitious “Traffic Safety Campaign” to bring the traffic situation under control. Elected councilor to the San Pedro Town Council Kenrick William Brackett, whose portfolio includes Vice Chair of the SPTCC, along with Councilor elect Wally Nuñez spoke to The San Pedro Sun regarding the new campaign. ”We are pretty much aware of the traffic situation. We are aware of the things that have been happening. We think that things have gone a little bit out of control and we need to curve that.”

From the desk of Mayor Daniel Guerrero
On Wednesday, April 4th the Mayor of San Pedro, Daniel Guerrero briefed the media on several issues within the Council. Addressed were the restructuring of the San Pedro Town Council’s staff, the Barry Bowen Bridge, operating hours of shops, restaurants and bars on Good Friday and the presentation of a Financial Report. The re-structuring of the Council’s staff saw the releasing of three employees and their replacements. The Mayor commented, “The restructuring of the Council’s staff was forthcoming, in fact it was promised in our manifesto during our campaign. In other municipalities this happened more immediate after the elections. However, we felt that we needed to do an analysis, an evaluation if you may, of what is going on at the Council and what needs to be done for the success of the Town. With this done the Council decided to release three of our staff members: Pablo Kumul, Nesher Acosta and Gonzalo Alamilla. If you notice, two of these individuals were from the Property Tax department. There has been a public outcry that the property tax system simply was not really operating. With the releasing of those employees and the placing of Daniela Nuñez along with Wilbert Magaña as the new Evaluation Officer, we have started to work on improving that department. We are already working on a new database. We have many persons working on it.”

Chris Emmanuel’s “Portraits for Charity 2012” launched
The project has a list of requirements which is as follows: The person commissioning the work must live in San Pedro and allow the painting to be displayed at an exhibit if requested at the end of the year. All children’s charity receipts will be on display beside the portraits at the exhibition. Please submit your name, a photo to be painted and contribution amount to Chris Emmanuel’s gallery is located at the Sunbreeze Hotel, submission must be made no later than the 15th of the month. If more than one person submits, all names will go into a drawing. You will be notified if your submission is chosen. If your name is not chosen, you will be placed in the next months’ drawing, unless you notify Chris that you no longer want to make the donation.

Misc Belizean Sources

Belize Revenue from Spanish Lookout Oil Field Year
Source: Ministry of Naturanl Resources and the Environment

At the finish line: Go Choto
Riding in by himself, Giovani Choto wins the Holy Saturday Cross Country Cycling Classic and lifts the spirit of an entire nation.


Rebecca Stirm wins Mission Catwalk reality show fashion challenge with Belize inspired design
Roaring Creek native Rebecca Stirm emerged the winner in a culture-inspired challenge in the second episode of Caribbean fashion designer reality series Mission Catwalk, filmed in Kingston Jamaica. Stirm and 14 other designers were challenged by host and executive-producer Keenea Linton-George to “create an outfit that reflects the style and culture” of their individual countries joined by “the common thread of independence.” The designers who hail from Barbados, Guyana, Jamaica and Trinidad were challenged to work within a short time frame and with a US$20 budget. Rebecca, 18, used Belize Hispanic and Mayan culture as inspiration for her design worn by model Abenah Gonzalez

Good Friday In San Pedro, Belize: Squabbling over Liquor Laws & A Religious Procession
Good Friday in predominantly Catholic San Pedro (like in many places) is quite a solemn, religious holiday. It has historically been a day of church services and religious reflection and tends to clash a bit with the newer Easter tradition in San Pedro: hard-core partying. All week we have seen some friction between the San Pedro town board and the San Pedro police department which is headed up by a new chief. According to the Intoxicating Liquor Licensing Acts of the country of Belize, Act 150: All licensed premises in which liquor is sold under a publican's general license (or malt liquor license) shall be closed on Christmas Day and Good Friday. But it also states that they shall be closed on Saturday at 11pm and re-opened Monday at 7am (a law San Pedro most certainly disregards). Historically, the San Pedro Town Council has loosened these laws to account for the tourism industry in our town. Shops and supermarkets that sold alcohol were allowed to open all day as long as they didn't serve liquor. The new police chief had another plan. During the afternoon, the police truck and officers drove around San Pedro and shut down the shops that were open.

Temptation begins and Raggamuffin Champions!
For those of you who are not lucky enough to be with us, we will keep you updated on the excitement on Caye Caulker as much as possible. Although the party has officially not commenced, the stages are set and they far outweigh any that we have seen before here on Caye Caulker!!! Alongside the excitement for the evening, the Tour Guide Association Sailing Regatta 2012 took place and once again, Raggamuffin’s Crew were Champions taking 1st in the larger sailboat race and 2nd in the Open. Jimmy, Patrick, Jerry and Shane were the team that took honors (on the lovely Ragga Gal) – congratulations guys! Easter Temptation at the Palapa Gardens looks set to be the place to be as the venue has been decked out with a lounge style furniture plus dancefloor, it looks too good to waste on just one nights events!!! Although nobody has been taking advantage of this area today, tonight will be a different thing as the DJ will make us understand why it has been named ‘temptation’!!

International Sources

Belize Explored
I’d like to invite you to a tropical paradise, one of the finest vacation destinations that I have had the pleasure of visiting. Recently my girlfriend and I set off on a two-week open-ended adventure in the Central American country of Belize. We had a loose itinerary: she wanted to see Mayan ruins and I wanted to add more world-class dive sites to my log book. After landing in Belize City, we hopped a bus to the city of San Ignacio in western Belize, almost to the Guatemalan border. The bus was a e-ticket ride – an experience we vowed not to repeat! You can typically get around in Belize by foot or using the "people’s taxi" (private citizens’ cars). The people’s taxi fare is set at one Belizean dollar, about 50 cents American. You share the ride with other folks, so it’s a nice way to meet people. Did I mention that English is the primary language of Belize? Until 1981, Belize was known as British Honduras.

VIDEO: Rebecca Stirm wins on Mission Catwalk episode 2
Rebecca Stirm won the fashion contest on the second episode of Mission Catwalk. Rebecca is representing Belize in Jamaica. Congratulations, Rebecca!

April 7, 2012

Last night's TV news on Channel 7 and Channel 7
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials

The San Pedro Sun

No Alcohol to be sold on Good Friday!
The San Pedro Police Department is reiterating that there should be no alcohol sold on Good Friday. According to the Intoxicating Liquor Licensing Act Chapter 150 of the Laws of Belize section 27 states that: ” 1. (a) all licensed premises in which liquor is sold under a publican’s general license shall be closed – on Christmas Day and Good Friday; 2. (a) All licensed premises in which liquor is sold under a malt liquor and cider license shall be closed – on Christmas Day and Good Friday 3. Any person who during the times at which any licensed premises are required by this section to be closed (a) sells or exposes for sale in such premises any liquor; or (b) opens or keeps open such premises for the sale of liquor; or (c) allows any liquor, although purchased before the hours of closing, to be consumed on such premises, is guilty of an offence”. The San Pedro Town Council (SPTC) however, has advised establishments that they are allowed to sell alcohol after 9PM on Friday. When asked if the SPTC have asked for special provisions regarding the law, ASP Robinson said, “They want me to break the law and that will not happen.”

SPHS are the Northern Regional Track and Field Champions
San Pedro High School (SPHS) brought to the island the Northern Regional Championship in Track and Field on Friday, March 30th. This is the second time this for year that high school athletes have made history; having won the National Male Softball Competition earlier in March. The team managed to capture a total of 76 medals placing them at the top of the board by the time the Track and Field Tournament was over. For the SPHS Principal Emil Vasquez, the win is a historical event for the school. “We have never won a championship in Track and Field. Last year we came in second and this year we got the championship; it is history in the making at San Pedro High School.” The medalists who captured first and second places in the various disciplines will join other athletes from three other high schools from the northern zone to compete at the National Track and Field final as one zone. According to Vasquez, going to nationals means even more training. “We believe that when we go to the nationals we should do fairly well,” said Vasquez. Having little to no space to practice track and field at the SPHS, Vasquez said that it is certainly a challenge which needs to be address. He added that having won so many medals despite the limited space is what makes the SPHS even more proud of their victory. SPHS garnered15 points more than Corozal Community College who won the zone championship in 2011, a school that is considered the powerhouse in northern zone.

Popular Salvadoran Musical Group “Sinkronia” Arrives in San Pedro
Salvadoran tropical musical group Sinkronia arrived in San Pedro yesterday evening, April 5th. The musical group of ten will be performing at Wet Willy’s this Easter weekend on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Shortly after arriving on the island, the group had the opportunity to meet with local islanders as well as sample some of the local food. In an exclusive interview with The San Pedro Sun, group leader La Lupita (Lupita Mejia) explained that they are excited and ready to entertain the islanders and tourists alike. “We are very happy and excited and we are ready to sing and dance with the people of San Pedro. We will be performing music such as salsa, meringue and the cumbia which is something that defines the region and I hope that it is well received by our audience.” La Lupita explained that to blend into the Belizean musical flavor, they will also be performing a bit of punta music.

SP Police Enforce Alcohol Law on Good Friday
ASP Robinson told The San Pedro Sun that she duly gave warning to the business community about the laws. “Absolutely no one is above the law. I am here to enforce the law and as such that is what we are doing. They [the business owners] are well aware of the law and it clearly states that no holder of a liquor license will be open for business on Good Friday. What is not clear about that law?” said a determined ASP Robinson. While the drastic enforcement of the law did not sit well with business owners, members of the public stopped and congratulated ASP Robinson as she was out enforcing it. The team of officers ensured that the store representatives/owners were informed of their offence and were also informed of the course of action that would be taken. As such the stores were promptly closed in the presence of the officers.

Ambergris Today

Teen Talk - Easter Break in Belize
The Easter weekend is a "real" Belizean holiday for any number of reasons, not the least of which is the spectacular weather, tips to interesting places for the holidays, and the myriad colors of pink, red, orange, lilac and yellow as the countryside blooms. With over 75% of the Belizean population being Christians, the origin of the four-day holiday weekend has its roots in Christianity. Each day is referred to separately by its own title - Good Friday, Holy Saturday, Easter Sunday, and Easter Monday - each with its own traditions and events. The Easter weekend is a favorite for visiting Belizean families from abroad as local families are off from work or out of school and can spend time together. This week I decided to ask my fellow teens “What do you plan to do for this Easter vacation?”


How To Make Hot Cross Bun
But Easter is not only about last minute shopping and Christian practices; it’s also about eating hot cross bun which is basically the main menu for Good Friday. But not many of us know how to make hot cross bun, and if we try, it just does not come out right. In one kitchen here in Orange Walk hot cross bun is the specialty. So, for those who are eager to learn how to make the Good Friday bun we invite you to join us as we air a story we ran last year featuring Miss Betty Lopez and her hot cross bun.

Where To Go For Easter? One Option Is Rio Adventures
While some Belizeans will be travelling to Playa Del Carmen or Cancun to celebrate Easter Sunday, there are those who will relay on the jewel to have a good time. Here in Orange Walk some residents will travel to Honey Camp and relax by the lagoon. But if for some reason or the other you want to stay within town limits then we suggest that on Easter Sunday you visit Rio Adventures located along the river side in the Louisiana Area. For this Easter Sunday Julian Chell Sr. has coordinated a day full of fun and excitement. Today he told us more about the activity. Julian Chell Sr., Coordinator “We are going to have swimming race and from Banquitas we are going to have a dory race, anybody who wants to participate it will a hundred dollars for the first price, we will having fishing tournament, whosever goes fishing in the morning and depends of the quantity of fish gets fifty dollars first price, we are going to have a banana contest too for ladies and for kids, we are going to have what you call the finding of sweets or not the eggs but sweets for the kids so everybody could enjoy the day it will be a family affair.

Minister Of Foreign Affairs Accepts Blame For Hyde's Appointment
On Tuesday Cabinet announced the appointments of seven Belizeans for Diplomatic posts. Among the seven was former Senior Deputy Leader for the People’s United Party Cordel Hyde who was appointed as Consul General to New York. On the same day that the release was sent out Bill Lindo informed media houses that Hyde, who is presently in New York where his son is being treated for cancer, was offered no appointment nor was he willing to accept any. So was it a simple typographical error? Well according to the Minister of Foreign Affairs Sedi Elrington, he is to blame. As Belize’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, it is a part of my responsibility to identify suitably qualified persons immediately below the rank of C.E.O.’s and Ambassadors for recruitment into the ministry. Persons identify for recruitment are those invariably those who I have good reason to believe are interested in the posting. Over the last four years, the practice has been for all ministers to submit to Cabinet the names for all potential recruits for senior posting in the government service for its approval. In conformity with that practice, I duly submitted the name of Cordel Hyde to the Cabinet some time ago for the senior post of Counsel General in New York. However, I had not, prior to doing so, communicated personally to Mr. Hyde my intention of submitting his name to the Cabinet for the post. Neither did I inform him prior to the issuance of Tuesday’s Cabinet press release that Cabinet had agreed earlier that day to his appointment as Counsel General in New York. Cabinet only agreed yesterday afternoon maybe about twelve-one. In the circumstances, I apologize to the prime minister, my Cabinet colleagues and especially to Mr. Hyde and his family for any and all embarrassment and inconvenience caused to them by my actions.”

Easter Message From The Catholic Church
Lent is the Christian season of preparation before Easter. Ash Wednesday marks the first day, or the start of the season of Lent which begins 40 days prior to Easter. It is a time when many Christians prepare for Easter by observing a period of fasting, repentance, moderation and spiritual discipline. The purpose is to set aside time for reflection on Jesus Christ, his suffering and resurrection so as to prepare ourselves to die spiritually with Christ on Good Friday, the day of his Crucifixion, so that we can rise again with him in new life on Easter Sunday.

Leader Of The Opposition Denies Bribery Allegations
Yesterday Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin granted leave for an election petition filed against the Leader of the Opposition and Freetown Area Representative Francis Fonseca by Lee Mark Chang. Chief Justice Benjamin handed down his ruling after Chang’s attorney Michael Young, read affidavits from seven individuals who said they accepted bribes from one Albert Vaughn to vote for Fonseca in the Freetown Division. Of note is that none of the sworn statements accuse Fonseca of being involved in erroneous acts. In his defense Fonseca’s attorney Said Musa, made mention that at least one of the affidavits was inconsistent. After hearing arguments from both sides Chief Justice Kenneth granted leave for the complainant to bring the election petition against Francis Fonseca.

42nd BNTU Convention To Be Held In Orange Walk
“Demanding Decent Working and Learning Conditions For All” is the new theme for this year’s 42nd annual Belize National Teachers Union Convention scheduled to take place here in Orange Walk on the 11th and 12th of April. Every year the convention takes place at a different location and this year BNTU Orange Walk is proud to be hosting the event which will emphasize on current issues affecting teachers countrywide. Otilio Munoz, President of BNTU Orange Walk Branch “The purpose of the convention is basically, the convention is the highest level of authority in our organization, our constitution, and this is the opportunity where teachers can come out and voice out there opinions concerning what are the things that they are encountering, they are facing in the classroom, their working condition and all these things they can voice it out that day and then the national president and the whole national executive is given the task that whenever they negotiate with the government of Belize then they would present it and this is what the teachers of this country are demanding to see happens in our classrooms or in our profession. We want to send the message to be clear and what is our needs, what we are facing everyday in our Belizean classroom, what we want to see different and we want to also talk about the union business which is basically our finances where we stand, do recommendations for the running of our business, the transactions and things like that so that is the main purpose of this convention.”


Valley of Peace youth claims police brutality
A young man from Valley of Peace says he is in pain and incapacitated by wounds inflicted by a policeman. The man, Ian Tun, told Love News that last Saturday night he was at a party when he witnessed another man about to start trouble. That was when he decided to intervene, he said, but a policeman who was outside the location turned on him and administered a beating that still has him on the recovery list. We got a picture of Tun and his version of the events via telephone today. Tun is hoping that the Belmopan police will investigate the incident, especially since he says he can produce witnesses of the brutality.

Series of robberies reported in Belize City
A series of armed robberies, the latest of which happened this morning, has been reported in Belize City in the last twenty four hours. The first happened around eight forty last night. Twenty seven year old Shian Bradley tells police that she was inside her car on Fairweather Street last night waiting for a relative to at a store when she was held up. Bradley says that a dark skin man, armed with a handgun and riding on a bicycle approached and robbed her of a gold chain and Black Berry phone, totaling three thousand seven hundred dollars. The second incident happened forty five minutes later. Thirty nine year old Peter Morgan reported to police that he was in his yard on King Street around nine fifteen last night when he was held up and robbed. Morgan says that he was packing some clothes and shoes when two dark skin men armed with firearms robbed him of two bags containing tennis shoes and clothing. The total value of the stolen merchandise is put at three thousand, nine hundred dollars. In both cases, the robbers made good their escape, and police say they are investigating.

City business held up, customer robbed
The latest robbery occurred just this morning on Cemetery Road in Belize City. And while it might have just happened, police already have one detained and are looking for another.

Payroll jacked from Belize Recycling Company
A short time before the Johnson murder on Custard Apple Street, there was another armed hold up reported. This time is was the Belize Recycling Company that was the target. The mid-afternoon incident happened at the city’s garbage dumpsite on the Western Highway. It has left a businesswoman hospitalized and over two dozen workers were unable to receive their pay because the company’s payroll was jacked. Love News spoke with one of the affected employees who, fearing for her own safety, chose not to speak with us on camera. Here is her account of what took place. Police are investigating both incidents and up to news time were no reports of any suspects being detained.


Hol Chan Marine Museum
One of the most recommended tours to do on Ambergris Caye is a boat trip to Hol Chan Marine Reserve. We really do have world class scuba diving and snorkeling here in Belize and even enjoyed some recent international and local press: Hol Chan Marine Reserve Belize Among Top Ten Snorkeling Spots In The World by the National. Belize named second best snorkeling spot in the world by San Pedro Sun. What people forget to mention is a visit to Hol Chan Marine Museum. I recommended it in my tacogirl Top Ten 10 random things to do in San Pedro write up and I always tell people to stop and support Hol Chan by taking a trip to the marine museum in downtown San Pedro. In addition to what you see in the pictures below they have nice glass cases on the wall with all the different shells found in Belize.

We Came SO CLOSE to Winning Trivia at Pedro's Inn
Every Thursday night, there is trivia tournament at either Pedro's Inn or Roadkill Bar. Last night, we studied up and headed to Pedro's to take the entire pot. We were totally in it to win it. And our team lost by 1/2 of a stinking point. Ugh. I'm still not over it. Here is Pedro's full schedule for the holiday weekend. Trivia starts at about 7:30pm, it is $5bzd for each player's entry fee and there are 5 rounds of 10 questions with a pictorial bonus round. Cindy is the no-nonsense quiz mistress. Her word is law on Thursday nights. Even loud mouthed Pedro cannot sway her. Peter (the owner) was nice enough to offer a free drink. Of course we were allowed only one choice: jager shots. Nice? Not really. He was trying to throw us off our game. I saw the fear in his eyes. The quiver in his lip. After a very heated battle, the team called the "Roadkillers", a team of five, came in first and won the $160 pot. BY HALF A POINT!

Mr. Pop’s Plantation
During a recent trip to Belize, I visited the cacao plantation of Eladio Pop and observed the quiet passion, humility, and expertise of one of the District’s most well-known organic farmers. We were returning from our ecolodge in Belize’s tropical heartland to the Belize City municipal airport. There, we would take a short flight to the southern state of Toledo. On the way, our driver asked our permission to pick up a woman waiting at a lonesome bus stop in the countryside. He knew her as the wife of a farmer and she was taking a basket of squash to market. We exchanged small talk and when she left the van, she turned to me and said, “Little Belize has a lot of richness but nobody pays no mind.” I was still thinking of those words when we landed in Punta Gorda, just a little more than an hour later. Yes Belize is little. But I’m wondering if being ignored by the world is not a blessing in a way. With the exception of controversial coastal developments, and admittedly recent concerns over plans for offshore oil exploration, Belize seems comparatively untouched, and especially here in the south. The view from our fourteen-seat Cessna aircraft was uninterrupted green and snaking rivers. Home to both Kekchi and Mopan Maya, farming in traditional ways remains a characteristic of this locale. Villages are nestled throughout the countryside off unpaved roads. Thatched-roof houses dot the lush green foothills of the Maya mountains. Many of these villages offer tours of local plantations as well as demonstrations of cacao bean roasting and tastings. Visitors can arrange an excursion through their hotel.

Corozo aka Cohune Palm – Multi-Purpose Maya Tree
This is a great article on Cohune Palms from Lower Dover Lodge. Some interesting facts. "Many believe the Maya had many practical uses for the tree (oil, roofing material, and even salt). Local guides go a step further and describe Maya shamans using the palms as proof of their spirit connections. When the wind would blow through the palms located around their settlement, shamans would say…'I told you the Gods were listening!' 'Heart of Palm' or 'Palmito' is a rare but well known local delicacy that is delicious in salads and commonly enjoyed over the Easter holiday. Unfortunately, to obtain the palm heart, the tree must be cut down, which is why they are so rare and usually carry a high cost. The nut is a favorite food of the gibnut, and is also eaten by people, despite the difficulty in cracking the shell. Cohune has a high oil content, yet it requires extensive extraction processing, so it’s not very economically viable for biofuels. Many have tried to mechanize the process, but the Maya version of cracking the outer shell on stones, mashing the nuts by hand tool, and boiling the oil out in water remains the most effective way of extraction."

Competitions around Cayo
There are quite a few competitions going on right now. Belmopan City Online has their Mother's Day comp: Cindy Lu Photography and Vanessa Awe Makeup have one: UB has their Earth Day Creative Arts competition too. And there's the Children's Environmental Poster competition. Cayo Event Calendar:

Barefoot Skinny at Lucky 5 Sports Bar & Grill
Tonight and tomorrow night, Barefoot Skinny will be performing at Lucky 5 Sports Bar. Good Friday brings good live music. See you there!

PHOTOS: Rebecca Stirm's Dress of Leaves
Belmopan's Rebecca Stirm, one of Belize's up and coming fashion designers, has released some pictures of her dress of leaves. That's talent!

Bread Pudding
Bread pudding is one of my all time favorite recipes. This will be the 1st of 3 videos that I will put up for bread pudding. This sweet confection is simple to make yet elegant to taste. This recipe has a soft custard on the bottom, while the bread forms a crunchy crust.

Caye Caulker Prepares for Easter
Easter, in the Belizean calendar, is that where one and all go on vacation – Businesses close in the cities and this leaves four days for everybody to relax and play. So this is our time to be centre of attention, a moment where Caye Caulker’s population will triple in the next few hours and the entertainment has been laid on, Caye Caulker style!!! Easter Temptation is being billed as the event not to mis (and I am inclined to believe them!!). The Palapa Garden (at the Centre of town, opposite Da Real Macaw) will be the focus of the weekend bringing Belize’s Artist of the Year Nello Player and Federation 501 to entertain the crowds on Saturday night, dancing under the full moon!! On Sunday day there will be the Tour Guide’s Association Sailing Regatta with both small and large boats and even windsurfs I believe. In the afternoon we are all looking forward to the games .. there are promised to be large cash prizes for Raggamuffin’s Greasy Pole competition and many many more … fun for everybody!! And finally on Sunday night, the party will continue to 1am! And this is not all .. the Split too will be having their own very impressive Easter bash. They have brought the live bands Electosounds (from Orange Walk) and also a band from Mexico – as well as porter toilets for our convenience later in the evening!! Once again, with a back drop of the moon plus the ocean view, revelers will be able to drink and dance until they drop!!! So hurry, hurry, hurry – if your ticket is not already booked then you may miss out!!

April 6, 2012

Last night's TV news on Channel 7 and Channel 7
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials

The San Pedro Sun

No Alcohol to be sold on Good Friday!
According to the Intoxicating Liquor Licensing Act Chapter 150 of the Laws of Belize section 27 states that: ” 1. (a) all licensed premises in which liquor is sold under a publican’s general license shall be closed – on Christmas Day and Good Friday; 2. (a) All licensed premises in which liquor is sold under a malt liquor and cider license shall be closed – on Christmas Day and Good Friday 3. Any person who during the times at which any licensed premises are required by this section to be closed (a) sells or exposes for sale in such premises any liquor; or (b) opens or keeps open such premises for the sale of liquor; or (c) allows any liquor, although purchased before the hours of closing, to be consumed on such premises, is guilty of an offence”

Parked golf cart crushed by container
A golf cart was totaled when a container fell on it while parked in front of a store in the San Pablo Area of San Pedro Town. The incident occurred sometime between 9:30AM and 10AM, while workers were offloading cargo from the container in front of Island Pool Supply. It appears that the container tipped over and crushed the parked golf cart when part of the ground caved in. The San Pedro Sun understands that the driver of the cart had just parked and was inside the store picking up some supplies. The incident occurred so fast that nothing could have been done to prevent the container from falling over the cart. Luckily no one was hurt in the freak incident. According to Julie Putnam of Island Pool Supply, some merchandise was damaged, but everyone is really thankful that no one was hurt.

Ambergris Today

Video Pick: Celeb Jennifer Lawrence had “UnBelizeable” Vacation
Oscar nominee and movie star of the recently released The Hunger Games (March 23) in Hollywood, Jennifer Lawrence recently vacationed in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize and spent a fantastic time at the Victoria House, one of the leading resorts on Ambergris Caye. During one of her press interviews while promoting her new movie roll, Jennifer mentioned that she had an “UnBelizeable” vacation. And get this – Jennifer’s vacation was courtesy of The Oscar’s as it was included as part of her ‘goodie bag’ for being an Oscar nominee. It’s a ‘vacation in a bag’ as they described it.

SPTC Promoting Road Traffic Safety
The San Pedro Town Council has embarked in a Road Traffic Safety Campaign promoting safe driving in the island of San Pedro. In speaking with Mr. Chris Nuñez of the transport department he stated that they are currently placing large banners on the streets with safety tips as well as distributing safety tip flyers to all drivers. In addition, all speed bumps and street corners (no parking areas) are being given a paint job. Councilor Kenrick Brackett whose work portfolio includes the transport department also mentioned that they will be fixing and placing traffic signs where necessary as part of the campaign.

Golf Cart Pancaked by Cargo Container
OOPS! The owner of this golf cart is probably upset that he chose to park it next to this container; talk about being at wrong place at the wrong time. While the folks at Island Pool Supplies were unloading a container full of cargo, the unexpected happened - it toppled over and literally 'pancaked' a golf cart that was parked adjacent to it.

Misc Belizean Sources

National ICT Policy for the Government of Belize: Scoping Exercise
Mr David Spiteri Gingell was assigned by the Commonwealth Network for ICT (COMNET-IT), on behalf of the Commonwealth Secretariat, to work with the Ministry for the Public Service, Governance Improvements, Elections and Boundaries (MPS) to carry out a scoping exercise for the design of a National ICT Policy (NICT) for Belize. The terms of reference for the assignment were the following: - To carry out a technical mission to kick start the National ICT Strategy development process in Belize. - To prepare a Small State Network for Economic Development Funding Proposal. - To create appropriate working groups for the ICT Strategy. - To design and form a project management program. - To prepare the Government administration to enable earliest quick start of project and technical expert. - To assess funding options for the development of the strategy (not its implementation, at this stage), The scoping assignment was carried out between Friday 6th February and Friday 13th February.

Towards a Sustainable and Efficient Belize
Towards a Sustainable and Efficient State: The Development Agenda of Belize represents a tangible expres- sion of the Inter-American Development Bank’s commitment to generating knowledge as part of its assistance to its borrowing member countries and illustrates the Bank’s willingness to accompany Belize in its efforts to overcome its development challenges. This intellectual contribution to some of the most important issues regarding Belize’s economic and social development is directed primarily at two audi- ences. First, it is directed at Belizean policymakers, offering a technical and internationally comparative perspective. Second, it is aimed at the wider public who are interested in Belize’s economic and social development but who find little material available on the subject.

Slickrock Adventures Eco-Resort Serves Lionfish for Breakfast in Effort to Help Save Coral Reef
Last week Lucy Wallingford served her guests a breakfast of the invasive, reef-destroying lionfish. Her eco-resort off the coast of Belize, Slickrock Adventure's Adventure Island, has now joined a movement spreading throughout the Caribbean; to establish this invasive fish on restaurant menus to stimulate a commercial lionfish industry. Lionfish first appeared in Florida, as a result of a home aquarium release. They have spread quickly and reached Glover’s Reef, where Adventure Island is located, four years ago. Because they are a Pacific fish, they have no natural predators in the Atlantic — and they eat just about everything. Lucy bemoaned their arrival: “They're bad for the entire coral reef ecosystem, and we are out here on Glover's Reef, which is recognized as one of the most pristine reefs in the Caribbean." Glover's Reef is so pristine that it is protected by the Belize government as an official Marine Reserve — therefore, only catch-and-release sport fishing is permitted. However, due to the negative impacts lionfish have on the reef ecosystems, the Belize Fisheries Department exempted the lionfish, so not only is catching and eating them permitted, it is actually encouraged.

Sawdust Art Project 2012
Benque Viejo's House of Culture is having their Sawdust Art Project for Good Friday. It'll be today from 6:00am up. Thanks to NICH and the Benque HoC! "Live the momentum of Good Friday - Viernes Santo, in Benque Viejo, this is a call for children, youths, and adults who wish to be part of this colorful creation"

PHOTOS: Burns Avenue Upgrading pictures
By official San Ignacio & Santa Elena Town. Burns avenue is coming along nicely. They've gotten most of the bricks laid in the road. Great work, guys. There are a few pictures of the Cayo Outdoor Theatre on there too. Tonight they are playing Un Rey el La Habana.

Channel 7

We are going into Easter, one of the holiest observances of the year - but there's no letup of violence in the city. A 21 year old was killed this afternoon in Belize city, almost exactly 24 hours after a 23 year old was killed yesterday on Albert Street. But today's killing happened off Faber's Road extension where Leron Johnson, a working man, was shot to the head - through his motorcycle helmet. We'll have the full story of his murder coming up, plus an interview with his mother. But first, there has been a disturbing string of brazen armed robberies in the city over the last 24 hours. The most recent one happened this evening at the Belize Waste control dumpsite. A pair of armed gunmen were waiting for the owners of Belize Recycling Company to pay their employees - when they pounced and snatched most of the payroll.

And, A business in a much trafficked area of the city was robbed at gunpoint this morning. It happened at around 9:30 at Paula's on Cemetery Road. A pair of dark-skinned men reportedly held up the store and robbed two of the employees and a customer of all of their cash and valuables, and they then escaped. Due to the surveillance evidence, police have already detained one of the assailants, and they are looking for another. The owner of the business did not want to speak to the media.

AND, last night in the city, a man was robbed also at gunpoint. Peter Morgan, a 39 year-old resident of #76 King Street, reported that on Tuesday night at around 9:15, he was in his yard packing up some clothing and shoe merchandise when he was approached by 2 dark-complexioned men armed with guns. They robbed him of two bags containing 24 single tennis shoes, along with an assortment of clothing, which has a total value of $3,900.

Tonight a distressed sibling is appealing for information on the whereabouts of his missing brother. Delvin Galvez, better known as "Peelie" is a 28 year old Belmopan resident who has been missing for two weeks. He disappeared without a trace and today his brother, Richie Galvez told us why he is very worried. He spoke to us via phone from Punta Gorda. Isodoro "DJ Ritchie" Galvez, Brother of missing person "He went missing from Thursday March 22, 2012 at about 5pm. He was last seen getting into a blue car with a Hispanic man right in front of his home at #13 Iguana Avenue in Belmopan City and today actually is 14 days; two weeks that he went missing. He went missing on his birthday which was on the 22 March." "We are just appealing to the public that if anyone knows any information that could help us then please get to us or a family member. We would really appreciate it."

21 Year old working man Lerone Johnson was killed this afternoon in Belize City. It happened near the Faber's Road Extension where a gunman shot him in the head - straight through his motorcycle helmet. Monica Bodden was on the scene and she tried to find out why anyone would kill the hard working 21 year old. Here's her report:.. Monica Bodden reporting This is where the shooting happened at the corner of Custard Apple Street and Neal's Penn Road at about 3 o'clock this afternoon.

A teenager will spend three years in jail for stealing a car. Yesterday, 18 year-old Rodolfo Carrera was arraigned in Magistrate's Court for theft. His friend, 26 year-old Charles Requena, had been arraigned for handling stolen goods on Tuesday. It is alleged that Carrera stole a 1997 Nissan Altima car, and left it with Requena. The vehicle, valued at $3,200, belongs to Nicaraguan businessman Yadir Reyes, who reported to police that sometime between Saturday March 10 and the following day, his car was stolen.

A distraught family has been left concerned and confused after a back and forth with the courts over their jailed pregnant daughter. Stacey Humes is a 30 year old woman who, according to her family, has been denied bail without any explanation. It all started with a domestic dispute with her common law husband in September of last year. Humes had a restraining order against her, and she violated it. We spoke with her mother who wished to appear off camera, and she outlined some of the challenges her daughter has been facing. Mother of Stacey Humes "She never knew that there was a restraining order for her. She went to the house one day and he choked her, she picked up a brush and throw at him."

25 year-old unemployed William Joseph Usher is spending his second night of a 5 year sentence for burglary. He was convicted yesterday before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith. On September 29 of last year, Police Officer Virgil Perez responded to a burglary in progress at Carlos' Fruit Shop, on Central American Boulevard. Perez testified under oath that he caught Usher red-handed as he broke a portion of the wall open which he used to enter the shop. He was able to arrest Usher before he could steal anything.

Yesterday in the Western Session of the Supreme Court, 19 year-old Leonel Daly, and 36 year-old Abelino Briceno Jr. were convicted of attempted murder and robbery. It was alleged that the attacked and robbed 45 year-old Leonardo Velasquez. In the trial which started on April 2, Crown Counsel Cecil Ramirez called 7 witnesses, but his key witness was the victim himself. Velasquez, a shaved ice vendor, testified that on September 20, 2010, at around 11 p.m., he was walking on the side of the road in the Savannah area of San Ignacio. He said that at around that time, Daly and Briceno attacked him, stabbed him twice in the left side of his chest, and robbed him of $23.

The 84th. Annual Cross Country Cycling Classic will start on Saturday at 6:00 am from in front of Leslie's Imports. The final number of riders who will start the race is being finalized at a technical meeting which is being held right now. But what we do know is that only a very small number of foreign riders will be participating in this year's race. And that means, that for the time in years, A Belizean cyclist has a fair chance of winning. That sounds like good news for Belizean fans who've been longing for a hometown victory since Shane Vasquez did it in 2006. But it the great Belizean hope for real? Or is it just hype? We went out on the road this morning to find out more:..

Today, many Belizeans headed out to their Easter weekend getaways - and that meant a crowd at the water taxi terminals. So how crowded was it? Our news team went terminal hopping to find out how the water taxis are dealing with the beach seeking throngs. Here's what she found out:.. Jose Marin - Employee, Caye Caulker Water Taxi "It's the usual, more than the ordinary. So, it's the last minute and people are coming out to go to the cayes. I believe that the rush started late. The years before this, they usually would start earlier at around Tuesday, but right now, today's Thursday, and the rush is picking up. When there is too much, we send 2 boats, like just now. We sent off two boats; it was a bit more than the ordinary, and that's how we handle it. But we are still running at an hour in time and such."

The Easter Season is the Fisherman's Christmas, where the fish are plentiful, demand is high, and the pay is good. And the fishes were most abundant today at the Conch Shell Bay Fish Market as everyone rushed to get their catch for tomorrow. Our intern Robin Schaffer stopped in amidst the bartering and scaling to find out from the Fishers the types and prices of the fishes that they were selling. Robin Schaffer "What kinds of fishes are most sought after today? What's everybody trying to buy today?" Lennox Lino - Fisherman "Only fish." Robin Schaffer "What's the type of fish - the species of fish that everybody mostly going for?" Lennox Lino "It's most snappers, jacks, and barrows. We have for $5, $6, and $7. Prices went up for the couple of day, and afterwards prices will go back down at least a dollar off the price."

30 year-old John Emmanuel Brown and 31 year-old David Anthony Phillips got into a fight over a woman yesterday. Now, it's not the kind of thing we usually report, but it happened in front of the Belcan Police Sub-Station! And that's why they ended up in court on charges brought against them because of complaints they lodged against each other. According to Phillips, yesterday at around 7:30 a.m., he was near Belcan Bridge when he saw Brown approaching him. Brown allegedly swung a machete at Phillips - while Phillips defensively threw a bike at him. But Brown swung again, this time Phillips blocked the machete with a forearm - but it inflicted a very deep wound.

Channel 5

Francis Fonseca denies bribery allegation
On Wednesday, Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin granted leave for the United Democratic Party’s Lee Mark Chang to file an election petition against Francis Fonseca, leader of the People’s United Party and area representative for Freetown. Chang, who contested the seat in the recent General Elections, is accusing Fonseca’s agents, Albert Vaughn and Hugh Bodden of [...]

San Pedro Town Council Good Friday Controversy with Police
There is a standoff tonight between the San Pedro Police Department and the San Pedro Town Council over the sale of alcohol on Good Friday. The Town Council has advised business establishments that they can resume selling alcohol as of nine o’clock on Friday night. But that does not sit well with the officer commanding [...]

Is it an inside job? Murder of employee with cash
There was a murder shortly before four o’clock this afternoon on Custard Apple Street, off Fabers Road extension. The deceased, twenty-two year old Leron Johnson, was killed during a cold and calculated robbery. Apparently, Johnson was tasked to transport cash belonging to, a popular tour guide operation. It is believed that he was lured [...]

Police looking for suspect for Albert Street Murder
Albert Street in downtown Belize City was the scene of a ruthless murder on Wednesday afternoon and tonight the gunman that shot twenty-three year old Michael Garbutt is still on the run. The merciless killing was witnessed by Garbutt’s aunt who is visiting from the United States. She was waiting for him in a nearby [...]

Early morning robbery of Paula’s Store
The brazen afternoon murder on Albert Street and this evening’s murder are only two recent examples of the callous nature of criminals in the old capital. Another incident involving gun toting thugs occurred this morning, but the victims were spared and their emotional wounds will be healed. At nine o’clock this morning, Cemetery Road, one [...]

Viewers strongly oppose cost of incomplete stadium fence
Should the government have spent two point six million dollars on the perimeter fence at the Marion Jones stadium that is still not completed? That was the question of the week and the viewers are overwhelmingly against the exorbitant cost. Eighty-four percent of participants on our e-poll voted no, while sixteen percent said yes. One [...]

A car so sweet, it was taken twice
An eighteen year old is going to prison for three years because of a stolen car. That decision was handed down on Wednesday afternoon by Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith in the case against Charles Requeña and Rodolfo Carrera. Requeña was charged with Handling Stolen Goods while Carrera was charged with the Theft of a [...]

2 men charged for brawl, woman’s affection heart of issue
Also in court, two men appeared before separate magistrates this morning to be charged in connection with a brawl that took place near the Belcan Bridge on the morning of April fourth. The first to be arraigned was John Brown, who is charged with Aggravated Assault and Wounding for allegedly attacking David Phillips with a [...]

Easter is Christmas for Conch Shell Bay Fishermen
The national holidays on April sixth and ninth, are a testament to the dominance of Christianity in Belize. The mores that accompany Good Friday signify that fasting and eliminating red meat from the diet, are observed across the country. And that is the primary reason why the price of fish increases during Easter. News Five’s [...]

Mass exodus to cayes and beyond for long weekend
Belize has its unique Easter traditions. If residents don’t implement holiday plans by Thursday evening, they remain at home through Good Friday and observe the launch of the Cross Country Cycling Classic. But once the race is on the road, car radios are blazed with updates as the wheels spin inland or the boats ride [...]

To avoid driving tragedies, heed safety tips
Judging by the number of closed businesses, it is clear that some people are on their way to their holiday destination. But too often people are carefree and careless which then taints the holidays with the wreckage and tears of tragedy. So Raphael Martinez, Public Relations Officer for the Ministry of National Security, has some [...]

Ministry of Security advice for home protection
And to beat the heat during the Easter holidays, just about everyone will be flocking to the beaches, rivers and other watering holes across the country. Martinez also has some advice to be safe while swimming as well as tips on securing your homes while you’re away.   Raphael Martinez, Acting Police Press Officer “We [...]

The right documents and knowledge for Mexico travel
Now that you have every safety tip for every possible occasion that may occur in Belize, one embassy also has a few words of advice for those who intend to hop over the northern border. Mexican destinations such as Cancun and Merida are popular Easter vacation spots for both Belizeans and visiting tourists. The Embassy [...]

Jesuit of St. Martin De Porres shares Easter Message
Much has been said about safety in the departure from urban centers to vacation hotspots in the country and across the border. But the celebration of Easter is rooted in Christian tradition. After the forty days of fasting, prayer and penance, prescribed during lent, Easter celebrates the resurrection of Jesus Christ on the third day [...]

The Choto Brothers; all five riding for the garland
The staging of the eighty-fourth Annual Cross Country Cycling Classic is set for Holy Saturday. With big cash prizes, and the country awaiting a Belizean to take the garland this year, it is expected that the Cross Country may very well be one of the most exciting yet. Since Shane Vasquez won the coveted title [...]

Healthy Living takes the sun out of heat related illnesses
The next four days will be filled with fun in the sun as most people spend a lot of time outdoors during Easter. But it’s important to avoid excessive sun exposure and remember to stay hydrated. In this week’s Healthy Living, Internist, Dr. Daniel Godinez, talks about the range of illnesses from mild to severe [...]


Keeping the true meaning of Easter alive
And while most of the country will be celebrating and travelling for the Easter, we remind viewers that the signifi...

Court grants application for Lake I election suit
The first application for election petition which was granted was by Justice Michelle Arana, for election petition ...

Francis Fonseca speaks out on Freetown election petition
The office of the Hon. Francis Fonseca has issued a press release regarding the Election Petition which will be fil...

Man fatally wounded during afternoon robbery
Another Belize City resident succumbs in yet another case of robbery. Leron Johnson was fatally wounded in a robber...

Machete brawl in front of police sub-station
A broad daylight machete attack occurred at about 7:30 a.m., near the Belcan Bridge, in Belize City. The attack too...

Fight for the garland in 84th Annual Holy Saturday Cross Country
It’s the long Easter Holiday once again and the 84th Annual Holy Saturday Cross Country Classic is entering high ge...

Bullet grazes Belize City teen
On Tuesday Evening, a 16 year old was grazed by a bullet while he was at his Belize City home. It happened at aroun...

Police destroy marijuana plantation in Belmopan
Yesterday between the hours of 9:00pm and 11:00am, Belmopan Police conducted a search about 2 ½ miles north of Spri...

String of robbery plague Belize City
Belize City Police are investigation reports of robbery. At approximately 9:30 a.m. this morning police received a ...

San Ignacio store robbed, one person detained
A daring daylight robbery goes down in the heart of San Ignacio. A little after 2pm yesterday afternoon Celina’s Su...


Tour guide gunned down in cold blood
It’s Holy Thursday, the start of the most solemn time of the year when Belizeans join in observing and celebrating Easter. But tonight, on the eve of the holiest of Christian holidays, there is grief and mourning as the senseless bloodshed that has been plaguing Belize City has claimed another life. Around three o’clock this [...]

Raising forest fire awareness in Toledo
A major event to promote awareness of forest fire prevention and management will be held in the Toledo District. Correspondent Paul Mahung has the details.

CJ approves application for election petition against Francis Fonseca
On March seventh, the PUP’s Francis Fonseca won the elections for the seat with 1, 558 votes over the UDP’s Lee Mark Chang, who garnered 1, 408 votes. But the UDP has been alleging that there were cases of bribery from within the Fonseca camp and there was talk of an application by Chang for [...]

Investigation underway in drowning of tourists
On Tuesday’s newscast we told you about the tragic incident in which two tourists perished while on a snorkeling trip to the Holchan Marine Reserve. An investigation to determine exactly what transpired is underway. Love TV’s Maria Novelo has an update.

BELIZE: The best place in the whole wide world
There is no doubt that Belize is the best place in the whole wide world. And the folks over at the Belize Tourism Board are doing all within their power to let world know that we’re welcoming of all who want to sample some of what Belize has to offer. Love TV’s Natalie Novelo and [...]

All systems a go for Cross Country Cycling Classic
It is a tradition that dates back to 1928. And over the decades, the Holy Saturday Cross Country Cycling Classic has grown to be Belize’s most prestigious one-day sporting evening. Over fifty champions have worn the garland in the 84 year history of the race and on Saturday the quest for cross country immortality will [...]

Neighborhood brawl reported in San Pedro
A neighborhood brawl in San Pedro town earlier this week left one person injured. The incident has apparently been smoothed over and the tempers calmed. Love TV’s Maria Novelo reports.


The Guardian

Caye Caulker Chronicles

Reina’s pastries offering Pizza
Free Delivery. 666-8163


The Reporter


Our Sojourn in San Ignacio: Beautiful Birds
We added quite a few birds to our life lists on our recent trip to San Ignacio and the Cayo District of Belize. We also saw many we'd seen before. It is hard to get decent bird photos with a 12x zoom, but here are the ones worth sharing. If anyone disagrees with any of our identifications, please let us know in the comment section below -- thanks! We saw both male and female Rose-Throated Becards numerous times as they were adding onto their interesting round nest in a tall tree. Both birds would fly into the woods, then come back with nesting material to add to the top of the nest. The nest hole is in the side. We didn't get a photo of the male, unfortunately, but this photo of the female that Barry took is the clearest bird photo of any he took, I think.

A few Easter weekend events on Ambergris Caye
Easter is always the busiest weekend of the year in San Pedro. Many families come from mainland Belize to enjoy our beautiful island and if you have not made a reservation yet good luck as places are usually booked up by now. Below are just a few of the many Easter weekend events happening on Ambergris Caye. Walking the beach on Easter Sunday and seeing everyone out having fun is always one of my favorite Easter Activities on the island.

The Search for Cheap Food on Back Street and a Hidden Gem Found: Briana's Deli
Back Street (more properly known as Angel Coral Drive) is a road of small, local food shops, tiny grocery and produce stores, old school houses, used clothing stores like this one My Clothes Shopping in San Pedro and more. It's a very eclectic local mix. Yesterday, trying to recreate the yummy local taco dining experience of Mexico, we set out to yummy, local tacos. We used A King's Life's blog on the chicken tacos of San Pedro as a guide. We headed to town at about noon and let me tell was HOT. The summer is definitely here. The temperature forecast was 90 degrees for the day (we haven't seen that in a while.) By the time, we got there, we were positively wilting. Taco time. And here is what we found out quickly. Taco time is the morning. All of the carts are pretty much cleared out by 10am. Even this shop selling my favorite, Tacos Al Pastor was closed for business. tacos today.

International Sources

Billionaire Huang Maoru, a China-born, Belize national
Huang Maoru, a China-born, Belize national, leads retailer Maoye International. The company is headquartered in tha mainland Chinese boomtown of Shenzhen, located just across from the Hong Kong border. Huang's wealth is off from year ago amid a drop in Maoye's Hong Kong-listed shares on worries that slowing economic growth in China will crimp consumer spending. Yet Maoye's business growth has been healthy. Sales in 2011 increased by more than half to $532 million, helping to boost net profit by 11% to $102 million. Huang's wife, Huang Jingzhang (who shares ownership in the company), retired as a director of Maoye International in 2010.

'Top Chef' meets 'Survivor' on latest food reality show
In Episode 2 of “No Kitchen Required,” Madison Cowan, front, Kayne Raymond, left, and Michael Psilakis put their culinary skills to work on Belize cuisine amid the native elements for BBC America’s new reality show. (Tim Calver) "No Kitchen Required" is a new show from BBC America in which three chefs from three corners of the English-speaking world travel to remote locations to have their way with the native cuisine, and vice versa. If the words "Top Chef" and "Survivor" were not uttered in the same sentence at some time while this series was being pitched, I will eat my own cooking. All the chefs have appeared on reality TV, but in the 21st century that is just what chefs do. Top-rated Michael Psilakis has been on "Iron Chef"; probably not coincidentally, he is an executive producer of this show. Though he's the least colorful of the three, his clothes remain impressively unwrinkled under difficult conditions.

April 5, 2012

The San Pedro Sun

The Belize Sailing Association has just asked the San Pedro Sailing Club to prepare a youth team to represent Belize in the 2012 Optimist Class North American Sailing Championships. This championship is open to sailors from all countries. The week-long event will take place October 20 – 28 at Valle del Bravo on Mexico’s picturesque Lake Avandaro. Belize’s 2011 Optimist Class National Champion Alexander Rhaburn, 11, of Holy Cross Anglican School has already secured an invitation. The Sailing Club believes it can provide the logistics and funds needed to bring him and three others to the event.

Snorkeling Tragedy Tale Unfolds
Investigations are ongoing into the deaths of one male and one female tourist which occurred in the Hol Chan Marine Reserve (HCMR) located between Caye Caulker and San Pedro, Ambergris Caye. The incident occurred shortly before 1PM on Tuesday, April 3rd during a snorkeling trip. The tourists have been identified as American national 54 year old Roger Burger and Italian national Zyihe Florencia. Both were part of a group of seven that were separated from their group by strong currents near the channel at the HCMR. According to police the group left Caye Caulker on board a vessel, namely Cyclone, belonging to Tsunami Tours based in Caye Caulker, for a morning excursion to Hol Chan and Shark Ray Alley. Miguel Alamilla, manager at Hol Chan Marine Reserve, who was at Shark Ray Alley at the time spoke with The San Pedro Sun and recapped his experience.

The Belize Shark Project
Sharks and their lesser-known cousins the rays have been featured repeatedly in the news the past two years and fortunately not only in regards to incidents between sharks and people. The world is finally learning that many populations of sharks and rays are in global decline as a result ofexcessive fishing pressure, with tens of millions of sharks and an unknown quantity of rays captured yearly as bycatch to the tuna and swordfish fisheries and as targeted catch to supply the voracious demands of the Asian fin soup market and the Lenten season’s requirement for white meat. What many do not know is that through their role as apex predators in the food chain, sharks and rays (collectively known as elasmobranchs) are vital components of healthy and functional marine ecosystems and commercial fish stocks. They play key roles in structuring fish communities and fostering reef resilience against the relentless impacts of algal overgrowth, climate change and possibly even ocean acidification. These animals’ life history characteristics such as slow growth, late maturity and low fecundity (ability of produce offspring) increase their vulnerability to overexploitation and therefore indicate a dire need for management. The unfortunate news is that we are racing against time as populations dwindle to find out as much as we can about these charismatic animals and best forge effective and rational conservation strategies for their survival. Belize has been relatively pro-active in shark conservation: Gladden Spit and Silk Cayes Marine Reserve were the first Marine Protected Areas (MPA) declared to encompass critical shark feeding habitat and enforce regulations related to the management of whale sharks (Rhincodon typus) in 2000 and Hol Chan expanded it’s boundaries to include Shark Ray Alley. The nurse shark (Ginglymostomacirratum) was added as a protected species in July 2011, and eight of the 13 MPAs now include management actions for the conservation of sharks and rays.

Ambergris Today

Belizean Novel Beka Lamb Turns 30
Did you know that the Belizean literary work Beka Lamb by Zee Edgell is 30 years old this year? Zee Edgell’s first novel, Beka Lamb, was published in 1982 and has since become a Caribbean classic. The Minister of Education of Belize at that time, Mr. Said Musa, pushed for the book to be used at schools in Belize.

Mayor Guerrero Addresses Firings at Town Council
Less than a month after taking office several Town Councils and the City Council have been firing or as they call it “reconstructing” their offices, leaving many without a job. Mayor Daniel Guerrero addressed the situation of firings at the Town Council. “After elections we sat down and analyzed what was going on in the town council and decided that we needed to do some reconstruction in office,” stated Mayor Guerrero. “After studying the situation, we noticed that in the property tax area we needed to do some changes as it has not been working properly. Therefore we decided to let go the three people which were fired last week.”

Misc Belizean Sources

Weekly Fishing Report
The seas have been quite rough lately, 7 to 10 foot waves. The weather has been humid and hot. No rain, but hazy days. The fishing inside the reef has been a bit slow. Mostly small snappers, jacks, small groupers and as usual, the fish that always saves the day from coming empty handed, the famous barracuda. Now, weather permitting, the offshore fishing has been pretty good!! The dorado's have been biting pretty good; caught about 15 this week, and for down here, that is pretty good. These, are considered to be the best eating fish on the ocean!! The tuna's have been active on the late evenings as well. Mostly, blackfin that range from 5 to 10 lbs. That is the average size we catch down here. Sailfish season has started but it has been too rough to go out for them. Also have been catching some wahoo as well as we are at the ending of the wahoo season...

"Belize Zoo - Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh No!
The 'Best Little Zoo in the World'. If you are looking for cages filled with animals from Africa, Asia or the Antarctica, you had better reset your course for San Diego. But if you find yourself in Belize, I would encourage you to seek out the Belize Zoo. It advertises itself as the "Best Little Zoo in the World." Whether that's true or not, the claim is certainly not without merit. Just north of Belize City, the facility is easily accessible. Housed within the confines of a rain forest, it's easy for the visitor to feel like they are on an expedition. The grounds span 29 acres encased under the tropical canopy. Well-groomed dirt paths lead you to the ticket office where, once a ticket is purchased, you are allowed to enter the local menagerie. Exotic animals abound, more than 150 in total, all indigenous to Belize. Brightly colored reptiles and amphibians are showcased along with their more camouflaged kin. Blue frogs and red hued snakes lurk silently behind glass, while crocodiles lay almost lifeless in pools of water. And, new species are still being discovered annually. With 543 species of birds living in Belize, the zoo only houses a small sample of its population. For me, the giant black vulture was memorable, and who can visit a jungle without thinking of the toucan.

Green luxury in the rainforest
Meshak, one of Chaa Creek's best guides, gets mentioned in this article. "The resort's Rainforest Medicine Trail was once the property of Don Elijio Panti, the last Maya shaman of Belize who died in 1996 at the age of 103. It was when naturalist guide Meshak Elia took me there to learn about medicinal plants that I spotted the howlers in the trees alongside the river. The copal tree, Meshak told me, was sacred to the Maya. They would collect and dry its sap, which was burned as ceremonial incense. It was used by shamans to chase away bad spirits and attract good ones, and also as protection against the 'evil eye.' That evening, I joined another small group Meshak was leading on the 'Creatures of the Night' tour. Headlamp flashlights allowed us to pick our way down a path where, in addition to the hairy tarantula and the amorous toads, we also spotted a possum, leafcutter ants and several bats."

Cayo Christian Academy Scholarships
The CCA has 2 scholarships available. One is entitled the Gideon Scholarship, and is awarded for academic excellence. The other is the Pastor Tate Scholarship, and is awarded for good character. The deadline to register is the 21st of June.

PHOTOS: Band Fest
The Banquitas House of Culture has posted pictures from Band Fest 2012. Looks like they have a picture of most of the bands. Congratulations to Succotz Marching Band for winning again!

PHOTOS: More Band Fest Photos
Oceana got some great pictures of Band Fest! Succotz still reigns supreme.

SISE House of Culture Easter hours
The SISE House of Culture will be open on Thursday until 12:00 noon, and will then be closed until Tuesday. Happy Easter to the SISE HoC.

Nova Scotia CC tourism students coming to Belize
From basking on the beach underneath a Belize sun, to ziplining through the rainforest, four tourism students are about to enter a whole new classroom environment. The group from the Nova Scotia Community College Pictou Campus in Stellarton as well as other students from around the province will be making the trip from May 9 to 24. While there they will get to take in all the local tourism attractions, visit a jaguar preserve and even stay a night in a Mayan home. “Yeah, we’re going to come back tired and sore and dirty and stinky, but we’re going to be in a country for two full weeks – which is only a flash in the pan really,” said instructor Adam Rumsey, one of the leaders on the expedition. “In that two weeks we’re going to see as much of their tourism industry as possible. That’s the key. Yes there’s some down time and yes there’s some beach time, and there’s some great experiences, but the whole thing is to experience their tourism industry and bring those experiences home.”

How many people can you fit? A ‘thank you’ to Belize
The fresh natural juice looked particularly bright today. It quenched my thirst after a long walk around the new beachfront “facelift” on Caye Caulker. Sand had been built up behind concrete retaining walls to prevent erosion on the reef side of the island. It’s looked smart, fresh and clean. The morning was already warm, and made even warmer by the exercise. At Amor y Cafe, I sat down to eat breakfast. I drank the orange juice down quickly and began to write. Three months in Belize have passed. I love this country- its places, its food and mostly its people. I fill up with tears – of joy and sadness, and sentimentality. This trip has exceeded my expectations, both professionally and personally. For readers who are thinking about taking a trip to Belize, do it now. You will find an open door and excitement for life that will refresh you.

The Split’s new beach …
In preparation for the upcoming Easter festivities and of course to consistantly upgrade and improve our islands beauty, the Split has gained additional beach. In previous blogs you have witnessed the construction of this beach but finally it is complete. Tourists today were finding their way back to the west side of the split as the beach is now extended and from what we can see, there is full approval!!

PHOTOS: A visit to the Iguana Hatchery
The Green Iguana Conservation Project rocks! They have some sad news: Roxy has passed away. That won't stop them from thrilling tourists from all around the globe. Mariposa Jungle Lodge has some really amazing shots of guests with baby iguanas on them. "Have you ever been this close to a reptile? Come and have a look, it's an amazing experience! For quite some years the San Ignacio Resort Hotel have been at the forefront of conservation for the threatened Green Iguana. A highly interpretive and educational exhibit has been designed within the Resort’s property in order to create a closer look at this amazing reptile, and to learn how vital they could be to the ecological balance of the river habitat."

A tribute to Roxy
One of the senior iguana’s and star of the Green Iguana Conservation Project has passed today Friday, 30th March 2012 at the age of 6 years. She was a remarkably social iguana who enjoyed the parade of daily visitors, University Interns, Celebrity Hotel guests and hundreds of tiny pre-schooler’s intriguingly awed at her beauty. “Roxy has been a part of our lives for so many years now. Her character and features stood out immensely from all the others we’ve worked with. I will certainly miss her morning welcome and outgoing demeanor with visitors. Roxy was the most gentle iguana I’ve ever worked with.” The words of a saddened guide and caregiver, Bert at the Green Iguana Conservations Project. Roxy leaves behind her mate, Gomez age 14 years, whom Eddie (the second of the duo team at the project) explains, “Gomez enjoyed being close to Roxy, flopping around and finding a quiet corner for resting with her.” Iguanas are found to develop close bonds with their mates. Roxy was four-foot, three inches in length with greenish-brown skin. She was introduced to the Green Iguana Conservation Project in 1996 where she has worked as a part of the “green team” in educating visitors on the importance of this endangered species. “Iguana’s are considered a delicacy in Belize, especially large fertile iguanas like Roxy are hunted for their eggs,” said Eddie.

Channel 7

Tonight another Belize City family is grieving after a 23 year old man was killed this afternoon on Albert Street. It happened in front of Dee Dees just a block and a half away from our studio. Michael Garbutt was shot fatally in the head a...

Since last week, 7News has been following the flurry of election petitions taken before the courts. Well, we add another pair to that growing list tonight. Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin has granted leave for UDP's Lee Mark Chang to bring a...

And while Fonseca's disqualification is now a possibility, the UDP's Mark King, is also under scrutiny. Last night, we told you about the arguments which were heard before Chief Justice Benjamin as to why Martin Galvez should be granted his e...

Tonight police are still looking for 16 year old Ernesto Bernardez - but the focus of the manhunt has shifted: police now believe that Bernardez managed to give them the slip and is now in Ladyville - where he reportedly has relatives. This co...

A teenager was grazed by a bullet yesterday at his Belize City home. Yesterday evening around 6:30 p.m., two men were walking past his family home on Sibun Street when one of them fired 4 shots. 16 year old Chrisdale Courtenay was shot in the rig...

Two hours later, two men held up Venus Photo Studio on Bishop Street in Belize City. Jose Javier, a 33 year old Belizean photographer and co-owner of the business, was at work when, at about 8:30 pm, two men walked in. One of the men took out a gun a...

And there is another disturbing armed robbery to report. Not even a bible could protect a city woman was robbed on Palm Sunday - of her bible and other items worth a total of $1400. At about 8:30 on Sunday night VIRGINIA CASANOVA, a 49 year old ...

Whether you like regular old "cartoons" or those fancy full length features like Toy Story or Shrek, the science and the art known as animation is one of the most fascinating areas of development in media. And now, a form of it is being taught...

Yesterday we reported about two tourists who drowned while snorkeling in the Hol Chan Marine Reserve. They are 54 year old American National Roger Burger and an Italian national Zayihe Florencia. The tourists along with 5 others were on a tour wi...

Right now you probably know more about the life and times of Shyne than you do about almost any other Belizean public figure, and that's owing to our extended interview with him. And while some viewers have told us they cringe at the spectacle of ...

Channel 5

Afternoon Murder Downtown Belize City
There has not been a murder in the City since March eighteenth when Jiovanni Saldano was killed. But this afternoon, in downtown Belize City, a young man was executed. It happened in broad daylight just before three o’clock on Albert Street. Michael Garbutt, who was deported from Los Angeles in June 2011, was smoking a [...]

U.D.P. gets election petition against Francis Fonseca
Both political parties today got leave for election petitions. At ten a.m., Michael Young made submissions to seek an election petition on behalf of Lee Mark Chang who charged that bribery was used for votes by one of P.U.P. leader Francis Fonseca’s agents, Albert Vaughn. Young read affidavits from seven individuals who said they accepted [...]

P.U.P. gets election petition against Mark King
Chief Justice Benjamin also heard the motion for an election petition against Mark King, area rep for Lake Independence on Tuesday. Arguments presented by Attorneys Lisa Shoman and Denys Barrow started at three and ended at six-thirty. Shoman, who represented Martin Galvez, argued that King should have been disqualified because he did not disclose contracts [...]

Celina’s Store in Cayo robbed by gunmen
Around two-fifteen this afternoon a popular supermarket was robbed in downtown San Ignacio. Celina’s Super Store located at number forty-three Burns Avenue was the target of two armed men. It is reported that robbers walked into the store and pistol-whipped two employees. One of the assailants later held a gun to the head of the [...]

‘Mea Culpa’ on Cordel Hyde Appointment
As we reported in Tuesday’s newscast, former senior deputy leader and government minister of the People’s United Party, Cordel Hyde says he was not officially offered nor will he accept the designation of Consul General to New York as the government announced following the meeting of cabinet. Hyde is currently in New York where his [...]

Minister discusses Ambassadorial Appointments
When he was interviewed this morning, the minister was asked if it is not customary to discuss the appointments before they are made public. Elrington also disclosed that an ambassadorial appointment for Taiwan had been declined.   Wilfred “Sedi” Elrington, Minister of Foreign Fairs “It’s basically in consequence of his statement that he did not [...]

Sedi second take on decriminalizing transportation of drugs
A regional security conference was held recently in Antigua, Guatemala. It was widely reported in the international press because the president of Guatemala is proposing to decriminalize the transportation of drugs through Central America. It is part of an unusual plan to combat the large scale escalation of violence that has resulted from drug trafficking. [...]

Claymation Animation Workshop
NICH through its Film and Media Arts Unit today concluded two workshops on claymation. Forty participants received training in this new technique from film expert, Matthiew Klinck. Suzette Zaiden of the Institute of Creative Arts says that the training is a springboard for a major film and media art competition, entitled ‘Animated’ that will be [...]

Get yo’ hot cross buns for Easter
The baking of cross buns has become a part of the Belizean tradition at Easter time. In homes across the country, the aroma from the buns will be permeating the air on Thursday. While some people make cross buns for a living, others do it to bring the family together; the Belize Red Cross takes [...]

Pedal with the Cross Country Cycling Classic
The most anticipated cycling event takes place this Saturday. The Cross Country Classic is attracting over a hundred riders, local and foreign, who will ride to the west and return to the City, hopefully in time for lunch. It has been six years since the garland has been won by a Belizean so the pressure [...]

Disc Jockey rides for Charity
Among the hundred riders is DJ Alfrain Supaul. Supaul is not competing for the garland; he is hoping to complete the ride to raise funds for two institutions that cater to disadvantaged children. News Five’s Isani Cayetano found Supaul preparing for the Cross Country and has this story.   Alfrain Supaul, Radio Personality, Wave 105.9 [...]


Marion Ali reporting… “23 year old Michael Garbutt returned to Belize from the US last year to settle down, but tonight he is dead, the victim of another bloody murder. Garbutt was shot dead today in front of his family’s residence at 93 Albert Street. ...

The 2012 National Agriculture and Trade Show will be held on the weekend of April twenty seventh to the twenty ninth in Belmopan. According to a brief statement from the Ministry of Agriculture, the theme chosen this year for the 3-day event is: “Agriculture: creating great...

An extensive man hunt for a male person in connection with yesterdays shooting of a police officer is currently underway in the neighboring village of Caye Caulker. Love News understands that the station recived a call sometime before five yesterday informing them of the whereabouts of...

Belize Electricity Limited has announced that it is asking the Public Utilities Commission to consider revised fees for pole rental paid by cable companies and telephone operators. According to a release from the government-owned electricity provider, BEL has submitted an applica...

The government of Belize today announced the appointments to the Diplomatic Corps. According to an official release, the appointments were approved today during the regular meeting of Cabinet in Belmopan. The list of appointments to diplomatic posts abroad include: Al...

Maria Novelo reporting... “A group of seven visiting tourists set out to sea early today with Tsunami Tours, a tour company based in Caye Caulker for a snorkelling trip. A short while later, the choppy seas coupled with strong currents turned the pleasure trip into a tragic s...


12 Year Old Allegedly Left Alone In Orange Walk At 4:00 In The Morning
Last week Thursday a group of students from the Belize Adventist College located in the Village of Calcutta in the Corozal District embarked on their annual sporting trip to Punta Gorda. Late this evening, nearly a week after the trip took place; a disgruntled and frustrated parent contacted our news room informing us that on the day of the trip her 12 year old daughter was abandoned here in Orange Walk at around 4:00 in the morning. According to Sheila Gillette at 2:00 in the morning she dropped off her daughter Stephanie Lawrence, a first form student at the Belize Adventist College, at the Central Park in Corozal Town where the students were picked up by the chartered bus. Gillette alleges that when the bus arrived here in Orange Walk at 4:00 in the morning, Shilea was dropped off at the Orange Walk Town Hall and left there all alone. The child was informed that she was unable to go on the trip because of an outstanding school fee. But what has Gillett piping mad is not that her daughter could not take part in the trip but that she was left all alone here in Orange Walk where she has no family or friends.

Victim of Traffic Accident Passes Away
Tonight the family and friends of 19 year old Dennis Cawich, a resident of San Pablo who was involved in a traffic accident on March 28th, are mourning his death. Cawich passed away on Tuesday at around 7:00 in the morning while receiving treatment at the Karl Huenser Memorial Hospital. According to family members who spoke to us off camera today, during the accident Cawich sustained head and body injuries. It is unknown however, if the 19 year old died as a result of those injuries. The family is now awaiting the results of a post mortem examination to determine the exact cause of death. On March 28th the 19 year old was traveling from Orange Walk to San Pablo in a black and white Mazda Pickup Truck when he ran into a culvert just a few miles away from the village. Cawich was returning home after purchasing sacks of corn in Orange Walk for his family’s tortilla business. Dennis Cawich will be laid to rest tomorrow in the Village San Pablo.

Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin Rules In Favor of Mark Galvez
On Monday night we reported that Justice Michelle Arana granted leave for David Craig to file an election petition against UDP Standard Bearer Herman Longsworth. Yesterday another election petition was heard, this time by Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin. Martin Galvez, who is represented by Attorneys Lisa Shoman and Anthony Sylvester, is alleging that Lake I Area Representative Mark King is the Manager of Brint's Security which has a $135,000 contract with the government. Reports are that King, as is stipulated in section 58 of the Belizean Constitution, failed to declare that he had a signed contract with Government starting July 2011 and ending July 2013 to provide twenty-four hour security for the Charles Bartlett Hyde building and the sales tax office in San Ignacio and as such his election should be null and void. Inside the courtroom of Justice Kenneth Benjamin both Lisa Shoman representing the complainant and Denys Barrow representing the defendant argued their case.

17 year old Wanted By Police For Shooting a Police Officer
Tonight the community of Caye Caulker is practically under lock down as police continue their search for a 17 year old minor considered armed and dangerous. Seventeen year old Ernesto Bernardez is accused of shooting PC John Valerio on the head with his service revolver. Luckily the bullet only grazed Valerio. The incident played out on Tuesday evening when Bernardez, who is also wanted in connection with the robbery of a nine millimeter pistol belonging to another police officer, visited the Maya Island Air Office to purchase a ticket to Belize City. Bernardez was about to board his flight when he was approached by PC Valerio who at that that time had already been informed that a man matching the description of a suspect wanted in connection to the robbery of a firearm, was seen at the airstrip.

Fire Department Says Gas Leak Caused February 28th Explosion
On February 29th 49 year old Reymundo Dominguez of Custard Apple Street received 2nd degree burns to his legs, arms and face after his newly built house exploded with him inside. Dominguez was rushed to the Northern Regional Hospital where he was later transferred to the KHMH. The explosion which caused the four concrete walls of the building to collapse and zinc roof to blow off attracted many speculations. For one, reports were that it could have been a case of arson and two that a gas tank could have caused the explosion. But at the time of the incident the Orange Walk Fire Department was unable to determine what exactly caused the explosion which left Dominguez’s neighbors in shock. After carrying out an extensive investigation into the matter the fire department was able to determine what caused the blast.

Fire Department Issues Safety Tips For Easter Holiday
Apart from the police safeguarding the town and your home from unwanted visitors, the Orange Walk Fire Department is also ready to take charge in case of a fire emergency. We all know that in a matter of seconds a vacation can turn into tragedy if the right measures are not taken to prevent a fire. With that in mind today we spoke to the Chief Kenneth Mortis of the Orange Walk Fire Department who gave out some tips on how to keep your home safe. “What we have done we have launched our safety pamphlet and it pretty much covers wild fires or what we call brush fires in this time of the year, we have noticed a high increase in terms of response to bush fires and so forth, our pamphlets here kinds of like guides you how to go about preparing yourself and your neighbours for these fires, what we ask is to keep your surrounding pretty much clean if you have a high bushes and so forth to keep it low and even if you live in a more bush or more populated areas where they have some bush then we ask to go a minimum of six feet perimeter in the neighbour and what that does it reduces the chances of a forest fire coming and clashing close to your property and we are pretty much trying to work with the community in terms of getting themselves ready and also to educate the people about what to do in the event of a fire.

Police On High Alert For Easter Break
It’s that time of the year when good weather and four days of holiday make for fun all across the nation. But in this day an era when criminals are on the prowl day and night there is no doubt that Belizeans are thinking twice about leaving there homes over the long weekend. In order to keep your property safe the Orange Walk Police Department will be out in full force working with the community to try and ensure as crime free a celebration as possible. Today when we spoke to Corporal Zenobio Coc from the Orange Walk Police Department he told us that preparations for the long weekend are already being set out.


Belizeans introduced to stop motion animation
A workshop entitled Animagics was held yesterday and ended today at the Youth for the Future computer lab on Youth for the Future drive. The workshop is an introduction to stop motion animation also referred to as claymation. Facilitator for the Belize Film Commission Suzette Zaiden explained more about the workshop. Zaiden says that the workshop was free of cost and they got their participants by sending letters to schools and to persons they knew would be interested in taking part in this activity because space was limited this time, but they are looking forward to hosting another workshop of the same kind in May of this year, so that it comes in line with their animation competition. Zaiden says that anyone that is interested and wants to collaborate on anything that has to do with Belize, is encouraged to join their Institute of Creative Arts facebook page or sign up at the Belize Film Commission.

Terror on Burns Avenue in San Ignacio
There was a terrifying armed robbery this afternoon in the heart of the business district in San Ignacio town. Our Cayo Correspondents Elaine Berry and Jonathan Carriddi went to the scene and worked together to bring you the following report.

Youth shot dead on Albert Street
A man is dead following a mid-afternoon homicide in the heart of the business section of the commercial capital. Love TV’s Marion Ali and video journalist Myles Gillett rushed to the scene just minutes after the incident and file the following report.

POLL: Should the government legalize marijuana in Belize?
Please visit the site to participate in this poll.


UDP files counter petition against Francis Fonseca's Freetown
Of course the drama doesn’t end there, as the UDP has filed a counter petition regarding the Freetown Constituency ...

More PUP election petitions; Mark King of Lake Independece
Earlier this week Supreme Court Justice Michelle Arana granted defeated candidate in the Albert division, David Cra...

Belmopan residents sign petition against proposed farmers market
The placing of the proposed New Farmers Market continues to plague the residents of the Mountain View are. The Coun...

Nazarene Church beautifies neighbourhood Belmopan park
The city park which is frequently used by the United Evergreen Primary School children and located next to the Belm...

Workshop held for video animation fanatics
The workshop is called ANIMAGIC and it “leads its participants through all the creative and technical steps of plan...

9 year old dies in hide-and-seek accident
Early Sunday morning, nine year old Christian Orantes, a student of Patchakan Village in the Corozal District passe...

Broad daylight murder in Belize City
A Belize City man is gunned down on Albert Street. Micheal Garbutt aka ‘Micki’ was a resident of T- Street who was ...

Appointment of Cordel Hyde as Consul General uncertain
Last night we reported that Cordel Hyde was officially appointed as Consul General in New York. However in a phone ...

Man arrested after firing shots at cops
WILLIAM JOSEPH LEIVA, a resident of Coral Grove, Belize City, reported to police that he was riding his red Meilum ...

Tourists drown on snorkelling trip at Marine Reserve
Two tourists drown whilst snorkelling at the Hol Chan Marine Reserve. Sometime between 2:30pm and 3pm yesterday aft...

The Guardian

Another Petition Against King
On Friday, March 30th, leave for an election petition against Hon. Mark King, Lake Independence Area Representative filed by Yolanda Shackron failed in the Supreme Court before Chief Justice Kenneth ...

Power Hungry PUP!
The People’s United Party are so desperate for power that they have launched a number of applications for leave in the Supreme Court to be granted election petitions. They began with Shackaron against Hon. Mark King, which was the first ...

Succotz Festival Drum Corps Continues to Dominate Bandfest
On Saturday, March 31, Belizeans from across the country travelled to the Santiago Ricalde Stadium in Corozal Town for Bandfest 2012. Hon. Pablo Marin, Mayor Hilberto Campos and the great people of Corozal were gracious hosts to thousands of visitors....

Shackaron Fails
On Friday March 30th ,Yolanda Shackaron failed in her bid to have her election petition heard at the Supreme Court. The Chief Justice ruled that her application for leave for an election petition would not be allowed....

Numbskull Move by O.W. Mayor
It is supposed to be one of the busiest revenue days of the month but instead of taking care of people who want to do business with the Orange Walk Town Council, the Mayor decided to close operations on April 2nd. Information suggests that he wanted to do some investigation or the other at the Council. That may be all fine and good, but doing an investigation does not necessarily mean that you close down all operations of the council. As a newsflash for the Mayor, the first week of the month and in particular the first workday is usually the busiest for any town administration. That is the case because people take time out to visit the town board and the traffic department in particular to renew their licenses for their vehicles. This week is that much more important since we are leading into a long holiday weekend and many people will be using their vehicles to get to their holiday destinations. They need to get the license in order to avoid paying a fine. Instead of considering this, he disrupted the lives of hundreds of Orange Walk residents. And by the way, couldn’t the investigation have been done while business was ongoing? Or couldn’t he have waited until after business hours to do the investigation?

Akeem Thurton sentenced for shooting S.C. Rodwell Williams
On May 31, 2010, 19-year- old Akeem Thurton was found guilty of the attempted murder of SC, Rodwell Williams in the first trial by judge in Belize. Since then, the Chief Justice, Kenneth A. Benjamin commissioned a Social Report to ...

Security Forces maintain Lead in Football Competition
The Premier League of Belize concluded week eight of its on-going football competition on Sunday April 1, 2012, with no surprises in the games played. The official standings clearly show that the Security Forces (the Police Department) and (the Belize ...

Back to school
They say that the key to success is preparation, preparation, preparation. Sadly, there are those among us that would not care to take that advice. Among those is a specific PUP attorney, who has been championing all causes. In fact, that attorney has championed causes that have turned out to be quite the opposite of what the original cause was and still went ahead and dutifully did her part in the matter. Even if it meant going against what she ‘believed in’. Well, it seems as if that attorney’s run came to an end on Tuesday when she was literally taken to school - or should we say law school. It was not Norman Manley, rather it was the courts in Belize City. Oh, how she thought that her case was fool proof, that is, until she met up with a real attorney who instructed her in affidavit preparation and as basic and fundamental a course as the Evidence Act.

Central America Considers Pulling Out of US War on Drugs
US Under Secretary of State, Maria Otero, and US Ambassador to Belize, Vinai Thumalapally, clearly states the US position on decriminalizing drugs On July 17, 1971, President Richard Nixon declared a “war on drugs”. The President said that drug abuse was “public enemy number one”. That was over forty years ago. Since then, the levels of addiction, trafficking and violence has continued to rise. If drug abuse is public enemy number one then it is safe to say that the United States is losing its war on drugs. Fortunately for them, they are not the ones suffering from this war. Latin America has suffered most and many leaders of the region have come to realize that the war on drugs is a slow, painful, self-destructive march. Fighting the United States’ war has caused thousands upon thousands of casualties in this region. The President of Guatemala, Otto Perez Molina, hosted a meeting of Central American Leaders in Antigua, Guatemala to begin discussions about decriminalizing, legalizing and regulating drugs and the drug trade.

New Ambassadorial Appointments
Cabinet at its regular meeting today, Tuesday, 3rd April, 2012, approved the appointments of the following Belizeans to the following diplomatic posts abroad:- •Alfredo Martinez re-appointed as Belize’s Ambassador to Guatemala. •Nestor Mendez re-appointed as Belize’s Ambassador to Washington and Canada. •Lois Young appointed as Belize’s Ambassador/Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York. •Janine Coye Felson to continue as Ambassador/Deputy Permanent Representative to the United Nations. •Perla Perdomo appointed as Belize’s High Commission to London, United Kingdom. •Mark Espat in his role as Leader of the Re-negotiating Team appointed Ambassador for Economic Affairs.

Cop Shot in Caye Caulker; 17-year-old wanted
Police are looking for 17-year-old Ernesto Bernardez after he allegedly shot a police officer in Caye Caulker. Police report that at around 2a.m. on Sunday April 1, Bernardez was approached by a police officer in connection with an investigation being carried out on the island of Caye Caulker. During the interaction between the policeman and the 17-year-old, a struggle ensued during which Bernardez managed to get a hold of the policeman’s 9mm pistol which he pointed at the police officer and attempted to fire. The gun was on safety and the attempt failed. Bernardez then allegedly hit the cop with his own weapon and escaped. Bernardez’s encounters with police continued on Monday April 2nd when at around 5:00 p.m., he was spotted on Avenida Mangle near the Caye Caulker Airstrip. He was reportedly about to catch a flight off the island. Police officer John Valerio attempted arrived in the area and conducted a search on Bernardez during which Bernardez allegedly again grabbed the policeman’s .38 revolver and fired two shots at him, hitting the officer once to the left side of his head. Bernardez managed to again escape and police are now looking for him. The officer was transported to the Caye Caulker Health Center and later to the KHMH where he was treated and released.

Prison Officer and Three Others Convicted on Separate Drug Trafficking Cases
On Monday April 2nd, four person were convicted in the Belize City Magistrates’ Court on separate drug related offenses. Three of them were for drug trafficking while a tour guide pleaded guilty to the lesser charge of possession.

Counterfeit charge withdrawn from cop
On Friday March 30th, the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions withdrew charges of possession of counterfeit notes against Sergeant of Police, Sherwood Wade. Wade was arrested and charged after he was allegedly found trying to deposit U.S. counterfeit money into his account at the Belize Bank branch office on the Northern Highway on May 18, 2011. Police said at the time he was found in possession of 16 - $100 US currency notes.Two days after the bust, Officer Wade on Friday, May 20, appeared in Court #1 before the then Chief Magistrate, Margaret Gabb McKenzie where he was read a single charge of possession of counterfeit notes. Sgt. Wade pleaded not guilty to the charge and was granted bail of $8,000 plus two sureties of $4,000 each.

The 84th Riding for the Garland this Saturday
The Belize Cycling Association will be holding its 84th Edition of the Holy Saturday Cross Country Cycling Classic on Saturday April 7, 2012. The race will start at 6:00 am from the Old August Meat Shop at Mile 1 1/2 on the Western Highway travel to San Ignacio Town around Columbus Park and return to finish in front of the Memorial Park on Marine Parade in Belize City for a total distance of 142.4 miles. According to the Belize Cycling Association, the event is open to athletes of the U-23, Elite and Masters categories. The Technical Meeting for the 84th Holy Saturday Cross Country Cycling Classis is scheduled for Thursday April 5, at 7:00 pm in the Santa Rita Room at the Radisson Fort George Hotel. The Belize Cycling Association says that only team managers will be allowed to attend this meeting. The Belize Cycling Association is asking all team managers to contact the secretary at telephone number 621-0952 to collect passes to enter the meeting. Team managers are kindly asked to note that verification of documents will be done during the allotted time of 6:00-7:00 p.m. At this time, all registration for the race and verification of proof for all payments including outstanding fines must be presented. Team managers are reminded that failure to provide proof of payments will result in a denied start.

National Sports Council invites Boxing Enthusiasts to meeting
The National Sports Council is inviting all boxing officials and enthusiasts to a very important meeting on Tuesday April 10, 2012 at 6:30 pm at the National Sports Council Office at Rogers Stadium. The goals of the meeting is to discuss the way forward for the re-organisation of the discipline of Boxing in Belize and to set a date for new elections for the Boxing Association.

CONPASA concludes General Assembly Congress in Valencia
Valencia, State of Carabobo, Venezuela, Monday April 2, 2012 The Confederation of Pan American Softball Associations concluded its 15th General Assembly on Sunday April 1, 2012, at the Stauffer Hotel in Valencia, State of Carabobo, Venezuela. The 15th General Assembly officially got underway on Wednesday March 28, with 20 countries of the Americas in attendance. The President of the International Softball Federation, Don Porter, addressed the congress and its delegates at the official opening ceremony. The congress also received the reports from its various sub-committees as well as that of the national federations that make up the organisation.

78th Belize City Senior Female Softball Competition set for Wednesday April 11
The 78th Belize City Senior Female Softball Competition for its regular season is scheduled to commence on Wednesday April 11, at 6:30 pm at Rogers Stadium, the home of softball in Belize. This year’s competition will feature four teams that will compete in 8 rounds of competition before the playoffs are set to commence. On Wednesday April 11, at 6:30 pm, in the first game of the 2012 campaign will feature Orchid Blazers against Hurricanes. The competition will then continue on Friday April 13, at 6:30 pm when newly crowned marathon champions, Mirage Lady Rebels, will see action against the defending champions Telemedia. The champion and sub-champion from Belize City will represent the association at the 22nd National Women’s Championship scheduled for August 24-26, 2012, at Rogers Stadium.

Searchlight: The Parameters of the Law
Several articles have been reprinted in the past week underlining the casual cruelty meted out to slaves in what is now modern Belize. The reports concentrate on the ill treatment of slaves and were sent to the Colonial authorities by various visiting officials. They were shocked by what they perceived as a failure by the magistrates touphold the existing laws and thus protect slaves from excessively cruel treatment. These officials accepted slavery as an institution but were appalled by its practical implications. The visiting officials reserved their anger for individuals especially cruel slave owners but did not admit the cruelty of an institution that classified the rights of human beings according to their status and not as an inherent right of all persons. They recognized that magistrates, who were also slave owners could not be relied on to impartially administer the laws. Even had the laws been strictly followed, they offered slaves a bare minimum of protection. Whipping and lashing were permissible up to a predetermined limit that certainly caused extreme pain and suffering. There were no laws to protect the integrity of families who could be split up at the whim of owners and none to protect women and ...

Caye Caulker Chronicles

Caye Caulker applauds one of it’s own
Born and raised in Caye Caulker, Ilna Alamina (Auxillou) started studying for a degree in education in 1946, at the tender age of 14 yrs. She also began her teaching career at that age, handing over her monthly paycheck directly to her parents (approximately $15 US / Month) to help out with the family household expenses. Over the years, Ilna Alamina consistently passed every level of the Teachers Exams available in Belize, thereby completing her secondary education in this country. To obtain a tertiary education, she would need to leave the country, and left the country she did. Leaving her tiny country and even smaller island behind, she headed for Jamaica to continue her studies. Ilna described that experience as foreign as ‘going to the moon’ might be. Ilna Alamina-Auxillou achieved her goals, obtaining a Teaching degree, by attending various universities abroad on educational scholarships. Her first university years were done in Jamaica, followed by Michigan State University, and then finally the University of Leeds in England. Ilna Alamina-Auxillou, always a hardworking and dedicated individual, will be the first to tell you that in the early days she studied by candle light, or kerosene lantern, yet managed to get straight A’s in class. During the course of her 30+ years teaching career, Ilna Alamina-Auxillou taught at Holy Redeemer R.C. School, and St. John’s College extension in Belize City; following that, she became the first local principal at Caye Caulker R.C. School. She was also the principal at Ladyville R.C. School in the late 1970′s, before becoming a teacher and assistant principal at Junior Secondary High School (1) and Junior Secondary High School (2) in Belize City in the early 1980′s. Ilna Alamina-Auxillou applied for early retirement in 1983-1984, when she migrated to the USA with her four teenage daughters.


Manhunt for 16-year-old on Caye Caulker
He stole 2 guns from 2 officers, shooting one of them... Caye Caulker police are conducting a village-wide manhunt for a teenager who shot their fellow officer in his head and stole two of their firearms in Caye Caulker around 5:00 p.m. on Monday, April 2.

Court of Appeal rules $2.13 million for Janae and Georgia Matute
Awich judgment reduced by half-a-million... The Court of Appeal has upheld a landmark ruling made in the Supreme Court in October 2010 against Dr. Raju Meenavalli, a former government doctor now in private practice, who was accused of negligence and medical malpractice before Supreme Court Justice Samuel Awich, in the case of Georgia Matute and her child, Janae, who developed cerebral palsy, as a consequence of a premature birth by C-section.

PI concludes today; decision 2 p.m. Wednesday
Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin has set tomorrow, Wednesday, April 4, at 2:00 p.m., as the time when he will declare whether he will allow Martin Galvez, the PUP candidate for Lake I in the March 7 general elections, to file an election petition challenging the validity of Mark King’s election to the House of Representatives on the basis of a contract with the Government of Belize that King has allegedly failed to disclose.

15 years for Akeem Thurton, 19
Who “set up hit” on Rodwell Williams? It is his first criminal offence, and 19-year-old Akeem Thurton of Belize City was given every benefit of the doubt by Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin before being sentenced to serve a 15-year term of imprisonment on a charge of attempted murder today.

Schakron election petition denied
Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin today denied an application made to the Supreme Court by Yolanda Schakron, Lake I political aspirant for the Opposition People’s United Party, to file an election petition to challenge the decision by Returning Officer Noreen Fairweather to refuse her nomination paper following an objection made by a voter, alleging Schakron’s disqualification due to her dual Belizean-American nationality.

Twin tourist tragedy
Two tourists, an American and an Italian, drowned in the Hol Chan Marine Reserve, near San Pedro, after they became separated from their snorkeling group, reportedly because of rough seas and strong currents.

Ricardo Cak, on the run after brother’s shooting, turns self in
Punta Gorda Police have confirmed that Ricardo Cak, 25, wanted for questioning in the shooting death of his younger brother, Cesar Cak, 18, during an apparent hunting accident, turned himself in on New Year’s Eve, December 31.

III National Junior Karate Championship results
The Belize Karate Federation (BKF) held its III Annual Youth National Karate Championship on Sunday, April 1, in Benque Viejo, Cayo District. Despite the event clashing with Palm Sunday, a total of 50 youths participated in this all-day, action packed, family fun filled event!

2 weeks of war to reach the Premier League playoffs
Week 8 is history, and there are now only 2 more weeks of regular season games remaining in the Premier League of Belize opening season, to determine which 2 teams from the North and which 2 from the South will make it to the big 4-team playoff round.

More than a race
Socio/cultural/historical journey - international war of the wheels... The 84th Annual Holy Saturday Cross Country Classic is only a few days away, and the Easter weekend frenzy and fever, the romance and the nostalgia of family reunions, are inevitably beginning to kick in, as Belizeans make their travelling preparations, those who are leaving for the holiday weekend, and everyone is looking forward to the race that rekindles life in the nation, after the somber suspension of activity with mournful Good Friday gives way to the fresh dawn of Holy Saturday filled with hope. Holy Saturday is when the full glory and uniqueness of our cultural legacy takes center stage, as we review and relive the historical episode of the first Cross Country, and the many epic journeys since, that make the folklore ever growing for Belize’s special race. No other cycle race possesses the mystique and the historical significance to match the ‘Country – the reenactment of the painstaking plotting of the social and cultural ties that bind the folks in our productive western hills and valleys, through the eastern flatlands, and persevering on through nature’s favor or challenge to reunite with their seaside relatives and friends in the old marketing capital.

Sugar City Girls win back-to-back against Millennium
There was no “pay back” for the Millennium girls of Belize City on Sunday at the MCC Grounds, where they faced the team that beat them 2-1 the previous week in Orange Walk. Sugar City Girls promptly shut out Millennium this time, 3-nil, with 1 goal late in first half, and 2 more in second half. Speedy Sugar City striker, no. 10 Giselle Baizar shook the net at the 40th minute, and she returned early in 2nd half for her second goal at the 51st minute to make it 2-nil. The final tally to secure the 3-0 victory for Sugar City came from the very formidable #9 Karen Garcia. Outstanding Sugar City midfielder Natalie Macias says she is an American Peace Corps presently attached to the Ministry of Education in Belize on a 2-year stint. She hails from Los Angeles, California, and played on her college women’s team as well as for a while in the Women’s League.

David Craig wins leave to file election petition for Albert division
Stating that the question put before her this morning in the Supreme Court was “an important legal question that should be argued, properly ventilated and determined in a court of law,” Supreme Court Justice Michelle Arana granted leave to defeated candidate in the March 7 general election for the People’s United Party (PUP) in the Albert division, David Craig, to file an election petition in respect of the validity of the election of his opponent, Herman Longsworth of the United Democratic Party (UDP).

SICA Secretary-General visits Belize to strengthen ties
Juan Daniel Alemán, Secretary-General of the Central American Integration System (Spanish acronym SICA) met in Belize with Minister of Foreign Affairs Wilfred Elrington on Friday, March 30, 2012, to discuss plans and projects to further the integration of the 7 countries of Central America, as well as the Caribbean island of the Dominican Republic.

EDITORIAL: 1993 and 2012
If the Opposition People’s United Party (PUP) had gotten a few more votes on March 7, perhaps just 60 in all, in the Cayo Northeast and Cayo Central constituencies, they would have formed a 16-15 government, even though they polled 3,000 fewer votes nationwide than the United Democratic Party (UDP) did. The PUP would have been, in the sense of overall voter support, a minority government, which is precisely what the UDP was between 1993 and 1998. In the June 1993 general elections, the UDP polled 2,000 fewer votes than the PUP did, but won 16-13 in seats.

From The Publisher
Over the last three decades and more, the field of Afro-Mexican research has experienced explosive growth, most notably amongst the academics in the great United States of America. The Mexican regions which are being studied include Veracruz, the Pacific coast and states like Guerrero and Oaxaca, and, most important and relevant for us Belizeans – the Yucatán.

The Kushites: who were/are they?
In Genesis chapter 9 verse 18, we are told that the sons of Noah were Shem, Ham and Japheth, and that Ham was the father of Canaan. The story continues that Noah got drunk and lay naked and that Ham went and told his brothers, Shem and Japheth. But exactly what did he tell them? That their father was drunk and that he was naked? The Bible doesn’t say. In verse 24 of the same chapter, Noah awakens and learns what his younger son has done. But what was that? If Noah was drunk, it had to be something that his other two sons told him what Ham had done.

The Reporter


Our Sojourn in San Ignacio - Day 5: Return to San Pedro
Alas, all good things must come to an end, and today was our day to return to San Pedro. Not that that is such a bad place to go, by any means, but we'd been having so much fun on our various excursions in San Ignacio and the Cayo District of Belize, we hated for our time there to draw to a close. We really love spreading our wings by visiting new places and are so fortunate our retirement is allowing us the precious time to do this! We tried a new place for breakfast this morning recommended by Becky and Gonzo, "Pop's". It was the least expensive place yet and full of locals, so it had to be good -- and it was. Barry got -- what else -- a breakfast burrito (with a choice of meat this time; he chose ham); and I got waffles with bananas and one egg on the side. The restaurant was just a short walk around the block from the Casa Blanca, our home for the past four days. We even got to see Pops himself serving some of the folks, though he did not wait on us.

Big Boats at the Belize Yacht Club, The New Holiday Hotel and Some Changes in Town
I haven't been into San Pedro town in a least not since I returned from my trip to Mexico. Yesterday, we took a walk and passed the Belize Yacht Club. About 8 BIG boats are parked along the dock and their crews were furiously swabbing the decks. All boats were flying American flags and none had home port on the stern except for a huge one on the other side from Oyster Bay, NY. A crew member said that all the boats (except the one from Long Island) were owned by Guatemalans, that they are in Belize for Easter and that they are headed down to the Rio Dulce. Great looking boats. This is one of the medium sized boats, Vitamin Sea.

International Sources

DHS Holding Co. Signs Purchase Agreement for Land Development in Belize
DHS Holding Co. (pinksheets:DHSM), a holding company with experience in the health care sector including Cyber Security, Authentication and Identification, Specialty Medical Devices, Medical Banking and Electronic Funds Transfer, Electronic Remittance Advice and proprietary software solutions, announces today entry into the international land development sector by signing a purchase agreement to acquire a 40-acre parcel of land in the northern region of Belize. The 40-acre site is on the Belize-Mexico Border in an area called the EPZ Zone. The property is located directly across the street from the Mexican Immigration department and duty free shopping zone. The area is traversed every day by several thousands of people. This is the first part of a multi-phase project for DHS in the country of Belize. "We strongly believe that the tourism and gaming industries will continue to flourish in Belize. The purchase of this land will allow DHS and its shareholders the opportunity to engage in these growing sectors while helping to develop a richer economy for the citizens of Belize," stated DHS CEO Michael Rohling. DHS Holding has begun clearing the land and has hired Architect Daniel Arguellas and his firm International Environments LTD. to begin the process of developing concepts for the land.

Goshen man dies on family vacation
Goshen businessman and inventor Roger Burger drowned Tuesday while on a vacation in Belize with his wife and son. Burger was one of two drowning victims from the same snorkeling party. An Italian woman also drowned. Burger, his wife Becky, and son, Zach, were part of a party of tourists who left Caye Caulker Tuesday morning to experience Hol Chan Marine Reserve and Shark Ray Alley, one of Belize’s top destinations for snorkelers and divers, according to the “San Pedro Sun,” a Belize newspaper. According to the newspaper account, Burger, the Italian tourist and others were caught in rough seas and strong currents and separated from the group. Police rescued the other divers after receiving a distress call at about 11:30 a.m. Tuesday. Two survivors were hospitalized with cuts and abrasions. Burger will be remembered for his sense of humor and quiet intelligence, according to his friends.

A Tillsonburg family hopes Mike Holmes will help make their home more accessible
The doorways of Denis and Alrae Turcotte’s Broadway Avenue home are scraped, nicked and scarred from constant abuse. The wear and tear is due to friction from a wheelchair that is too large and awkward for the cramped main floor kitchen, living space and tiny washroom in the home. The wheelchair belongs to Denis Turcotte, 64, who was critically injured when he was run over by a tourist boat while scuba diving with his son Alden Turcotte in Belize in 2008. His trip to Belize to swim with whale sharks was supposed to be an adventure that would allow Turcotte, an avid sportsman, to cross one more thing off his bucket list. Instead, a dive boat going full throttle through shallow water left Turcotte hovering between life and death. Despite trying to dive to the bottom of the sea to avoid the collision, Turcotte’s head and leg were clipped by a propeller. “He floated to the top, his arms outstretched, a pool of blood,” Alrae Turcotte said. After a ride on the boat that hit him, and then torturous ride down a winding dirt road to a local hospital, Denis Turcotte was transferred to Belize City for surgery to remove bone from his brain before being transported to an intensive care unit in Florida. A stroke left him paralyzed on the right side, which was further complicated by pneumonia and a blood clot. “I wasn’t sure he was going to survive,” Alrae Turcotte said. After several weeks, he was transferred to London Health Sciences Centre and then to Parkwood for rehabilitation. Just before Christmas 2008, he finally moved back to his Tillsonburg home. In order to deal with his mobility issues, the home was modified slightly with the help of local firefighters. They built a ramp and porch to help Denis Turcotte into a van, specially purchased so he could be transported. Altogether, the couple spent about $75,000 on medical expenses, transportation and minor renovations at the time. As a result of the tragedy, the couple was also forced to retire as Alrae Turcotte became her husband’s chief caregiver. Denis Turcotte had been employed at Tillsonburg Memorial Hospital as the manager of the X-ray department while Alrae Turcotte was a senior mammographer at Woodstock General Hospital. “Our pensions are adequate, but because of ongoing medical expenses, there is no money to do the expensive renovations we need,” Alrae Turcotte said. In 2011, the family learned Denis Turcotte would never walk or stand again. He also suffers from aphasia, which affects his speech.

Dental Hygiene students traveled to Belize to offer a prevention-oriented dental program through "Project Smile"
Six select senior students in Savannah Tech’s Dental Hygiene program travelled to Belize to provide prevention-based dental care for indigent children. As a participant in Project Smile, Savannah Tech students offered their services free of charge alongside two STC faculty members and Savannah dentist Dr. Steve Acuff, who is one of STC’s clinical supervising dentists and the president of Project Smile. Project Smile began in 1992 as a cooperative effort between the Episcopal Diocese of Georgia and the Anglican Diocese of Belize, in Central America. It is a prevention-oriented dental program for indigent children at St. Mary the Virgin Anglican Church in Belize City. An unused classroom at St Mary’s School is home to a permanent seven-chair dental treatment facility. In March 2010, Project Smile opened a four-chair clinic in the mountains near Guatemala. The clinic treats children ages four to 14 years through cleanings, fluoride treatments, fillings, and treating abscesses. Every child in the schools receives toothbrushes and toothpaste, which are used every day after lunch at school. Every Wednesday students receive a fluoride rinse given by trained adult volunteers.

April 4, 2012

The San Pedro Sun

Belize Says “Present” At Four Trade Shows In March
Belize continues to be in high demand at trade shows around the world, and the month of March was no different. The Travel Trade Team found their way to destinations in the US and Europe, participating in the ‘New York Times Travel Show’ New York, the ‘Adventure in Travel Expo’ Washington D.C., the ‘Beneath the Sea Trade Show’ New Jersey, and the ‘International Tourism Bourse (ITB),’ in Berlin, Germany. Our diligent delegates have successfully disseminated promotional and educational information and materials about our country to over 300,000 potential visitors. Our Travel Trade Team’s main priority is the establishment of partnerships within the international tourism industry especially with travel agents, tour operators, airlines, and cruise lines. “Attending trade shows gives us the perfect opportunity to showcase Belize, and market what our country has to offer as a premium tourism destination,” said Michelle Bowers, BTB’s Travel Trade Manager. Every month, the Travel Trade Team attends roughly two shows in either North America or Europe that target our key audiences. ”The New York Times Travel Show” for example, featured over 500 exhibitors and attracted over 8,000 travel trade and 30,000 consumer attendees. As for the ITB Berlin show, it hosted more than 170,000 visitors from around the globe.

Government Appoints Ambassadors
Press Release – Government of Belize – April 3, 2012 - Cabinet at its regular meeting today, Tuesday, 3rd April, 2012, approved the appointments of the following Belizeans to the following diplomatic posts abroad:- *Alfredo Martinez re-appointed as Belize’s Ambassador to Guatemala. *Nestor Mendez re-appointed as Belize’s Ambassador to Washington and Canada. * Lois Young appointed as Belize’s Ambassador/Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York. * Janine Coye Felson to continue as Ambassador/Deputy Per-manent Representative to the United Nations. * Perla Perdomo appointed as Belize’s High Commission to London, United Kingdom. * Mark Espat in his role as Leader of the Re-negotiating Team appointed Ambassador for Economic Affairs. * Cordel Hyde appointed as Consul General in New York.

San Pedro Seadogs draw with FC Belize
The San Pedro Seadogs played their first home game at the Ambergris Stadium on Sunday April 1st, to a stadium of about 200 spectators. The Seadogs played an intense game against FC Belize that ended in a nil-nil draw. San Pedro had many opportunities to score but for some reason, just couldn’t seem to get a goal in. At the end of the game, they remained at fifth place in the Zone A standing while FC Belize takes second. Sunday April 8th, Easter Sunday the San Pedro Seadogs will go up against Juventus in the second to last game in this leg of the Premier League Football Tournament. Team Captain, Kent “Bob” Gabourel, spoke of the Sunday’s game, “This game, we had a weakness in the forward position, they couldn’t capitalize out there. This week coming we have to start training harder, putting in more hours. Some of the players were slacking off. We are working on more dedication and preparing mentally as well for the next two games.”

Two drown in snorkeling accident
Seven tourists left Caye Caulker on the morning of April 3rd to experience Hol Chan Marine Reserve and Shark Ray Alley, one of Belize’s top destinations for snorkelers and divers alike. Trusting tour operators from Tsunami Tours to provide this memorable experience in Belize’s waters, two deaths were the last thing on their minds. According to Dr. Noeli Nicholson, around 12:40pm, five tourists arrived at the Dr. Otto Rodriguez San Pedro PolyClinic II accompanied by a Hol Chan Marine Ranger. They appeared to have received multiple scratches and were visibly shaken. Further investigations revealed that the tourists left for Hol Chan with Caye Caulker based Tsunami Tours, which is owned by longtime Caye Caulker resident and Canadian national Heather Martin. They mentioned that the tour guide kept taking them into the channel at Hol Chan and they started to get separated because of the strength of the waves that were pushing them into the reef. Dr. Nicholson informed The San Pedro Sun that the husband stated that he and his wife became separated from the group around 11:30am.

Ambergris Today

Tourists Drown as 7 Dragged by Strong Currents at Marine Reserve
Tragedy strikes a group of tourists while vacationing in Belize as seven of them are dragged by the strong currents at the Hol Chan Marine Reserve, off the island of Ambergris Caye, leaving two dead on Tuesday, April 3, 2012. Five of the seven tourists were rescued after seven of them were dragged out into the channel and into open waters at the Hol Chan Marine Reserve. They were on a snorkeling day tour on board Caye Caulker’s Cyclone vessel of Tsunami Tours when the incident took place at around midday. Shortly after the five people were rescued the body of a woman was retrieved from the water and taken to the Dr. Otto Rodriguez Poly Clinic where she was confirmed dead on arrival. According to bystanders, the woman was being given CPR at the dock when they arrived to the island, a visiting doctor tried to render assistance but police did not allow him to do so.

Price of Gas Way Up High!
Gas Prices are on the rise! There was a major hike on Wednesday, March 28, 2012, and the prices of fuel are way up passing the $12 mark. Regular gasoline on the island was at $11.67 and is now selling for $12.17 (0.50 cent increase) and the diesel price was $11.06 and is now selling for $11.26 (0.20 cent increase).

Belize Says “Present” At Four Trade Shows In March
elize continues to be in high demand at trade shows around the world, and the month of March was no different. The Travel Trade Team found their way to destinations in the US and Europe, participating in the ‘New York Times Travel Show’ New York, the ‘Adventure in Travel Expo’ Washington D.C., the ‘Beneath the Sea Trade Show’ New Jersey, and the ‘International Tourism Bourse (ITB),’ in Berlin, Germany. Our diligent delegates have successfully disseminated promotional and educational information and materials about our country to over 300,000 potential visitors. Our Travel Trade Team’s main priority is the establishment of partnerships within the international tourism industry especially with travel agents, tour operators, airlines, and cruise lines. “Attending trade shows gives us the perfect opportunity to showcase Belize, and market what our country has to offer as a premium tourism destination,” said Michelle Bowers, BTB’s Travel Trade Manager. Every month, the Travel Trade Team attends roughly two shows in either North America or Europe that target our key audiences. “The New York Times Travel Show” for example, featured over 500 exhibitors and attracted over 8,000 travel trade and 30,000 consumer attendees. As for the ITB Berlin show, it hosted more than 170,000 visitors from around the globe.

Busy Easter Weekend Expected for La Isla Bonita!
Many Belizeans are preparing for their Easter Holiday, which starts on Good Friday, April 6 (for some on Holy Thursday) and continues until Easter Monday, April 9. Following long-time tradition for many families from all over the country, most of them are planning to head to La Isla Bonita. Hotel and airline bookings are proving to be at their busiest and business owners of San Pedro are preparing for the crowds. Expect to see busy streets filled with both local and international tourists as hotel bookings for San Pedro are looking good from now way into August of this year. Tropic Air has recently inaugurated its flight to Honduras and bookings are looking bright! Its demand during Easter was so big that the airline added more scheduled direct flights to Honduras around this time. The local water taxis have also added more trips to accommodate people travelling to and from San Pedro. People will be lucky to find accommodations at this point as hotel are booked; and golf cart rentals are out of available carts as well! With lots of entertainment being provided by businesses all over the island, this weekend is looking up to be a very busy and fun-filled one. Just take a look at what all is expected to take place: Friday, April 6, 2012 and Saturday, April 7, 2012 – Island Invasion at Fidos Restaurant and Bar, Wet Willy’s Dock will be rocking the weekend with a Fiesta Tropical with a Latin band from El Salvador and On Saturday, April 7, 2012 - The San Pedro AIDS Commission Noche de Estrellas (imitations of artists at is best), to name a few.

Misc Belizean Sources

San Pedro Sailing Team Fundraiser
From Tammy Peterson.... We are hosting a fund raiser for the San Pedro Sailing Team. It is this Saturday at The Hotel in Molly Malones Irish Pub at noon to 5:00 ish. We are brand new and located just a 1/2 mile North of the bridge. The BIG white hotel! The kids are sailing from town up to The Hotel for lunch about noon and an Easter Egg Hunt at 1:00. There is also an ADULT SCAVENGER HUNT starting at 1:00. This is going to be done off FaceBook. You may sign up between now and Friday night at Molly Malones. Cost is 20.00 BZ. All proceeds to go the sailing team for jerseys and gloves. The list of items to be found for the scavenger hunt will be posted on FaceBook at 1:00 on Saturday, you will have until 5:00 to complete. The first person/cpl to The Hotel with all items will recieve dinner for two, 100.00 bar tab, an ADULT gift basket and a two nights stay for the GRAND PRIZE ...

VIDEO: Lionfish Awareness, Turneffe Islands, Belize
Featuring Ecologic Divers 5 Star Padi Dive Team aboard "Blue Attitude. Today we dive "The Elbow" as we take a look at Lionfish while providing you with some Lionfish Awareness facts. San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize This dive was actaully filmed on New Years Eve, 12-31-11

Channel 7

Tonight, the small village of Caye Caulker is like a tinder box - tensions between police and criminal elements are running very high - and a special police detachment is combing Caye Caulker - looking for a 17 year old - who allegedly shot an officer in the head yesterday evening. That officer, PC John Valerio survived because the bullet only grazed him. But it could have been fatal - and the suspect allegedly took the officers service revolver after shooting him. And tonight, police have closed in on that small island because that same 17 year old is accused of stealing another officer's gun on Sunday morning. And after stealing it, he allegedly pointed it at the officer's head, but it did not fire because the safety was on.

Today the Cabinet had its regular meeting, and approved the appointments of Belizeans to diplomatic posts abroad. Two notable appointments are Mark Espat who, as Leader of the Superbond Re-negotiating Team, was appointed Ambassador for Economic Affairs, and Cordel Hyde who - the release says - was appointed as Consul General in New York. But Cordel Hyde has contacted personnel at this newsroom to say that no such arrangement has been made, and he has accepted no such offer. He said he wasn't called, spoken to or advised of this posting by anyone - and so, effectively, he is not Consul General in New York. Hyde is still in New York dealing with his teenaged son who has a very serious form of cancer.

It was a tour guide's nightmare today at the Hol Chan Marine Reserve - after two tourists - an American and an Italian National - drowned while snorkeling in the reserve. Sometime between 2:30 and 3 this afternoon, San Pedro police received a distress call from a group of tourists who were snorkeling in the Hol Chan Marine Reserve. When police responded with a vessel belonging to the reserve they rescued 5 of the tourists out at sea. They were 54 year old Rebecca Burger, her son 17 year old Zack Burger, American Nationals, 59 year old David Florencia an Italian and 2 Canadian citizens 25 year old Laurence Tastet and 29 year old Yanik Doyon.

Last night, we told you about the first application for election petition which was granted by Justice Michelle Arana. That was the election petition by the PUP against UDP Standard Bearer Herman Longsworth. The news tonight is that another of the PUP's applications for an election petition was heard before Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin. The PUP, on behalf of Martin Galvez, contends that the Mark King, the duly elected Area Rep. for Lake I is disqualified because his security company has a contract with the Ministry of Finance. Brint's Security, of which King is allegedly the General Manager, is in a 135 hundred thousand dollar contract with GOB, which started on July 2011 and ends on July 2013. In this contract, the security firm is charged with protecting the Charles Bartlett Hyde Building on Mahogany Street Extention, and the San Ignacio Sales Tax Office.

Last night a man was intercepted by the police, but instead of going quietly, he fired two shots and fled. At about 7 in the evening, Stephen Anderson, a 20 year old Belizean Laborer, was riding on a red motorcycle on Evergreen Street in Belize City, which he stole at gunpoint from a business man. Police intercepted Anderson, and that's when he allegedly pulled out a gun -that looked to be a black .38 revolver. Anderson fired two shots at the Police D-Max vehicle, hitting the front bumper and radiator. He fled, but was soon apprehended on Hondo Street where the police recovered 1 Smith and Wesson .38 revolver containing two expended shells and one live round.

Last night we reported on the laying off of workers at the City Hall. A well-placed source gave us information that 25 persons were terminated for redundancy or poor work ethic. Today we caught up with Belize City Mayor, Darrell Bradley. We asked him to explain why the downsizing is necessary. First off, he told us that it was actually 22 persons who were terminated and not 25 as was our information. He also told us that it was not intended to be any form of victimization. According to Bradley they did a human resource audit, and these people were the non-performing employees. Because City Hall is in a bind for finances, these people had to be terminated.

Last week, we told you about 21 year-old Carldeen Lawrence who was convicted of grievous harm for an injury which he inflicted on his 2 year-old stepdaughter. Our information from the case at court was that he allegedly beat the girl on the right leg and caused a fracture, but he came by our studios yesterday to say that's not quite how it happened. He kept silent throughout the trial, but he told us that he willing to speak up so that there is no misconception about what really happened. He said that he didn't lash the child; he simply fell on her in an accident while trying to avoid injuring her younger sister. Here's how he explains it: Carldeen Lawrence -Says He Didn't Beat the Child "What happened was that I was coming inside, and I didn't know that the smaller daughter was behind me. She was always tagging along behind, and I didn't realize that was there. And when I shut the door, and was turning around to go back inside, I was going to accidentally fall on her. In order to avoid hitting her, I spun, and I ended up hitting the daughter which was also right behind her.

Last night in part one of his interview with 7news, Shyne admitted that his plans to launch his career outside of the United States had failed - and that he needed to get back to New York to get back on track. Now, even though he is Belize's Cultural Ambassador, the truth is that Shyne is a convicted felon and a deportee - and you'd have to pull ropes, not strings to get a Visa after you've been deported. But he has applied for his visa, and he's hoping against hope that somehow, something is going to come through. Now that's his business, right? Well, not really. He says that if he can make a brand new start in New York - then Belizeans will see what he can really do as Cultural Ambassador. If you're not buying the logic - we'll let him explain why it can work - and why he's fit to be Belize's Cultural Ambassador:

Channel 5

Tourists die during snorkeling trip to Hol Chan
There is tragic news tonight out of the island of Caye Caulker where a snorkeling trip ended terribly for two visitors. A group of seven men and women, vacationing in Belize, set out on an expedition, in a vessel named Cyclone led by Tsunami Tours of Caye Caulker this morning. As they snorkeled near the ...

Belize Coast Guard Rescues Tourists Stranded at Sea
The Belize Coastguard was also involved in the rescue of the visitors. The Unit was called out on two incidents at sea today. In the first, four persons were rescued and brought safely to shore. On the second, however, the Italian and US nationals perished from drowning. In the view of the acting Commandant, however, ...

2nd Cop attacked by teen grazed by bullet
Also in Caye Caulker, a teenager is on the run after shooting a cop. It happened shortly after five o’clock on Monday evening. The shooter, Ernesto Bernardez, was wanted by police for a robbery. Bernardez was about to leave the island when police caught up with him. Within minutes, shots rang out and PC John ...

Is $2.6 Million too much for incomplete Marion Jones Fence?
Tonight’s question is: Should the government have spent two point six million dollars on the perimeter fence at the Marion Jones stadium that is still not completed? Send your comments and responses using your SMART phones to 8686 or post your vote on our e-poll at You can also send an email with your ...

Night Court? Chief Justice hears arguments about Mark King
The People’s United Party went to the Supreme Court today for the second time this week in respect of election petitions. On Monday the court granted leave for an election petition against Herman Longsworth who failed to disclose a contract for the construction of the perimeter fence at the Marion Jones Stadium. Today, Martin Galvez ...

Attorneys will return for ruling and for Francis Fonseca hearing
Mark King did not appear in court but his adversary, Martin Galvez and his sister Yolanda Schakron sat through the entire proceedings. They would not speak on the matter but their attorney Lisa Shoman did. Shoman was hopeful that the ruling would allow them to seek the election petition for Lake Independence.   Lisa Shoman ...

New Diplomatic Appointments for Foreign Offices
Six diplomatic appointments were announced today following the regular sitting of Cabinet. Of the six, four are new and are as follows. The government says that former P.U.P. senior deputy leader and Lake I representative, Cordel Hyde, has been named Consul General in the New York area. That appointment is a rank lower than ambassador ...

Youth shoots at Police Mobile Unit
In other crime news, a city cop dodged a bullet when a robber opened fire in his direction. The suspected gunman who shot at Police Constable Homan Katanegie has been identified as twenty year old Stephan Anderson and he is some serious trouble with the law. At around seven-thirty on Monday night, Anderson was spotted ...

Machete pulled out on Compassion Lane
Forty year old Sidney Humes, a laborer of Ladyville, appeared in the lower court today before Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith following an incident on April first during which he was attacked by a machete wielding neighbor. According to Humes, he was assisting Alicia Vargas, whom he said was intoxicated, when her husband, forty-seven year ...

Former Cop fighting for wages and job
Ex-police officer, Aldo Ayuso was fired in 2005 and six years later he is still fighting to get his job back. Ayuso was charged for the fatal shooting of Leslie Rogers in February, 2005 and even though he was freed of the Manslaughter charges, he was dismissed from the force later that year. He sued ...

Oh Snap! Belize is the 34th Happiest Country
The first ever United Nations World Happiness Report has been released and it may make you smile. It shows that Belize is the thirty-fourth happiest country. The one hundred and fifty-eight page document explores various factors that influence the happiness of residents in over a hundred and fifty countries. Numerous surveying mechanisms were used during ...

SMART’s Grand Anniversary Raffle Winner
In celebration of their seventh anniversary, SMART started a grand anniversary raffle that culminated on the twenty-ninth of last month. The grand raffle, which was carried out in partnership with COURTS, was for a living room and kitchen make-over. After three months of raffle entries, the lucky winner, thirty-nine year old Jason Staine of Belize ...

KTV Latino is Hot, Live and Only on 5
Group B performers will be back at the Bliss for another exciting night of KTV Latino. It’s down to five singers and they have one common goal; that is to win the ten thousand dollar grand prize and be named KTV Latino champion. That is why they will sing out their hearts to woo the ...


Police search for gunman who injured officer in the line of duty
Caye Caulker police have begun an extensive manhunt for a seventeen year old who has attacked and assaulted two police officers in just a matter of two days. The first incident occurred on Sunday and the other on Monday when the suspect allegedly shot an officer in the head during a scuffle. Police Public Relations Officer, Raphael Martinez, gave Love News a briefing on the two incidents. We have the identity of the suspect, but because he is only seventeen years old, we are obliged to withhold his name. Meanwhile, a man reportedly shot at a police vehicle that was on patrol in Belize City on Monday. Martinez explains what happened. Police investigations into this incident continue.

Government announced diplomatic appointments Patrick Jones
The government of Belize today announced the appointments to the Diplomatic Corps. According to an official release, the appointments were approved today during the regular meeting of Cabinet in Belmopan. The list of appointments to diplomatic posts abroad include: Alfredo Martinez as Belize’s ambassador to Guatemala. Returning to his post in Washington is Ambassador Nestor Mendez who is Belize’s ambassador to the United States and Canada as well as permanent representative to the Organization of American States. Over at the United Nations, the new ambassador and permanent representative is attorney at law Lois Young. She will be assisted by Janine Coye Felson who was reappointed as ambassador and deputy permanent representative to the UN. In the United Kingdom, the Barrow administration has replaced Kamela Palma are Belize’s representative there. Now serving as Belize’s High Commissioner to the UK is Perla Perdomo who will take up residence in London. Rounding out the diplomatic appointments are former leader of the People’s United Party Mark Espat who was appointed as Ambassador for Economic Affairs. As we had reported earlier, Espat was named the leader of the Super Bond Re-negotiating Team last month. Former deputy leader PUP Leader Cordel Hyde’s diplomatic posting is as Belize’s Consul General in New York.

BEL proposed revised pole rental fees Patrick Jones
Belize Electricity Limited has announced that it is asking the Public Utilities Commission to consider revised fees for pole rental paid by cable companies and telephone operators. According to a release from the government-owned electricity provider, BEL has submitted an application to the PUC under the Annual Tariff Review Proceeding for the period of July first of this year to June thirtieth of 2013. Copies of BE:’s submission are available at BEL’s corporate headquarters an online at the company’s website. According to the company’s website, BEL is the primary distributor of electricity in Belize, serving a customer base of approximately seventy seven thousand accounts.

Toledo high school gets footwear donation Patrick Jones
A collection of football gears was donated to the Toledo Community College in Punta Gorda. Our Toledo correspondent Paul Mahung reports.

An Easter tradition: the hot cross bun
Preparations continue to be made for the observance of Easter. And as we count down to the holiday, many of the traditions that go along with it are in full gear. Love TV’s Natalie Novelo and video journalist Brian Castillo have a report on one sweet tradition that is sure to add flavor to the holiday.

Youth charged for shooting at police vehicle Patrick Jones
20-year-old Stefan Anderson who allegedly fired two shots at Police Corporal Holman Katanegie after a robbery was committed was charged with six offences when he appeared in court today. Anderson was charged with attempted murder, aggravated assault, robbery, damage to property, kept firearm without a gun licence and kept ammunition without a gun licence. No plea was taken from him because the offences are indictable. Neither could the court offer him bail. Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith remanded him into custody until May 23. The incident occurred around 7:30 last night. 39-year-old businessman William Leiva reported to the police that he was driving his red motorcycle on Douglas Jones Street and when he turned on to Freetown Road he was held up at gunpoint by a person of dark complexion who wore a cap. Leiva said the person demanded that he hand over his motorcycle and he complied. Leiva said the person then sped away on his motorcycle. Leiva reported the robbery to the police and Corporal Katanegie who was driving a police pickup truck saw a person driving a motorcycle that fitted the description of the stolen motorcycle and he began to pursue the motorcycle. Katanegie said the motorcyclist fired two shots that missed him but damaged the radiator and bumper o the pickup truck. The police reported that Anderson was apprehended with the stolen motorcycle on Mopan Street by members of the Police’s Anti Drug Unit. According to the Police Anderson took them to an area on Evergreen Street where he had hidden the point 38 revolver he used to fire the shots at Katanegie. The revolver had one round of point 38 caliber ammunition in it.

Chief Justice to rule on application for leave to lodge election petition against Mark King
Chief Justice, Kenneth Benjamin, will pass down a ruling on Wednesday afternoon at two in the petition application filed by former PUP Lake I standard bearer, Martin Galvez, against his political opponent, Mark King. The application questions the legitimacy of King’s nomination and election to electoral office on ground that he did not publicly declare that he has a contract with the government of Belize to provide security and surveillance services for two government buildings. In arguments before the CJ this evening, Attorney for Galvez, Senior Counsel Lisa Shoman, pointed out that the two year contract is for a hundred and thirty five thousand dollars and ends in July of 2013. As in the previous application filed by the PUP’s former Albert Standard Bearer, David Craig against the UDP’s Herman Longsworth, Shoman argued that Mark King did not publish any information about his contract with the government in any newspaper one month prior to his nomination as is required by law. But, Shoman’s opponent, Senior Counsel Denys Barrow for Mark King, feels that the evidence that the claimant and his attorney provided is not admissible. Chief Justice Benjamin will deliver his judgment at 2 pm on Wednesday.

Woman locked up inside ATM booth Patrick Jones
An unexpected incident inside the Automatic Teller Machine booth at the Punta Gorda branch of the Belize Bank has left a Toledo resident disturbed and concerned. Correspondent Paul Mahung reports.

Belize City man on remand for aggravated assault
21-year-old Percival Blancaneaux Jr., one of two persons who allegedly broke into the house 48-year-old Esmeralda Glastonbury, was charged with aggravated assault when he appeared in court today. Blancaneaux pleaded not guilty to the charge. The prosecutor objected to bail on the grounds that the offence has become prevalent, that the penalty is no less than 10 years, that a second suspect id still at large and if granted bail the accused might interfere with witnesses. Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith upheld the objection and remanded Blancaneaux into custody until May 8. Mrs. Glastonbury, a housewife of Old Well Road, Ladyville reported to the police that at about four a.m. while she and her husband and their son were asleep, two men armed with knives broke into her house and tried up all three of them. She said the burglars stole her red Isuzu Rodeo and a number of items that included five digital cameras, a DVD player, one Samsung touch screen cellular phone, 385 dollars, 400 pesos, two computer monitors, a chain saw, 13 DVD movies and games and other items. The police reported that they recovered the Isuzu Rodeo the following day in Burrell Boom Village.

Former prison officer found guilty of drug trafficking
32-year-old Dean Crawford, a former prison officer charged with drug trafficking dor 100 grams of cannabis was fined $10,000.00 after he was found guilty to the charge. Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith who imposed the fine, ordered Crawford to pay $3,000.00 forthwith and the balance by January 2013. If Crawford defaults on payment of the fine he will serve three years. The incident occurred around 7:15 a.m. on October 2, 2011. When Crawford reported to work at Belize Central Prison he was searched. The search resulted in the discovery of the cannabis in two plastic bags. One bag was in one of his boots and the second bag was in his other boot. Crawford testified and said that he was set up.

Couple found guilty of drug trafficking Patrick Jones
A common law couple, 36-year-old Delroy Barrow and 36-year-old Carolyn Garoy, charged with drug trafficking for 50 grams of crack cocaine, were each fined $10,000.00 after they were found guilty of the charge. Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith who imposed the fines ordered them to pay $2,000.00 forthwith and the balance by January 2013. If they default on payment of the $2,000.00 they will serve six months. If they default on payment of the $10,000.00 they will serve three years. The incident occurred on June 29, 2011. The police went to the couple’s residence on Haynes Street and Police Officer George Ferguson testified that when he arrived there he saw a black sock being thrown through a window. When the police retrieved the sock it contained the crack cocaine. Only Barrow and Garoy were in the room of the window from where the sock was thrown. Barrow and Garoy testified but they did not say anything to prove their innocence.

Passenger bus held up at gunpoint
It was a terrifying ride on the Western Highway on Friday night for a group of commuters as a passenger bus was held up and robbed at gunpoint. The incident involved a Shaw’s Bus that had departed Belize City just before nine o’clock on Friday night enroute to San Ignacio town. The owner of the Bus that was jacked, Andy Shaw, spoke with Love TV’s Patrick Jones about the terrifying ordeal. Shaw says the robbers fired at least two shots after they had gotten off the bus after the robbery. No one was hurt and Shaw says that the bus continued on its journey west. Shaw told Love News that he would like to step up security on his busses but with the escalating cost of fuel it is a real challenge to keep his passengers and employees safe on the highway So far, police have not released any information on the armed hold up.

Home invasion leaves one injured
A man was shot in his face in the wee hours of Sunday, but luckily for him, he survived the attack. Police say that at around three-thirty on Sunday morning, thirty-five year old Michael Usher, also known as “Pama” was inside his house on Antelope Street Extension when a man entered through the front door and shot Usher. The bullet struck Usher on the left side of the head near his left eye. Usher remained in the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital until this morning when he was released, having suffered an injury that was not life-threatening. Police have no suspects.

New champions of Band Fest chosen
It was billed as the premiere family event of the year and on Saturday Belize Band Fest did not disappoint. Corozal was the place to be on Saturday for the 2012 edition of Belize Band Fest. At the end of the day, the Corozal Community College Marching Band was voted the most popular marching band. Succotz Festival Drum Cops won the title of best uniformed marching band, while the Holy Redeemer Marching Band won the drum line competition. In the drum corps category, Delisle Academy Marching Band from Dangriga won first place and took home four thousand dollars as prize. They also took home a trophy and individual medals. First runner up was the Sarteneja United Drum Corps while the second runner up was the Holy Redeemer Marching Band. In the Marching Band with Wind Instruments category, the top prize was captured by the defending champions, Succotz Festival Drum Corps. They took home six thousand dollars plus a trophy and individual medals. Second place was captured by the Corozal Community College Marching Band, while the third place winner is the Western Xunan Marching Band.

Plane wreckage retrieved
The wreckage of a sea plane that crash landed on Saturday, March twenty fifth in the waters offshore southern Belize has been recovered. No one was hurt in the incident. The sole occupant of the aircraft at the time of the incident was pilot James Glen Wagner. An alert viewer of Love Television snapped these photographs of the plane being towed away from the site of the crash-landing . Love News understands that the plane was being towed north towards the mouth of the Monkey River. The eight seat sea plane went down in the Caribbean Sea near Abalone Caye around three thirty on Saturday afternoon, March twenty fifth. According to the pilot, he had just dropped off some guests in Placencia village and was attempting to land the aircraft in the sea when it flipped over. Investigators from the Civil Aviation Department are conducting an aircraft accident investigation.

Orange Walk businessman injured in shooting incident
A businessman remains hospitalized following a shooting incident on Sunday. Reporter Arturo Cantun has the details.

Supreme Court approves application for election petition
The Marion Jones Stadium has undergone a number of phases of renovations, and its attractive fence, which was first started in 2009, is now the grounds of a court battle to determine whether a man’s electoral seat is on the line or not. Herman Longsworth, the UDP Albert Area Representative who beat the PUP’s David Craig at the March seventh polls, will have to face the court to find out if his nomination and subsequent election was legitimate. This morning in the Supreme Court, Justice Michelle Arana, ruled in favour of Craig that there is a question on whether or not the contract that Longsworth held to construct the fence around the Marion Jones Stadium, was completed by nomination day. As the law stands, anyone seeking political office is required to declare whether he has a contract with the Government of Belize. Craig, who is represented by Senior Counsel, Said Musa and Attorney Anthony Sylvestre, is contending that his political opponent failed to declare that he had a contract with the government to construct the fence. And today Musa argued on those points. He quoted directly from section fifty-eight of the Belize Constitution, which states that any person who has a contract with the government shall be disqualified from being a member of the House of Representatives. In Longsworth’s case, his construction company, L and V Construction, received the one point five million-dollar contract to construct the fence – a project that the claim is still ongoing. What makes Longsworth’s victory illegal, according to Musa and Attorney Anthony Sylvestre, is that Longsworth failed to publish this fact in the newspapers one month before his nomination. Further to that is that there appears to be a supplementary contract, said Mr Musa, for ongoing work.

New cook book for use in schools feeding programs
A cook book for school’s feeding programs is being implemented in the Toledo district. Our Toledo correspondent Paul Mahung reports.

Basket weaving competition held in Toledo Patrick Jones
The annual Jipi Japa Basket making Competition Award Ceremony took place at the weekend in Punta Gorda town. Artisans who participated in the competition were awarded on Saturday by the Building the People Movement, a Toledo based, non-governmental organization primarily focused on economic empowerment. Founder and Director of the Movement, Dorla Bowman spoke with Love News about the competition this afternoon. The first prize winner received two hundred dollars; second place winner received one hundred and seventy five dollars and the third prize was a hundred and fifty dollars in cash. Participants winning in other categories received a hundred dollars in cash prize and all winners received plaques along with their cash prizes. Over forty women participated in this year’s event and Bowman says she’s grateful for all the businesses and organizations that assisted with sponsorship.


Mayor Bradley defends the termination of 22 City Hall employees
Twenty two persons have been terminated from the Belize City Council and there could be more. Newly elected Belize ...

More wrangling over election petitions in the Supreme court
Yesterday morning Supreme Court Justice Michelle Arana granted defeated candidate in the Albert division, David Cra...

YC Belize draws youth from across the country
This past weekend YC Belize held its 6th annual Youth conference under the theme SURRENDER. And this past weekend’s...

High level training for Belizean educators culminates today
Over a hundred teachers from different parts of the country participated in a two days workshop held in the City of...

SICA's Secretary General pays Belize’s Foreign Minister a courtesy visit
SICA - Central American Integration System has been the economic, cultural and political organization of Central Am...

DJ to participate in Cross Country race to raise funds for underprivileged children
Alfrain Suppal rides to raise funds for much needed children. The annual cross country this year will see a new com...

Cabinet meet to approve appointments to diplomatic posts abroad
Cabinet met in session today 3rd April, 2012 and approved appointments to diplomatic posts abroad. These are the ap...

Cop shot, authorities seek 16 year old culprit
A shooting on la isla Carinosa results in injury to a police officer; Yesterday (April 2) around 5:05pm, informatio...

National Agriculture and Trade Show dates announced
The Ministry of Natural Resources and Agriculture have announced the dates for this year’s National Agriculture and...

Gun stolen in burglary of Cristo Rey home
On Friday, 32yr old Frank Patrick BURNS, a businessman of Monkey Falls Hill, located in the village of Cristo Rey r...

Man drowns in the Belize River trying to save brother
Ronnie Loewen, an 18 year old teen from Spanish Lookout drowned in the Belize River yesterday, in Joe Friesen Ranch...

Teens arrested after highway vehicle search
Last week Friday around 8:30pm, San Ignacio Police was on mobile patrol on the Western Highway in the vicinity of R...

Burglars hit electronics store in Belize City
Belize City and San Elena Police are also investigating cases of burglary. On Saturday March 31st, 31 yr old Sharle...

Over 13 grand in merchandise stolen from Santa Elena home
In Santa Elena 43yr old Ramon VARGAS, reported to Police that on Saturday at 6:00am, he left his home to conduct bu...

Police investigate case of obtaining property by deception
San Ignacio Police is investigating a case of obtaining property by deception. Jeffery Joseph MURILLO, reported tha...


Our Sojourn in San Ignacio - Day 4: Actun Tunichil Muknal Cave Tour
Even before leaving on our trip to San Ignacio, we had booked an Actun Tunichil Muknal (ATM) cave tour through River Rat Expeditions, after reading great recommendations and reviews online stating that they were THE tour company to see ATM with. Thursday was our last full day in the Cayo District, and an excellent day it was indeed. We started with breakfast at Mr. Greedy's again. I had a breakfast sandwich that was supposed to be on wheat bread but came on white bread, unfortunately, though it was still yummy. Barry had his usual -- a breakfast burrito. After breakfast we changed clothes and waited to be picked up on the steps of Casa Blanca, joined by a very pregnant black cat who hung out there during our entire stay. Gonzo and Becky with River Rat picked us up around 8:45 am, and we joined three other people who were taking the tour with us, a Hungarian couple and a man from British Columbia. The five of us, plus Becky and Gonzo, made a nice small group as opposed to some of the groups we saw with eight to ten tourists plus guides. After driving over to Teakettle Village in their SUV, we parked, then took a two-mile hike along a well-worn trail through the jungle to the cave. It was a beautiful hike, and nice and flat since it went alongside the water. We had three river crossings that were fun -- the water was so clear, with many river rocks visible below our feet.

Get Zen at Exotic Caye yoga classes
I have always admired the skill and flexibility of those that practice yoga, I tried a few classes back in Canada and have done yoga in Belize twice. While I can honestly say it is not my thing, I can see why people would choose this form of exercise. Yoga is an ancient practice that has been done for more than 5,000 years, and millions of people world wide enjoy it’s health benefits daily. Yoga brings together both physical and mental to help achieve peace in mind, body and spirit. May see it as a perfect way to reconnect with the balance that we were all born with. Think about it as babies we were all natural yogis, we were able to pull our feet up by our head and all had great flexibility. As we grew older and life got more demanding most of us lost that flexibility. This also proves the old saying if you don’t use it you loose it.

Crossing the Border from Mexico to Belize and the Thunderbolt Water Taxi
I took the San Pedro Belize Express from Chetumal to San Pedro, Belize to get back home but my friends needed to cross the border another way. They too were coming to San Pedro for Easter week but they have a truck and lots of equipment. Note: If you have been in Mexico for more than 7 days and are leaving by boat or by land (rather than plane), you need to pay the exit fee of $294 pesos (about $24 USD). Here is a relatively new twist or really just one that they have been cracking down on recently, you need to pay the fee at a bank and not at the border. A GIANT PAIN IN THE ASS. There is a bank near the border but it is not open on weekends and, like my friends, you may need to back track to Chetumal. Luckily, they have a car but if you don''ll probably have to get a taxi to find the bank. The boat seems more lax. Though I didn't have to pay (I'd been in Mexico Friday to Friday), the immigration guys will let you pay at the boat terminal. (Who knows where that money actually goes.) Dani and Cesar left the truck in Corozal. Not just on the street but at an RV park managed by Henry Menzies. Mr. Menzies is pretty well known and runs a taxi/transfer service driving people from Corozal to Chetumal and back all day long. For more information on the RV park or the transfer service, check out: BelizeTransfers. They are paying $5 USD a day to leave their truck in the secured park.

Hot Cross Buns
Just in time for Good Friday. Hot Cross Buns are a special treat made every Good Friday in Belize. This bread is just sweet enough to be eaten with cheese,or jelly or peanut butter, or some time of cold cuts. It can also be eaten simply with butter. You may put dried fruit in the dough and honey on top.

International Sources

Caribbean Fisheries Forum Concludes Three-day Meeting
The Caribbean Fisheries Forum, technical arm of the CRFM, concluded its tenth sitting in Nassau, Bahamas on 28 March 2012. The three day forum was held under the Chairmanship of Michael Braynen, Director, Department of Marine Resources, Bahamas. The Bahamas will chair both the Forum and Ministerial Council of the CRFM for the next year. Delegates from Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Belize, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, Montserrat, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname and Trinidad and Tobago, were joined by observer and fisheries experts from Bermuda, Bonaire, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), Caribbean Network of Fisherfolk Organizations (CNFO), University of the West Indies, University of Southern Mississippi, the USA’s National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), EU-sponsored ACP Fish II Project, and the Caribbean Large Marine Ecosystem (CLME) Project based in Colombia. In his opening ceremony address Bahamas Minister for Agriculture and Marine Resources Hon Larry S. Cartwright cited the significance of role of the Forum, as technical and scientific advisors to Fisheries Ministers, in respect of regional policy. Minister Cartwright reaffirmed the importance and potential of the marine resources of the Caribbean Sea– as a source of food for the region’s people, for export and income generation. He also noted the potential for development within inland waterways, rivers, ponds, lakes and the aquaculture enterprises as natural assets which can support the region’s future economic and social development. In his delivery CRFM Executive Director, Milton Haughton re-echoed his concern over the numerous challenges which can militate against sustainable development of the fisheries and aquaculture sector. Among these, an inadequacy of resources and staffing in the national fisheries departments; the prevalence of illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing; the need to improve sanitary and phyto-sanitary standards to ensure safe, good quality fish and seafood and, therefore improve access to export markets. The Invasion of the invasive Pacific lionfish and climate change were also issues of concern. “In only a few years this invasive species has spread across the entire Caribbean causing untold negative impacts on local fish stocks and marine ecosystems. The impact of climate change and climate variability on the fisheries and marine ecosystem, and possible links with the unprecedented large quantities of sargassum seaweed have negatively impacted the fisheries and tourism sectors in 2011”.

Belize’s Hidden Treasure
Sharita Hutton takes a boat down the Belize River to find out about a project that is reducing deforestation by tracking down precious woods in the most unlikely of places – at the bottom of the river. The world’s hardwoods are disappearing fast, with 1.5 acres (0.6 hectares) of rainforest cut down every second. This in turn causes the loss of an estimated 50,000 species of hardwood each year. From the Amazon Basin to the forests of Southeast Asia, extensive logging has resulted in the disappearance of huge swaths of hardwood supplies, and world population growth is putting pressure on governments to gain quick cash flow by cutting down what is left of their hardwood forests. But in the Central American country of Belize, there is a supply of hardwoods that was cut since 200 years ago that could help meet the demand without cutting down the remnants of existing forests.

BOOK: Giant Belizean Anteater of Death
The Anteater of Death. It exists, but it's a mystery novel. "But if Lucy, the pregnant Giant Anteater from Belize, didn’t kill the man found dead in her enclosure, who did? California zookeeper Teddy Bentley must find the real murderer before her furry friend is shipped off to another zoo in disgrace. Then another human bites the dust, the monkeys riot, and the wolves go nuts."

Down and out in San Ignacio Town, Belize
Located approx 10 miles from the Guatemalan border, San Ignacio and it’s across the river neighbor, Santa Elena make up the majority population of the Cayo district, Belize’s most historical district. Hot spots such as Tikal (2 hrs), Actun Tunichil Muknal (ATM, 1.5 hrs) and various eco-tourism have made San Ignacio a must see destination for anyone coming to Belize. Granted they can steal themselves away from the coast for a couple days. I would recommend 3-4 days here to really take advantage of the abundance of excursions, tours, and wanderings. A sample of what can be had here is below. Barton Cave Creek- canoeing through a couple of the local rivers. Mountain Pine Ridge- Bumpy ride showing off a cave, waterfall and relaxing secluded swimming spot. Actun Tunichil Muknal or ATM Tikal Tour- See the famous Guatemalan Mayan Ruin Spanish Lookout- Mennonite Village- yes, there is a thriving Mennonite community in Belize. Horseback riding Birdseeing tours. Even though Belize can aptly be described as 3rd world, the tour prices definitely are not. Expect to pay upwards of $50 to $125 per person for most of the tours around here. You need to do some bargaining or vie for group discounting to save here. There are also tour alternatives to see out- see below info box.

April 3, 2012

The San Pedro Sun

Police Constable Jose Valerio Shot in Caye Caulker
A police officer attached to the Caye Caulker Police Station was shot shortly after 5PM today Monday, April 1st. was shot by a civilian who remains at large. According to multiple police sources, Valerio was shot in the head in the Bahia del Sol area in the southern part of the village near the airstrip. Information is still sketchy at this time but The San Pedro Sun understands that sometime last night, a male person was being detained for having a firearm. The person, while being taken to the station, managed to escape. It appears that while the police in Caye Caulker were on a man hunt for the person, Valerio was shot by the same person they were searching for. A seriously injured Valerio was airlifted to Belize City where he remains hospitalized.

Organic Soap on the San Pedro Market
There is a new organic soap on the San Pedro market. The organic soap is in a powder form and is being sold by Mr. Jose Nájera. The elder citizen has been selling his products in an effort to generate an income to offset his ongoing medical expenses. The organic product originates from the Quillaja saponaria plant, also known as the soap bark tree or Soapbark which is endemic to the warm temperatures of Chile and Paraguay. Nájera explained that the product was imported after he obtained the all-clear from the Belize Agriculture Health Authority (BAHA). The plant, which is considered non-toxic, has great pharmaceutical properties but in its organic state, can be used for bathing or for washing clothes. Nájera says that in its organic state his product can be used externally to reduce excess skin oil and dandruff. The product comes neatly wrapped in paper and sold in units of two 15-gram packs marketed in a brown paper bag. The bag is sold for $10. Before using, the soap will take a few minutes of perpetration. The product will have to be dissolved in water and put to boil. Once the water has come to a boil, it can be used for bathing. Nájera explained that the water can also be used to wash clothes; perfect to remove bad odor and stains from clothes without compromising the color.

Wilmer Cartajena Reported Missing in San Pedro
Police on Ambergris Caye are asking for public assistance in locating an islander. 27 year old Wilmer Cartajena, also known as Chix, went missing on March 24th. Cartajena, who lives in the Basil Jones area located some 12 miles north of San Pedro Town, was reported missing by his brother Oscar Cartajena on Sunday April 1st. According to San Pedro Police, Cartajena was last seen on March 24th sometime between 9:30 and 10AM on the said date in the Boca del Rio area of San Pedro Town. Cartajena was seen near the bridge in a white boat along with four males of dark complexion, heading in a northerly direction along the eastern coastline of Ambergris Caye. He was last seen wearing a white T-shit, short pants and black Costa del Mar sunshades. Police say Cartajena has three distinguishing tattoos; one on the right side of the neck with the name “Gloria,” another on his back with the word “Angel” and a third on his right elbow with this nickname “Chix”. Cartajena is described as being Hispanic of fair complexion, short black hair, slim built with medium height and brown eyes.

PADI 2012 Member Forum held in San Pedro
The Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI), held the first of what will be a yearly Member Forum on Thursday March 29th at the SunBreeze Hotel Conference room in San Pedro. The meeting started at 7pm and saw the participation of over 65 PADI professionals. The reason for the forum was to help PADI professionals to not only stay up-to-date as a PADI member, but also to provide PADI Pros with tips to enhance their business and educational programs. Robert Sievens, Regional Manager for PADI Latin America, Course Director and Examiner with PADI spoke of the forum. “Tonight we are having what we call a PADI Member Forum, a member forum is an opportunity for professionals in Belize, especially here in San Pedro, to come over and listen to the new products that PADI has launched for this calendar year. A portion of our program this evening is on Risk Management and how to lessen risks as you move into diving with your customers and students. We also have a section that will deal with the standards, to make certain that everyone is on par with what they’re doing. As PADI Professionals we have standards within our organization, and our members are supposed to stay within those lines.”

Ambergris Today

Holiday Hotel Inaugurates Caprice Restaurant & Bar
The San Pedro Holiday Hotel officially repoened its restaurant and bar under the new name Caprice; giving the establishment a new look. Classy Chic comes to mind when you step into Caprice; with a long and elegant bar, four different lounge areas, a waterfall wall, and the large deck converted into the restaurant dining area, the establishment now gives off more of a boutique-hotel feeling. A very impressive makeover, we must say! Celi's Restaurant has now become an elegant outdoor dining experience, known as Caprice, with a shaded outdoor deck with mood lighting for the evenings. It's menu has been tweaked, so you have to try out the new classy joint in town. Renovations at the San Pedro Holiday Hotel also include upgrades to their rooms and a swimming pool to come in the near future. Lisa Guerrero commented that the renovations are a breath of fresh air for the long-standing iconing hotel in downtown San Pedro, as much had not changed in a long time.

San Pedro High Making Sports History
San Pedro High is on a roll and making sports history. Sports teams of the High School are in a lucky streak; first the SPHS Softball team became Regional Champions, then they captured the title of National Softball Champions (a first in history for the school) and this past Friday, March 30, 2012, the SPHS Track and Field team became the Regional Champions in the NSTA Regional Track and Field Tournament, another Big First for SPHS! The San Pedro High School Track and Field team traveled to Corozal Town to participate in the NSTA Regional Track and Field Tournament. Members of the team partook in events such as relays, long-distance, sprints, discus throw and shot put throws to name a few. At the end of the day, SPHS athletes captured 27 gold, 30 silver and 19 bronze medals for a total of 76 medals, almost double of what was obtained last year. The team also captured first place in this tournament for the first time ever in the history of San Pedro High. Congratulations to the team members of the San Pedro High School Track and Field Team and to the coaches! Go SPHS!!!

SP Cancer Society Holds “Hair Day”
Founding members of the San Pedro Cancer Society got together at Mar De Colores beauty salon on Friday, March 23, 2012, to Go Bald, Go Strong and shaved off their hair in show of support for cancer patients and create awareness for their campaign during Cancer Awareness Month. And to show how serious and committed to their cause and wanted others to join them, this past Saturday, March 31, 2012, the group held an awareness campaign called “Hair Day”. For “Hair Day” residents were asked to either shave their hair or streak a lock of hair pink or purple to show support for cancer patients. The event took place at Central Park where massages were also being offered by Kristy Gonzalezof Escape Spa at $1.00 per minute; all proceeds went to the Cancer Society. A total of $812.00 was raised on Saturday ($650 from the hair streaking and massages and $162.00 from pastries and beverages sold). The San Pedro Cancer Society would like to thank all the persons who came out to streak their hair in support of cancer patients, got a massage and bought pastries. Much thanks to Carlos Barrientos of Mar de Colores, and newly elected Town Councilor, for generously donating his services for hair dying, equipment, as well as to Kristy Gonzalez for donating her time and massage services towards the Cancer Society’s cause.

Portraits for Charity to Benefit Children’s Charities
Starting this April, local artist Chris Emmanuel (Chris) will donate one oil portrait of a child or animal (12”x16”) each month. In exchange, the person commissioning the art work will support a registered children’s charity by donating a minimum $150. Chris says, “I’m glad for this opportunity to give back to the children of Belize; after all it’s the little ones that carry our legacy forward”. Requirements: Chris says that the person commissioning the work must live in San Pedro and must allow the artwork to be displayed at an exhibit, if requested, at the end of the year. All children’s charity receipts will be on display beside the portraits at the exhibition. *Please submit your name, a photo to be painted and contribution amount to Chris Emmanuel’s gallery in Sunbreeze Hotel by the 15th of the month.

PHOTO: Sea Turtle Spotting at Hol Chan
Easter break is almost here and the island of Ambergris Caye is already teeming with Spring breakers and folks from the mainland who are flocking in search of sun, sea and sand! One of the hotspots along the Great Barrier Reef is the Hol Chan Marine Reserve that is packed to capacity these days. Friendly residents of the reserve are these two sea turtles that are not shy and come curiously close to the skiffs to say "Hello" to visitors of the park. Here's wishing a Happy Easter Break to everyone who visits San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize - La Isla Bonita! -

Alejandra Hackson Crowned Miss Isla Bonita Elementary
Four lovely candidates did a spectacular job at putting on a great show this past Saturday, March 31, 2012, at this year's Miss Isla Bonita Elementary Pageant. At the end of the fundraiser show that took place at the R. Angel Nuñez Auditorium, Alejandra Hackson, won the title of the new Miss Isla Bonita Elementary. The pageant was a popularity fundraising competition and each candidate has been working hard, together with their classes, to raise money for improvements to the Isla Bonita playground and lunch area. The girl with the most funds at the end of the evening was crowned the new queen of the school. The four contestants were Caroline Sersland, Joyce Martinez, Martha Alica Vasquez, Alejandra Hackson. Outgoing Queen Grace Brown was on hand to crown the new Miss Isla Bonita Elementary, Alejandra Hackson who raised over $7,000 for the school. Each contestant won great prizes donated by the business community including some pampering by Kristi Gonzalez of Escape Spa just before pageant night.

PHOTO: The Rate Of Development In Ambergris Caye
This is a delightful photo taken by Mr. Al Felly of Madison Wisconsin taken in the 1970’s during one of his annual visits to San Pedro to assist in his San Pedro High School project. Talk about a new look and much development for San Pedro. In the far right you can see part of the San Pedro Roman Catholic School with its huge empty yard full of grass and Maestro Reyes’s home in the school yard. George Kumul’s house remains intact and is probably San Pedro’s most original building. The little building was once Maya Airline’s office located on private land which today would be the middle of the street. Then there is no more- no Sunbreeze Hotel, no Tropic Air Office, No Ancona Building with the many offices and businesses. Look at the photo below taken in 2006 and see the massive rate of development. Let the photos talk for themselves. Note: The High School Students were awaiting the arrival of Al Felly, San Pedro High School’s biggest benefactor ever.

Misc Belizean Sources

Mother's Day Contest at Belmopan City Online
Would you like to get your mother free maid cleaning for a month? Belmopan City Online is doing another contest. All you need to do is nominate your mother by telling them why she deserves it. That shouldn't be too hard. The cleaning is provided by Happy Maids. Good luck to all.

Summer Solstice at Caracol on June 20th
If you missed the Vernal Equinox camping trip at Caracol, then you can do the Summer Equinox camping trip on June 20th. Link goes to the FB event. "The follow up to the Vernal Equinox, this is another chance for an overnight to Caracol, the largest Maya site in Belize."

PHOTOS: Palm Sunday in Benque Veijo del Carmen
Check out the pictures from Palm Sunday in Benque. Nice! "Thank to Mr. Subrata Basu, Peace Corp Volunteer at the Special Unit Office at the Town Hall, for such vivace documentation we thank you for sharing images."

VIDEO: TAS Belize's Tell A Story Thursday episode 4
They interview the married team of Richard and Heitha Beane in this edition of Tell A Story! "Mervin Budram - Host of Tell A Story Thursday - Asked Richard & Heitha Beane of Belize Internet Marketing questions relating to being successful in business. Heitha states, 'You've got to love your product, or at least act like you love it.'"

Channel 7

Last week, 7News told you about the failed election petition by the People's United Party on behalf of Yolanda Schakron. We also reported the impending application for another petition on behalf of her brother, Martin Galvez, which has also been filed against the Lake I Area Rep., Mark King. Well tonight, the news is that another application was brought before the courts by the People's United Party. This is on behalf of the PUP Standard Bearer, David Craig, against the duly sworn-in Area Representative for the Albert Division, Herman Longsworth. Remember that construction being done on the Marion Jones Sporting Complex? Well, the honourable Longsworth is the one who got the contract to build it.

A Belize City man was shot early Sunday morning inside his home. According to police, around 3:50am on Sunday, 35 year old Michael Usher better known as Pama was inside his home on Antelope Street extension, when a man entered through the front door and fired a shot at him. The shot caught Usher in the left side of his head beside his left eye. He was rushed to the KHMH where he was treated and later released today. He didn't want to comment when we visited the area today.

A man was also shot in Corozal Town this weekend. It happened early on Sunday morning at a few minutes to one, when 41 year old Guilermor Briceno was shot during what looks like an attempted robbery. Briceno was getting out of his car when he was held up by three men. One of them held him at gunpoint and demanded money and jewelry. He didn't have any and shouted for help which was when the gunman shot him several times, twice to his hip, and four times to his feet. Police responded and found him lying on the street next to his car. Police found one expended shell and have detained three men for questioning.

Every day, tens of thousands of Belizeans rely on public transport, particularly those who have to work or go to school in one municipality, but live somewhere else. And, on Friday night, a group of those road-weary travelers got a hellish surprise on a westbound Shaw's Bus. Their bus was held up by armed men - who weren't afraid to use their weapons. Monica Bodden found out more from the conductor: Monica Bodden reporting On Friday night this Shaw bus left Belize City around 8:45 en route to San Ignacio Town - but while making their way pass Hattieville, they were held up at gunpoint by two armed robbers. The bus was loaded with passengers, luckily no one was hurt.

21 year-old Percival Blancaneaux, a resident of Taylor's Alley is currently on remand after he was arraigned in Magistrate's Court today. It was alleged that on January 24, he and another man invaded the home of Esmeralda Gladstonbury, located in an area on the Northern Highway known as Old Well Road. Glastonbury reported to police that about 4:00 a.m. on that date, she was at her home sleeping along with her husband and son. She awoke to the sounds of someone breaking in, and that's when she saw two men were inside the house. Both men held them hostage at knife-point, tied them up and then cleaned out their house of about 18 thousand dollars in electronics and other personal items, including her red Isuzu Rodeo which they used to get away with. That vehicle was eventually recovered on the Burrell Boom Road.

32-year-old Dean Crawford, who worked as a prison officer until last year, was convicted of drug trafficking in Magistrate's Court today. It was alleged that on October 2, 2011 he tried passed two bags of weed in to the prison, but he was caught in the act. In the trial, Prison Officer Raynard Valencio testified that initially, nothing incriminating was found on any of the workers during the routine check on that day, a check which included Crawford as well. Valencio said that after he moved off, a piece of marijuana fell out of Crawford's jacket pocket and that made them become suspicious. Crawford was then taken into a room where a thorough search was done on him, and they ordered him to take off his work boots.

You will remember 11 year-old Janae Matute - whom we featured on this newscast in 2010. She was born with cerebral palsy, and receied the biggest malpractice award of a little over 2.6 million dollars from the Supreme Court in November 2010. Her mother, Georgia Matute was awarded with just under six hundred thousand dollars. Justice Awich found that the doctor, Raju Meenavalli, acted negligently when he calculated Georgia Matute's due date, which caused Janae to be born pre-term, and caused her to develop complications. Well, on the last day of the sitting of the March Sessions of the Court of Appeal, Doctor Raju Meenavalli appealed the decision; he was represented by attorney Godfrey Smith. Smith appealed Justice Awich's decision on the grounds that there was not a full-proof scientific method to calculate the exact time in the gestation period, and that the trial judge's conclusion does not have the evidence to support it.

When the UDP took over City Hall in 2006 - it marked the end of a long drought, politically - and the council had to hire "Good UDP's" from all over the city. Well now, things have changed, and the new UDP City Council has decided to cut the fat - even if it means laying off those who may be called "good UDP's". 7news has confirmed from the council that it has laid off 25 employees - after a review by the managers of each section. A senior source told us that the city administrators instructed managers to determine which posts are redundant, and which workers are not working up to par. The managers came up with a list of 25 and those persons have been laid off. The employees are saying that they have been retrenched, many of them by their own party.

A Belize City fisherman lost ten thousand dollars in a Cayo land swindle. 33 year old Jeffery Murillo thought he was buying a piece of land form Leiticia Jones, but now he's told police that he got played, big time! He says Jones took him and his brother to the Lands Department in San Igancio where they met one Mr. Bautista, an employee. He prepared all the transactions along with Jones and a Justice of the Peace named Tut. Murillo says he paid the money to Leticia Jones, and was told that that in 2 weeks, the lease would be in his name and would be mailed to him. But 2 weeks passed, and he got nothing. So, he went to the Lands Department in Belmopan, where he was told that the land that was sold to him actually belongs to the DFC. They told him to go back to the Lands Department in San Ignacio - but, again, he had no luck. He says that he's also had no luck getting in contact with Leticia Jones who doesn't asnwer her phone.

2 Months ago, 7News told you about the Fort Point Facelift which was launched under the Sustainable Tourism Development umbrella. This IDB funded tourism project is being called the "Belize City Fort Point Pedestrian Walk". It has a budget of just over 5 million dollars and it is supposed to deliver a comprehensive renewal of North Front Street from the bridge-foot to the Memorial Park and Tourism Village. Work has been taking place at the Memorial Park for about a month now, and all the old elements of the park have been demolished. If you are concerned that they've been destroyed, don't worry the experts assured 7News today that the basic footprint is still there. It's just part of the renewal process.

Whether you call him Jamal Barrow, or Moshe Levy Ben-David, - the man most of us know as Shyne has been an enigma since his return to Belize in October of 2009. And in those two and a half years, he hasn't earned a lot of fans here in Belize - in fact, it's safe to say, he's lost most of them. We can't say for sure what that is attributable to - but certainly, his dress and religion - which most people would call "strange" - have contributed to it. And certainly, the concert debacle in March of 2011 - when no guest artist arrived - made a skeptical public downright hostile. Add to that, the fact that he hasn't had any kind of popular success since coming out of jail - and Shyne is in a real doghouse. And you might be surprised to know that no one is more keenly aware of that than Shyne himself. He knows he's got a lot of making up to do with a public that really couldn't care less.

There is breaking news at this hour that a police-man has been shot in Caye Caulker. It happened after 5:00 this evening - near the Village airstrip. Apparently there was a misunderstanding with a civilian - over a firearm. We're not sure quite what led to it - but the civilian ended up shooting the policeman. He is reportedly seriously injured and has been flown into the city. We'll have more eons this tomorrow.

Channel 5

Breaking News: Cop shot in La Isla Carinosa

There’s breaking news tonight from La Isla Carinosa. Before six o’clock this evening a police officer was allegedly shot in the head and is being airlifted to the K.H.M.H. Only last Thursday, a cop shot at a resident in the Black Neighborhood of the island. Tyson Williams was rushed to the hospital and has disputed ...

P.U.P. gets Election petition against U.D.P. Longsworth

It has been less than a month since the passionately contested March seventh 2012 elections were held. But the atmosphere is still highly charged and the courtroom litigation left in its wake is potentially explosive. Yolanda Schakron failed in her attempt to have an election petition heard last Friday, but the People’s United Party was ...

Over $2 Million spent on incomplete Marion Jones Fence

Herman Longsworth and David Craig were not present at this morning’s Supreme Court hearing. Longsworth’s attorney Michael Young conceded that the matter must now be trashed out in court. Young argued that Longsworth’s contract was successfully completed on April eleventh 2011 with a liability period of six months that expired on October twenty-fourth, 2011. Young ...

City Council fires redundant workers

There are mass firings underway at City Hall. Less than a month after taking office, Mayor Darrell Bradley says he has to trim the excess fat from among Council employees. At least twenty-two employees are losing their jobs in the wave of firings that started Friday and continued today and more may be on the ...

Orange Walk Town Council also trims its numbers

Up north, the Orange Walk Mayor, Kevin Bernard says several irregularities have been uncovered since his team took office. Today, it was revealed that shortly before the March seventh elections, fifteen employees signed three year contracts, granted by the previous mayor. The contracts would cost the council five hundred and ninety-one thousand dollars in salaries, ...

Viewers get their say in National Online Poll

The recent clash between the Gang Suppression Unit and gang members in Taylors Alley is only one of several incidents that have led to allegations of abuse of power by the GSU. We asked our viewers if they think the use of force on the gangs by the GSU is justified. Sixty-seven percent of voters ...

Breaking News: PC John Valerio shot

As we told you earlier in the newscast, a police officer was shot before six o’clock at Caye Caulker. According to early reports, PC John Valerio was ambushed by an angry resident. He has been transported to Belize City’s Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital. A team of investigators from San Pedro have been deployed to the ...

Government of Belize and Dr. Raju must pay millions in damages

A landmark case was recently appealed and it will put the government out of pocket at least two million dollars. The suit for medical malpractice and negligence was brought against Dr. Raju Meenavalli and the government for substantial damages. In March 2010, Supreme Court Justice, Samuel Lungole Awich awarded about two point six million dollars ...

Girl with dangerous tumor on her face getting surgery

There is an update tonight on twelve year old Catarina Ishim, who left for the East Tennessee Children’s Hospital in Knoxville, last Friday. It’s the first trip overseas for the San Pablo, Toledo young girl who will be getting surgery for an aggressive cancerous tumor called leiomyosarcoma. Through correspondence with her hosts in the U.S, ...

St. Francis Xavier Parish Hall burglarized

In recent days, the YWCA and the ITVET were jacked by thieves. At the ITVET three University students were robbed in their classrooms by three thieves posing as students. And to show that few are spared, the St. Francis Xavier Parish in Corozal Town is the latest target of burglars. It was no All Fool’s ...

Briceño shot several times by robbers

Also in Corozal Town, a businessman was ambushed and shot by robbers near his home on Park Street South. Corozal police have confirmed that forty-one year old Guillermo Briceño, owner of Champion Pawn Shop, arrived home at around twelve-thirty on Sunday morning and as he exited his vehicle, he was accosted by three Hispanic men. ...

Belize City resident survives shooting incident

There was also a shooting in the city. At around three-thirty on Saturday morning, thirty-five year old Michael “Pama” Usher was at his home on Antelope Street Extension, when a man entered and fired a single shot hitting Usher to the left side of his head next to his left eye. Usher is hospitalized at ...

He said he didn’t beat toddler; he fell

Twenty-year old Carldeen Lawrence was convicted of Grievous Harm last Thursday reportedly because he beat his two year old stepdaughter and fractured her leg on June eighth, 2011. Lawrence chose to remain silent during trial and simply asked the court for leniency in mitigation. But today, he decided to speak out and came to our ...

Another person busted for Aggravated Burglary

Taylor’s Alley resident, twenty year old Percival Blancaneaux Junior is tonight behind bars on a charge of Aggravated Burglary. The charge is in connection with a home invasion on the Northern Highway that occurred on January twenty-fourth, but police captured Blancaneaux over the past weekend. The victim, forty-eight year old Esmeralda Glastonbury, reports that she ...

7 years for repeat offender burglar

Also in court, Sterling Williams who was caught breaking into the home of his neighbor, thirty-five year Shana Tillett was today convicted of Burglary. Williams stole assorted children’s clothing, a gold chain valued at three hundred dollars as well as a nine hundred dollar cell phone. He was caught inside the house on Banak Street ...

2 Belize City teens missing

Two Belize City teens went missing on Friday; their families spent the entire weekend trying to find them, but had no luck. So today they came to our studios to ask the public for assistance in locating fourteen year old Aaliyah Lanza and fifteen year old Paula Gentle. According to Lattie Lamb, who is Gentle’s ...

Full Sporting Events with James Adderley

Good Evening, I’m James Adderley and this is Sports Monday.   Week 8 in the Premier Leagues of Belize saw undefeated Police United play host to the Belmopan bandits inside the MCC Saturday night in a bid to keep the clean sheet intact. Folks we’re only 6 minutes in when the Police provides positive proof ...


The annual Jipi Japa Basket Competition Award Ceremony took place at the House of Weavers in Punta Gorda Town on Saturday. Artisans who participated in the competition were awarded by Building the People Movement, a Toledo based, non-governmental organization primarily focused on...

Corozal Police is investigating a shooting incident yesterday morning that has left a man hospitalized. Love News understands that around 12:35 yesterday morning, 41 year old Guillermo Briceno, businessman from number one Park Street South Corozal Town got home. As Briceno ...

Police in San Ignacio town are looking for a Cayo woman on suspicion of obtaining property by deception. Leticia Jones is wanted by police following a land transaction which appears to have been fraudulently completed. According to thirty three year old Jeffrey Murrillo, he...

A common law couple, 36-year-old Delroy Barrow and 36-year-old Carolyn Garoy, charged with drug trafficking for 50 grams of crack cocaine, were each fined $10,000.00 after they were found guilty of the charge. Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith who imposed the fines ordered them to...

The Marion Jones Stadium has undergone a number of phases of renovations, and its attractive fence, which was first started in 2009, is now the grounds of a court battle to determine whether a man’s electoral seat is on the line or not. Herman Longsworth, the UDP Albert Are...

Mexico ex-President Miguel de la Madrid dies at 77
Former Mexican President Miguel de la Madrid has died at the age of 77 after a long illness. Mr de la Madrid led Mexico for six years from 1982-1988, introducing free-market reforms in response to a severe economic crisis. But his administration was criticised for its response ...


Owners of Butchy's Lounge Held Up At Gunpoint
It was not reported in the police sitrep and Oragne Walk Police are being tight lipped about the situation but CTV3 News understands that the owners of Butchy’s Lounge, Noel Grajales and his wife Yaninie Grajales were held up at gunpoint yesterday around 5:00 in the morning. The couple, we understand, had just arrived home after closing the establishment when they were approached by a male individual armed with what is believed to be a 16 gauge shotgun. The armed robber pointed the firearm at Grajales’ wife demanding that the couple hand over the money. The assailant’s action is what triggered Noel to react and before he knew it he was struggling with his attacker. Somehow Grajales managed to take away the firearm from the burglar after which he placed a beating on him. When we spoke to Grajales today he told us that he believes the robbery gone bad was staged. So far police have one person detained. We understand that the individual is a former employee of Grajales.

Another Firearm Confiscated By Corozal Police
On March 28th Corozal Police was able to remove one 9mm pistol with 14 rounds and one .357 revolver with 6 rounds off the streets of Corozal and tonight word is that another weapon has been confiscated by the authorities of that community. On Saturday the department’s quick response team searched an abandoned lot located in an area know as Skeleton Town where they found a black plastic bag containing a black .380 ACP handgun with no serial number, three .30 rounds and one 9mm round. No one was in the area at the time of the incident and both the firearm and ammunition were labeled as found property.

Corozal Police Investigate the Death of Nine Year Old
Corozal police are tonight investigating what exactly caused the death of a nine year old student from the Village of Patchakan. Details are still sketchy but CTV3 News understands that around 6:00 Saturday evening a group of children were playing hide and seek. One of the children, 9 year old Christian Dorantes, climbed into the ceiling of the house in order to hide from his friends. It is believed that the material with which the ceiling was made out of could not hold the child’s weight and came crumbling down. As a result of the fall Dorantes received head and body injuries and was transported to the Corozal Community Hospital and later transferred to the Karl Huesner Memorial Hospital where he passed away yesterday. When we spoke to Corozal Police this evening we were informed that they were notified about the incident until after the child’s death. We understand that an investigation has been launched and authorities are now awaiting the results of a post mortem examination to determine the exact cause of death. We will have more on this story in tomorrow’s newscast.

Robbery Victim Shot Six Times
A man from the Corozal District is lucky to be alive tonight after he was shot by robbers six times. Reports are that around 12:35 yesterday morning 41 year old businessman Guillermo Briceno of # 1 Park Street Corozal Town had just arrived home and was exiting his Saturn SUV when he was approached by three male individuals described as being of Hispanic decent. One of the men pointed what is believed to be a black handgun at Briceno and demanded that he hand over all his money and jewelry. But Briceno was unable to provide what the men were asking for and fearing for his life he shouted for assistance. At that instance the individual holding the weapon fired a barrage of bullets at Briceno hitting him three times on the right hip, 2 on the right foot and once on the right toe. The men then made good their escape leaving an injured Briceno behind. When police arrived at the scene of the incident they found Briceno lying in his yard with gunshot wounds to the lower part of his body.


Passenger bus held up at gunpoint
It was a terrifying ride on the Western Highway on Friday night for a group of commuters as a passenger bus was held up and robbed at gunpoint. The incident involved a Shaw’s Bus that had departed Belize City just before nine o’clock on Friday night enroute to San Ignacio town. The owner of the [...]

Orange Walk businessman injured in shooting incident
A businessman remains hospitalized following a shooting incident on Sunday. Reporter Arturo Cantun has the details.

New cook book for use in schools feeding programs
A cook book for school’s feeding programs is being implemented in the Toledo district. Our Toledo correspondent Paul Mahung reports.

Belize City man on remand for aggravated assault
21-year-old Percival Blancaneaux Jr., one of two persons who allegedly broke into the house 48-year-old Esmeralda Glastonbury, was charged with aggravated assault when he appeared in court today. Blancaneaux pleaded not guilty to the charge. The prosecutor objected to bail on the grounds that the offence has become prevalent, that the penalty is no less [...]

Former prison officer found guilty of drug trafficking
32-year-old Dean Crawford, a former prison officer charged with drug trafficking dor 100 grams of cannabis was fined $10,000.00 after he was found guilty to the charge. Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith who imposed the fine, ordered Crawford to pay $3,000.00 forthwith and the balance by January 2013. If Crawford defaults on payment of the [...]

Couple found guilty of drug trafficking
A common law couple, 36-year-old Delroy Barrow and 36-year-old Carolyn Garoy, charged with drug trafficking for 50 grams of crack cocaine, were each fined $10,000.00 after they were found guilty of the charge. Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith who imposed the fines ordered them to pay $2,000.00 forthwith and the balance by January 2013. If [...]

Supreme Court approves application for election petition
The Marion Jones Stadium has undergone a number of phases of renovations, and its attractive fence, which was first started in 2009, is now the grounds of a court battle to determine whether a man’s electoral seat is on the line or not. Herman Longsworth, the UDP Albert Area Representative who beat the PUP’s David [...]

The Reporter

Disqualified Candidates?
Three weeks into the government’s second term in office, four elected officials find themselves in the proverbial hot seat, as both major political parties have filed election petitions in the Supreme Court in an attempt to discredit the legitimacy of their ascension to public office. The PUP filed an application for leave to bring an election petition against UDP Lake Independence Area Representative Hon. Mark King on Wednesday, March 28; and the next day filed a similar application against UDP Albert Area Representative Hon. Herman Longsworth. On the same day the UDP countered by also filing an application for leave to bring an election petition against PUP Freetown Area Representative Hon. Francis Fonseca. Attorney Michael Young told The Reporter that the UDP’s application is for bribery and attempted bribery and that the application named two of Fonseca’s agents: Albert Vaughan and Hugh Wellin Bodden. The PUP also plans to file more election petitions in the days ahead.

Citco scammed out of almost $70,000, audit report reveals
A Belize City Council’s audit report completed on March 22, and entitled Audit Inspection-Payroll, shows that former payroll clerk, Sherlene Sabal, scammed the council out of almost $70,000. Belize City Mayor Darrel Bradley said he intends to collect every penny back from Sabal. Bradley also told the media this week that the Council will take possession of Sabal’s two cars, and it’s very likely that CitCo will seize a property that Sabal’s family owns. The Council may also press criminal charges. City Administrator Candice Burke ordered the audit inspection because, as the reports says, “for allegations in respect to irregularities in the payroll.”

Boy 10, shoots sister, 6, in Valley of Peace tragedy
Belmopan Police have detained the parents of 6-year-old Lucy Velerio Cano, who died after being shot by her 11-year-old brother in their Valley of Peace home. Lucy died of a gunshot wound to her upper right shoulder as her parents rushed her to the Western Regional Hospital in Belmopan around 6:30 Monday morning, March 26th. Police initial investigations revealed that Lucy and her brother were playing with an unlicensed 12-gauge pump-action shotgun, which went off accidentally. Their aunt, Rosalia Cano, has been given legal custody of the children.

Robber dies from stab wound. Hot dog woman blameless!
Solomon Earl Gabourel, 34, of Jasmine Street, died at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital at 5:55 Sunday morning, March 25, after he allegedly robbed a woman selling hotdog near the Battlefield Park in downtown Belize City. The vendor’s female relative stabbed him with a small 13-inch machete. Gabourel’s victim was working along with her sister and aunt, when Gabourel, described as a tall man with shoulder-length “dreadlocks”, approached the women and punched one of them. He then pointed a sharp object at one of the other women’s belly and yanked away her apron, containing nearly $800 and a cellphone worth $240.

Brothers accused of grenade murder freed after a remand lasting 4
Four years after the first grenade to hit Belize City streets killed 16-year-old Darren Trapp, the two men charged for his murder left the Supreme Court as free men. Last Friday Supreme Court Judge Justice Adolph Lucas instructed a 12-member jury to return a verdict of “not guilty” for brothers Akeem “Baby” Smith and Kareem “Flash” Smith, after their attorneys, Sharon Pitts Robateau and Ellis Arnold, made the no case submission at the close of the prosecution’s case.

Japan funds Samuel Haynes Institute expansion
The Samuel Haynes Institute of Excellence is to expand its facilities through a US$111,635 grant provided by the government of Japan. His Excellency Counsellor Hiroshi Mitsuya, of the Embassy of Japan, signed an agreement to fund the expansion project with Mrs. Barbara Elrington of the Pickstock Development Association at the Institute in Belize City on Monday afternoon, March 26. Counsellor Mitsuya said that Japan applauds the success the Institute has had in helping under-privileged and at-risk young people to get an education, in helping single mothers acquire job skills and so saw the institute as a project well worthy of funding.

Gas up to $12.12 a gallon!
Prime Minister Hon. Dean Barrow’s pre-election promise of cheaper fuel seems to be slow in coming, as fuel prices rose again on Wednesday, March 28, with the new price for premium gasoline now set at $12.12 per gallon, an increase of 49 cents. The price for regular gasoline is now $11.81 per gallon, a 50-cent hike; and diesel went up 20 cents to $10.90 per gallon.

U.S. State Official, Maria Otero visits
The United States is particularly pleased with the free, fair and democratic manner in which Belize conducted its recent general elections, which are a cornerstone of a healthy democracy. This was the message from U.S. President Barack Obama which U.S. Under Secretary of State Maria Otero communicated to the government and people of Belize at a press conference at the House of Culture in Belize City on Thursday, March 29. Otero is Under Secretary for Civilian Security, Democracy and Human Rights, and she also coordinates U.S. foreign policy and relations with the rest of the world with regard to these issues as well as refugees, trafficking in persons, rule of law counter-narcotics, crisis prevention and response, global criminal justice and countering violent extremism.

Punta Gorda to share projects for streets and Town Hall Center
The Punta Gorda Town Hall and the adjacent administration building are to be repaired and renewed as part of Government’s $30 million Belize Municipal Development Project (BMDP). A contract for $425,150 for this project was signed in Punta Gorda Town last Thursday morning, March 22. The Punta Gorda project will begin in the next two weeks and will mark the official start of the Municipal Development Project countrywide. The long-awaited project will bring much needed infrastructure development to seven municipalities in Belize.

University of Belize sets the pace for sustainable resource management
Students of University of Belize joined UB scientists and their regional and international counterparts in charting the way forward for Belize’s natural resources to be managed in a sustainable manner. The symposium was held at the University of Belize Central Campus in Belmopan last Thursday and Friday, March 22-23. “Conservation through Cooperation: Practical Approaches for the Management of Natural Resources in Belize” was the theme for the symposium which was brought together by researchers, managers, students, government agencies and non-governmental organizations engaged in natural resource management.

Roaring Creek Grace Kennedy wins Cayo softball marathon
Roaring Creek Grace Kennedy has won the two-day softball marathon which launched the 2012 Cayo District Women’s Softball Competition at the Joan Garbutt Stadium in Esperanza over the weekend, March 24-25. As defending Cayo district champions, Roaring Creek Grace Kennedy, crushed the Esperanza Wolverines 10-0 in the 10th game of the tournament on Sunday, and 7-0 in the 11th game, the grand finale to win the marathon, a Pitcher Nikita Perez led the Esperanza Wolverines to a 5-2 upset of Roaring Creek in the second game on Sunday. Roaring Creek fought back out of the losers’ circle after winning their first game 7-1 in a six-inning duel with the up-to-then undefeated Camalote.

Lady Rebels win Belize City softball marathon
The Mirage Lady Rebels won the all-day softball marathon which launched the 2012 Belize City Women’s Softball Competition held under the auspices of the Belize Softball Federation at Roger’s Stadium last Sunday, March 25. Lady Rebels crushed last year’s champions, Belize Telemedia, 10-4 in the finals. Telemedia’s pitcher Elaine Flowers gave up no runs in the top of the first inning, and Erleen Belisle scored first for Telemedia in the bottom of the first. Lady Rebels soon tied the score 1-1 when pitcher Lanesha Jones scored in the top of the second, and Rebels jumped to a 6-1 lead when Marsha Stevens, Sharette Vernon, Lisa Jones, catcher Ashanti Anderson and Lanesha Jones scored in the top of the third inning.

UB men win 31st annual Relaython
The male students of the University of Belize won the 31st annual relaython from San Ignacio to Belize City on Sunday, March 23. Their victory broke a three year drought in which the female students won, running the shorter distance from the UB Belmopan campus. The men have won 17 times and the women have won 14. The men completed their 70-mile relay run in seven hours, passing the girls at mile 10, with Garett Bermudez having the best time of four minutes 49 seconds. Yserri Palacio was second in five minutes four seconds. Kaylon Young had the third best time: five minutes 50 seconds.

Oscar Quiros wins Junior Cross Country Classic
Oscar Quiros, formerly of Cayo Uprising Team and now riding unattached, won the 2012 Junior Cross Country Cycling Classic held under the auspices of the Belize Cycling Association. The race,from the San Jose Succotz ferry on the Western Highway to Belize City. was run on Sunday, March 25. Quiros clocked in at 3 hours, 50 minutes and 11 seconds for his 73-mile ride. He out-sprinted Aiden Juan of the Cayo High Road team, and Deezan Spence of the D&D cycling team to take the garland. With his victory Quiros won the $300 first prize and the winner’s trophy from the Belize Cycling Association. Aiden Juan of the Cayo High Road team won the $200 second prize and a trophy as well as a $100 prize as the first Youth. Deezan Spence won a $100 third prize and a trophy from the Association.

The United Democratic Party this week announced that it is launching an election petition to protest the use of bribery on election day in the Freetown Division. Paying voters to vote is a common practice in Belize, on both sides of the political divide, but it is an illegal practice and the penalty for bribery is severe. Bringing an election petition which charges that bribery has been committed will focus the bright light of public attention on an area of election fraud which, though commonplace in Belize, is never acknowledged and seldom publicly discussed. The law, which is defined by the Representation of the People Act at Ch.6, is detailed and thorough in defining bribery. Any money donation amounting to more than $20.00 is considered a bribe.


Our Sojourn in San Ignacio - Day 3: Bikeless in Bullet Tree Falls and El Pilar
We decided to start the day with breakfast at Mr. Greedy's, where we'd eaten pizza the night before, as we noticed that the prices were a bit less than at Ko-Ox Han-Nah. We had delicious breakfast burritos, orange juice, and excellent coffee. The burrito was only $8.75 BZD (approximately $4.36 US), which included one large mug of coffee, a great deal. Our plan for today was to rent mountain bikes in Bullet Tree Falls, just a few miles from San Ignacio, and to ride up to El Pilar, an Archaeological Reserve and partially excavated Maya site, which we'd read had many hiking trails, excellent birding, and few tourists. Perfect! Our Lonely Planet guide suggested that mountain bikes could be rented at Cohune Palms River Cabanas to navigate the eight-mile gravel road to the site, and we thought that sounded like a perfect way to burn off some of the restaurant meals we'd been eating. So, we moved onto Plan B and asked Mike if he could take us up to El Pilar. At first he seemed a bit unsure, as his taxi was a small Geo that did not have 4WD, but I guess he figured he better give it a try as the fare would certainly be much better than he'd make in a day hanging out in San Ignacio with many other cabs competing for not many tourists. He quoted us a price of $50 US to drive us there, wait for us to hike and bird-watch, and drive us back to San Ignacio, so we decided to go for it. This ended up being a great decision as it was a very difficult slog up a messy, rocky road, and even on mountain bikes would have been a challenge. Had Plan A worked out, we might not have had any energy left for hiking after biking the mostly uphill, messy road, as it turned out. This photo does NOT do the road justice. Many portions were steeper, with deeper ruts and larger rocks. Mike really had to take it slowly and carefully in his little car, and he bottomed out on some of the worst parts. Fortunately for us, he made it to the top!

Very funny Belize Airport customs story
I was really grateful that the TJ Walker middle school kids had started our fundraiser off with a good chunk of change from their coin war, so I decided to make them a tacogirl style trophy. Red Fanta and tacos with a Belize Red Cross Sticker on the bottle as a reminder of where the money went. I was not able to get it done in time for the fundraiser due to the new tube of crazy glue tacoboy bought me was rock solid. I got some more glue the other day, finished the trophy and dropped it off for Deb and Dan Swanson at the Conch Shell Inn. They were on a day trip to Caye Caulker and leaving the following morning, so I never did get a chance to catch up with them to see what they thought of my crazy craft project. This morning I got a very funny email about their Belize airport customs adventure with my taco trophy. I have to tell you our adventure with your trophy. We have carry- on luggage only so I drank the Fanta so we could put it in the trophy. I had to take the taco off first and planned to re-glue it later. Then we got to the airport and they took the empty bottle away for some reason. Then I almost lost the foam taco. A security guy asked me if I was carrying a taco in my luggage. I had to explain that it was fake. At least we got the taco home and a picture. We will bring the picture to school. Again, it was nice to meet you. Thanks for all you are doing for the Red Cross. Sincerely, Dan and Deb Swanson I am not sure they found this quite as funny as tacoboy and I did but the Swanson were definitely good natured about it.

A Cenote, Chedraui, Felipe Carrillo Puerto and My Trip Back South to Belize
One of my favorite parts about visiting the Yucatan is the cenotes. Cenotes are sink holes in the limestone that exposes the fresh ground water underneath. They are part of a huge system of underground caves and rivers. They seem to be almost everywhere. And some are much better than others. (Interesting trivia fact: The Chicxulub Crater is located off the north Yucatan coast. It is thought to be the crater left from the giant meteor strike that wiped out the dinosaurs over 65 million years ago. Did you know that?) While camping on the beach at Xpu-Ha, we packed up for a day to visit a cenote and do a quick shopping trip in Tulum. Our camping neighbor, Ricardo, had scoped out all the area cenotes the day before and pointed up in the direction of the very best. The Garden of Eden cenote. It cost $50 pesos to enter. We were there early. A small group of divers was gearing up in the parking lot but we were the first ones in the water. This cenote is deep and crystal, crystal clear and surrounded by tropical flora. You can see straight down to the limestone bottom in what must be 30-40 feet of water.

FRESH BELIZE: Coastal village is an exotic paradise friendly to English and the dollar
Savvy travelers looking for sun, sand and culture off the beaten path should consider packing their bags and bikinis for a different, untouched paradise: Hopkins in Belize, a small village in a tiny country with a dynamic split personality. Home to seven distinct cultures living amicably side by side in a country the size of New Hampshire, Belize embodies numerous contradictions. It’s located in northern Central America, but locals speak English peppered with Creole slang. Though the country was granted independence from Great Britain in the early 1980s, a British sense of order remains, mixing with a laid-back vibe that comes standard with proximity to the tropics. The Stann Creek District, Belize’s coastline dotted with villages and towns, is also home to Hopkins Village, a hidden gem and cultural paradise. So whether you want to submerge yourself in the Western Hemisphere’s largest barrier reef, play Indiana Jones at an ancient Mayan ruin, stalk jaguars in the lush rain forest or lazily work on your tan on a deserted beach, Hopkins has you covered. Get there, before everyone else.

Actun Tunichil Muknal is the museum
Now listen very carefully. A wrong move on your part could cause an injury; and you are far from proper medical facilities. The guide, at the front of our single-file line of roughly 10 spelunking museum goers, gave very clear, and very precise instructions. I was right behind him, so there could be no misunderstandings... "With your left hand, grasp this edge of rock," as our guide patted the protuberance. Then, "Place your left foot here on this rock..." he said as he pointed the beam from his headlamp at a rock shimmering about one foot beneath the surface of the crisp clear water. "Then with your right foot stretch across to here," indicating the rounded point on a rock perched upon a submerged boulder, a few feet away. "And then shift your weight to your right foot as you pull yourself forward and grasp that larger boulder over there... like this..." as he quickly demonstrated, the splashing water sounding eery in the hollow sounding chamber. He then moved along further up the stream, deep within a cave, deep within the remote western jungle of Belize. But wait! Before you can go, turn around and tell the person directly behind you the instructions, and then send off a silent prayer for that unlucky one at the back of the line. A mistake here, in this "whisper down the lane" real life game, can cost you some skin or worse. "Actun Tunichil Muknal, or ATM, is one of the most well known ceremonial caves in the entire world. It has been voted by National Geographic to be the #1 sacred cave to visit, and is a big draw for tourism in Western Belize. Caves were considered to be very spiritual places to the ancient Maya. As an entrance to the underworld, the Mayans would often hold ceremony and prepare offerings to their Gods, and occasionally ritual sacrifice. Deep within the ATM cave is a cavernous series of dry chambers that hold the remains of hundreds of ceramic bowls, pots, and shards which have essentially calcified over the years by the natural drippings of limestone. Rather than remove the items, the government of Belize decided to leave them in their positions, and to make the cave, and its contents, the museum. Guides must also be certified as museum curators; and clean socks are packed into the cave to be worn when you reach the inner chambers."

International Sources

Founder speaks on importance of service
Bernard Amadei promised hired landscapers in Colorado 13 years ago that he would use engineering to help people in their homeland, Belize. To keep his promise, he founded Engineering Without Borders-USA. Today, the foundation has about 12,000 members spread throughout the world, Amadei said. Amadei presented on the importance of engineering in addressing international problems to an audience of about 150 University students at the Fiber Optics Auditorium on Busch campus. The audience gathered for the 28th annual Mason Welch Gross lecture, where the Class of 1962 presents their Presidential Public Service Award each year. Amadei, chosen to speak because the University student chapter of EWB-USA won the award in 2011, said he had told his landscapers he could use his engineering background to help improve conditions in Belize.

Waltzing at the Doomsday Ball: The Best of Joe Bageant
“I’m so damn average that what I write resonates with people”, Joe Bageant once told an interviewer in explaining how he had gained a global following for his essays published on the web. In 2004, at the age of 58, Joe sensed that the Internet could give him editorial freedom. Without gatekeepers, he began writing about what he was really thinking, and then submitted his essays to left-of-center websites. Joe Bageant died in March 2011, having written two books, and 78 essays that were posted on his own website and also on many other sites. The 25 essays reproduced in this book were first published on the web. I’ve selected them based on many emails from readers, web traffic counts, and specific suggestions from his online colleagues. They appear here as Joe wrote them, apart from copy-editing and light corrections agreed to between me and his book editor, Henry Rosenbloom, the publisher at Australia’s Scribe Publications. Always wanting to escape, he embarked on a life-long voyage of discovery that included living in a commune and on an Indian reservation, and, later in life, in Belize and in Mexico.

ALLEY CAT ALLY: Belize transforms town with its Humane Society
I was recently reconnected with the Hopkins Humane Society. I was so inspired by their accomplishments I thought I'd share their story. So, I'll stray from the alley cats theme to tell the story of how the Hopkins Humane Society came to be and how they've transformed their town - not just for the animals, but also for the people. At the end of 2007, my husband John and I were travelling from Mexico to Guatemala when we took a detour through Belize as a vacation from vet volunteering. We found a little town called Hopkins, which was, in essence, shacks scattered alongside a dirt road next to the beach. We rented a hut on stilts, a few metres from the ocean, with the plan to do nothing, but lay in hammocks, read and relax.

VIDEO: Turtle Time at Hol Chan
Sanjiv and Sunnie spend some time with Hol Chan marine residents, especially Mr. Sea Turtle

VIDEO: Exploring Shark Ray Alley with Nipa and Ayisha
Nipa and Ayisha snorkel with sharks and rays on the Belize Barrier Reef.

April 2, 2012

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The San Pedro Sun

Belize Lionfish Project holds Achievements Presentation
The Belize Lionfish Project held an Achievements Presentation on March 22nd at the San Pedro Lion’s Den. The ceremony was held to showcase the Belize Lionfish Project’s achievements, as well as to recognize the great job that San Pedro’s guides, fishermen and establishments have been doing in conquering the problem of the invasive lionfish. The event also launched the Belize Lionfish Project documentary on DVD. In attendance were Robbie Gonzalez of the San Pedro Tourist Guide Association, Miguel Alamilla of the Fisheries Department, Nadia Chacon and Linda Searle of ECOMAR, Leonel Requena of the Community Management of Protected Areas for Conservation Program, Nayari Diaz of Protected Area Conservation Trust and other guests.

Be Kind Belize Launches ‘Kindest Kid in San Pedro’ Award
Be Kind Belize was established in 2007 to provide humane education, promoting the belief that through respect, reverence and responsibility (the humane education three r’s) our community can become kinder and more caring towards each other, other living creatures and our planet. It is with this in mind that Be Kind Belize is delighted to announce the Kindest Kid in San Pedro Award 2012. All primary schools in San Pedro have been invited to nominate two Kindness Ambassadors to represent their school.

Misc Belizean Sources

San Jose Succotz Retains Best Marching Band In Belize Title
The San Jose Succotz Festival Drum Corps from Belize’s western Cayo district has successfully defended its title as the Best Marching Band in Belize at the annual Belize Bandfest held yesterday in Corozal Town. The Succotz Festival Drum Corps scored high points for choreography and music and barely beat out the Corozal Community College that had won the competition in 2010, but lost it in 2011 to Succotz. The usually serene town of Corozal at Belize’s northern border came alive with one of the biggest events in the country as thousands of Belizeans and tourists flooded the streets for the early-morning parade of bands preceding the competition. The 11 participating bands gathered in front of the bus terminal and then under the precision drumming, music and choreography that is now a signature of the event, marched through the principal streets of the town. Judging was conducted at the Santiago Ricalde stadium. The Corozal Community College Marching Band was voted the most popular marching band. Succotz Festival Drum Cops won the title of best uniformed marching band. The Holy Redeemer Marching Band won the drum line competition. In the drum corps category, Delille Academy Marching Band from Dangriga won first place and took home $4,000. as prize. They also took home a trophy and individual medals. First runner up was the Sarteneja United Drum Corps while the second runner up was the Holy Redeemer Marching Band.

PHOTOS: BNYCF East Cayo Qualification tournament
The Belize National Youth Chess Foundation held their East Cayo Qualification tournament this weekend. "Winning means you are willing to go longer, work harder, and give more than anyone else."

Mary Open Doors newsletter
Mary Open Doors has released another Newsletter.


Government Employee Rams GovernmentVehicle Into Elderly Couple's Home
Imagine being sound asleep and suddenly you are awakened by a loud bang. To make matters worse upon making checks you find out that your home has been partially destroyed by a Government vehicle. That’s exactly what happened to an elderly couple living in the Village of Chunox. They were fast asleep when around 1:30 Tuesday morning, 48 year old Eduardo Cuz, a Rural Community Development Officer crashed the Ministry of Health’s vehicle into the couples home. As mentioned last night Cuz has been charged by Corozal Police for driving without due care and attention. But that’s little consolation for the family who told us today that they are in dire need of assistance. Hipolito Novelo-Reporting Seventy year old Margarito Mendez and his 67 year old wife Emeteria Mendez say they are lucky to be alive tonight after a vehicle belonging to the Ministry of Health smashed into their home. According to the couple who live alone around 1:30 Tuesday morning they were sound asleep when they were awaken by a loud bang. When they went to investigate what was the matter this is what they were met with.

Yolanda Shakron's Petition Rejected By CJ
Today the case regarding the leave to file an election petition at the Supreme Court, presented by former P.U.P candidate for the Lake I Division Yolanda Schakron was rejected by Chief Magistrate Kenneth Benjamin. But when Schakron walked out of the court room she told the media that she is in no way discouraged and will keep on fighting a good fight. Yolando Schakron- Filed election petition "I will tell you that I will continue working with the Belizean people; I will continue working in this country; I will continue working against the injustices. Yolanda Schakron will go nowhere." Marion Ali, reporter "So you are not discouraged from running again come next election?" Yolanda Schakron-Filed election petition "Not at all. I am here, and I see the suffering of our people, and I am here to work for the Belizean people and to serve the people of this country - make a better life for them."

CJC Holds 2012 Business and Science Expo
Today Corozal Junior College held their 2012 Business and Science Expo. It’s an annual event in which students display their business, science and English language projects. But besides the student’s, the business community also set up their booths, advertised their products and offered visitors reasonable discounts. Hipolito Novelo-Reporting Through out the day the Corozal Junior College alumni displayed their business ideas, scientific thoughts and acting skills as they took part in the 2012 Expo. The compound was over crowded with inviting booths, including those from the business community. During our tour “Bachelor’s Wine” caught our attention. As we savored some of the product we found out that the students made over 35 bottles of wine that were on sale today. Sarita Bejerano, Bachelor’s Wine “We are offering a unique product at the CJC Expo because we are offering wine something that no other group has offered before and we are also promoting our culture because Belize offers wine and we are using nice fruits like apple, pine apple, grape and rice like traditional fruits over here and we are giving it with a good packaging as well.”

Students of Muffles High School Re-enact a Midsummer Nights Dream
William Shakespeare is recognized as one of literature’s greatest influences, his works have composed questions and mysteries which have fascinated people for centuries. The author is well known for plays like Hamlet, Macbeth and Othello. But tonight Shakespeare is being recognized for his play Midsummer Nights Dream. As we speak students of Muffles College High School are acting out the play. This afternoon as the young actors prepared for the big night, we spoke to coordinator of the event Stephanie Acosta. “The drama festival has been held for many years at Muffles College so it is a tradition we promote art, we promote culture, we expose students to these things, get them to express themselves in different ways so that they can appreciate art, appreciate drama, and so that we also promotes these things to the community as well, and it is also a form of fundraiser for our school and then this dram festival what it does for us is that every year we allocated towards different things mainly it would be for the promotion of art, drama things that are of this nature for example this year what it has been done with the funds from last year’s drama festival we have purchased some new PA equipment, some cordless mics and different things of the sort where we are upgrading the school, uplifting and we are really now at this point trying to promote more technology within the classrooms so if we got access more projectors get as many of those to the students so that teacher can creatively deliver their lessons.”


Our Sojourn in San Ignacio - Day 2: Uphill to Cahal Pech and Lost in Benque
Today the plan was to walk to a nearby Maya site, Cahal Pech. It is one of the sites here in Belize that doesn't require a guide, which we appreciated. Belizean guides are incredibly knowledgeable and very reasonably priced for the service they offer, but being from the US, we are used to doing things on our own and taking as much time as we like to linger over things that especially interest us but aren't necessarily the focus of a guided tour, especially birds. We are more amateur naturalists than history buffs, as regular readers of this blog probably know. We are also fairly frugal, so anywhere we are not required to take a guide, we probably won't. We also liked the fact we could walk to the site, rather than take a taxi. With all the restaurant meals we'd be eating, we knew we could use the exercise, and we just plain enjoy walking. But first, breakfast! We once again ate at Ko-Ox Han-Nah across Burns Avenue from where we were staying, Casa Blanca, because we'd read their breakfast menu the night before, and it sounded good. We were not disappointed. Barry had a massive breakfast burrito, and I had banana pancakes with a side of vegetarian "sausage". I didn't care much for the "sausage", but I ate most of it because I wanted some protein for the long day ahead. Breakfast came with a steaming mug of coffee, and we also ordered freshly squeezed orange juice -- delicious.

Mission Catwalk Season Two
Mission Catwalk is an exciting reality TV series aimed at discovering and developing talented fashion designers. Season One showcased 15 designers in fierce competition for top prizes. This year, the series shortlisted 20 designers from across the Caribbean; including Barbados, Belize, Trinidad and Tobago, Guyana and Jamaica. These 20 designers will meet a swift and ferocious first round of challenge in which 5 designers are eliminated in the first episode. This TV series testes and nurtures the talents of the contestants through numerous challenges and exercises geared at identifying and honing a range of creative skills and abilities. Mission Catwalk is set in Kingston, Jamaica and each hour-long episode comprises of four segments: the challenge, the design production, the runway show, and the elimination of a designer. The series lasts thirteen weeks and culminates with three designers at a live showdown in Kingston. One designer will win the ultimate prize- to show their collection at London Fashion Week 2012.

Mystery Fruit of San Pedro, Belize: Custard Apple or Cherimoya
The fruit season in Belize is starting up. Mamey is here. Green mangos are just arriving, ripe ones should be here in a month or two and yesterday I found a strange fruit that I've never tried. The custard apple. Also called cherimoya or even the ice cream fruit. Hmmmm...those names sound promising. Hey, Mark Twain even called the custard apple "the most delicious fruit known to men". His books weren't half bad, maybe he knows something about fruit. Let's give it a try. (I also love the name of this fruit. I would love to hear more husbands calling their wives "my little custard apple" much better than pumpkin or honey.) According to Wikipedia, this fruit grows on an evergreen-like shrub and is in the sour sop family (a popular ice cream fruit flavor in Belize). It is best when eaten green (I wish I had known that when chosing but red seemed so much more appealing to me). It is also best when eaten chilled. Enough not so attractive looking custard apple went straight into the refrigerator.

Plantain Chips & Cassava Chips...Better than Potato Chips!
let's start off today with Plantain Chips locally known as "ghetto pringles". First off Plantain is the best thing ever grown...yes the Best. It's family to the banana but a bit more firm & starchy. In Belize we eat it with Rice & Beans (our national dish), Split Peas & rice, Boil Up, and much much more. It can be cut thick and fried just so it's brown, it can be cut in quarters and baked, and it can be boiled. All means of cooking usually end up with a sweet caramelly slice of foodie heaven. As with our Breadfruit friend it is said that Plantains originated from South-east Asia (phillipines, malaysia,...etc). It is also used widely in those areas as well as Africa, Central America and South America. That's a good chunk of the world if you ask me...that many countries can't be wrong, meaning it must be good! And it's also very healthy for you and best part even when fried in Coconut oil Plantains somehow maintain it's low fat level and keeps it's carbs level so don't feel guilty about having that 4th slice of plantain...hehehe. Now on to the recipe...

In Hopkins there is a chef…
I like seeing a chef this way- swimming in the water drinking a beer with his dog. He is in his element, at ease and enjoying life. All too often, I meet chefs, buttoned up in their whites, speaking formally about food and service. The relationship is then built on marketing alone, rehashing the niceties of the cuisine they make and why you should dine at their place. Every time I interview a chef, I want to to have the heart-to-heart conversation that reveals, ” I love food, I hope you do too. Let’s get the marketing thing out of the way and have a REAL conversation about the food you make and why you love it.” Sometimes this happens, sometimes it doesn’t. Chefs have been set apart – we put them on a pedestal because they feed us so well. The speak to us in a vocabulary of flavor and through our own speechlessness, we swoon. In reality, it can be just as lovely to see them as real people with passions that succeed and fail. I meet a chef, Anthony “Tony” Marsico and his wife, pastry chef and manager Angela Marsico during our stay in Hopkins. They run the Beaches and Dreams resort, a five-room hotel that houses the now famous, Barracuda Bar and Grill. Both Tony and Angela are so down-to-earth that we knew right away that this was the kind of place that we would enjoy. They talked with us like they had known us for years – no pretenses, no ego – just comfort and relaxation.

Bread and Butter Caye- Photo Gallery
Bread and Butter Caye, Belize Can a small island change your life? Bread and Butter Caye did.

International Sources

US MILITARY Off-Grid Hybrid System in Calabash Caye
The U.S. Army Contracting Command, Fort Sam Houston, Texas, has issued a pre-solicitation notice (W912CL12R0019) for the construction of a complete and usable off-grid hybrid system. This award will be valued between $100,000 and $250,000. It was posted on March 30 with a response date of April 5. Place of performance will be in Calabash Caye, Belize.

Building And Retiring In Belize: Technology Is Still A Problem
We are in the process of building a home in Belize, first as both a vacation home and hedge against an economic collapse here and second as a place to retire to. We are now a year into the project and working on house plans but there are a number of things we’ve learned and some resources we’ve found that have helped along the way. I figured I’d capture some of that learning with this post. Picking Belize While we wanted to live overseas in a place where living costs were lower, we didn’t want to completely relearn a language or a legal system and, if we were concerned with the U.S. Government, we didn’t want a place that was either too close or too opposed to our home. In addition we didn’t want a place where the political structure appeared fragile and close to break down or one that had high levels of crime or violence. We looked at Costa Rica and Panama first, but both countries speak Spanish as their national language and, as with most South American countries, the legal system was based on Napoleonic law. This is kind of a guilty until proven innocent system designed to expedite legal process and if you are really good at contracts and making the right kind of friends it can work for you. Not knowing the language very well, however, makes both of this initially risky and once you learn how a legal system works unlearning it can be a serious problem.

CARIFORUM, EU Sign 82m Agreement
The Caribbean Forum of African Caribbean and Pacific States (CARIFORUM) and the European Commission on Wednesday signed three financial agreements designed to boost the Caribbeans ability to deliver tangible results of integration to its populace. Under the agreements, 82.6 million (US$110 million) will be used to provide support for, among other things, the economic integration and trade of the nine-member Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS); the further development of the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME), with special allocations for Belize and Haiti, and CARIFORUMs implementation commitments under the Economic Partnership Agreement ((EPA). Of the amount, 8.6 million will be used by the OECS to advancing its economic union, particularly in the areas of harmonized policies in tourism and agriculture, strengthening its capacity to integrate into the wider CARICOM arrangements and boosting competitiveness and export capacity of the private sector.

April 1, 2012

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The San Pedro Sun

Four teams prepare for the SP Belize Express Semi Finals
The second round of the SP Belize Express games commenced on Sunday, March 18th. Eight teams moved on to the second round: Joker Boys, Club Latino, Tuff E Nuff, Tropic Air, Blablazo, Arzenal, Juventus and Shalom. With these games played, four teams now move onto the semi finals; Joker Boys, Tuff E Nuff, BlaBlazo and Juventus. The championship game is scheduled for April 8th with a time to be announced in next week’s issue of The San Pedro Sun. The organizers of the tournament would like to take this opportunity to extend much thanks to Gabi Nuñez and the present San Pedro Town Council for the repairing of all the lights at the Ambergris Stadium as well as the lights at the Saca Chispas field.

Radios For NACNW Police Patrol
To show appreciation for the fine job they have been doing the members of the North Ambergris Caye Neighborhood Watch (NACNW) voted to find a way to purchase at least two radios for the police who patrol the area. A BBQ fund raiser will be held this Saturday, March 31, across from the old Beach-N-Kitchen (just before the Palapa Bar). Manny will be grilling the chicken and members of the NACNW board will provide beans, cole slaw, potato salad and chocolate cake. Beer and soft drinks will be ice cold and available for purchase. All throw-away eating containers will be eco-friendly which means bio-degradable. The event is multi-purposeful; 1) raise funds to buy much needed equipment for the police, 2) meet and get to know your neighbors, 3) pay annual membership dues and 4) nominate people for the 2012 board of directors. Food will be served starting at noon and at 2:00 there will be a very brief meeting. Immediately following the meeting the raffle will be held.

ACES Croc Chronicles: NGO Status, Anthony Pine, Annual Report
In March 2012, the American Crocodile Education Sanctuary (ACES) received a $600US grant from The Global Federation of Animal Sanctuaries and The Summerlee Foundation to obtain its official Non-Government Organization (NGO) status in Belize. Currently ACES is registered and operates as a non-profit organization in Belize and tax-deductible donations are received through ACES USA 501(c)(3) partner, the Belize Economic & Ecological Development Fund. “Obtaining our NGO status in Belize will definitely increase our funding opportunities and we are grateful for the continued support from both granting agencies,” stated Cherie Rose of ACES. In 2011, ACES earned a total of $28,889US in grants and revenue, of which $8,269 was spent on the American crocodile population and habitat viability survey in Ambergris Caye; $12,691 was utilized to secure natural habitats at the Ladyville facility for the rescue of 22 freshwater Morelet’s crocodiles from illegal and inhumane captivity; $6,759 was used to initiate a holding facility here on Ambergris Caye and to educate about crocodile conservation on the island; and finally, $4,120 was spent on crocodile rescues, which includes the expense of gas, bait and capture supplies. ACES responded to 61 crocodile calls; rehabilitated and re-released ten ill or injured crocodiles; relocated 27 nuisance crocodiles; captured nine problematic crocodiles, three of which were placed into captivity; and rescued 22 freshwater crocodiles from inhumane captivity.

Misc Belizean Sources

PHOTOS: SHC Baldmiration Festivities
Sacred Heart College had their Baldmiration yesterday morning. Dr. Aird is sporting a new hairstyle, or lack thereof. In fact, many students and faculty had some pink in their hair. Check out the video to see the festivities. SHC's Balmiration was a fund raiser for the cancer society, in solidarity with Mrs. Kim Simplis-Barrow, and her current fight with cancer. Great job, SHC, and good luck to Mrs. Simplis-Barrow!

VIDEO: Luky's New Commercial
Luky's, in Benque, has just released a new commercial. Know anyone in there? Good job!

PHOTOS: Sacred Heart Junior College's Open Day
Many colleges visited Sacred Heart Junior College for their Open Day. Each department was there to show off their stuff. The Tourism department even had some tree repelling. The Food and Beverage students had some really creative fruit designs too.


Minister Alamilla meets with environmental stakeholders
An introductory meeting between the Minister of Forestry, Fisheries and Sustainable Development, Lisa Alamilla and the Conservation Community was held at this morning at the Biltmore Plaza Hotel. Chairman of the Association of Protected Areas Management Organization APAMO, Edilberto Romero, spoke with Love News about what went on in the meeting. The meeting also included [...]

Pre-teen girl goes to USA for lofe-saving medical treatment
Catarina Ishim, the eleven year old girl from San Pablo Village, Stann Creek, today traveled to Knoxville, Tennessee, where she will undergo a life-saving surgery to remove a facial tumor that has over the past weeks begun to inhibit her breathing. Ishim, who developed the tumor in 2010, has undergone two surgeries locally to remove [...]

CJ denies Schakron application to file election petition
Yolanda Schakron, the woman who replaced Cordel Hyde for the PUP in the Lake Independence area, has lost her chance to present a Petition before the Supreme Court. In his ruling before midday today, Chief Justice, Kenneth Benjamin, denied Schakron permission to bring forth her Petition. Schakron’s intention was to, through her attorneys, Senior Counsels [...]


The beach at the Split
It is work in progress but we thought you might be interested to see that actual progression of the new beach at the Split before it is finally finished next week. As you can see from above, the Western side of the split will be increasing the beach size by creating a protective wall and filling it with sand. The wall is built up using pimento (wood) and will eventually look much more natural than many sea walls around the island! The sand is not obtained by the contentious dredger but brought in by boat loads from various locals dug from the back of the island. It has taken a painstaking week to get this far and therefore I would expect that completion would be next week … we will have photos!!

Our Sojourn in San Ignacio - Day 1: Getting There is Half the Fun
Yesterday we returned from a five-day trip to San Ignacio, which is a town in the Cayo District in the western part of Belize. We had never visited this part of the mainland before and were looking to do some hiking, birdwatching, and escape some of the traffic and general busy-ness of high season in San Pedro. San Ignacio does get tourists (especially eco-tourists, adventure-seekers, and backpackers), but it is not the big tourist destination that Ambergris Caye is, and we were craving some recharge time away from crowds. As usual, we planned to do this trip on a fairly tight budget, so we chose to take the ferry to Belize City, then a "chicken bus" to San Ignacio. This is not the most luxurious or fastest way to travel around the country, but it is very budget-friendly. So, on Monday morning, we caught a ride to town from Mr. Raymond here at Grand Caribe. We dropped Paisley off at Pampered Paws for boarding, where she was happy to see her friend Bess the Doberman in doggie day care. She trotted right off and never looked back -- she really seems to enjoy her stays at Pampered Paws as she gets to play all the time. She returns home completely exhausted!

Let's Move North to Tulum and Xpu-Ha: The World's Most Perfect Beaches
I really don't know what could make the beaches south of Playa Del Carmen down to Tulum more beautiful. The sand is pinkish white, never gets hot. The water is aqua blue, softly sloping and incredibly clear. I mean, seriously. Look at our view from our campsite. But, as usual, we need to back this up. Sunday morning we packed up the truck and my little tent from Mahajual, Mexico to move northward. I been bragging about how great the beaches are in Tulum (honestly...I can't get enough of them) so we decided to drive up there. We headed out of Mahahual to the main road (Route 307 North) and about 2.5 hours later, we pulled into Tulum. Our trip so far has been one of campsite cooking and local taco stands...for about $50 pesos, you can get a huge, filling and delicious authentic meal. Do not be scared of street food! We had some shrimp and fish tacos at a small local restaurant (look for the one that seems to attract the local crowd) and they could not have been better. If you can find El Camello a few blocks south of Tulum town, I promise, you will be very very happy. I'm not sure what a camel has to do with seafood...ask them for me if you get a chance. Get this...apparently their signature drink is a Shrimp Cocktail Michelada. A beer Bloody Mary (sans vodka) in a huge glass packed with shrimp and avocado. I didn't try one since I was gorging myself on fried shrimp tacos, but I can only imagine that it is delicious. I've always wanted to meld the michelada with ceviche. Seems like El Camello was one step ahead of me. Beer, shrimp and avocado? It's my heart's fondest wish.

A day with you two: Sittee River
You will hear over and over from people who visit Belize, “The people are so nice! Everyone is so friendly!” Its true. On our first trip to Belize, we met a couple, Horace and Sharon Andrews, who live in Sittee River. Sittee River lies in the Stann Creek District, just north of Toledo. After a day of fishing and snorkeling on their charter boat called, “Mek Wi Fish”, Kriol for Let’s Fish, we struck up a friendship over the love of Belize, the marine life, and most importantly, the food. We met up with Horace and Sharon on this trip at their friend’s restaurant in Hopkins, Belize called the Barracuda Bar. The bar, owned by the Andrew’s friends, Angela and Tony Marsico, is a showcase for Tony’s self-described “Mediteribbean” foods. Angela’s sweet desserts round out the menu and it is a perfect beachfront locale to meet up with friends. “Its so funny how sometimes, when you are on vacation, you meet people you might not otherwise talk to. You get to be open and free and be yourself.” Sharon said. Her words rang true.

Garbage Warriors recruiting!!
As you can imagine, much of the garbage that is found in Caye Caulker actually comes from the sea. Thankfully in the centre of town there is the Village Council crew that clean up this unsightly plastic from off our beach. However, in the less developed areas this unsightly garbage can build up dramatically and therefore a number of concerned locals have put together a task force to combat this pollutant!! This motley crew was spearheaded by Sally Ringsred, Luciana Essenziale, Jane Peoples, Dorothy Bevereridge and Ellen Armstrong (and a few more I probably have forgotten and I apologize) – all naturalized Caye Caulker residence. They have grown in local support on the island and also have recruited a number of very helpful tourists who are helping them stem this problem.

International Sources

Electric squid power homes
A team of scientists from Belize have succesfully harvested electricity from squid. The invertebrates have been discharging enough bioelectricity to run the lighting and air-conditioning units at the research centre on Glover’s Reef Caye on the Caribbean coast. The team lead by Dr Dino Vanidici have published their findings in the Journal of Invertebrate Science and believe it could herald a breakthrough in sustainable energy. The researchers used the Belize Rainbow Squid (pictured) which discharges an electric shock equivalent to 202V but has been known to produce up to 380V, they then collected the discharge onto a conductor placed in the pen and used it to charge a capacitor which was connected to a large set of batteries.

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