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Specials and Events
Last night's TV news on Channel 7 and Channel 5
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials
The San Pedro Sun
Miss Lions contestants officially sashed for upcoming pageant
The San Pedro Lions Pageant is set for Saturday November 23rd, and four beautiful and talented young ladies are vying for the title of Miss San Pedro Lions 2013/2014. Ahead of the pageant, the four contestants have been engaged in several events, and on Friday November 15th, they were officially sashed at the San Pedro Lions Den. Current Miss Lions Alexis Del Valle did the honors, sashing each contestant with sponsor’s sashes. Miss Erica Bodden is representing Hummingbird Rattan Furnishings, Miss Julissa Trejo is being sponsored by Cayo Espanto Resort, Miss Arlethe Lima is Rojo Lounge’s delegate while Catline Benguche represents Caribeña Enterprises. The event took place before a group which included sponsors, family members, Lions members and other regular Lions supporters.
The Belize Red Cross launches flood victim appeal fund
The Belize Red Cross is a making a special appeal to aid families affected by the recent floods in communities in the Cayo District and the Belize River Valley.
Local rivers, their tributaries, and lagoons spilled their banks during two weeks of continuous rains caused by tropical depressions that affected Belize. Villagers in some areas have endured up to four feet of water in their neighborhoods.
The Belize Red Cross has begun assessing the needs of communities most affected in these areas. Both the National Emergency Management Organization and the Belize Red Cross are jointly collaborating in efforts to alleviate the suffering of those families most affected.
Some 200 families in these areas are in great need so we ask for monetary donations, canned food, and toiletries to help in assisting these communities in need.
The Belize Red Cross urges members of the public to support this appeal and to make contributions at our headquarters #1 Gabourel Lane, Belize City, and at our branches in Corozal, Orange Walk, San Pedro, Belmopan, Dangriga, and Punta Gorda.
World AIDS Day Solidarity Walk and Fundraising Fair
San Pedro AIDS Commission invites the community of Ambergris Caye to their annual World AIDS Day Solidarity Walk and All Day Fair and Fundraiser on Sunday, December 1st. The Solidarity Walk will take place around downtown San Pedro and it will be followed by the Fair including Rapid HIV Confidential Testing, Food & Drink Sales, Music by Rompe Raja & DJ Tribal. Read flier below for more details:
Tropic Air Inaugurates Service to Roatan, Honduras
The tourist community of Roatan is also very excited about this new connection with Belize. Speaking with various business owners (including hoteliers, restaurant & bar owners and tour operators) they expressed how happy they are and expect great things from this new flight. Both Roatan and Belize have much to benefit from the new flight. It is such an easier and more convenient way to connect with both destinations as many tourists are looking to visit Belize once in Honduras and vice versa.
Belize Coast Guard and BDF Receive 2 Million Dollars in Equipment
On Friday, November 15, 2013, Belizean and U.S. Military forces came together to commemorate important security and defense cooperation efforts between the two countries through a major equipment donation ceremony. The equipment the United States donated to Belize will allow the Belize military to deploy its forces more efficiently and rapidly. This equipment represents an investment that will yield major long-term security progress in the region, and will enable the Belize military forces to address the transnational threats of terrorism and illicit trafficking of humans, weapons, drugs, and merchandise.
As part of the donation, the Belize Coast Guard received one Boston Whaler 370 Outrage Justice Series boat, 12 complete sets of Maritime Dive Gear, Three Panasonic Toughbook laptops, two sets of maintenance tools, one Hydraulic Outboard Engine Hoist, and one Motor Backup Test Tank. The Coast Guard boat package includes three four-stroke Mercury outboard engines that will be able to effectively operate and maneuver in coastal areas, and maintain sustained high-speeds, a vectored chase on the open seas, and maintenance spares to keep the fleet operational. This donation also included a 10-year limited hull warranty, a chart plotter with touch screen and GPS navigation equipment, radar and multi-band radio.
Actun Tunichil Muknal – One of the Creepiest Places on Earth
Our beautiful Belize is known for its natural wonders that included the Great Belize Barrier Reef, the Blue Hole and its Mystical Maya World and Archeological Sites. Making it in the international scene is one of Belize’s most popular Maya sites, the Actun Tunichil Muknal, also known locally as “Xibalba” or ATM, is a cave in Belize, near San Ignacio, Cayo District.
The Actun Tunichil Muknal is a Maya archaeological site that includes skeletons, ceramics, and stoneware. It is a very popular tourist attraction and both locals and tourist enjoy visiting the cave. ATM has been featured in Ghost Hunters International season 3 episode 9 "The Crystal Maiden: Belize and France" where the team of Ghost Hunters evaluated the ghost stories behind the mysterious maiden.
“The cave of Actun Tunichil Muknal is also known as “The Cave of the Stone Sepulcher.” The cave plays host to numerous skeletons, but what makes it even creepier is the fact that most of the skeletons belong to sacrificed children. Many of the remains and artifacts are completely calcified to the cave. One of the cave’s most notorious features is the skeleton of a teenage girl, whose bones have been calcified into a crystallized appearance. This skeleton is known as 'The Crystal Maiden'.”
Misc Belizean Sources
How Belize Transformed My Life.
I have been in Belize for over 5 years now and looking back I can see some profound changes that happened within me.
For many years I owned an Import/Export business in the states. I did product development and consulting. After a few years in Mexico I went back to the states and lived in a gated community. I had everything that I thought I wanted in life.
However something was wrong in my life. Very wrong. I did not feel I belonged anymore. The culture in the USA was moving in a direction I did not like. Government regulation and interference was constantly nagging me. I had to hire someone just to keep up with all the red tape and filling out forms that business need to give.
Out of the blue my father called me. He wanted me to learn and take over the family business in Belize. At the time he had been in Belize for 25 years. I jumped at the chance.
I did everything I thought I needed to do. I visited Belize several times and then sold the house.
VIDEO: Musical presentation by the Bimecacule Group from Belize City.
Belize’s National Bird – The Keel- Billed Toucan
The Keel-billed Toucan, known as the “bill bird”locally, is the national bird of Belize. The most obvious characteristic of the toucan is the huge yellow, orange, red, green and black bill. The toucan’s bill is amazingly dextrous and allows the bird to feed on a variety of tropical forest fruits.
The Keel-billed toucans are a very social bird and can often be seen in flocks of six or more birds. They are found throughout Belize’s forests and nest in holes in tree trunks. They lay one to four eggs and the parent birds take turns incubating the eggs. This bird displays a rapid, heavy flapping of the wings when flying and calls with a creek creek sound, similar to a frog.
Toucans are primarily fruit eaters, feeding on a wide variety of tropical fruits of the forest. It feeds by snipping off the fruit and flipping its head back to gulp the fruit. Toucans will also feed on insects, lizards, snakes and event the eggs of smaller birds.
Glass-floor hotel room on private island in Belize: Watch fish and ‘facetime your houseman’!
I couldn’t resist sharing this photo from Cayo Espanto, a private island for rent on the back side of Ambergris Caye in Belize. This is the glass floor in their Over Water Villa. “At bedtime, we recommend counting fish rather than counting sheep,” they say. The high end in Belize really is high-end. Every villa comes with iPad 2s, so you can call your butler (”facetime your houseman! surf the web in your star bed”)–or film and broadcast those fish in your floor.
VIDEO: Octopus steals GoPro camera
An octopus stealing my GoPro Hero 3 camera at Calabash Caye in Belize.
Xunantunich Frieze Highlights Maya Exhibit
We are featured inside the Nov/Dec issue of the American Alliance of Museum's magazine 'Museum'.
Festival of Culture Continues
Benque's Festival of Culture continues this weekend, starting tonight with poetry from Amado Chan. Saturday, Orquidea Negra will be performing, and on Sunday, Wagner Majus will be playing. Pictured are the Caracol YCD Stilt Walkers from last weekend.
"The manifestation of the Arts by our Youths from Caracol Youth Community Development for the International Festival of Culture...Kudos to the skillful Youths.. for their support and Regional Representation at the Community Arts Network in Central America."
Buena Vista Gets Safe Water System
Feelgood news of the day. The ROWKIDS, with Low Country Community Church, are back in Belize, and they installed another safe water system. This time, they went to Buena Vista village, which recently got a new school building. Thanks, ROWKIDS, for providing safe water to another 3 villages that needed it.
"Today was the first day of work. We all set out early at 8:00 to head to Buena Vista, our host town. It was smooth sailing until we hit the towns lovely pot hole filled roads, then the adventure started. The school was updated, and slightly modern, but still held its own personality. We were met by the children with open hearts and open arms. In true amazement that someone would devote even a moment of their lives to them. The building was almost completely finished, just needing an inner wall for storage and a sink for sanitization. We started our day with finishing the end of the stucco on the backside of the building."
Sixth Annual Artisan Fair
The 6th annual Artisan Fair, held in front of the U.S. Embassy, is tomorrow, from 10:00am until 2:00pm. There will be arts and crafts from all over Belize, and it's just in time for Christmas.
In related news, they are having an auction the next day.
Cayo Celebrates Garifuna Settlement Day
The Cayo Welcome Center was jumping over the weekend, and the World Culture Band played there on Sunday night. There was also team of marimba players entertaining the crowd too.
"The Cayo Welcome Center had a lot of live music over the weekend. The World Culture Band played on Sunday. There were also marimba players. In related news, there's a new restaurant in the CWC called Masabaduga, which is Garifuna for 'barefoot.'"
In Our Own Words (HD)
A video produced by the Special Envoy for Women and Children and partners and launched at the National Symposium to End Violence Against Children. Hear what Belizean children have to say about violence; their experiences and opinions... in their own words!
Ever wondered what children think about the violence in our country? Have you ever heard their stories? If not, then you should take a few minutes to watch this jaw-dropping mini-documentary created by Special Envoy Belize .
Deputy Prime Minister Visits Belize Aquaculture Limited
The Shrimp Industry is on the rebound and Deputy Prime Minister, Hon. Gaspar Vega found out why ... Check out our Belmopan Weekly story here!
Hon. Faber Vs. President Fraser
Good evening, and welcome to an early edition of 7news. We apologize for the early start but we're doing it so that we can have live football coverage for you from the FFB stadium in Belmopan at 7:00. Tonight the junior jaguars are taking on regional powerhouse, HONDURAS.
In the headlines tonight is UB President, Dr. Cary Fraser. He announced his resignation to the Board of Trustees two weeks ago, and now rumours have surfaced saying that he's abruptly left office. And we don't mean "left" as in stepped out for a cup of coffee; we mean "left" as in "gone"! Those reports contradicted statements made by the Chairman of the Board of Trustees last week. He said that although Frazer had effectively tendered his resignation, he would remain on as President until the end of this current school year in mid-2014. Well, the Office of Public Information at the University circulated a notification amongst the faculty and staff that Frazer hadn't left office, he was simply on leave. Again, the circumstances surrounding that sudden leave has not been provided, and it has been interpreted by some at the university as the upper management quietly forcing Frazer out of office, given that he has already publicly accused them of micromanagement and undermining his office. Yes, it seems to have gotten quite ugly.
Faber Uses Public Platform to Defend Government
At that CXC Award Ceremony - Faber was one of the keynote speakers, and he used his remarks to address some of the pressing matters of public interest, which included the raging scandals revealed this year, and finally, the current dispute between the cane farmers and the BSI/ASR Group over the bagasse issue.
Here's how he put it to the parents, students and CXC awardees in his remarks:
Hon. Patrick Faber, Minister of Education
"If you have been tuned in to the airwaves and the media over the last few weeks, maybe even a couple months now, you may be aware of apparent insidious coordinated attempt, I would say politically to discredit a lot of what this government has done. Even when we have done well, somehow if one little thing is going wrong, it is use to taint the entire effort of the government."
"There is an attempt to paint a picture that there is a general lack of accountability in this government and that we are somehow obstructionist in this regard. Yet it is this government that has passed laws which allows for the recall of elected representatives that is now being used. This really put power in the hands of the people to hold their elected officials accountable."
Smart Students Celebrated
2013 CSEC and CAPE exams. As we told you, Aaron Stock, who was the second best performer in the 2011 when he graduated from high school, was the best this year in the CAPE examinations when he graduated from 6thform. He managed to get 8 grade ones, and he was the country's best performer in Caribbean Studies, Chemistry Unit 1 and Physics Unit 2.
He is currently studying in in the US, and today, his mother had to deliver his speech which he prepared especially for the UB Gynasium filled to capacity with this year's celebrated students and their proud parents. Here's what he had to say to his fellow students through his mother:
Beverly Menzies-Stock, Delivering Aaron Stock's Address
"Failure is not falling down; it is refusing to get it after you have fallen. One place where I fell a few times was 6th form, you 2 years at junior college is the time to find yourself spiritually, socially and academically. As you enjoy the almost total freedom of post-secondary education. Of course like it is always said with freedom comes the responsibility to act as mature adults do."
PUP’s Penner Recall Fizzling?
Whatever happened to the PUP's much discussed recall of UDP's Cayo Northeast Representative Elvin Penner? Three weeks ago, Deputy Leader Julius Espat told us the party would submit the signatures to the Governor General "next week". Well two "next week's" have come and gone, and a third is about to pass - and still no signatures have been submitted and no recall has been triggered. So is the PUP going to try and recall Penner, or what?
Today Espat told us that all signatures have been handed in to the party secretariat and that he is now awaiting word from the Party Leader and the National Executive on how to proceed. Now you may ask why is the PUP waiting around when the party leader himself issued an ultimatum on a recall a whole seven weeks ago? Well, Deputy Leader Espat told us it is a matter of strategy and timing. We'll conclude that obviously momentum is not a consideration.
Penner remains a member of the House and apparently has no intention to resign as his party has publicly asked him to.
A Workshop To End Violence Against Children
From bullying in the schoolyard to sexual abuse in the home setting - a two day workshop which started today is studying all forms of violence against children. It is ambitiously titled "Ending Violence Against Children" and is spearheaded by a constellation of child advocacy organizations: The Ministry of Human Development, the National Committee for families and Children, Restore Belize, UNICEF and the Special Envoy for Women and Children.
They're all coming together to tackle a problem that is institutional, interpersonal and structural. That's a lot to take on but CEO in the Ministry Judith Alpuche says they have to start somewhere:...
Judith Alpuche, CEO in the Ministry of Human Development and Social Services
"What we intend to do over the next 2 days is to really come together and fleshed out or at least have the bare bones of a road map to combat violence against children."
UB, Embassy Encouraging Enterprise In Students
Every year, management students at the University of Belize are required to develop a product or service and pitch it publicly at the Entrepreneurship and Innovation Expo. It's one of the signature events of the management programme, and this year was no different as the US Embassy and the Youth Business Trust joined in. Lecturer Dr. Vince Palacio says it's about nurturing a spirit of enterprise which they'll need in a real world where opportunity isn't exactly waiting for them:...
Vincent Palacio, Dean - Faculty of Management and Social Sciences - UB
"Every year we put out over 800 graduates and the economy does not absorb them as fast as they come out, so we encourage our students and we trained them to be entrepreneurs. This particular initiative helps students to develop product from scratch and to be able to go out there and actually develop their own businesses."
"As a part of the expo as well, we have some established entrepreneurs and our students can see them and strive to be like them also."
U-16 Team Recovering From Losses, Determined To Move On
Just a FEW MINUTES AGO, the Belize U-16 National Football team started its 4th game against Honduras in the 2013 UNCAF U-16 Championships in Belmopan. Channel 7 will cut to that game live right after the news, but today, 7News got a chance to speak with the team which is now playing with a losing record.
The Junior Jaguars won the first game against Nicaragua, but they were defeated by El Salvador on Tuesday. They were looking to beat Guatemala last night in the rematch from the Cayman Island Tournament held earlier this year. They felt that they could have won that game, and so, when they hit the field last night it was with vengeance.
But, it didn't work out as they had planned because the Guatemala National Team gave them their second loss of the tournament with a score of 3-2. They are set to go up against Honduras tonight, and Costa Rica tomorrow, and if the circumstances don't line up, they won't make it to the final round of the tournament, even if they win the two final games.
Today, we spoke with the players and their coach about the mindset going into tonight's game:
BEL Builds, Donates House
Once upon a time not too long ago, say 7 years - your light company, BEL, was something like BTL - known as a proud corporate citizen, making donations to causes large and small. But, after the company's former owner Fortis clashed with government and started booking losses, the charity and community goodwill went out the door.
Well, now, it seems the company is coming back around. No, they're not sponsoring reggae superstar concerts like BTL, nothing like that, but they did show some community love two weeks ago when the workers put hand to hammer to build a house for a woman in need.
BEL says it has supported various other community initiatives this year, such as Dara's Feeding Program, the Inspiration Center, and other activities.
It is getting ugly at UB…President Cary Fraser goes on leave
Five presidents and seven provosts in thirteen years….that is the track record of the national university at its top two positions since its inception in 2000. And as it stands [...]
Minister of Education speaks on burning issues
Earlier today, we caught up with the Minister of Education at an award ceremony for top national students who bested the CESC and CAPE. We’ll have that story coming up. [...]
Faber makes huge announcement: high scorers to be compensated more
But there was an announcement by Minister Patrick Faber that students and parents will be pleased to know. The award for the Open Scholarship has been upped by a hundred [...]
BSCFA to meet with Deputy Prime Minister
Back to the sugar industry….With the opening of the new crop season in the sugar belt fast approaching and a threat of strike by cane farmers looming in the days [...]
Livelihood of Maypen villagers threatened by flood
Incessant rains in the past weeks have inundated most of the country, resulting in serious damage to infrastructure, including roads and bridges. In various parts of Belize the damage is [...]
Baby Jaguars take on Central American powerhouse, the Honduran U-sixteen team
The Baby Jaguars are tonight facing Central American powerhouse Honduras after falling to Guatemala in a devastating three-one loss on Wednesday. As the UNCAF Under-sixteen Tournament enters its tenth match, [...]
CSEC and CAPE top scorers are honored
The spirit at the gymnasium at the University of Belize was uplifting today; present were sixth formers from junior colleges around the country and the occasion was the award ceremony [...]
Minister Lisel Alamilla addresses UN Meeting on Climate Change
A Belize Delegation currently in Warsaw, Poland for a UN Meeting on Climate Change joined with other small and developing countries and walked out of the meeting in protest, bringing [...]
Gardenia village says that someone beheaded his horse
A horse was killed and beheaded by an unknown person or persons in the village of Gardenia early this morning. The horse belongs to Gardenia resident Leslie Moody, who says [...]
Promoting regional economic growth through F.D.I.s
Representatives from nineteen countries that make up CAIPA are currently meeting in Belize. The organization promotes foreign direct investment in the region and at its current annual general meeting it [...]
Forget the word diet…it is all about clean eating in Healthy Living
Christmas is right around the corner and we know that the last thing you want think about is a “diet”. But for those immersed in the fitness world diets are [...]