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The San Pedro Sun

When will the Water Taxi Terminal be operational?
On March 14th, The Minister of Tourism, Culture and Civil Aviation, Manuel Heredia Jr. inaugurated the San Pedro Sunset Boardwalk and Water Taxi Terminal in grand style. But over one month after the glamorous inauguration, the Water Taxi Terminal, along with the kiosks are still not operational. The San Pedro Sunset Boardwalk Project was the last project to be completed and delivered to the Government of Belize under the Sustainable Tourism Project (STP). The SPT has exhausted its funds and closed down. According to Christy Mastry who was the Director of STP, the final legal procedures are being put in place to hand over the facility to the Belize Border Management Agency who will be overseeing and managing body. Mastry explained that a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) is being drafted, with the input of the Ministry of Tourism and the San Pedro Town Council, and once that has been completed and accepted, the terminal will be opened. “The legal parameters are being taken care of before we open the terminal to international boats only,” said Mastry. When questioned if other local water taxi companies will be using the facility, Mastry explained, “that is the future plan.” According to Mastry, the relevant authorities will have to ensure that all vessels used by the local water taxi companies can access the terminal without any problems. She said that all the vessels used by the water taxi companies, with the exception of two inboard engine vessels can navigate through the lagoon and access the water terminal without major problems. “Before the management authority requests that the two companies relocate to the lagoon area, we have to ensure that all of their vessels can be accommodated,” explained Mastry.

Kent “Bob” Gabourel to be featured on BBC World News
Belize’s first ever triathlete to the 2014 Commonwealth Games, Kent “Bob” Gabourel will be featured on the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) World News on Wednesday April 30th. The islander was interviewed by a BBC television crew who was in Belize as part of the Queen’s Baton Tour, which made a stop in the country ahead of the 20th Commonwealth Games. Belize is amongst 71 Commonwealth countries and British territories that will participate in the competitions which will run from July 23rd to August 3rd in Glasgow, Scotland. One of the Belizean athletes participating in the 2014 Commonwealth Games is Gabourel, who will be competing in the Olympics Distance One-Man Triathlon. According to BBC Sports reporter and television presenter Mark Beaumont, BBC has been featuring an athlete in each of the Commonwealth countries and British Territories where the Queen’s Baton makes a stop. “Besides filming the Queen’s Baton Relay, we are featuring athlete stories. There are 17 sports competed at the Commonwealth games and so we have a different focus and different athlete in each country we go to. The interesting part about filming Bob is not only that he is the first Belizean going to compete in triathlon, but the fact that he is doing a lot for the community, working with youngsters, getting them off the streets and into various sports.

San Pedro Lions Club to host 36th Annual National Convention
The convention will kick off with an opening ceremony on Friday May 2nd at the Rafael Angel Nuñez Auditorium with the attendance of several dignitaries and Lions members from Belize and Chetumal, Mexico. Following the opening ceremony, Lion members and guests will have the opportunity to visit the various hospitality booths prepared by the different clubs. On the second day of the event, Lions will be involved in several housekeeping matters. The members will also participate in a Lions Cabinet Meeting in which each club’s president will report on activities undertaken by their respective clubs. The highlight for the day will be the Queen pageant, held that evening when the Zone 59 Queen will be crowned. On the final day, Lion members will attend a solidarity mass at the San Pedro Roman Catholic Church at 8AM, which will be followed by a parade through the principal streets of San Pedro Town. During the course of the convention, the Lions will have the opportunity to do other fun events including enjoying a trip to Hol Chan Marine Reserve.

Congratulations Tigersharks!!
The San Pedro Tigersharks have officially clinched the top spot in the National Elite Basketball League (NEBL) after winning tonight's game against Cayo Western Ballaz 75-70. Although the Ballaz led by as much as 9 pts in the first 3 quarters, Tigersharks came from behind and took the win in the 4th. Congratulations Tigersharks!!

Misc Belizean Sources

Engineer deploys to Belize for humanitarian mission
Each day is 12 to 14 hours long. It’s hot. It’s humid. And, there is little relief from the elements. He spends most days doing things like moving cement blocks, cutting through concrete and spreading mortar adhesive carefully between each layer of blocks until he and his team reach 15-courses high. Airman 1st Class Sterling Depew, a 820th REDHORSE Squadron pavements and heavy equipment operator, deployed from the Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., is currently in Belize as part of the annual U.S. Southern Command-sponsored New Horizons exercise. He’s on his first deployment and is excited to be able to come to a new country to work in a joint environment alongside partner nation militaries. His mission is to assist Airmen, Soldiers, Marines and Belize Defence Force engineers in building four school additions and one hospital clinic. “I love working in a joint environment and communication has been great with the Belizean Defence Force engineers … they are hard-workers and bring knowledge from their experience and ways of doing things in their country,” the Airman said.

Marine puts his construction company on hold, deploys for USSOUTHCOM exercise
A U.S. Marine Reservist has closed his construction company for two weeks to deploy to Belize in support of the U.S. Southern Command-sponsored New Horizons exercise. Marine Sgt. Kyle Dugas, Marine Wing Support Squadron, Det. 472, Bravo, out of Chicopee, Mass., is working here as a technical engineering craftsman at the Edward P. Yorke school addition construction site project in Belize City, Belize. During the exercise, civil engineers from both the U.S. and Belize are working together to construct a hospital clinic in Belmopan, three school additions in Belize City, and one school addition in Hattieville. The schools will support furthering the education of children in the country. Dugas, from Plainfield, Conn., is very familiar with exercise objectives. Having been part of New Horizons’ exercises in Belize ‘13, Peru and the Dominican Republic, this is his fourth exercise with USSOUTHCOM.

Un Viaje de Ida y Vuelta Gala Concert
The Un Viaje de Ida y Vuelta Gala Concert at the Cayo Welcome Center FRIDAY night was great. That soprano voice was piercing! The Institute for Social and Cultural Research got some good pictures. It's great to see music every week at the Cayo Welcome Center, the new cultural center of Cayo.

Tabu Grand Opening
Tabu, Cayo’s newest club, is having their grand opening LAST NIGHT. It’s located in the Manzanero Mall downtown, and it’s a huge club with multiple floors. DJ Russian and DJ Orsy will be there mixing tonight, so check them out after the Western Ballaz game. See all the great events going on this weekend on the Cayo Event Calendar.

ATLIB Football Tournament
The ATLIB Football Tournament is Saturday starting at 3:00pm, and Sunday, starting at 9:00am. "The ATLIB finals will be held April 26, and 27, 2014 and will be hosted by SHJC and will take place in San Ignacio at the Norman Broaster Stadium on April 26 and 27, 2014. The game schedule for the first day is as follows: On Sunday, the first game begins at 9:00 a.m for third place Male followed by third place female match."

Cross Country Cycling Classic in Cayo
The Institute for Social and Cultural Research has some great pictures of the race going by Columbus park. "Photos of this year's race at the halfway point in San Ignacio!"

BAY Basketball Playoffs
Last night was the start of the BAY basketball tournament playoffs. They really have some great team names. Next weekend is the finals. "The Belmopan Active Youths start their basketball playoffs tonight. They continue tomorrow night, and conclude next weekend."

History of Slavery and Emancipation in Belize
Join us Tuesday April 29th for the official launch of the exhibition, "History of Slavery and Emancipation in Belize", produced by the Institute for Social & Cultural Research . It chronicles the trials and tribulations of a repressed people and will remain on display until late June 2014.


“Money (Thats What I Want)” in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize.
With the bonding session finished it takes no more of me than to open the front door (yes, THAT front door) and let him out to take care of his ‘needs’ (he chosen three locations in the garden and our challenge is to reduce this to one. With this taken care of its straight in to ‘me time’. Make the mug of black coffee, grab the iPad and onto the veranda. Ziggy joins me when he’s done ‘what a dog needs to do’ but is quite content to just sit by my chair. As long as I give him the occasional stroke that is. This ‘me time’ sets me up for the day. Don’t know why because I don’t feel that I do a lot. Yes I might send the occasional email. I read The Times online. I read some blogs. Touch base with Facebook. But nothing life changing. Yet it puts me in a great frame of mind. My variation of transcendental meditation? I don’t emit a sound and I definitely do not have a mantra (well not yet anyway) but after a bit of ‘me time’ I feel totally relaxed and if I was suffering from any stresses they’ve gone by the end of my session. Maharishi John? Why not? I mean I do like Indian cuisine! In my transcendental state I showered, shaved and got dressed (well at least I think I did!) and then headed in to town to pay the cable and property tax bills stopping off afterwards at Estel’s Dine By the Sea for breakfast (it would have been rude not to was my way of thinking!).

International Sources

This Swimmer Noticed A Shark Was Following Him; The Dolphins Noticed, Too
A group of dolphins apparently came to the aid of a British long-distance swimmer just in the nick of time. Adam Walker was on a 16-mile swim in the choppy waters of New Zealand's Cook Strait on April 22 when he spotted a great white shark beneath him, Yahoo! News reports. A pod of 10 dolphins quickly surrounded him and stayed by his side until the shark swam off. Walker posted images of his guardian dolphins on Facebook a day after the rigorous swim. "I'd like to think they were protecting me and guiding me home!!!" he wrote of his brief time with the dolphins.

McDonald's Calls Report on Foreign Workers 'Bullshit'
After the CBC reported that McDonald's Canada has been abusing the country's Temporary Foreign Worker (TFW) program — designed to allow employers to legally import employees from other countries to fill jobs Canadians do not want — Employment Minister Jason Kenney temporarily suspended the program while his department investigates the allegations. On a call with franchisees, McDonald's Canada CEO John Betts lost his cool while acknowledging the situation, and called the attack from the CBC "bullshit." A recording of the call was leaked to the press. The CBC's original report told the story of a group of foreign workers who were recruited from Belize. Jaime Montero and four others were flown into to Edmonton and forced to live in an apartment together. Half of their wages were garnished to pay for the apartment, leaving them with less than $800 per month to live on. When Montero complained, he was fired and evicted; he has since been sleeping in homeless shelters.

Two multinational meetings will be held in Mérida, with the presence of 23 Presidents
According to information issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Secretaría de Relaciones Exteriores), two multinational meetings will be held on the Yucatan capital, where 23 presidents and Foreign Ministers of several countries from South, Central America and the Caribbean will be present. The “Association of Caribbean States” and the “Mexico-Caricom Summit III” are scheduled for 28 and 29 of April in the city of Mérida, Yucatán. 23 Presidents, along with some Ambassadors, Foreign Ministers and other diplomats, will be attending these two Summits in the city of Mérida, which represents the largest international meeting of heads of state and probably the most important diplomatic and political meeting in the history of our city since the visit of US President George W. Bush in 2007. Since Thursday April 24, 2014, officers of the Mexican Army and Presidential Guard are camping near the Polifunctional Municipal Gym (Gimnasio Polifuncional), that will be used as a Command Center during the Summit.


Video: Rebecca Stirm Earth Day Shoot, min.
Rebecca Stirm has a behind the scenes video out for Earth Day, and she has a dress made with organic materials, like fungus. She has the talented Vanessa Awe doing makeup. It was shot around Roaring Creek, near Guanacaste National Park. Well done. Monica Gallardo posted some pictures, and here are the fashion shots, on her blog from the shoot.

Video: The Manatee in Belize, Sailing 2014 MBT, 2min.

Video: Snorkelling in Belize, 5min.
Meet the nurse shark, sea turtle and lots of other beautiful coral life at the Belize Coral Reef

Video: Belize City Municipal (TZA) to San Pedro on Tropic Air, 9min.
Aircraft Cessna GrandCaravan C208B Registration: V3-HHC (G1000 equipped) Tropic Air Belize

Video: Diving April 2014 Ambergris Caye, Belize (British Honduras), 13min.
Ramon's Villiage and diving right outside of the barrier reef that runs along the coast of Ambergris Caye; Caves, Mountains , Valleys, and of course sharks.

Video: How Belize was named - As told by Prince Charles Perez, 12min.
A local man on the street in Belize tells us how Belize was named.

Video: Belize Sun Dancer April 19-26, 2014, 17min.
A week aboard the Belize Sun Dancer II as 'The Video Guy'. My first production using my new Canon G16 Camera and underwater housing, MacBook Pro with Final Cut Video Editor program.

Video: Belize Diving with Paul and Lisa, 13min.
Turtle, angel fish, nurse sharks, lots of little fish, lobster, tang, raccoon fish, grouper.

Video: Belize Design, 2min.
The story of how the new Belize Identity/logo was created.