US$16 million resort
Plans for a multi-million dollar tourist resort and housing development on the scenic edge of Guadalajara’s famous Barranca de Oblatos were announced in mid-October by Palm Springs, California Mayor Frank M. Bogert. The plans include a 36-hole golf course surrounded by luxury homes, a convention center, motels, sports center, 1,000 homes for U.S. retirees and employee housing.
Halloween to rule
Public and private ghouls and ghosts will take over this weekend with much of the colony celebrating Halloween weekend in traditional parties at the American School, the Butler Institute, the Instituto Cultural Tolsa and in Jocotepec at La Quinta.
The Guadalajara Alvarez Castillo Post Three of the American Legion formally opens its new club rooms at Madero 221 with a cocktail reception October 31. Mexican leaders, including the governor and the city’s mayor, consulate officials and the general public have been invited.
Weak bulls spark riot
More than 100 local police officers were required to quell a riot at El Progreso bullring. Angry spectators destroyed electrical lines, iron fencing and wood barriers and started several fires before being brought under control. Dissatisfaction apparently arose over the non-performance of young bulls in the billed spectacle. The bulls apparently couldn’t even stand. The angry crowd stormed the ticket window for a refund, but the management had fled.
Jaliscienses settle down up north
Each year some 30,000 Jalisco citizens apply for residency status in the United States and Canada, according to figures released by the U.S. Consulate General and Canada’s diplomatic mission. According to statistics from the U.S. Office of Immigration, 500,000 Jaliscienses currently live in California, and an additional 50,000 in Illinois and Michigan.
Mexico City hosts
Pan Am games
3,600 athletes representing 33 nations of the Americas are competing in the seventh Pan-American games being hosted in Mexico’s capital this month. Many of the country’s former 1968 Olympic sites have been renovated the games. The site of this year’s competition was changed from Chile to Brazil because of the former country’s political problems. Then a meningitis epidemic in Sao Paulo required another site change. Mexico accepted the responsibility with less than a year to make all necessary preparations.
Hard hit by the September 19 earthquake, the southern Jalisco communities of Ciudad Guzman, Gomez Faria, Sayula, Zapotiltic, Tuxpan, Tonila and San Andres Ixtlan began to dig out this month. Worst hit was Ciudad Guzman, with 27 deaths, 350 injured and approximately 75 percent of its adobe buildings shattered or destroyed.
Gov’t grabs quake properties
One month after the devastating earthquake, the federal government expropriated some 7,000 properties and 250 hectares of land in downtown Mexico City, much of it in the worst hit working-class sector, as a measure to alleviate the capital’s pre-quake housing squeeze and put a brake on possible land speculation. President Miguel de la Madrid promised owners indemnification over ten years. This has had a chilling effect on some foreign investors in the real estate market, who see the move as creating doubt about the entire basis of law in the country.
During a recent World Food Day commemoration Jalisco Governor Enrique Alvarez del Castillo said that it is important to recognize that this state’s roots lie in el campo (countryside) and this recognition will never cease. The active working population of Jalisco is about two million and 70 percent is associated with farming and the agricultural industry.
Day of Dead
Is Mexico becoming obsessed by Halloween, the October 31 happening which an increasing number of religious groups in the U.S. are condemning as anti-Christian? A closer look at how Guadalajara embraces Halloween reveals that it is really favored only by the middle class and that working people still prefer to respect the traditional November 1 and 2 Day of the Dead observance. However, as more city shopping malls use Halloween imagery to entice shoppers into stores and boost sales, more children will be drawn in by this predominantly U.S. custom.
Farmers bring livestock to palace
Jalisco farmers came to downtown Guadalajara this week with a long list of demands, but state officials weren’t at all happy to see their country cousins. Angry farmers entered the Governor’s Palace bringing in a huge pedigree bull and then dumped rotting agave roots on the sidewalk outside. Members of the Barzon movement not only jammed the streets with their colorful tractors, but also set up a makeshift stable filled with horses and other farm animals alongside the entire length of the cathedral.
killed in quake
Two Canadian citizens died when the Hotel Costa Real in Manzanillo, Colima, in which they had been staying collapsed during the October 9 earthquake. Four U.S. citizens were treated for minor injuries and released from the hospital. Two U.S. citizens from Texas were guests at the Costa Real, but were in a nearby plaza when the hotel collapsed. They were thrown over a wall by the force of the impact and suffered leg cuts. At least 48 people, mostly in Colima, died in the quake.
Chapala is claiming seniority over Guadalajara and plans to celebrate its 471st anniversary with an intense week of festivities, November 11-19. Guadalajara admits to only 453 years.
City mayor defends polemic text
A city hall-sponsored primary school text book on the history and geography of Guadalajara is causing controversy because it makes various references to the Roman Catholic Church. Some city councilors have called the book fascist and argue that by law religion has no place in text books because public schools are obliged to follow a lay curriculum. Right-wing Guadalajara Mayor Emilio Gonzalez defended the books, saying references are merely description as historical fact.
Tourists flee Hurricane Wilma
Some 27,000 tourists have been evacuated from hotels in Quintana Roo, as well as 30,000 residents of Isla Mujeres, as a category-four hurricane bears down. Thousands more tourists are stuck in the Cancun as flights are now scarce. MTV postponed its Latin American Music Awards, which it had planned to hold in Playa del Carmen.
spills into lake
A partial collapse of Ajijic’s sewage system has left the west side of town without operable drainage service, causing a back-up of untreated residual water that has been spilling directly into Lake Chapala for more than a month.
Mexican bobsled team advances
For perhaps the first time ever, Guadalajara played host to a winter sports championship, holding the Federation Internationale de Bobsleigh et de Tobaganning World Push Chamionships in Providencia’s Unidad Deportiva Revolucion. And in a sign of obvious improvement, the Mexican squad almost captured the title in the two-man event, missing gold by only 0.01 seconds.