Did you know that today Tuesday, December 27 is a Public and Bank Holiday in Belize. Yup! (In lieu of Boxing Day) Merry Christmas!!!

Various competing theories for the origins of the term boxing day circulate in popular culture, none of which are definitive. However, the Oxford English Dictionary gives the earliest attestations of the term as being from England in the 1830s, defining it as 'the first week-day after Christmas-day, observed as a holiday on which post-men, errand-boys, and servants of various kinds expected to receive a Christmas-box'.

So what is a Christmas-box? A Christmas-box is a present or gratuity given at Christmas. In Britain, it was a custom for tradespeople to collect "Christmas boxes" of money or presents on the first weekday after Christmas as thanks for good service throughout the year. This is mentioned in Samuel Pepys' (member of the English Parliament) diary entry for 19 December 1663. In his diary he stated that the custom was linked to an older English tradition and the tradition was that since servants would have to wait on their masters on Christmas Day, the servants of the wealthy were allowed the next day to visit their families. The employers would give each servant a box to take home containing gifts, bonuses and sometimes leftover food.

Various historical accounts differ slightly, however, what they all had in common was that they all involved giving something to the less fortunate or needy in some sort of a box.


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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, and other specials


The San Pedro Sun

San Pedro Branch of Belize Red Cross says thank you for making “Nurse Holly” rock
On Saturday, December 17th, the San Pedro Branch of the Belize Red Cross (SPBRC) participated in San Pedro’s annual ‘Lighted Boat Parade’ and presented “Nurse Holly”. Entering the parade for the third time, the Red Cross was awarded third place for their decorated boat. Members of the SPBRC would like to acknowledge and thank the following individuals and groups for their help in creating “Nurse Holly”: Kendall Beymer of Ecologic Divers, who donated his dive boat; Charlie Mejia for being the boat Captain and Manuel Mendoza as his first mate; and Brittney O’Daniel of Sandbar Restaurant and Hostel, who donated money to help transform Beymer’s boat into “Nurse Holly”. They also thank the entire boat parade organizational team, who made it possible this year: Emily Moore of The Baker, Mermaid Supermarket Store, Casa Pan Dulce, Black Orchid Restaurant, and Super Buy for donations of food, drinks and lodging for the volunteers and guests on the boat.

Arnold Lino sentenced to 3 years for drug trafficking
Island resident 27-year-old Arnold Lino has been charged and remanded to the Belize Central Prison to serve a sentence of three years for the offence of drug trafficking. According to the police report, on Saturday, December 17th around 2:40PM a quick response from the police conducted a search at a room of an apartment complex located on the Bayside of San Pedro Town. The room was at the time rented by Lino and one Edwin Henry. Upon completion of the search, police officers found six separate sealed transparent bags containing a green leafy substance suspected to be cannabis. Immediately both suspects were detained by police and escorted to the station along with the said drugs. When the drugs were weighed they totalled 723 grams just below one pound. Lino took full responsibility and pleaded guilty for drug possession and control. He was then given three years of mandatory sentence. As a result, all charges on Henry were dismissed.

Letter to the Editor: Amazing Sponsors for the Christmas Inspiration at The Zoo day
Dear Editor, Thank you for allowing me to express my sincere gratitude to the amazing sponsors that made the Christmas Inspiration at The Zoo day such a huge success. It all started when I wanted to take a friend of mine and her daughter, who uses a wheelchair, to enjoy the new wheelchair friendly paths at The Belize Zoo for a day out. The idea somehow took on a life of its own and I ended up taking my friend, her daughter and a group of beautiful children from The Inspiration Center, an outpatient rehabilitation centre for children, from all over Belize, who have special needs. 20 clients from The Inspiration Center, their siblings, their carers and some of the dedicated and fantastic staff team arrived at The Belize Zoo on a rainy day in a comfortable bus, along with the lovely driver Charles. They were greeted by Jamal Andrewin Bohn, Director of Education, along with his energetic and entertaining team of educators, who took everyone on an adventure full of wonder, laughter and joy, to visit all of the gorgeous wild animals who live there.

Wolfe’s Woofer: Psychiatric Seminar
Dale brought his cup of coffee over to my table at the Holiday Hotel and took a seat. “Hey, Wolfe.” he said. “About six years ago a psychiatrist came to the Lion’s Den for a seminar. He handed out a bunch of those weird psychiatric tests. Do you remember that?” “Remember? Hell, I’m still embarrassed about it.” The psychiatrist had given us a short test of words with missing letters like BOO_S, P_N_S, _ _NDOM, F_ _K and S_X. The correct answers were BOOKS, PANTS, RANDOM, FORK and SIX. To my humiliation I had failed to get one correct answer. Dale said, “I ran into that psychiatrist this morning. He’s giving a seminar at the Lion’s Den this afternoon and he invited us to go. He specifically asked if you are O.K.”

Season’s Greetings from the staff of The San Pedro Sun
Each year, as we reflect on the passing of 365 days, we tend to measure the quality of that time based on how good or bad it was. No matter how you consider 2016 to have been, even the worst year has its shining moments, and the best year has its downfalls. It’s what we make of each, and every one of those 365 days that adds up to the final tally. 2016 was indeed a tough one, with the passing of some of my most beloved musicians, actors, leaders and the heartbreak of global unrest. On the other hand, 2016 was full of adventure, good health, dear friends, a loving family and living on a beautiful island in the Caribbean. No matter how complicated life can be, each day life on La Isla Bonita offers a special blessing. Be it the whistle of an osprey as it soars above, or the endless beauty of our bluest of blue waters, these gifts remind us of the true majesty each day can hold. As we look to a new year, full of promise and possibilities, let’s always remember the daily gifts in our lives that so often we neglect to see, and know that each bit of gratitude adds towards the tally of a good year ~ Tamara

Doctor Love: Leap of Faith
Dear Doctor Love, An attractive and intelligent female started working at my place of employment about two months ago. We have become good friends and enjoy each others company. Every day the males flirt with her and ask her out, but she seems to have no interest, and she does not have a boyfriend. Here is the problem. I am also very attracted to her and would love to ask her out but I am a female. I have not “come out” as of yet, but there is no question in my mind that I am gay. I really want to be more than friends, but I cannot handle the shame of asking her out and being rejected. There will be no going back, the truth will be known and I won’t be able to deny it. If I don’t ask her out, I will always wonder if I missed an opportunity for great happiness. Should I take the “Leap of Faith?”

The Reporter

Separate traffic accidents claim two lives
Two men are dead as a result of traffic accidents early Christmas morning. In the first incident, Gilroy Myers was knocked down and killed at around mile three on the George Price Highway sometime around dawn. Reports are that a red Nissan pick-up truck, allegedly driven by Wave TV and Guardian newspaper’s Alfonso Noble, was heading from Belize City towards Mile 8 community when it knocked down Myers. In the second incident, police are asking the assistance of the public in identifying a man whose corpse was found on the in Independence village about an hour later. Police believe the hispanic man was the victim of a hit and run incident, or may have fallen out of the pan of a truck. The man had a huge gash on his head.

Climate and El Nino have possible effect on spread of Zika
A new study suggests that climate changel along with last year’s El Niño phenomenon are responsible for the Zika virus to spread rapidly across South America. The University of Liverpool says while the Zika virus and mosquitoes that spread it have been around for a while, several factors – including specific climatic conditions – possibly made the disease a public health emergency status. “There’s a window of temperature that’s ideal, and when you look at 2015, the numbers were in the right range,” according to Cyril Caminade, research associate with the university’s Institute of Infection and Global Health and author of the study. Caminade added that the climate was only one of the factors that contributed to helping the spread of the disease. “These are populations who haven’t been exposed to this particular virus before, so they were completely naive to it. This pathogen was also particularly virulent. And two years after it was introduced, you have the perfect climatic conditions for it to spread,” Caminade added.

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

Moist conditions to continue
Mostly moist weather is expected to prevail over the next 24 hours with cloudy skies and some showers and isolated thunderstorms over most areas. The wind will blow from the east to northeast at 10-20 knots and becoming gusty near the heavier showers and […]

Another Mayan monument destroyed
Another Mayan monument in Orange Walk has been mowed to fix a road.The unnamed monument existed an estimated kilometer and a half away from the Fresh Water Creek Forest Reserve located on the Honey Camp road in Orange Walk. CTV3 News reported that almost half […]

Government loyalist Alfonso Noble involved in fatal highway accident
Staunch government loyalist and editor of the United Democratic Party’s (UDP) Guardian Newspaper, Alfonso Noble, was reportedly involved in a road traffic accident near mile 3 on the George Price Highway last night, in which one Gilbert Myers was killed. The incident happened some […]

Blogs

Christmas Eve Sailing and Snorkeling with the Lady Leslie
For those up north, it’s a very different Christmas down here and sometimes hard to imagine. But different doesn’t necessarily mean bad – it can mean GREAT. Here are some pics of our sailing trip yesterday – to Hol Chan and Shark Ray Alley for snorkeling and lunch on Caye Caulker. Pineapple salsa, conch fingers, rice and beans, sushi rolls, lobster fritters and coconut tarts… We chartered the 40 foot catamaran, the Lady Leslie — a gorgeous boat and a fabulous crew of father, Martin, son, Jody and son-in-law, Ricky. All born and raised in San Pedro. The day started off with looming clouds – both in front of us and behind us. We only got a little sprinkle… Hol Chan had more boats than I’ve ever seen…but everyone loved the snorkel. The guides are great at keeping the groups separated. And off to Caye Caulker – we arrived by noon, ate at the Rainbow Grill (reliably taste food with DELICIOUS conch and lobster fingers) just at the end of the pier where we parked.

Simone Biles spends Christmas vacation in Summer bliss
Since Olympic gymnast Simone Biles touched down in her self-proclaimed “second home” Belize last Thursday, many news outlets and travel blogs have taken note of the fact that her vacation resembles less of a chilly Christmas winter and more of a summer beach party. Biles arrived in country last week with her family and was met with a warm welcome rivaling Belize’s toasty Christmas climate and a wave of local support. She was the highlight of a motorcade that made its way through the principal streets of Belize City. On-lookers came out to get a glimpse of the Olympic hero. She was welcomed by government officials, Belizean athletes and the general public at an official ceremony held at the Battlefield park. Biles, in an interview with the Belizean media on Thursday, had said she intended to spend her Christmas vacation soaking in the sun and salt waters of the Caribbean sea. The dual American-Belizean citizen who delivered four gold medals in the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janerio, Brazil has made good on that promise. Her Instagram account has given her followers a glimpse into the splendors of an ideal ocean paradise that is the perfect vacation destination all year round.

International Sourcesizz

Canada's CTV Recommends Belize As A Hot Travel Trend for 2017
Just in time to help with planning next year’s vacations, Canada’s CTV News recently announced its top “Travel trend for 2017” – the tiny but chock-full-of-attractions country of Belize. And new Canada-to-Belize City direct flights have made it easier than ever to take, as CTV put it, “A walk on the wild side,” The Lodge at Chaa Creek reports. “We were very happy to see CTV recommend Belize as having 'plenty to offer travellers looking for a walk on the wild side'," Chaa Creek’s marketing administrator Roberto Harrison said. “Especially as Canadians have been enjoying our ‘Wildly Civilised’ eco-resort for decades. “And with travel from Canada to our doorstep getting easier all the time, we’re looking forward to seeing more of our northern neighbours this winter.” Mr Harrison said WestJet Air’s new twice weekly nonstop service from Toronto’s Pearson International Airport to Philip Goldson International in Belize City, combined with Tropic Air’s service from the newly upgraded Sir Barry Bowen Municpal airport to the Maya Flats airstrip adjacent to Chaa Creek, means that northern visitors can “Have breakfast with snow falling outside and then be outdoors splashing around the pool before enjoying dinner that same day. “

Videos

  • JONKUNNU DANCE BY FPS MEDIA BZ, 2min. This Christmas, we’re pleased to present to you our new video highlighting the Habinahan Wanaragua [Jonkunno Dance].The Garinagu are keeping culture alive at Christmas by passing this dance unto the next generation.The Video also features drummers from Lebeha Drumming Group from Hopkins Village. Feel free to like and share this video filmed and produced by ©FPS Media.

  • Christmas in Paradise | Caye Caulker, Belize | December 25th, 2016, 2.5min.

  • DIVING HALF MOON WALL LIGHTHOUSE REEF BELIZE 720x480 AVI, 7.5min.

  • THE AQUARIUM HIGHLIGHTS, Lighthouse Reef Belize 720x480 AVI, 2min.

  • Trip to Belize, March 2016, 3.5min.

  • Merry Xmas & Happy New Year Belize, 6.5min. Showing all things Belize, my country is beautiful from all angles.

  • You Gotta Belize - Honeymoon GoPro, 4min. CHEERS! From San Pedro to Caye Caulker to Altun Ha. A Belize Honeymoon done right.

  • Celeni is making and selling Mayan calendar @ Caye Caulker, Belize. 12.nov, 2016, 5.5min.

  • Spearfishing Lionfish in Belize, 5.5min. While staying at Hamanasi Resort in Belize, I had the opportunity to spearfish lionfish. Lionfish pose one of the greatest threats to the sustainability of coral reefs throughout the Caribbean. They are decimating marine life along the Belize barrier reef. Visitors get the chance to scuba spearfish the lionfish, learn how to clean the fish, and see how it is prepared back at Hamanasi for guests to eat for themselves.

  • Guatemala & Belize 2016 720p, 7.5min.

  • Herping Belize Part II, 5min. As darkness falls on the jungle, Michael catches a tarantula by hand, and continues herping into the night, finding many fascinating creatures not often seen in their natural habitat!

  • Belize Shark Ray Alley, 5min. Some GoPro footage from Shark Ray Alley in Belize. This is an open ocean snorkel so these rays still have their business ends. Some of the nurse sharks are about 5 1/2 ft long. There's an appearance by a barracuda at the end.

  • The Blue Hole - Belize 2016, 14min.

  • Trip to the Lamanai Mayan ruins in Belize, 4.5min. Took a boat up the New River to explore the Lamanai Mayan site in Belize.

  • Snorkeling Laughing Bird Caye in Belize off coast of Placencia, 4.5min.

  • Snorkeling in Belize, 5min. Snorkeling at Hol Chan Marine Reserve. Video includes sea turtles, eels, nurse sharks, barracudas and various fish.

  • Shark Ray Alley snorkeling in Belize, 2min.

  • Belize - Esmeralda Canyon, 2min.

  • Chocolate Covered Chopstix - Snorkeling in Belize, 2min.

  • Belize Progressive Party Christmas Message 2016, 6.5min.

  • Lemenigi Wanaragua Club Sharing the Christmas Spirit in the Nation's Capital. The Garden City., 6min.