Last updateFri, 17 Jul 2015 4pm
Unique Consignment

Looking Back: A review of July news from the last 50 years


Cast readies musical review

“Sing for your Summer — 1965,” annual musical review produced by Tapa-Teatro of Guadalajara (in English) to benefit the Dr. Banda free clinic in Colonia Seattle was in fine form on opening night at the Teatro Experimantal in the Parque Agua Azul. The show casts nearly all American actors and singers and is built around Broadway musical hits.

Plaza planned for Aranzazu

Guadalajara plans to build a “monumental” plaza in front of the venerable churches of San Francisco and Aranzazu, so to better to exhibit their architectural charms. The little plaza now in front of San Francisco is known as “Gringo Park.” It is a haven and a meeting place for pensioners who find it quite satisfactory for political argument. It has taken years to accumulate the subtle aura of Yankee spit and argue that seems to permeate the rather shabby shrubbery and ancient trees. Gringo Park is a little outpost of Long Beach, California or Miami, Florida set down in alien soil. 

Amsoc membership increases

The American Society has 140 new members as a result of last month’s membership campaign, and Hal Kreuth, drive chairman, is taking a well-earned breather. Nat Coleman, with 24 new memberships, was awarded a weekend in Puerto Vallarta, as winner of the membership contest.

Council plans for parade entry

Ten organization heads met recently to discuss plans to enter an American colony float in the first Fiestas de Octubre parade. Fred Mardus was appointed general chairman of a yet-to-be-named float committee.  



Plainclothes cops at Lake

Top security measures are being taken in Lakeside communities, according to authorities. Twelve plainclothesmen (both the Secret Police and Judicial Police) are now stationed in Chapala, Ajijic, Chula Vista, San Juan Cosala and Jocotepec.

Lake Pollution

Increasing pollution of the Lerma and Santiago Rivers and the Lake Chapala basin was a major topic of the second annual Regional Planning Meeting attended by representatives of seven central Mexican states. Federal district delegate Rodolfo Flores said that new development strategies were required with an emphasis on a re-design of agricultural planning. 

Mazamitla looks to tourism

The rustic mountain pueblo Mazamitla revealed a detailed plan this week with the ultimate aim of attracting tourist dollars. The town’s civic improvement group met with Jalisco Governor Orozco Romero to propose an upgrade to the highway leading into the town. As a result of recent storms the highway to Mazamitla has become impassable. 

Northern visitors top tourists

Ninety-two percent of Mexico’s annual 1.2-billion-dollar tourist income is generated by U.S. and Canadian visitors, said Guillermo Martinez Guitron of the Mexican Convention Office.

Mayor calls for federal aid

With an annual population growth of 100,000 people per year, Guadalajara urgently needs more economic and financial assistance from the federal government, said Mayor Juan Delgado Navarro. .

Fish disappearing from Lake

Lake Chapala’s rich fish population has been reduced by 70 percent, with a strong possibility that the remaining 30 percent will disappear if existing contamination levels are not reduced.

Tragic flooding kills ten

Flooding has killed at least 10, injured 400 and destroyed 70 houses near the town of Tequila. Downpours caused the Arroyo de la Virgen river to jump its banks and become a two-meter wall of water, submerging almost everything in its path. The previous day Puerto Vallarta was buffeted by its worst storm in five years as landslides blanketed six kilometers of the coastal highway with mud and rocks burying some of the cars in the parking lot of the Camino Real Hotel.



Drunk traffic cop hits 3 pedestrians

A drunken Guadalajara traffic officer reportedly in a hurry to get home, shower and then report to work, swerved off the road and ran over three pedestrians on Avenida Artesanas in the northeast sector of the city. He was arrested and charged with drunk driving and attempted manslaughter.

Artists livid over mural destruction

In what is being called an aberrant sense of moral renovation, some members of the Chapala Yacht Club painted over a 50-foot mural of a nude girl hugging a fish lying in a hammock over a fishing boat. Aritst Guillermo Chavez Vega had been commissioned by club members to paint a series of murals. But members of the Herrera family took offense with this particular mural, which Chavez had taken from Lakeside legend and was generally believed to be representative of the fishing village, and destroyed it.

PRI sweeps elections

Despite the peso tumbling by 38 percent against the dollar in a week, an inflation rate of 51.4 percent a year and an oil revenue loss of 1.5 billion dollars annually, the electorate endorsed President Miguel de la Madrid Hurtado’s ruling Partido Revolucionario Institucional (PRI) with a near clean sweep of the midterm July 7 nationwide elections 

Dollar earners enjoy new wealth

North Americans living in Mexico are reveling in the bonus a nearly 40-percent devaluation of the Mexican peso has just tacked onto their dollar incomes. Although anticipated price increases in August and September may slice into this windfall, for the time being in Mexico is truly a bargain.



Miniskirt row at city hall

Short skirts have never gone out of fashion in Guadalajara. An uproar broke out at the Guadalajara Department of Public works when Director Mario Bitar Alatorre decreed that miniskirts were out and that employees should not dress “in an undignified or provocative manner.” Mayor Ceasar Coll Carabias said “It’s not a question of miniskirts as such, but whether they’re too short or too tight.” When asked by female employees of the state highway and transportation department for his opinion, Jalisco Governor Alberto Cardenas Jimenez said with a smile that if their boss objected to miniskirts they could work in the governor’s palace.

JPO standards higher?

Shortly after performing his second concert here to a standing ovation, contrabassist Gary Karr found time to praise the Jalisco Philharmonic Orchestra with which he had previously played in 1967, 1970 and 1978. “The spirit of the JPO is absolutely fantastic; the potential is great. The standard is much higher than before. The musicians play together very well, more like a chamber orchestra. They have flexibility, seriousness and musicality,” he said. There has been “an enormous improvement; the stings are much much better,” Karr concluded.

Sugar/agave power plant

A project to build a power plant generated by sugarcane and agave plant residues in Tequila was announced last week. This joint U.S.-Mexico 180-million-dollar venture will produce enough steam power and electricity to power all the tequila factories in the region and will represent a 20-percent savings in costs.

Unescorted women: stay home

Unescorted women traveling alone might not want to be too adventurous in exploring the non-tourist areas of Puerto Vallarta. Article 90 of city regulations prohibit the presence of unescorted women in bars, night clubs, restaurants and discos, as a means of discouraging prostitution.

Guerrero next Chiapas?

Will Guerrero, the state in which the lovely bay of Acapulco nestles, become the next Chiapas, site of a full-fledged guerrilla uprising? Several recent events indicate that it is a possibility: There is a long history of guerrilla activity in the states mountain areas; many groups of impoverished campesinos and workers are protesting social and economic inequalities; 17 campesinos protesting rural poverty were killed by state police June 28 and by July 16 at least 40 people had been slain in the state, 35 of them campesinos. July 20 the Mexican Army intensified its patrols in the mountain region of the state. 

Charros finish last

The Charros of Jalisco, Guadalajara’s entry in the Mexican Baseball League, just missed going into the record books during the last game of the season July 23 — and they were delighted. Delighted that they had not tied the league record (21) for the most consecutive games lost during a season. The ended the season in last place with 30 wins and 82 losses.

Drug lord negotiates surrender

Juan Garica Abrego, Mexico’s most sought after head of the Gulf cartel and one of the ten most wanted criminals in the United States, is dictating the terms of his surrender.  His first priority is that he surrender to a Mexican court and serve his sentence in a Mexican prison — ironic considering he is a U.S. citizen. He also wants a cell in a prison in Mexico City or Tamaulipas that offers good personal protection, good food and frequent visits with his family. He also wants that 20 percent of his holdings not be confiscated and that his close fellow felons be accorded similar treatment if they surrender. 



Mexican stamp creates racial backlash in US

Memin Pinguin, a Sambo-like character that has captivated the hearts of Mexican children since the early 1940s, has started a firestorm of protest in the United States since his image came out on a series of five Mexican postage stamps saluting Mexican comics. Jesse Jackson said the stamp is a racist symbol stereotyping African-Americans. Mexico replied that Memin is a historical icon who deserves to be celebrated on a postage stamp. “I respect the Reverend Jackson, but we think that he is uninformed about the historic role of this series in Mexican culture to combat racism and promote family values,” said a spokesman for President Vicente Fox.

Arizona murder suspect arrested

State authorities in Puerto Vallarta apprehended an Arizona man suspected in a triple homicide and of kidnapping his two young children, thus ending a nine-day manhunt. Rodrigo Cervantes Zavala, 34 is accused of shooting both of his wife’s parents dead along with his 17-year-old brother-in-law in Queen Creek, Arizona before fleeing with two infant children. 

Tapatia golfer wants to open first public course

Fresh from charting an unprecedented path to sports success in the U.S. LPGA star Lorena Ochoa says she plans to open Mexico’s first public golf course in Guadalajara. 

Robots to plug leaky pipes

Guadalajara’s water utility SIAPA is investing in state-of-the-art technology that it says will plug its notoriously leaky pipes. The new system fixes pipes from the inside using robots to seek out problem spots and apply a special resin to stop the leaking. A single repair job will now take less than 10 hours. Previous repair jobs took days, disrupted traffic and local businesses. Presently SIAPA’s 7,300-km network of pipes leaks 1,900 liters of water per second.