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The San Pedro Sun

Letter to the Editor: Journalism
I’ve recently noticed the staff at the Amandala is bigoted in an unethical manner. Correct me if I’m wrong, but shouldn’t good journalism mean that one presents all sides of an issue, like same-sex marriage, and not only the op-ed’s that agree with the editor’s personal opinions? If this is correct ethics, aren’t editors legally obliged to it? I’ve also observed bias in their news reports; I even think it approaches sensationalism. Such as their headlines (The Churches stand strong against UNIBAM!; UNIBAM divides Belize), scare quotes (UNIBAM calls it “hate crime” and “hate speech”), and use of negative connotation (Mr. Orozco and UNIBAM almost always “claim,” instead of just stating or saying).

Letter to the Editor: San Pedro Police
I would like to express sincere appreciation to the San Pedro Police that work so tirelessly protecting our island. They make so many calls for all types of help and recently they went above and beyond their duties this past week, and before our call for help was even made. During the wee hours of Wednesday morning Corporal Young, Constable Martinez, Constable Wade & Constable Ramirez were passing by our facilities when they noticed a small fire had started on the exterior of one of our wooden buildings; a building with a thatch roof that was filled with peacefully, sleeping guests. They noticed it as they were passing in their police vehicle. Thankfully they stopped and acted swiftly and decisively to extinguish this small fire that was certainly on its way to becoming a larger, more devastating fire.

Doctor Love: Just Friends
Readers, please send your letters. They can be emails, formal letters or handwritten notes. They are edited solely for grammar and spelling. Also, they are sometimes edited for length. Dear Doctor Love, After being with my boyfriend for three years I finally broke up with him two years ago. The reason we broke up is […]

Wolfe’s Woofer: In The Corner
“Grandpa, it’s me, Davin.” “I figured it was you,” I said. “You’re the only grandson I have. What’s up?” “Mom said you are supposed to pick me. I borrowed the phone to tell you I’m going to be one hour late getting out of class.” “What did you do this time?” I asked. Davin said, […]

Mrs. Idolina Vasquez, Mother of the Year 2014
Congratulations to Mrs. Idolina Vasquez, Mother of the Year 2014, as selected during the annual San Pedro Town Council Mother's Day Extravaganza held May 10th.

Congratulations Team Coco Beach for winning the 10th annual Lagoon Race Eco-Challenge!!
Hats off to the organizers who put this event together year after tireless year, and major props to the paddlers who braved the heat and seas to cross that finish line!!

Misc Belizean Sources

Benque Marimba Academy Celebrates Mother's Day
The Benque Marimba Academy celebrated Mother's Day with a performance at the Benque HoC, and at St. Martin's Credit union. They've posted some videos from them playing at SMCU here and here.

CTV3

Carmelita Resident Goes Missing
Orange Walk Police are tonight requesting the assistance of the general public in locating 22 year old Ricardo Garma from the village of Carmelita. Jesus Antonio Garma, father of the 22 year old reported to police that his son went missing on Wednesday May 7th. Ricardo, who left home around 2:00pm, is a mental penitent. He was last seen wearing a pair of yellow tennis with white socks, red shirt with short sleeve and red ¾ pants. He is about 5 feet 6 inches in height, of fair complexion and has straight dark hair. He also has a scar on the upper part of the head and a tattoo of a skull on his right fist and a rose on the left side of his chest area.

Venezuela's Economic Status Will Not Affect Petro Caribe Agreement
Tonight there is good news for the entire Belizean public. Venezuelan ambassador to Belize, Yoel Del Valle Perez Marcano, has confirmed that the price of fuel that his country sells to Belize will not see an increase despite the inflation in his country. According to Ambassador Marcano, the price of fuel in Venezuela has nothing to do with international prices. The contract with the 18 member countries of Petro Caribe remains intact. The announcement comes at the heels of a 30 percent increase for minimum wage in Venezuela, which Venezuelan President, Nicholas Maduro, deemed necessary to help address the country’s inflation rate, which literally skyrocketed over the past year to 56 percent, the highest in the world. It also comes after reports that fuel prices in Venezuela could go up to ease the economic strains in that country.

Bowen And Bowen Office Robbed In San Pedro
Classics Store and Scotia Bank in Belmopan were not the only targets in a number of robberies registered today. San Pedro Police responded to an attempt robbery at the Bowen and Bowen Distribution centre located on Blake Street sometime around 1:20 pm. Initial investigations have revealed that a male person charged into the office with a firearm and demanded money. Quick response by Security guards on duty removed the culprit away from the office and the employees. Reports are that the assailant fired nine gunshots. Luckily no one was injured but a glass door was broken. The man fled the area empty handed into the nearby area after firing the shots.

Major Decrease In Butane Prices
The last time we reported on the price for a hundred pound cylinder of butane we were not the bearer of good news, but tonight we are because the price for Liquid Petroleum Gas has seen a reduction which came into effect yesterday. The new controlled price per 100lb cylinder of butane imported by Belize Gas Limited and Western Gas Company Limited from Pemex in Mexico, which saw a reduction of $13.00, is as follows: Belize City $115.00, Belmopan and San Ignacio $117.00, Benque Viejo Del Carmen $118.00, Orange Walk $116.00, Corozal $115.00, Dangriga $119 .00 and Punta Gorda $120.00. As for the controlled price per 100lb cylinder of LPG imported from within Central America, it saw a reduction of $16.00. The prices are as follows. Belize City $112.00, Belmopan $114.00 and San Ignacio $114.00, Benque Viejo Del Carmen $115.00, Orange Walk $113.00, Corozal $112.00, Dangriga $116.00 and Punta Gorda $117.00.

Robber Shot In San Ignacio
A young man was shot by a Belmopan Police officer this morning after he decided to be the main character of what can only be described as a robbery spree. Just before 10:00 this morning 25 year-old Cannon Augustine Obispo, a resident of Teakettle Village reportedly walked into Classics, a clothing store, and asked to try on approximately $210 worth of brand new clothes and a pair of tennis shoes. The Shop vendor, then asked him to pay for the items, but instead he walked out of store without handing over any money. Ctv3 news understands that the vendor reported to have seen the gentle man walking over to Scotia Bank across the street, and so he waited outside, thinking that Obispo went there to withdraw money to pay for the clothes.

The Reporter

Big drop in butane prices
The price of Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG) both imported and domestic has dropped by over $10 per 100 lb cylinder, marking its first decrease since 2013. The Belize Bureau of Standards announced a $13 reduction on LPG imported from PEMEX in Mexico and $16 from Central America, effective from May 8. Punta Gorda, which had the highest retail price for gas countrywide, benefited most from the price drop, which adjusted the cost from $133 to $120. Belize City and Corozal now enjoy the lowest price for imported gas in the country at $115 per 100 lb cylinder. LPG from Belize Natural Energy is now priced at $108 per 100 lb and this is available in Burrell Boom, San Ignacio, Belmopan, Benque Viejo Del Carmen and Punta Gorda.

Murder in Punta Gorda
Punta Gorda police are looking for a suspect following the shooting murder of a woman at a bar in Indianville early Sunday morning. According to Officer Commanding the PG Police Formation, Superintendent Simeon Alvarez, they discovered Janice Vargas, 19, of Far West Street, PG, lying face up in the corridor of the establishment. She had a gunshot wound to her right shoulder and was unconscious. Vargas reportedly died around 4:15 a.m. while on the way to the Southern Regional Hospital. While police do not yet know what the motive of the killing was, they have ruled out robbery.

Evan Garnett Jr dies in traffic accident
Evan Garnett Jr, 19, a resident of Los Lagos community, lost his life in a traffic accident on the Philip Goldson Highway at around 4 a.m. on Saturday. The Reporter understands that Garnett Jr was heading home alone when the Honda Accord he was driving careened into the other lane of traffic and collided head on “the remains of a passenger bus parked on the other side of the road”, according to Sr. Superintendent Chris Noble, officer commanding Ladyville Police. Garnett was the son of Jacinta Hyde, a manager at Krem and Evan “Duck” Garnett, former Raiders basketball player.

Venezuelan authorities detain hundreds of protesters
Venezuelan law enforcement authorities detained 243 protesters during an early-morning operation on Thursday that targeted four campsites set up at public squares around Caracas. The raid involved more than 900 members of the Venezuelan National Guard and police. Demonstrators who witnessed the operation complained about the way it was carried out. One of the persons staying at a campsite reported that law enforcement authorities showed up and destroyed the campsite. Miguel Rodriguez, Venezuelan peace and justice minister said he had no choice but to deploy security forces to ensure public safety. This latest incident followed clashes between anti-government protesters and security forces that have left more than 40 people dead and around 800 injured since February.

Brazil boosts military patrols along border
Brazil has initiated a massive military operation to patrol its borders leading up to next month’s World Cup. In what Brazil calls its single largest mobilisation ever, more than 30,000 members from the army, navy and air force are patroling the borders. But even with all this preparation, there are still concerns over whether some venues for the tournament will be ready in time. Coupled with that, authorities are concerned over street protests against the cost of holding the event. The border security operation dubbed Agata targets illegal immigration and drugs and arms smuggling. The troops also monitor rivers and lakes as part of their operations in Brazil’s dense jungle.

Patrick Jones

Woman shot and killed in PG
A shooting incident early this morning in Punta Gorda town has claimed the life of a woman. According to our colleagues at PGTV, the shooting incident happened around 1:30 am at an establishment in the Indianville area of PG and claimed the life of Janice Vargas. More information on this tragic incident will be posted as they become available.

The Export Processing Zone in Belize
The EPZ ACT is another Belize law that creates imbalance in the playing field…..special, politically driven, discretionary benefits for a few….at the cost of the Belizean tax payer. The beneficiaries of EPZ status basically pay NO tax in Belice!!! Does Belize law actually ENCOURAGE and FACILITATE poor CORPORATE CITIZENSHIP? DOWN-SIDE OF EPZ ACT They use our roads and other infrastructure; our land, air, water and other natural resources; our education and health services; our security and safety services; fire and natural disaster services, among others. In many cases, they also contaminate our environment, ground water, coral reefs, seas, air and land…most of them repatriate their profits abroad….and therefore, they do not contribute ONE IOTA to the bu

Murder in the Indianville area of Punta Gorda
Police in Punta Gorda town are investigating an early Sunday morning shooting incident in that has left a woman dead and her family and community in shock. The victim has been identified as 26 year old Janice Vargas, a resident of the Indianville area of PG. The shooting happened sometime after 1 o’clock this morning inside a building which houses the Jamaica Bar where Vargas has only recently gained employment. Preliminary information received say that the establishment closed at midnight and what transpired after that and leading up to the shooting which claimed the life of the young lady is now the subject of the official police investigation.

Hundreds walk for Cancer Awareness in Dangriga
The Dangriga Cancer Society held its annual Cancer Walk on Saturday, May 10. Under overcast skies, more than three hundred men, women and children gathered at the Xaibel Gas Station on the Hummingbird Highway for the six and a half mile walk which ended at the Drums of our Fathers Monument in Dangriga town. According to the Educational Chair of the Dangriga Cancer Society Lisa K. Cheng this year was the biggest Cancer Walk ever seen in Dangriga. Leading up to Saturday’s Cancer Walk, hundreds of T-shirt and other promotional items were sold, with proceeds going towards the support of activities carried out by the Dangriga Cancer Society.

The Spring/Summer 2014 issue of The TOLEDO HOWLER is online HERE

This Issue's Stories:

  • Heart of Toledo Adventure Trail:
    The Heart of Toledo adventure Trail is a collaboration between the Destination Planning department at the Belize Tourism Board and BTIA members and other small businesses owners in central Toledo. Rob Hirons from the Lodge at Big Falls who has been involved with the project from its inception said, “It is a great example of collaboration between the Tourism Board and small business owners in the area. BTB has the resources and the locals have the knowledge and this project brings the two together in a way that could be a model for future tourism trail developments.” Kevin Gonzalez, Director of Destination Planning along with his colleagues Clive Myers and Arlo Cansino worked on bringing the project to fruition at the Belize Tourism Board. The trail comprises a range of cultural, adventure and natural history experiences located around the loop that runs north from Big Falls village, west through the villages of Silver Creek, San Miguel and San Pedro Columbia around to the Dump junction at mile fourteen and back to Big Falls.
  • Chocolate Festival of Belize 2014:
    Toledo is gearing up once again to celebrate the eighth Chocolate Festival of Belize that will take place on the Commonwealth Day weekend from Friday 23‐Sunday 25 May. The overall format remains similar but each day will be enhanced with new attractions and activities. The festival opens with its gala evening of Wine and Chocolate, sponsored once again by Bowen and Bowen who will be offering their signature chocolate stout. This year the event moves back into Punta Gorda town and will be held at Garbutt’s Marine and Fishing Lodge on the waterside by Joe Taylor Creek. On Saturday all the action takes place in Punta Gorda town on Front Street where local ethnic groups will display their cultural food and music and Belizean chocolatiers will have samples of their wares available for purchase. The festival moves into the heart of Toledo on Sunday to Lubaantun Mayan site. This year the dancers of the Baktun 13 group from Maya Centre will return to perform and there will be performances by Jose Chun and family from San Marcos village who form a string ensemble playing the Mayan harp, violin and guitar. The marimba will be performed by another group from Blue Creek village.
  • 4TH Annual Punta Gorda Christmas Bird Count:
    Although the weather cooperated this year, we ended up with our lowest totals in the 14‐year history of the count: 224 species and 3295 individual birds counted. But there was no shortage of good birds. After some‐ how failing to log Spot‐breasted Oriole on count day every year since its discovery in Belize in 2007 at Cattle Landing, we finally nailed it down this year thanks to a pair that had been visiting my feeder on a daily basis since last October (see associated article in this issue). We also recorded Orange‐breasted Falcon, Northern Harrier, and Wedge‐tailed Sabrewing the first time, and Brown Booby, Double‐crested Cormorant, Lovely Cotinga, and Black‐throated Blue Warbler for only the second time since the first count was conducted back in 2000. Low turnout and car trouble were the main contributors to the low numbers. With ever rising gas prices, it is becoming more and more difficult for people from northern Belize to participate in the count, and we still do not have enough local birders to sustain the count. Additionally, some of the local stalwarts of previous counts are finding it harder and harder each year to juggle work commitments with an entire day afield. But, for me, the most frustrating aspect of this year’s count was my vehicle breaking down outside of Laguna Village late in the morning and having to be towed into town. That relegated me to an afternoon of counting birds at my feeder—but, hey, I did get the Spot‐breasted Orioles!
  • Lee Jones: Attracting Birds to Your Yard:
    I have always been the only birder in my family. My wife, despite her uncanny ability to spot birds along the highway and point them out to me as we zip past at 50 mph, had no interest whatso‐ ever in learning their names or how they fit into the overall scheme of things. My son thought birding was dumb. My daughter was still too young to fully comprehend the incredible magic of birds and birding. Or so I thought. Recently, that all changed‐ not gradually, not through constant ‘’coaxing” on my part, not through increased exposure to the world of birds. Their conversion was instantaneous. One day: “Duh”; “Blah”; “What’s the big deal?” Next day: “Oh my God!” Awesome!” “What’s that bird called, again? That one over there. The one with the orange breast and black hood.” Oh, and that beautiful blue one over there? And that bright red one?” The magic wand? Bananas. Yes, bananas. Lots of bananas. Add an occasional papaya, a few sliced oranges, and Voila! Instant conversion. Oh, and sugar water. Can’t forget the sugar water.
  • BTIA welcomes new Information Officer:
    Stephanie Parham is BTIA’s new Tourism Information Officer appointed in the autumn of 2013. She is Toledo born and bred. She grew up in Mafredi attending the Methodist Primary School in the village before going on to Toledo Community College where she graduated in 2005. At that time she did not have any clear career path ahead of her and spent the next few years in Belmopan, Belize City and Placencia. In Belmopan she ran a small internet café and stationery store; in Placencia she ran the Pirate’s Grill before moving on to the French Connection restaurant. After that she became office administrator for Remax real estate agents in Placencia where she worked for eighteen months. So after all this, she still had no chosen career pathway until returning to Punta Gorda and join‐ ing the front desk staff at Belcampo Lodge. She worked there for three years before joining BTIA as Tourism Information Officer. It was at Belcampo she discovered her passion for service in tourism and promoting the attractions of the Toledo that she knows and loves so well.
  • Eladio’s Chocolate Adventure:
    Eladio Pop was born into a family of fifteen chil‐ dren in San Pedro Columbia Village in the Toledo District. His father was a farmer and his mother was a housewife who also helped with the farm‐ ing. At the age of seventeen he met and fell in love with his wife, Virginia, a resident of San Pedro Columbia. Not long after they had their first child, Adalia. Eladio continues to farm and has a great love for planting and embracing the natural riches of the earth. He is an organic farmer who does not use any machinery or pesticides to farm and reap his products. His machete is his best friend. Eight years ago, after growing and reaping cacao, Eladio decided he would bring back the value of cacao from his ancestors, not only in his home but for the public as well. Slowly but surely, lots of people started hearing about and visiting the ca‐ cao farm, the roasting of cacao beans, grinding it and making it into a paste to drink as hot choco‐ late. It is prepared in the same way the Mayans, many years ago, use to do it. He is proud of his accomplishment in introducing and sharing this wonderful part of his heri‐ tage with his family and the world.
  • The Sapodilla Cayes at a Glance:
    om Owens Caye is leased by Gayle and Dona Scafe of Cuxlin Ha Re‐ sort in Eldridgeville, Toledo. It is used by Reef CI for diving groups from Monday to Friday each week apart from the month of October and two weeks in Febru‐ ary. At the weekends guests can make arrangements with Cuxlin Ha to go out for a weekend staying on the tiny 1‐acre caye on Saturday night. Reef CI +501‐629‐4266 info@reefci.com Cuxlin HA +501‐732‐4747 Cuxlinha@gmail.com Right Sunrise on Tom Owen’s Caye North East Sapodilla Caye is uninhabited and unused. It is the northern most point of the “No Catch Zone” that extends down to Lime Caye at the southern end of the Sapodillas. Frank’s Caye is for sale. It is not open to the public. The buildings on it are dilapidated. Nicholas Caye is privately owned by Belcampo Lodge. Hunting Caye is home to various branches of the Belize govern‐ ment. The Belize Coastguard has a base there as well as the Belize Port Authority that is responsible for the lighthouse. The Immigration Depart‐ ment has a unit there and sailing boats and other craft can do their entry and exit procedures at Hunting Caye. The Fisheries Department is re‐ sponsible for the enforcement of the marine park laws and marine re‐ search. This includes monitoring water quality and the health of the reef monitoring Nassau grouper, lion fish and the sea turtles.
  • Word on the Street: A Visitor’s Perspective:
    Anneke from Pennsylvania visited Toledo and Hopkins with her parents and two brothers dur‐ ing Christmas 2013. We thought it would be in‐ teresting to get a teenage visitor’s perspective on a family holiday to Belize, and tracked her down during her travels. What attracted you to Toledo? My parents wanted us to visit somewhere new in Central America, and thought Belize would be a great trip. So after some research, especially from the Lonely Planet, they thought Toledo would be a great first spot to visit in Belize, and then move to Hopkins for the beach. How does Toledo compare with other places in Belize? We stayed only in Punta Gorda and Hopkins so I didn't get to visit too much of the country, but Hopkins definitely gave us more of the beach as‐ pect of Belize and we had an amazing snorkel trip while we were there. I thought the Toledo area was very beautiful, especially the caves and water‐ falls, and going kayaking in the mangroves was one of the most amazing things I've ever experi‐ enced.
  • BTIA presents “From Your Valentine”:
    BTIA held its first St Valentine’s Day Party at Garbutt’s Fishing Lodge on Joe Taylor Creek on Friday 14th February. BTIA was pleased to welcome its members and guests from the community in‐ cluding Ms Celia Ma‐ hung, Director of TIDE and Ms Christina Garcia of the Ya’axche Conserva‐ tion Trust. Wil Maheia, well known Belizean activ‐ ist, was there as well as Love FM’s southern corre‐ spondent Mr Paul Ma‐ hung. Music was provided by DJ Fresh.
  • Wat’s Cookin? Blue Crab:
    A few months from now should see the start of the rainy season, bringing welcome respite from the hot and humid weather leading up to it, but also giving rise to a wonderful natural phenomenon – the run‐ ning of the crabs! The large blue land crabs emerge from the under‐ growth in their thousands for the start of their mating season, and you’ll likely come across family groups with sticks and bags looking to catch the crab and cook up a tasty stew. Each family has their favourite seasonings, but many versions of the stew include coconut milk and plantain, along with “matilda foot” – plantain dumplings!
  • BTIA Welcomes New Members:
    Toledo Cave and Adventure Tours: Toledo Cave and Adventure Tours formerly known as IBTM Tours, started more than 10 years ago by Bruno Kuppinger. He moved to Belize more than 15 years ago and got involved rather quickly as a tour operator named IBTM Tours. In October 2010 the name was then changed to TCAT (Toledo Cave and Adventure Tours). Bruno has been a licensed Tour Operator and a licensed Tour Guide for more than 12 years. Eladio’s Chocolate Ad- venture: Eladio’s Chocolate Adventure is a family business operated in the Ma‐ yan village of San Pedro Columbia. They offer daily farm tours, tradi‐ tional chocolate making, and camp‐ ing on a 30 acre farm situated just a “sights view” from historical Lubaantun Maya Ruin.
  • Restaurant Guide
  • Registered Tour Operators in Toledo District
  • Calendar of Events
  • Toledo District map
  • BTIA member directory
  • Transportation schedules, including Toledo Village bus schedule
  • PG Town map

The May 11th, 2014 issue of The STAR (Cayo) is online HERE

This Week's Stories:

  • The Weird Case Against Darrington Williams:
    The almost 19 month “weird” burglary case against a 46 year old Belizean Electrician from Bullet Tree Falls Village, Cayo ended on April 29 in a conviction and a 5 year jail sentence. The “weird” case against the convicted burglar, Darrington Williams, also known as Junior Williams, began on October 23, 2012 when a 28 year old man, cohabitating with his mother in Bullet Tree Falls, made the initial report to San Ignacio police. The man told the police that during the nighttime hours of October 22, 2012, he and his mother left the restaurant they operate in Bullet Tree Falls. The man headed home while the mother told him that she was going to San Ignacio Town. When the son arrived at home he noticed that the lights inside the house were on. He concluded that his mother might have changed her mind and had instead gone home. He went around the house to a back door and called for his mother. Opening the back door was Junior Williams instead of his mother.
  • Jermy Audinett Found Guilty On Drug Charges:
    A man from Esperanza Village, Cayo was today found guilty on drug charges and ordered to pay a ten thousand dollar fine. Acting upon information received on February 22, 2012, over 26 months ago, a team of Special Branch officers visited the Esperanza Village residence of Jermy Audinett, 21 at the time, unemployed Belizean, where a search resulted in the discovery of 477 grams of marijuana. The first 8 grams of weed was found in the pocket of a white ¾ Dickies pants on a red sofa inside the house. A further search led to the discovery of an additional 433 grams of the drug in a black plastic bag under the same chair plus an additional 36 grams of weed found in a knapsack also inside the house.
  • American Man Plea Guilty For Drug Possession:
    A 20 year old American man today pled guilty for the possession of 85.5 grams of weed and was ordered to forthwith pay a ten thousand dollar fine. A team of alert policemen on mobile patrol in Santa Elena Town, at around 11:00 am, made a stop at a yard, notorious for marijuana activities, in the Trapiche Area. The team’s attention was drawn to a Caucasian male person acting in a suspicious manner. He was pulled aside for a body search which led to discovery of a parcel of marijuana concealed in the waist band of the brief he was wearing. The man, identified as Jeffrey James Suisher, 20, who is in Belize on a tourist visa and residing in Cristo Rey Village, was transported to the police station in San Ignacio where the weed, weighed in his presence, registered 85.5 grams on the police scale. A quick charge sheet was prepared and the accused was rushed to court where he pled guilty to the charge.
  • Transforming Burns Avenue:
    Burns Avenue is as old as San Ignacio Town. This historic avenue has never ever undergone the magnitude of transformation it is currently undergoing. The first phase of the transformation of Burns Avenue was completed in the latter part of last year under the Tourism Municipal Development plan resulting in the total transformation of the middle section of Burns Avenue. The second phase of the project is now underway. It encompasses the total transformation of that section of the avenue from Scotia and Atlantic Banks to the Belize Bank linking it up with the first phase. The Belize Water Services Limited has completed the upgrading of mains and service connections in the area while, this week, the Belize Telecommunications Limited is engaged in likewise upgrading its underground assets in the area. Mayor John August and Councilors of the twin town informed that as soon as the utility companies complete their works and give the green light, the council will immediately take over and proceed with transforming of that section of Burns Avenue like it has never been transformed ever before in the history of the twin town.
  • Beware Of Con Artists Roaming The Community:
    San Ignacio police is today issuing a warning to the public in general and to senior citizens in particular, regarding con artists visiting homes within the community. In the latest reported incident, Mrs. Suzette Espat of #1 Church Street, San Ignacio Town reported to the police that during the mid morning hours on Wednesday, May 7, 2014, she was at home when she was visited a man who asked her to loan him an empty gallon container to purchase gasoline for his car that had ran out of fuel. The Good Samaritan reportedly went to another section of the house to get the item requested by the man. A few minutes later she returned with the empty container only to find that the man was gone. Also gone was her blue Samsung Digicell flip phone valued at $70. Quick response on the part of San Ignacio police led, within hours, to the detention of the suspect who was found in possession of the victim’s telephone. The suspect, identified as Albert Young, was arrested and charged for theft.
  • Apple 'In Talks' To Buy Beats For $3.2bn:
    Technology giant Apple is in talks to buy headphone maker and music-streaming service provider Beats Electronics, according to various media reports. The reports claim Apple could pay as much as $3.2bn (£1.9bn) and a deal could be announced next week. If completed, it will be Apple's biggest ever acquisition. It is being seen as move by Apple to get a stronger foothold in the phone and music accessories business and bolster its online music offerings. The two areas are expected to see fast growth in the coming years. The Financial Times, which was the first to report the talks, cited a source as saying the firms were still negotiating the details. Beats was founded by music producer Jimmy Iovine and the hip-hop star Dr. Dre and until recently was best known for its headphones.
  • Heart Attack:
    Heart attack occurs when blood flow to a part of the heart is blocked long enough for that part of the heart to die or become damaged. A blood clot blocking one of the coronary arteries is the most common cause of a heart attack. Plaque that is made up of cholesterol and other cells can build up on the coronary arteries and cause a heart attack. Plaque can develop cracks or tears to which blood platelets stick, forming a clot. Stress may also contribute to exacerbating plaque buildup and, eventually, heart attacks. The main symptom of a heart attack is chest discomfort, which can feel like pain, a feeling of tightness or indigestion in the chest, a feeling that something is sitting on the chest, or heavy pressure. The pain may last for more than 20 minutes. Other symptoms include anxiety, cough, fainting, light-headedness, nausea or vomiting, palpitations, shortness of breath or sweating. Symptoms may fade and return. Some heart attacks, particularly those in the elderly, people with diabetes or women, may have little or no chest pain. Heart attacks in these groups may also be silent, which means there are no symptoms.
  • Did The Surge Of Water From Macal River Dams Cause Loss Of Three lives?:
    It is sad that it takes dead bodies to bring attention to the potential for disaster created by the lack of a workable dam break early warning system for the Chalillo, Vaca and Mollejon Dams. It only takes talking to people in the area to realize that there is no general knowledge of what to do if the dam breaks. It took the deaths of two students from Corozal, Egar Puck and Anahi Zepeda, who “were swept off into depths” of the Macal and drowned, to learn that BECOL releases water from the dams, which causes a rise in the water levels in the area of the bridges connecting San Ignacio and Santa Elena. According to Stephen Usher, BECOL's Vice President of Operations, interviewed after the death of the two students earlier this month, Vaca Dam releases water to generate electricity that reaches San Ignacio around 4:00 pm. But why didn’t the public know that information? Just prior to the death of the students, there were two other drownings, one in the Macal River and one a little downstream at Santa Familia where the Macal meets the Mopan River. Over Easter, another drowning occurred in the Belize River, close to Santa Familia.
  • Trust Pro Certified - Four Foods That Lower Blood Pressure:
    According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, an estimated 67 million Americans -- approximately one in three adults -- suffer from hypertension, or high blood pressure. In 2009 alone, high blood pressure was the primary or contributing cause of almost 350,000 deaths in the United States, which averages at 1,000 deaths per day. The disorder is, in essence, an epidemic in the Western world. Though high blood pressure can be triggered by stress and other external factors, a poor diet remains its single greatest cause. Therefore, consuming foods that are proven to produce significant cardiovascular benefits is a great way to prevent and treat the disorder naturally. The best of these foods are listed below. Garlic, Hot chilis, cacao, and turmeric.
  • For The Benefit Of An Entire Community:
    Belize Water Services Limited customers in the San Ignacio, Santa Elena and Esperanza service area have, for many years, been complaining of low water pressure and of late the discoloration in the water piped into their residences. The discoloration has been compounded by changes in the water flow from the upper Macal River. The company recognizes that this quality of service CANNOT continue. In seeking to address this condition, the company has been aggressively exploring possible solutions one of which is the now more frequent flushing and cleaning the storage tank which is taking a toll on those employees assigned this task. Despite last year’s 7.2% decrease in water rates, the company undertook the curtailing of capital expenditure to finance the upgrading of its outdated storage and treatment facility in San Ignacio which is over 50 years old.
  • STAR Humor
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  • Letters to the Editor
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Blogs

Catamaran Sail to Caye Caulker on A Very Windy Day
Today is starting just as yesterday did. Windy (with gusts up to 25mph), waves crashing over the reef, warm and hazy. And yesterday, as over 20 kayaks took off from the back side of San Pedro to start the brutal 40 mile, 2 day Eco-Challenge, I decided to let someone else do all my boating work. I went sailing on Seaduced’s beautiful catamaran over to Caye Caulker. A nice stable catamaran where the wind and the crew – Manuel and Palma – were doing all the work. My station would be in a big purple bean bag. Easy to find me if I’m needed… We CRUISED over to Caye Caulker. And had an extra half hour (the usual is 2) for exploring. The winds would get us back to Ambergris Caye in way less than 2 hours.

International Sources

Fortis President & CEO H. Stanley Marshall to Retire Board Appoints Fortis VP, Finance & CFO Barry Perry as Successor
Fortis Inc. (TSX:FTS) ("Fortis" or the "Corporation") President and Chief Executive Officer ("CEO") H. Stanley Marshall today announces that he will retire as President and CEO and Director of the Board of Directors of Fortis, effective December 31, 2014. Mr. Marshall's career with Fortis spans 35 years and he has been at the helm as President and CEO for more than 18 years. The Board of Directors of Fortis today announces that Barry Perry, Vice President, Finance and Chief Financial Officer of Fortis will succeed Mr. Marshall as CEO, effective December 31, 2014. As part of the transition process, Mr. Marshall will relinquish his role as President to Mr. Perry on June 30, 2014. Mr. Marshall, 63, has led Fortis since 1996 when he was appointed President and CEO. Under his leadership, Fortis has grown into the largest investor-owned gas and electric distribution utility in Canada, and the Corporation's total assets have grown almost twentyfold from less than $1.0 billion in 1996 to $18.6 billion today. "I'm very proud of what we have achieved at Fortis over the last 25 years. I want to thank all of those dedicated employees, both past and present, who have contributed to our success. Fortis is strong and well-positioned for greater success in the years ahead. I have absolute confidence in Barry and the team to make it happen," says Mr. Marshall.

A Simple Theory, and a Proposal, on H.I.V. in Africa
While around the world a vast majority of AIDS victims are men, Africa has long been the glaring exception: Nearly 60 percent are women. And while there are many theories, no one has been able to prove one. In a modest public health clinic behind a gas station here in South Africa’s rural KwaZulu/Natal Province, a team of Norwegian infectious disease specialists think they may have found a new explanation. It is far too soon to say whether they are right. But even skeptics say the explanation is biologically plausible. And if it is proved correct, a low-cost solution has the potential to prevent thousands of infections every year. The Norwegian team believes that African women are more vulnerable to H.I.V. because of a chronic, undiagnosed parasitic disease: genital schistosomiasis (pronounced shis-to-so-MY-a-sis), often nicknamed “schisto.” The disease, also known as bilharzia and snail fever, is caused by parasitic worms picked up in infested river water. It is marked by fragile sores in the far reaches of the vaginal canal that may serve as entry points for H.I.V., the virus that causes AIDS. Dr. Eyrun F. Kjetland, who leads the Otimati team, says that it is more common than syphilis or herpes, which can also open the way for H.I.V.

Definition of incongruency: In pictures: Passenger jet converted into luxury hotel in Costa Rica rainforest
An old Boeing 727 passenger jet destined for scrap has been salvaged and converted into a luxury hotel suite

Videos

Video: Diving in Belize, 4min.
SCUBA Diving Belize in April 2014 with Mark and Brenda

Video: Flying into Caye Caulker, Belize, 2min.
Tropic Air flight from Belize City to Caye Caulker taken from the co-pilot's seat.

Video: Caribbean Belize Cuisine : Natural Coconut Milk with Coconut Water, 10min.
Many people have a great interest in natural, healthy Coconut milk. But how do you know what you are getting if you buy it in a can in the store? In this video we will show you the process of making the ultimate in natural Coconut milk the traditional way. We will take you from the very beginning - harvesting Coconuts from the coconut palm, to husking the Coconut, to opening the Coconut and saving the Coconut water to grating the coconut, And finally, making the all-natural Coconut milk from Coconuts growing naturally on the shores of the Caribbean. In another video we will show you how to make healthy Coconut Oil also - making Coconut milk is the first step in Coconut oil which can be used in a tremendous number of healthy recipes. Coconut milk is used in Caribbean cuisine as well as in food from around the world. This Coconut milk is perfect for all vegetarian recipes and vegan recipes. It is used extensively in Kriol ( Creole ) cooking by the people here in Belize and around the Caribbean. There are a large number of chicken recipes that call for high quality Coconut milk. One of our favorite easy recipes is coconut rice. That is just delicious and so simple! It has been said that high quality Coconut milk has been used as a replacement for breast milk for babies, but we do not know for sure the accuracy of that.

Video: BETTER BELIZE IT!!!, 12min.
Eddie & Patti Rosenkoetter's Belize Wedding

Video: Diving The Elbow with Big Current...The Best of The Best!, 3min.
Put "The Elbow at Turneffe" on Your To Do List! It's the best of the best when it comes to the large schools of fish that appear with the current found at The Elbow. Awesome, don't fight it, ride it!

Video: Manatee in caye caulker, Belize, 2min.

Video: A day on Caye Caulker Belize Central America, 12min.

Video: Oceanside Night Club Caye Caulker Belize, 2min.

Video: Placencia Belize, 12min.

Video: Scuba Diving Reef Sharks at The Blue Hole Belize, 2min.

Video: Playmates at Play in Belize, 3min.

Video: The Mayas of Belize Belize Culture,8 min.

Video: The Fer de lance in Belize, 9min.

Video: Belize 2014, 7min.
honeymoon

Video: Snorkeling in Belize, 5min.