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The San Pedro Sun

Wolfe’s Woofer: Elephant
Hello, sweetheart,” I said, answering my phone. “What’s up?” “Can you pick up Davin from school today for me?” Melody asked. I said, “Sure. That’s what grandfathers are for.” Since I arrived before class was over I sat on the porch and waited. “All right, class,” I heard the teacher say. “I am thinking of an animal whose name begins with the letter E. What is it?” There was an excited murmur in the classroom. Then I recognized Davin’s voice exclaiming, “I know! I know, teacher! It’s a elephant!”

Police Report
Found Property (Drugs) On Thursday, November 27th at 8:00PM, acting on information, San Pedro Police Quick Response Team conducted a search in an abandoned lot located on Glitter Street, San Pedro Town next to a well-known drug peddler. The search led to the discovery of a black plastic bag containing 84.79 grams of suspected cannabis. No one was found in the area and the drugs were labeled as Found Property. Theft On Sunday, November 30th, 23-year-old Jasar Price reported that on the same date at 12:30AM he parked a golf cart with aluminum bumper on Barrier Reef Drive. The golf cart was rented from a golf cart agency. About two minutes later when he returned he noticed that the golf cart was missing. As a result, San Pedro Police carried out an investigation whereby the golf cart was found abandoned in the San Pedrito Area with the light switch and windshield broken. The cart was processed and handed over to the owner. The matter remains under investigation.

TMM Yacht Charters donates computer to highlight Humane Education at the SPRC
The Saga Humane Society Education program, led by Sandie Betz-Eisenberg, and Cindy Kyles and her service dog Sheila, has been successfully educating the children of Ambergris Caye with a revitalized learning program since September of this year. The Humane Education Team has presented to Ambergris Caye Elementary School, Island Academy and ABC Pre-School in the last few months, spreading the word about the Basics of Pet Care – students learn about their pet’s basic needs, as well as the importance of safety around animals, Respecting animals – students learn the importance of the human-animal bond and why proper animal treatment is very important, and Pet Overpopulation – students learn about the issue of pet overpopulation, its root cause and the Saga Spay/Neuter Initiative Program (SNIP): “It’s Hip To Snip!”.

Doctor Love
Dear Doctor Love, I love my mom and dad but sometimes it seems like they want to control everything in my life. I am graduating high school in six months and I feel like I should be able to make some decisions on my own. This is about a friend of mine who got a tattoo that I think is really cool. I don’t have any tattoos myself but I told him how much I like it. Now, he and some more of my friends have been trying to talk me into a getting a tattoo. I finally agreed. When I went to my mom and told her, she called my dad in and they sat me down and lectured me on why I should not get a tattoo. I kind of agree with what they are saying but I have already told my friends I would get one, too. How am I getting out of this?


Getting To Zero WITH Outreach Programs
On December first, Belize joined the world in observing World Aids Day. The event has been observed worldwide since 1988 to celebrate those who have lost their lives to the virus, celebrate the work achieved and to recommit to ending the epidemic. Here in Orange Walk Town, this year the HIV/AIDS Committee organized an entire week of activities for these very purposes. Today, representatives were at the Institute for Technical and Vocational Education and Training Center conducting outreach. Nurse Veronica Ortega, who works at the VCT center at the Northern Regional Hospital, was heading the team there. Veronica Ortega – Nurse, VCT, NRH “Since the HIV Prevalence is higher in the male population so we think that coming to ITVET is a good means of trying to get this young male to get tested.”

Osmany Salas Elected As President Of BTIA
At its 29th Annual General Meeting, the Belize Tourism Board today announced that Herbert Haylock completed a successful two year term and now assumes the post of the Immediate Past President of the Association. This was followed by the announcement of his successor and that Orange Walks Osmany Salas has been elected as President for a full two year term. Salas is current Chairperson of the Orange Walk BTIA Chapter and General Manager of Nahil Mayab Restaurant & Patio in Orange Walk Town. In his speech, Salas listed several targets he wishes to accomplish by the end of his term including: Recruit an Executive Director by February 2015; Significantly increase the BTIA membership; Support the formation of new Destination Chapters for Belmopan and the Belize District; Develop further the financial viability of BTIA, among other goals.

Managed Access Program Comes To An End
Sustainable managed fisheries are essential for the people of Belize and for the health of the magnificent Mesoamerican Barrier Reef. The commercial capture fishing industry for lobster and conch is an important export and a source of employment for approximately 15,000 Belizeans – nearly five percent of the population. Belize’s recreational fisheries draw visitors from around the world and are a foundation of its tourism industry. Abundant biodiversity of fisheries is a crucial factor in maintaining the reef ecosystems. Yet, Belize’s fisheries are threatened by overfishing and decline. The potential decline of Belize’s fisheries due to overfishing and the deteriorating health of the Mesoamerican Reef is a threat to the environment, economy, food security, and livelihoods in Belize. To address these challenges, fishermen, the government, academia, and NGOs in Belize are working together to implement a system for fishing called Managed Access, which combines territorial user-rights for fishing and no-take replenishment zones. These collaborators envision that reefs will be healthier and more resilient to climate change due to recovered fish stocks from Managed Access combined with well-protected and larger no-take zones.

Investigation On Stabbing Of Student Continues
The last time we reported on the unfortunate incident that landed one student of Corozal Junior College at the Northern Regional Hospital was on October 29th of this year. Well today reporter Victor Castillo caught up acting OC of the Corozal Police formation Inspector Peter Serrano, who in an off camera interview informed CTV3 that presently his department is conducting the last leg of investigations, which is the identification parade of the culprit. Charges that the culprit could face in this case are grievous harm, use of deadly means of harm and attempted murder.

Fuel Prices Reduce At The Pumps
Belizean consumers and motorists got some badly-needed relief this week when the price of world oil plunged to its lowest level in years. This is translating to lower prices at the pump and today we were made aware that the gasoline prices have declined to under ten dollars, the lowest it has been in several years. Effective last night at midnight, Premium Gasoline went down 44 cents and now sells for $9.65 per gallon, Regular gasoline went down by 43 cents and now sells for $9.29 and Kerosene went down by $1.13 and now sells for $7.74. And while we know Gasoline is the bloodline that keeps Belize moving, tracking gas prices can feel like a roller coaster ride. They're down a little one month, up the next, and then they shoot up more than 40 percent in a year. Whether these prices will stay, well we just have to wait and see.

BSI Responds To BSCFA Start Of Crop Season Still In Limbo
When we left you on Wednesday we told you about the negotiations that were resumed by both the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association and ASR/BSI as it pertains to the current impasse in the industry. And while we they left the negotiating table with positive expectations and awaited a reply from BSI by today, tonight BSI/ASR held to its word and replied to the Associations points and proposals but let’s just say things are not looking up. Our sources at the Association say that the response from BSI/ASR was not in favorable terms and was mostly inclined to benefit BSI/ASR. At the end we will you be the judge as we managed to obtain that letter.

The Reporter

href="">BCCI holds Christmas Expo
The Belize Chamber of Commerce and Industry held a two-day expo this weekend under the theme “All about Christmas.” The expo, geared at promoting that Belizeans shop in country for the Christmas season, was held at the Ramada Belize City Princess. The event showcased various products such as cakes, chocolate, paint, craft jewellery and even multi-purpose cleaners. Chief Executive Officer of the chamber, Kim Aikman, explained that the event was in line with the chamber’s private sector development mission. ‘We are about creating that environment conducive to good business,” Aikman said. “For some businesses, this is an opportunity to showcase what they have to offer when people are in a buying mode.”

Mexico confirms missing student identity
Mexican Attorney General, Jesus Murillo Karam has confirmed that forensic experts have identified the remains of one of 43 missing students. Karam said that tests in Austria matched a piece of bone retrieved from a rubbish dump in Guerrero state to the DNA of missing student Alexander Mora. Mora’s relatives had vowed to carry on fighting for justice. The students’ disappearance in September has led to protests across Mexico against corruption and violence. Karam told journalists in Mexico City corrupt officials handed over the students to a criminal gang called Guerreros Unidos (United Warriors), after taking part in a protest in the town if Iguala on September 26. They were taken to a waste disposal site near the town of Cocula and killed. The criminals burned their bodies before scattering their ashes in a river, Karam said. He added that the tests were carried out by top experts at the University of Innsbruck.

IDB meets with media over coffee and projects
The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) shared breakfast with representatives of the media on Wednesday to shed light on its work and the projects it funds. IDB’s Country Representative in Belize, Anneke Jessen, said that while the bank provides loans mainly to governments at low interest rates, it also funds projects by civil society organizations because it feels those projects are also important. The Belize Audubon Society’s birding project is one of those initiatives. Meanwhile, one of the government projects that it has invested in is the Education Quality Improvement (EQIP) program, which focuses on improving the quality of education in Belize by offer teacher-training using different teaching methods. Jessen said that the bank will also help the government implement an information system to track how the schools are spending the monies that the government is giving them.

Patrick JonesPJ

PUP endorses Paul Thompson in Albert Division
The People’s United Party (PUP) today held an endorsement convention in the Albert Division in Belize City. Paul Thompson was officially installed as the PUP’s standard bearer for the division and will challenge the incumbent, Herman Longsworth of the United Democratic Party (UDP) in the next General Elections, constitutionally due in 2017. The PUP Albert Division endorsement was held at the basketball court at the Anglican Cathedral College in Belize City.

Traffic accident claims the life of one man
One man has lost his life in a road traffic accident this evening in the southern part of the country. The name of the deceased is being withheld pending proper notification of his family, but we understand that the man is from Bella Vista village. Information received says that the man was chartered to go to Trio village and that upon his return after dropping off his fare, his minivan overturned on the Trip road. Investigations continue.

Belizean athletes win at regional bodybuilding championship
This the four-man contingent of athletes from the Belize Bodybuilding and Fitness Federation and president Stanley Moody returned from El Salvador. There the athletes had a successful participation in the Central American Bodybuilding Championship. Mr. Belize Rigo Vellos placed 2nd in the Light Heavyweight (80 to 85 kg) category ahead of Clayton Greenidge who also came second in the Masters. Oyinkro Akpobodor, also known as the African, won the Juvenile U-23 category and placed second in the Heavyweight (over 85 kg) category in only his second overall competition.


San Pedro’s Christmas Lighted Boat Parade Is Back And GORGEOUS. Tickets MUST Be Booked For Next Year!
Last night was one of my favorite events of the year…a DO-NOT-MISS-EVENT. The San Pedro Christmas Lighted Boat Parade. An annual event…we hope. The last one was in 2012 and it was fantastic. Beyond great. 2013 was cancelled due to lack of participation. But this year, it was back! With so many people congregating in San Pedro’s Central Park. Hear? Yes. I MISSED IT. Sadly. I was on an all day trek from San Pedro to NJ…here was my view as I loaded on to my American Airlines flight to Miami at the Belize International AIrport. Not quite as festive. Neither is getting to Ridgewood, NJ (my hometown) at 12.45am in FREEZING cold rain. So let’s get to the parade. My tech-partner Chris took some great shots. And a few friends are sending them this morning. So here is the San Pedro Lighted Boat Parade. LOVE IT…even from chilly CHILLY NJ.

International Sourcesizz

Sofia Coppola's Guide to Belize
Even the most inveterate traveler needs to find a place to do absolutely nothing. For Sofia Coppola, that place is a tiny seaside village in Belize, where the most exciting adventure she’ll have all day is a bike ride to the gelato stand and back (and that’s just perfect). Hugh Garvey talks to the filmmaker about escaping it all. Sofia Coppola understands the transformative power of a hotel better than most. The filmmaker and style icon grew up as a sort of real-life Eloise, traveling the world with her father, director cum hotelier Francis Ford Coppola, who over the years has built a small empire of luxury retreats. She set two of her movies in hotels, mining the serene dislocation of the Park Hyatt Tokyo in Lost in Translation and the languorous debauchery of Chateau Marmont in Somewhere. And when Coppola wants to fully check out, it’s at her family’s Turtle Inn resort in Placencia, Belize, that she checks in. With a permanent population of just 800, the tiny fishing village of Placencia sits on a slim spit of land on the far western edge of the Caribbean, where the water is that textbook turquoise blue but dense rain forest is just a mile inland. It’s remote, serene, and slow-paced, which is just the way Coppola likes it. Coppola, who splits her time between New York and Paris with her children and husband, Thomas Mars, of the French pop band Phoenix, says, “In Paris you have to be more put together, or at least try to be. You get real privacy in Placencia. It’s nice to be able to be a bit of a slob and feel fully relaxed in a place so removed from busy, modern life.”

How Canada/Mexico became part of US policing regime
During this summer’s child migrant crisis and the accompanying frenzy around “security” along the U.S.-Mexico boundary, a spotlight was shone on Mexico’s role in protecting the U.S. “homeland.” It helped illuminate what Washington considers the United States’ territorial boundaries: those of the countries associated with the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). In other words, the territories of Canada and Mexico are part of the U.S. policing regime, under a regional security framework we might call “NAFTA-land Security.” Evidence of this emerged in July when a Congressional hearing featured a discussion on, as Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK) put it, “what Mexico is actually doing to help us” regarding the unauthorized movement of Central American children. Some lawmakers and officials hinted that insufficient efforts by Mexican authorities made possible the unwanted migrants’ northward movement through Mexico. The current focus on Mexico’s border with Guatemala and Belize is at once a long-developing story and part of a much larger policy agenda. Partly in response to the terrorist attacks of 9/11, partly the result of security compunctions deepened through the advancement of economic interests by way of North American economic integration, the United States has sought to improve the Mexican state’s policing capacities. In doing so, Washington aims to shape those capacities toward U.S. concerns in order to ensure Mexico’s political economic stability, to better protect the U.S. homeland through “layered defense,” and, in turn, to insulate the highly integrated and strategically crucial North American economic space from internal and external threats.

Venezuela cuts PetroCaribe oil shipments
Shipments of cut-rate oil from Venezuela to Caribbean and Central American countries under the PetroCaribe programme were cut by about 20% through October compared with the same period last year, ClipperData, a New York data tracker, has reported. And, according to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), last year Venezuela’s preferential oil exports to the 13 PetroCaribe countries declined 15% from 2012, says. Although Venezuela has pledged to continue the program, several participants in the programme are preparing for further declines, which would affect domestic spending and potentially tip some economies into recession. In Grenada, the discounted Venezuelan oil funds 40% of social programmes, from textbooks and free lunches for children to paying for roads and buses. Haiti named an airport after Venezuela’s late President Hugo Chávez , who founded PetroCaribe in 2005, and uses the oil money for food distribution programs and for monthly allowances for the poor. The Dominican Republic has used the program to plug a fiscal hole.

Caribbean heads arrive in Havana for CARICOM-Cuba summit
Heads of state and government of the member nations of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), together with officials from regional organizations, began arriving on Saturday in Havana to participate in Monday’s fifth CARICOM-Cuba summit. According to the program released to the press by the Cuban foreign ministry, starting at noon the presidents or prime ministers of Suriname, Grenada, Guyana and Antigua and Barbuda were due to arrive on separate flights at José Martí International Airport in Havana. The arrival on Saturday of the heads of delegations from Barbados, Jamaica and St Vincent and the Grenadines was also expected, along with the heads of the Association of Caribbean States (ACS), CARICOM and the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS).


Video: How to have fun in Belize, 1min. How to have a great time in Belize the a cave tubing trip. We have over five amazing adventures to take you on. See the amazing caves while floating down a river on an inner tube. Zipline across the tropical forest. Visit the Mayan ruins and explore ancient history.

Video: Belize 3 OK, 9min.

Video: Creation Care Study Program Belize Part II, 5.5min. Footage from our campus in Santa Elena Belize as well as our travel week to Guatemala, marine ecology course at Glovers Atoll and other parts of Belize.

Video: Belize, half moon caye wall, 15min. scuba diving in belize

Video: Norwegian Cruise, 12min. Bobbye and I were joined by Leigh Anne and Laura for a cruise to Cozumel, Belize, and Honduras. Great time!!

Video: Blue Ventures Bird & Manatee Conservation, 77min. Blue Ventures Bird & Manatee Conservation Blue Ventures are an award winning marine conservation organisation running expeditions in Belize and Madagascar. Blue Ventures new volunteer project works to help monitor and conserve coastal areas and the Barrier Reef around Corozal Bay and Bacalar Chico National Park .

Video: Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary || DTOURZ Placencia, Belize, 2.5min. Here's just a fraction of the excitement from the DTOURZ Cockscomb tour! You can also take the Cockscomb tour at night!

Video: Cockscomb Basin Nightlife Tour || DTOURZ Placencia, Belize, 1.5 min. Here's a little bit of the fun from the Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary tour when the nocturnal animals are out! You can also take the Cockscomb tour in the daytime for some fun in the water!