Today's Belize News: September 23, 2016
09/23/16 05:38 AM
09/23/16 05:38 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
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Specials and Events
Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, West Vision (Cayo) and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, Rise and Shine Morning Show, and the Dickie Bradley Specials
The San Pedro Sun
6-a-side Interoffice Football Tournament approaching quarterfinals
After 12 weeks of the 6-a-side Interoffice Football Tournament regular season, playoffs were held on Monday, September 12th to Thursday, September 15th. Four teams: Victoria’s House, Mambo Boys, Rain and Martha’s Ice, have already qualified for quarterfinals. As usual, fans gathered at the Honorable Louis Sylvestre Sporting Complex to support their favorite team. The San Pedro Town Council’s Sport Committee has arranged for the quarterfinals to take place on Friday, September 23rd and Saturday, 24th at the Sporting Complex. All fans are encouraged to come out and cheer on their favorite teams!
Belize at 35: Strong and Together as One!
Ambergris Caye joined the thousands of Belizeans countrywide in celebrating the 35th anniversary of Belize’s Independence. The patriotic festivities began with the official Independence Eve and midnight flag raising ceremonies on Tuesday, September 20th at the Honourable Louis Sylvestre Sports Complex. The celebrations concluded on Independence Day, Wednesday, September 21st with a spectacular parade through the main streets of San Pedro Town, ending at the Central Park with Gilharry 7 Band keeping the celebratory atmosphere into the night. Independence Eve official ceremonies started with the arrival of the various dignitaries, after which, Mayor Daniel Guerrero welcomed the thousands in attendance. “Indeed, looking at the thousands of patriotic Belizeans tonight gathered not only in San Pedro Town, but in all major municipalities and cities across the country, we can proudly say that Independence is not a dream, but a reality for every Belizean,” Guerrero said at the beginning of his speech.
Independence Day Address by Leader of the Opposition Honorable John Briceno
Thirty-five years ago today the Father of our Nation the Rt. Hon. George Price said and I quote: “Belize is a people with all the attributes of nationhood having one flag, one government, one constitution. Our mind imbues the democratic process. Our hand works the mixed economy. Our heart beats with social justice and our soul cherished treasures of the spirit.”
Today is a day to reflect and remember those audacious words for they capture the very essence of our identity. They define us as a people who desire to live free, and who work to build a fair, just and better nation. And we will continue to do so.
Independence Day Address by Prime Minister Honorable Dean Barrow
This year’s September Celebrations came at a time of great division in our country. Notwithstanding that it was not even 12 months since the people spoke in the last general elections, at which the results were decisive, the tug of war between the Ruling and Opposition parties has become more contentious. The Labour movement has also been beset by a degree of factionalism. And even within our Church community fundamental philosophical and doctrinal differences have beaten back the spirit of Ecumenism and highlighted some seemingly irreconcilable points of view.
Prime Minister Barrow's Address as Belize Turns 35
In his address to the nation of Belize, Prime Minister Hon. Dean Barrow, highlighted the fact that the September Celebrations come at a major crossroads in Belizean history, siting uneasiness and a great division in our country.
According to the Prime Minister, Belize appears to have never been less “together as one,” pointing to political as well as divisions in the labour and church sectors, acknowledging that the country is currently suffering from a recession, but that he is hopeful of an economic recovery which he sees just around the corner. Below is a transcript of Prime Minister’s address to the nation as it turns 35.
Misc Belizean Sources
Atlantic Bank Cheque Deposit Notice
As of October 7, 2016 we will no longer be accepting cheques without a MICR line or outdated Atlantic Bank cheques.
Four Mcafee related Belizeans don't want their interviews aired in Showtime documentary "Gringo."
Their attorney has sent information to the producer of the documentary claiming they were either paid or under the influence of alcohol at the time of their interviews. The documentary premiered at the Toronto Film Festival recently and John Mcafee has released a video featuring the same people claiming to have falsified statements made. The 4 individuals: Tyrone Moralez, Zaira Majil, Saka Canul and Cassia Chavarria ) will host a press conference during which they will speak new truths. Though it had been known from last year that the documentary would air by summer 2016, this objection comes days before the September 24th, airing on the cable network.
Two 20 minute power interruptions 7:00am to 7:20am & 4:40pm to 5:00pm on Saturday, September 24 & Sunday, September 25: entire Orange Walk & Corozal Districts
BEL to replace poles, downguys and ground wires on transmission system.
Mounteing a satellite transmitter on a scarlet macaw
With support from WCS Peten and the Belize Wildlife and Referral Clinic, FCD has mounted a satellite transmitter on one scarlet macaw in order to help us understand their movement patterns in the Chiquibul-Maya Mountains.
Corozal Carnival Parade
Independence Day Parade 2016
More Great photos...
BART'S BASH SAILING RESULTS
Provisional results of the Bart's Bash world wide sailing race are up. Venues could choose to race on Saturday or on Sunday, September 17 or 18. The event organizers in San Pedro chose Sunday to hols the race for Belize's field of 22 boats. All the well-established and known-to-be-organized clubs have now reported in. Therefore, for all intents and purposes, here, still unofficially, but quite encouragingly, is how the Belize sailors fared:
In the worldwide field of 174 Laser Radials, San Pedro's Andy Milner is ranked 3rd overall. Among the Belizean sailors still of formal age for Laser Radials, Antonio Ricardez, 16, of Belize City is right behind Andy in 4th; Andy's former cadets in San Pedro - sixteen-year-olds Sarah White and Blanca Velasquez - finished 5th and 6th respectively. Antonio's sister Nashira joins the others, finishing 10th in their class.
In the worldwide field of 196 competitors aged 8 to 15 sailing Optimist Dinghies in Bart's Bash, Kevin Velasquez, age 15, from San Pedro and the 2015 Belize National Champion, is atop Bart's Bash Optimist class leaderboard - in first place and ranked number one. out of 190. San Pedro's Caroline Sersland, age 12, who took 3rd in Belize's last National Championships, is in 7th place, Nicholas Lausan of San Pedro finished 9th. Out of 196, they are all in the top 10!
This weekend's Turtle Beach Cleanup
I am appealing to anyone who likes Hawksbill Turtles to please help get our team of 24 volunteers to the beach for this weekend's Turtle Beach Cleanup. We need to get from Gales Point Village across the lagoon then we walk two miles to the beach and back. We need a sponsor or two to pay for the boat.
Any contribution, no matter how small, adds up. If you can and want to help, plz call or txt me at 635-6012.
At this time of the year, all the Morelet's nests should have hatched in their region. Yes they are cute, but beware of Mama Croc!!! She will defend her hatchlings accordingly. So, if you see any cute hatchlings watch from afar- and who knows! Maybe you will be lucky enough to see their motherly love in action!
Missing dog in San Pedro
Anyone seen Stella? Beautiful Stella still missing! Asking the community of San Pedro to please come together to help bring her home. She got a bit scared of the noise from fireworks Tuesday night and we haven't seen her since. My number is 630-1241 if you think you've seen her. Her collar has her name and my number on it as well.
CASH REWARD for her return!!!
INDEPENDENCE DAY ADDRESS
by Belmopan Mayor Khalid Belisle
It is once again my privilege to welcome you to our nation’s capital, this City of Promise, as we officially celebrate the now 35th anniversary of our young nation attaining Independence. Although it has only been a year since we last came together like this, we have had significant events unfold that have altered the landscape and course of our country. We have once more gone through the traditionally peaceful process of free and fair general elections, been visited by what is considered a minor hurricane but whose effects are still being felt a month and a half later and had the age old dispute with our neighbor once again brought to the fore of the national discourse in a very real and tangible way. It is why despite the many submissions I am certain they received, I’m not sure that the National Celebrations Commission could have chosen a more fitting theme for this year: “Sovereign and Strong – Together as One!”
Miss América Latina del Mundo pageant
Mayor Daniel Guerrero, the San Pedro Town Council and Staff would like to wish the best of luck to Michelle Estrella Nunez on her participation in the Miss América Latina del Mundo pageant. She left Belize to partake in the pageant activities which will lead on to the final night taking place on September 30, 2016 in Cancun, México.
We are already proud of Michelle and we know she will be representing Belize to the best of her abilities without a doubt! Good luck Michelle and have fun!
Orange Walk Carnival Highlights
Lots of great photos!
Paradise Theater playing this weekend
Alice Through the Looking Glass,
The Legend of Tarzan,
Before I Wake,
The Purge: Election Year.
SAN PEDRO HIGH GIRLS BASKETBALL
All the best to our female basketball team who will be playing with Panama later today. Go SPHS!
PM and Teachers Union Meet In Overtime
On Monday, teachers shut down schools countrywide for their demonstration against corruption in the Barrow Administration.
Well this evening, in the aftermath of that show of strength and anger from the teachers, the Prime Minister held a scheduled meeting with the BNTU's Council of Management. The main agenda item? Their 8 demands on the topic of good governance. That conversation started at 2:00 pm at the Biltmore Plaza Hotel, and while it was scheduled for three hours, it finished just before newstime, taking up four and a half hours! Our Daniel Ortiz has been there all afternoon into evening, and he just finished with the interviews - which we'll have for you a little later on.
Father of Two Murdered On Independence Day
An Independence day murder has left 2 young kids fatherless. 27 year old Jesu Mai was stabbed three times in front of the Blue Angels night club. He had gone out to celebrate after the fireworks but it seems he just didn't know when to quit. Here Mai's story.
Jesus Mai had been working with these men on this clinic for about 6 weeks. Mai was grouting the tiles on this side of the wall, but today his coworkers had to finish it for him.
That's because he was stabbed to death in front of Blue Angels Night Club yesterday morning.
Supt. Richard Rosado, OC, San Ignacio:
"Initial investigation reveal that the deceased was socializing at a local night club on Hudson Street and sometime after exiting the night club he was engaged in a misunderstanding with another male individual who subsequently inflicted the stab wounds on Mr. Jesus Mai .The deceased subsequently ran and collapsed on King Street. Police are still trying to ascertain a motive but we do know alcohol may have been a contributing factor."
Stabbing After Murder? What the Devil At Blue Angels?
And there was another stabbing incident this morning in front of that same Blue Angels Night Club, but this one wasn't fatal. Benjamin Pinelo and Antonio Aldana got into a fight with 2 other men outside the club. Pinelo was stabbed twice to the upper body and Aldana was stabbed 3 times. One of them got away and collapsed on the Bullet Tree road in front of a barbershop. Both men were taken to the hospital then were transferred to the KHMH. Police gave us more details on this case.
Supt. Richard Rosado, OC, San Ignacio:
"Police received report of a fight in progress in front of a local night club on Hudson Street. San Ignacio Police visited the scene and upon arrival at the scene observed 2 male Hispanic individuals suffering from apparent stab wounds to the upper part of body. Initial investigation revealed that Benjamin Pinelo of a San Ignacio Town address and Antonio Aldana of a Santa Elena Town address were socializing at a night club on Hudson Street and after exiting the club they were engaged in a misunderstanding with 2 other male individuals who inflicted the apparent stab wounds on the men."
Correlation Between Cayo Carnage and Booze Consumption
Now the one common detail in these stories is alcohol. We have reported on several murders in the west fueled by drunkenness, in fact there have been numerous stabbing deaths in front of that same Blue Angels Night Club. But not only Blue Angels, there is also the Pasadita Bar on the Spanish Lookout road where there have been 2 murders in 4 months this year. Cayo Police told us how they are dealing with this problem.
Supt. Richard Rosado, OC, San Ignacio"
"I would like to say that 90% of our incidents are results of alcohol and bar related incidents. Presently we are working with the liquor licensing board and the town council to see how we can address these factors that are contributing to violence within the liquor establishment."
Four Claim They Lied For Money On McAfee Documentary
On Saturday night, SHOWTIME is airing a documentary about John McAfee - who made international headlines for his outlaw lifestyle in Belize. He's been the subject of all types of US news reports and special features investigating the death of his American neighbor on San Pedro, Greg Faull - but the new documentary is the first extensive study of McAfee's life and times in Belize, and is expected to make strong claims about Mcafee's alleged connection to the Faull murder. For the past week, McAfee has been blasting the documentary on social media, and, now, four Belizeans who participated in building that narrative for the documentary film-makers and recanting their statements. They say they lied, or were induced to lie by the film's producer Nanette Burstein. They've gotten attorney Bryan Neal to write the producers and tell them not to air any portion of the film showing their interviews - and today in Belize City they held a press conference to tell the media why they lied about McAfee in their interviews:...
Caleb Hugs It Out With VP Biden
While his opponents were filing legal appeals in the Supreme Court Registry, Caleb Orozco was in New York at the UN General Assembly, rubbing shoulders with political powerhouses. Orozco told us that he was the guest speaker at a UN General Assembly side event organized by the UN LGBT Core group yesterday in New York. After, that, by arrangement, he met and embraced US Vice President Joe Biden and others. He tells us the Biden encounter was by prior arrangement.
Cops Catching Cannabis and Ammunition
On Tuesday afternoon police discovered 14 ounces of cannabis while searching an abandoned lot on Supal Street. Later that night officers conducted a search on another lot on Supal Street where they found a black plastic bag containing a .38 revolver. On Wednesday at another abandoned lot on Fern Lane, police found a Gatorade bottle containing thirteen live .9mm rounds, seven 12 gauge cartridges, and nine 5.62 live rounds.
Talking Trade Licenses With City Council
The Belize City Council held a public consultation today unveiling their proposed plan to reform the current trade license system. These changes have not yet been finalized, however, and the City Council has opened discussions for public input and consultation - on what may result higher trade license fees:...
Darrell Bradley, Mayor - Belize City:
"Well, we are having a series of consultations. We have been working with the Chamber of Commerce, Ministry of Local Government, the Economic Development Council of the Central Government to try to look at a ways that we can reform the trade license. The consultant then put together a proposal that we want to release, that we have released today for public consumption, input, and feedback. The main idea is that we want to make the trade license system more predictable, more fairer, and cheaper."
Independence Day Fire on Pen Road
Yesterday, while everyone was enjoying the Independence Day Parade, a Belize City family was having their world tuned upside down. That's after their Penn Road house completely burnt down. The investigators from the National Fire Department are still making their inquiries at this time, but they believe that it may have been caused by faulty electrical wiring.
This morning, Orin Smith, the Station Manager for Fire Department, briefed us on what details they have at this time:
Orin Smith, Station Mgr., BNFS:
"On Wednesday the 21st of September 2016, at approximately 2:12pm the National Fire Service received and had responded to reports of a structural fire on number 138 Neal Penn Road, Belize City. On arrival on scene, the upper flat of a 2 story structure approximately 16x12 in size was seen engulfed in flames."
PM Met With Unions
As we told you at the top of the newscast, the Prime Minister met with the teachers Union's council of management today. The meeting which was scheduled for three hours pushed on to four hours and 10 MINUTES - as the teachers demanded answers for all eight points on the list of demands which they made to the PM two weeks ago. The meeting finished just before 6:30, and here's what the BNTU National President had to say when it was done:...
Luke Palacio - BNTU, President:
"We had 8 points that we needed to be discussing with the Prime Minister and so it took all this time. We've discussed, we have a number of issues that we've raised. In fact we address all the 8 points we had in the letter we sent to the Prime Minister and we are now prepared to go back and discused those responses and then determine what happens next."
Daniel Ortiz, 7News:
"Is the council of management satisfied with those responses?"
Luke Palacio - BNTU, President:
"You didn't understand what I said just now? I said we are going back to discuss the responses, so we cannot tell you that we are satisfied and neither are we saying that we are not satisfied, but we have a process and we keep on saying to the media, the BNTU has a process that it follows and you'll have to allow us to make that process work."
Talking Poultry For The Entire Caribbean
Fried, baked, stewed, barbequed....it doesn't matter how you cook it, chicken is and will continue to be an integral part of the Belizean diet. That is why the Belize and the Caribbean Poultry Associations are trying to ensure that the chicken you consume is quality meat, and in order to do that, they have to upgrade their management and production mechanisms. Today the members and stakeholders in the Poultry industry met at the San Ignacio Hotel for their 3rd Annual Technical Symposium. I found out more.
Desmond Ali, Executive Director, Caribbean Poultry Association:
"What we are doing is that we have an industry that uses state of the art technology, but on top of that state of the art technology, there are management techniques and scientific techniques that have to be imposed in the use of the technology to improve performance of the birds. Ultimately what we are trying to get, is trying to keep the cost to consumer down as far as we can."
The Passing of A PC
Police Constable Jason Hall made the news in July of 2015, when he was viciously beaten in the head by a man who pretended to be a good Samaritan by stopping to help him fix a blowout, and then ended up stealing his car. Hall received serious injury, and had other long term effects from those head injuries. Well, tonight we have learned that he died on Tuesday, September 20th. At this time we do not know his cause of death. The young constable had been attached to Precinct 3 in Belize City. His funeral will be held next week Monday in the north.
Briceno, Barrow and The Bishop
If you follow the Independence Day Official Ceremonies in Belmopan, you'll know that the speeches are considered a time for wholesome, patriotic reflection. But this year, politics has polarized everything - even prayer! Catholic Bishop Chris Glancy started off the ceremony with a prayer that would have even made those thieves in the temple run for cover!:...
Christopher Glancy, Bishop Roman Catholic Diocese:
"For 35 years the people of belie have elected numerous governments to act on our behalf and rule the nation."
"Sometimes God of justice we have used our sovereign power to steal from the poor and the powerless. Those in power have fixed the scales and use the system to personal advantage, ultimately cheating the nation of its limited resources for the gain of a few."
Khalid Belisle, Mayor - Belmopan:
"Now I won't stand before you in some idealistic bout of naïveté, pretend that all is well and good. We have our fair share of challenges. But I am confident that as those before us have, we will meet and overcome them, so that future generations of Belizeans have the same opportunity and prosperity that you and I have."
Re: Today's Belize News: September 23, 2016
09/23/16 05:38 AM
09/23/16 05:38 AM
Joined: Oct 1999
Marathon Meeting Between B.N.T.U. and the Prime Minister
The Belize National Teacher’s Union and the Prime Minister are meeting at this time at the Biltmore Plaza. The marathon meeting started at two p.m. and continues as government attempts [...]
San Pedro Resident Fatally Stabbed on Independence Day Morning
Official Independence Day ceremonies were held countrywide, but in San Ignacio, the day was tainted by violence. There were two stabbing incidents at the same venue on Hudson Street in [...]
Two-on-Two Knife Fight Took Place Outside Same Night Club
Within less than twenty-four hours, around one a.m. today, two men were also stabbed after they exited the same nightclub on Hudson Street. Benjamin Pinelo and Antonio Aldana were involved [...]
The View from Belmopan on Independence Day
Belize marked the thirty-fifth anniversary of Independence this past Wednesday. This September twenty-first comes at a major crossroads, when much of the nation is agitating for change and there is [...]
B.N.T.U. Says It Is Going Back to Consult its Members
Just moments ago, the marathon meeting between Prime Minister Dean Barrow and the Belize National Teachers’ Union’s Council of Management concluded. This is after four and a half hours of [...]
Prime Minister Says Meeting Clarified a Number of Issues
Shortly after Palacio’s interview with the press, Prime Minister Dean Barrow came down and addressed what he discussed with the teachers, much of which he had already responded to in [...]
4 ex-John McAfee Associates Admit They Lied About Tycoon for Documentary
Gringo, it’s the anticipated documentary about John McAfee, the eccentric millionaire, which is airing this Saturday on Showtime. But like most things in McAfee’s life, there are twists and turns [...]
P.M. Plays Down Concerns About Extra Borrowing for B.T.L. Settlement
Tuesday’s hearing at the Caribbean Court of Justice addressed a number of issues with regard to the Settlement Agreement for Belize Telemedia Limited, including the issue of paying back the [...]
Financial Secretary Says International Arbitrations May Head to U.S. Supreme Court
But aside from the B.T.L. arbitration award, there are other outstanding cases before international courts. Belize stands to lose another significant sum based on the decision of the most powerful [...]
Calvin Lauriano and Marlon Chaneck, Guilty of Drug Trafficking
Magistrate Deborah Rogers today found thirty-nine year old Calvin Lauriano and one of his passengers, Marlon Chaneck, a resident of Santa Elena, Cayo, guilty of drug trafficking. On June seventeenth, [...]
Alfred Lamb is Guilty of Drunk Driving
Taxi driver, Alfred Lamb did not follow the golden rule of don’t drink and drive. He was found to have consumed more than twice the amount of alcohol than prescribed [...]
Fire Destroys Top Portion of Structure in Belize City
There was no holiday on Wednesday for members of the National Fire Service based in Belize City, as around one in the afternoon they were called out to battle a [...]
Catholic Bishop Christopher Glancy Prays Pointedly for Belize
Bishop of the Roman Catholic Church, Christopher Glancy, delivered Wednesday’s invocation at the Independence Day celebrations. But was he more to the point than the PM and the Leader of [...]
Guat President Speaks About Julio Alvarado’s Death and Relations with Belize
World leaders are gathering in New York City where the United Nations seventy-first General Assembly is underway. The Belize delegation, we are told, is already in New York for the [...]
Caleb Orozco Addresses United Nations event in New York
And while on the subject of the General Assembly, UNIBAM’s Caleb Orozco also addressed a side event of the assembly organized by the UN LGBT Core group in New York. [...]
Healthy Living Reviews Link Between Zika and Pregnancy
Zika education continues. The Ministry of Health and other agencies have been working to keep the public aware of the preventative measures being recommended. As this emerging illness continues to [...]
Prime Minister Confirms The Country Is In Recession
Independence Day Celebrations were held across the country yesterday as Belizeans celebrated thirty-five years of freedom. As for customary the official Independence ceremonies was housed in the nation’s capital, Belmopan, where the Prime Minister of Belize, Hon. Dean Barrow; Leader of the Opposition, Hon. John Briceño; the Governor General, Sir Colville Young; the Chief Justice, Kenneth Benjamin; the Mayor of Belmopan, Khalid Belisle; members of the clergy, and many other government officials, dignitaries and ambassadors came together in celebration of Belize’s Independence. Belizeans have come to expect huge financial handouts including cancelling of mortgages, lower light rates to increases in internet speeds as a part of Prime Minister Barrow’s annual Independence Day address to the nation. But that was not the case this year because instead of bearing gifts, Prime Minister Dean Barrow used his Independence Day speech to tell the nation of Belize that our country is experiencing a recession something which the Leader of the Opposition had already disclosed in Parliament. Prime Minister went on to explain that this current recession is caused by vagaries of the commodities cycle: agricultural sector disease, the drying up of our petroleum resources, and the crash in global prices.
Breaking Belize News
The most powerful way to market Belize’s tourism
Belize has a unique, diverse cultural mix of people which should be our primary focus when marketing and selling Belize’s tourism product to the world. I have watched the Belize Tourism Board’s marketing material over the years, and most of it are well […]
Guatemalan President tells the UN that Belize is the ‘bad neighbor’
Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales, in his address at the United Nations today, claimed that “Guatemala undertakes actions of cooperation and good neighborliness in our geographical surroundings. However, in recent months we no longer encounter such a reciprocal attitude on the part of the Belizean […]
Why Belizean football shows no signs of development
Football, basketball, volleyball and softball are just a few of the most popular sports in the world. In Belize, football holds the title for the most loved and popular sport. Have you ever asked yourself: why is it that football is not growing or show […]
Analysis of the state of the nation address 2016
Prime Minister Dean Barrow presented his annual STATE OF THE NATION address on a sunny Independence Day morning in Belmopan; September 21, 2016. He departed from his usual gloating over a robust economy “flush with cash”, and pronouncements of gift giving such as “mortgage […]
Police find cannabis, .38 revolver, and ammo in Belize City
On September 20 and 21, 2016, while conducting patrol, police found 411 grams of cannabis, a .38 revolver and a Gatorade bottle containing (13) live .9mm live rounds, (7) 12 gauge cartridges and (9) 5.62 live rounds in three separate abandoned lots in Belize […]
Belize Attorney asks producers of John McAfee documentary “Gringo” to refrain from publishing footage of 4 Belizeans
Four Belizeans (Tyrone Moralez, Zaira Majil, Saka Canul and Cassia Chavarria ) interviewed for the Showtime documentary “ Gringo” which is about the life and times that the anti-virus pioneer John McAfee spent in Belize are claiming that they were “induced with alcohol and monetary payment” by the producers of the film to fabricate false information about John McAfee.
The 4 people are also claiming that they were made to sign papers which they were unable to read under the circumstances. […]
Belize selected as top adventure tour destination for 2017
Belize has been selected as a top adventure tour destination to visit in 2017 by Stride Travel, one of the largest search and reviews site for tours and adventure experiences on the Internet. According to the Stride Travel press release, “Belize has been a […]
That’s Mister Keel-Billed Toucan to you!
Although the national bird of Belize is often compared to the goofy “Toucan Sam” caricature seen on the popular cereal box, the Keel-Billed toucan is a sophisticated bird worthy of great respect. For one thing, Mr. Keel-Billed would never be caught eating cereal for breakfast! A nice bowl of fruit, along with some insects and perhaps a lizard on the side would be more like it.
Its colors are startling, from its rainbow bill to its iridescent blue legs, few birds display such a variety of color. Its face, throat and chest are yellow with a narrow border of red on the chest; its body is black with red under the tail and white on the upper tail. The Keel-Billed has a patch of bare green skin around the eye, and the feet are arranged like a woodpeckers’, with two toes forward and two toes back. The toucan can reach 17 to 22 inches in height and 5 to 9 pounds in weight. Keel-Billed toucans can survive 15 to 20 years in the wild.
Belize City Attractions
Most people will tell travelers to avoid Belize City at all costs. However some people want to see all sides of a country. I know some travelers that purposely plan to stay there as was the case with William, a world traveler by profession. He had to leave Honduras for a few days in order to be able to return and stay longer. Before coming to visit me on Ambergris Caye, he chose Belize City for a few days.
Since Belize City was the last topic that the Belize Tourism Board gave me to write about for their Toucan Talks series, I decided to ask my friend Jack to come with me and make it a work, food and shopping trip. For this mission we definitely needed a driver, so our friend Cheryl lives there and she was more than happy to drive us around in her Mercedes to take pictures and get in on the shopping action.
There are a few great historical buildings to see in the city as you will read below. I also find it very interesting that it was British and Scottish Pirates who came after the original Maya people. They used the city’s canals and mangroves to hide out and pillage treasure filled Spanish Ships.
Why You MUST Be in Belize on September 21st! The San Pedro JUMP UP Parade!
Good grief! Is it possible to have a parade hangover? No, no. I didn’t down rum punch and Belikin, only water but the heat! The amazing energy! THE HEAT! 2016’s San Pedro Jump Up Parade for Belize’s 35th Year of Independence may not have been the longest ever but it was fantastic. And I took many many pictures…
This year the parade was set to jump off at 10am…and after the late night, the 21 gun salute in town and the HUGE midnight fireworks…the site of the previous night’s event…
…you can imagine things were running a bit late. I think 11:20am was the time…
It gave me PLENTY of time to take lots of photos at the line-up.
I’m just going to keep them coming fast and furious. From the beginning of the line-up to the AMAZING end and the Mystic Mas group.
Trying to stay healthy while vacationing in Belize, or while living here? Low carb dieting and yoga discoveries in Placencia!
There are a lot of arguments over the "best" and healthiest way to lose weight. Personally, I find that yoga 3-4x a week, and eating a relatively low-carb diet keeps my weight low enough to feel ok in a bathing suit, but we all have our own body chemistry and what works for us!
For those that move here, or are just here on vacation, and are low-carb fans, I have some ideas about how I've maintained a low carb diet while here (And feel free to say to h*ll with dieting, I'm on vacation....however, you may not feel like you are dieting with these ideas!!)
Some ideas for low-carb menu items around the village!
***also note, I have researched the lowest carb alcohol drinks one can get here - I drink these two exclusively - Pinot Grigio or other white wine, or a Vodka (Hyper is the local brand but watch the hangover) with club soda and a lime. Most of the mixed drinks are just filled with sugar here. For beer, I'd probably stick to Lighthouse Lager. No info on the carb count of the beer here...and only Bowen and Bowen beers are available in the country.
The Work Life Balance (Part 2)
In our previous article, you were able to explore the definition of a work life balance and precisely identify what it is comprised of – Achievement and Enjoyment! When reflecting on your daily activity, were you able to identify whether the balance existed? Well, if you are looking at strategies on how to maintain a healthy work life balance, here are some useful tips to help you get it just right!
Naïa Resort to Debut in Belize
Naïa Resort and Spa, a boutique luxury resort with 35 beach houses, will officially open in January 2017 on the Placencia Peninsula in Belize. The property is on a 200-acre private reserve in southern Belize, near the hemisphere's largest barrier reef.
The beach houses, which include studio, one-, two- and three-bedroom options, all have private ocean-view verandas, air conditioning, complimentary WiFi, deep soaking tubs, private outdoor showers amidst tropical foliage. All units have a wet bar with refrigerator and coffee maker, while two- and three-bedroom units have full kitchens. Those larger units also have seafront pool decks.
A New Hotel Is Coming to Belize
A new resort and spa is coming to the Placencia peninsula of Belize: Naïa.
The property, which is set on a mile-long stretch of beach and surrounded by forests and lagoons, is in the heart of a 200-acre reserve in southern Belize.
The property consists of 35 “Beach Houses,” each of which includes a private ocean-view veranda, air conditioning, deep soaking tubs, private outdoor showers, a wet bar, flat-screen TVs and free Wi-Fi and local art.
New Showtime Documentary Investigates Damning Rape And Murder Allegations Against John McAfee
John McAfee made headlines this week after the SEC subpoenaed information about his company, MGT Capital Investments, which sent shares plummeting about 40 percent over two days. Considering he’s also the subject of a new documentary that alleges he raped his former business partner and links him to the murders of two men in Belize, it’s hard to believe his company’s stock problems are the reason he’s making headlines.
McAfee’s story ― the one of an antivirus pioneer and self-professed “eccentric millionaire” who fled Belize in 2012 after police wanted to question him in the murder of his neighbor, faked a heart attack to avoid extradition from Guatemala, and ran for president on the Libertarian ticket earlier this year ― has been told before. And it never fails to seem any less bizarre. Showtime’s “Gringo: The Dangerous Life of John McAfee” from Oscar-nominated filmmaker Nanette Burstein is a fascinating and horrifying investigation into the time McAfee spent in Belize, a country with one of the highest murder rates in the world.
San Pedro Independence Day Parade, 4min. Congratulations to Mystic Mas Band - Ambergris Caye winners of Best Group at Independence Day Parade (2 Years in a Row). San Pedro AIDS Commission came in second!!! Loads of energy in the Parade!!.
San Pedro Independence Day Parade, 2min. You saw the LIVE FEED, now here is a little clip of what's to come in our VIDEO HIGHLIGHTS of the Independence Day Parade in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye - Feel The Energy from Mystic Mas Band
Inheritance Teaser, 2min. "The Inheritance" film was shot entirely on location in Belize earlier this year and features Belizean talent Myrna Manzanares and Sham Salaam in supporting roles. The story is compelling, the photography gorgeous and the landscape...well, it's Belize, need we say more. Support if you can and KEEP YOUR EYE on this one folks, it has a very good chance of winning major awards in 2017. for more info go to http://www.theinheritancefilm.com/
Mexico & Belize 2016, 3.5min. Two weeks travelling through Mexico and Belize. April/May 2016
Belize - Caye Caulker - Unforgettable, 1min. An unforgettable week in Caye Caulker.
Stygian Owl - Mountain Pine Ridge - Belize - 7 April, 2016, 1min. This one was roosting near the road between Hidden Valley Inn and Cooma Cairn.... reliably
Painted Bunting - Maya Centre, Belize - 18 March, 2016, 1min.
Long-billed Starthroat - Eligio Panti National Park, Belize - 13 April, 2016, 1/2min. While there are only three reported sightings of this species in the field guide "Birds of Belize" by H. Lee Jones, it has recently been sighted on more occasions in the Cayo District. Here, the Long-Billed Starthroat is in Eligio Panti National Park near San Antonio, a real birding hotspot.
Exploring Belize 2015, 7min. This video is about our week in Belize. Locations picture: Ambergris Caye and Caye Caulker.
Alaska Wild on Expedition Belize, 17min. Russian Nature Channel
Chantae Guy Miss Earth Belize 2016 video, 3min. Chantae Guy, Miss Earth Belize 2016 will be representing our Jewel in the Philippines in October. We had the opportunity to shoot and produce Chantae's Miss Earth Belize 2016 video this past weekend. We are happy to share the final production with you. LIKE and SHARE to support our very own. Congratulations and best of luck on your journey Chantae Guy!
AARON FRANCIS: THE MAKING OF A DYNAMIC BELIZEAN-AMERICAN SCHOLAR (Part 2)!, 26min. (Dedicated in the memory of Robert "Pele" Ellis)
My coming across this outstanding young man in the Belizean-American Community and diaspora in Los Angeles was most astounding. Through the kind courtesy of a good friend, Orlin 'Proxy' Lewis, who prompted me on the dynamic youth achievement that this promising Belizean-American young man was contributing to his community, family and people, yours truly was moved by such rare sense of consciousness in our young people today, not to mention Aaron's incredible academic achievements, having to come straight out of South Central Los Angeles.
Aaron Francis is the son of Belizeans, Robert 'Pele' Ellis, and Desiree Francis, whom have raised this brilliant young mind to sore the heights of achievement regardless of who he is and where he comes from. Francis received full scholarships to go to the best law schools in California, but he chose to attend the distinguish Harvard Law School which he feels will most better prepare him to accomplish his goal to enter politics in California in the future.
Belize Independence Day Parade 2016, Dangriga, 9min. Sovereign and Strong; Together as one.
Ryusei's American Adventure 2016, and Sailing in Belize, 12min.
RAW DIVING FOOTAGE BELIZE, 1min. Esmeralda, Belize.
Belize independence day fireworks 2016, 3min. Belize independence day fireworks at midnight in orange walk town.BELIZE is now celebrating 35th years of independence.
Belize Scuba Diving. Shark and swim thru at 70 ft, 4min. Swim thru in Belize. Best Dive ever. Super cool.
2016 Carnival Mas Camp Visiting - Belize City, 7.5min. Amazing nights! We had been in 16 Carnival Mas Camps and those Mas Camps leaders, masqueraders were worked so hard. I can understand why people love Carnival so much and the Carnival magic has attracted me deeply now!
Let's Climb a Tree! - Scaling a Yellowhead Parrot Nest with Programme for Belize, 6.5min. Yellowhead Parrots are a beautiful species of parrot endemic to Belize and Central America, however are under threat by habitat encroachment and poaching for the pet trade. In order to help keep these birds wild, Programme For Belize in tandem with Charles Britt and many volunteers work together to monitor the young chicks nests in during their nesting season, ensuring as many young birds make it as possible! Here is a snapshot of what the job is like, climbing a 70 foot (21 meter) Caribbean Pine in Rio Bravo, Belize.
- Yellow-throated Euphonia, 1min. Filmed at Crested Caracara Private Reserve, Belize.
- Crested Caracara, 1min. Filmed at Crested Caracara Private Reserve, Belize
- Black and White Owl, 1/2min. Filmed at Chan Chich Lodge, Belize.
- Rose throated Becard, 1min.
- Cinnamon Becard, 1/2min. Filmed at Chan Chich Lodge, Belize
- Black throated Shrike Tanager, 1min.
- Black-and-white Owl - Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary, 1/2min. For me, filming at night, by myself, is always a challenge. And here, my best spotlight had already failed (!) so there is a fair amount of noise. But, in my mind at least, this is a beauty I cannot just discard....
- Yellow-billed Cuckoo, 1/2min. Filmed at Crested Caracara Private Reserve, Belize.
- Self-portrait, with Roni Martinez - Despair Camp, 1/3min.
- Smoky-brown Woodpecker - BFREE , 1.5min. Shortly after sunrise on the Northern Boundary trail this guy was hammering away. This clip starts off at full speed then transitions to 1/2 speed, then 1/4 speed to be able to see more of what he is doing.
- Painted Bunting - Maya Centre, Belize, 1min. Located at the entrance to the Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary, Maya Centre is just the second place I have seen the Painted Bunting. My only other sighting was at Caracol and I did not have enough time to film it. The only reason I was able to see and film this one in Maya Centre is due to the observations of my friend, CBWS Ranger Brijilio Bolon who lives in Maya Centre.
- Green-breasted Mango, 1.5min. April 14, 2016, morning at Crested Caracara Private Reserve, Cayo, Belize. A bunch of Belizean friends have come to join me birding on my last morning in the field. They are all great birders and we saw a lot of birds, many of which I was unable to film due to a camera malfunction (aka Operator Error). But there was a hummingbird that looked a little different. After some excitement and a lot of discussion, it was determined to be a Green-breasted Mango, a real beauty but we were hoping for something more uncommon. But still, this guy looks a little different – what is up with the obvious post-ocular eye spot? Is that common?
- Orange-breasted Falcon - Hidden Valley Inn, 1/2min. The folks at hidden Valley Inn were kind enough to let me move around their property seeking birds....
- Boat billed Heron, 1min.
- Tropical Pewee, 1/2min.
- Black and white Owl, 1min.
- Red throated Ant Tanager, 1min.
- White Ibis, 1min.
- Plain Chachalaca, 1/2min.
- White Ibis, 1min.
- Plain Chachalaca, 1min.
- Little Blue Heron, 1/2min.
- Great Kiskadee, 1/2min.
- Black-headed Trogon, 1min.
- Acorn Woodpecker, 1min.
- Least Sandpiper, 1min.
- Glossy Ibis, 1/4min.
- Ruddy Ground Dove, 1/2min.
- Vermilion Flycatcher, 1/2min.
- Northern Jacana, 10sec.
- Glossy Ibis close, 1min.
- Great Egret lagoon, 1min.
- Mangrove Swallow, 1/2min.
- Ruddy Ground Dove, 1min.
- Green Heron, 1.5min.
- Ringed Kingfisher, 1/2min.
- White winged Dove, 1/2min.
- Prothonotary Warbler, 5sec.
- Spotted Sandpiper, 1min.
- Great Blue Heron, 1/2min.
- Yucatan Flycatcher, 1/2min.
- Ringed Kingfisher, 1/2min.
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