Folk Art Show in Chapala

MP News Staff

Press Release From Marianne Carlson

Hola from Mexico,

It’s that time of year again to give you notice of the upcoming Feria Maestros del Arte Mexican folk and indigenous art show.

 Feria Maestros del Arte is a “heart show” – not just another “art show”. Read on to see why.

  • 2007 is the 6th Annual Feria Maestros del Arte
  • November 9-11, 10 am to 4 pm, 50 pesos admission/day (about $5 US) or 3 days for 100 pesos
  • Location: Club de Yates de Chapala (Chapala Yacht Club), Chapala, Jalisco, Mexico. Map at – just 40 minutes south of the Guadalajara International Airport
  • 61 artists from Jalisco, Michoacan, Guanajuato, Chiapas, Chihuahua, Puebla, Mexico, Guerrero, Queretaro, Oaxaca – many of the finest artists in Mexico
  • 8 artists featured in “Great Masters of Mexican Folk Art” book
  • Each artist has a webpage so you can read about them and their work before you come to the show
  • No middle-man – artists sell direct to you at the same price as if you were buying from them in their homes – Why? Because they pay nothing to attend this show – no booth fee, no percentage of sales, we house and feed them.
  • Incredible shopping opportunity for museum buyers, gallery owners, collectors or buyers looking for the best at the best prices
  • Consolidator on-site to help with your shipping needs.
  • A non-profit effort to promote Mexican folk and indigenous art
  • Daily raffle of special art pieces from each artist attending (proceeds go to charity)

For more information contact Marianne Carlson 01152 376 765 7485 (from the US) or email me. Ask anyone who has come to this show and they will tell you, it’s “the best” they’ve ever attended.

The Morning Papers

By Jeanine Lee Kitchel

About twice a week I pick up a Spanish language newspaper here just to see what’s really happening in my adopted homeland. I waiver between Novedades and Por Esto. Por Esto tends to run more photos, and not unlike the London paper with the daily photo of a girl gone wild, Por Esto never fails to have a daily shot as well, equally graphic but in a morbid way–one with plenty of blood–be it from a car crash, a murder victim, or a suicide. You can count on it.

A few days ago, Por Esto’s front page blasted the news of a plane crash in a small Mayan village east of Merida, Tixkokob, known for hammock-making. The plane, an 18-passenger handsome new Lear Jet, had crashed in the jungle there, with a cargo of six and a half tons of cocaine. The front page photos showed 135 black garbage bags lined up, neatly stacked aside the wreckage. The plane had broken into three parts.

The article stated the Lear Jet had been refused landing rights in two airports, Cancun and Merida, and was on its way back to Rio Negro, Columbia, when it crashed. The pilot survived, two passengers were killed on impact, and according to the pilot, a woman crawled away into the jungle. Great pulp fiction, no? But it’s fact.

Our coast, just south of Cancun, has been a popular landing spot in years back for black garbage bags (to put it nicely), and recently, for Cuban immigrants. Por Esto stated this crash and the cargo it contained could be attributed to the Gulf Cartel. (I never knew this cartel existed).

Every morning I see federales walking down our beach. Although our town has become more populated lately, we’re still patrolled regularly. Even we had our share of black garbage bags in years past, but now with better night lighting and more people, I hear the illicit night drops happen further south.

One of my neighbors, a local, tells me the reason there are so many Mexican drug cartels now is because tourism is so big in Mexico and the tourists want drugs. He’s originally from Cuernavaca and 40 years ago he’d drive the long treacherous road down to Acapulco on weekends to sail his 30-foot sailboat with his father. He said he watched as drugs slowly made inroads into Acapulco, because the tourists wanted drugs.

“They kept asking for it,” he explained. “They created the demand, the supply followed. And that’s what’s now happening with Cancun.”

“We Mexicans,” he continued, “we’re not big drug users.”

This I know to be a fact, but not so with many tourists. Also, Mexico’s Quintana Roo coast is a drug lord’s dream. Quiet, dark nights, few people, great for hand offs and the illicit rendezvous. It may sound rather romantic, but in reality, it’s a drag. Cancun is valiantly fighting off the cartels, but how long can it last?

As for Cuban immigration, that, too, is topping the charts here. Chalk it up again to the dark and quiet nights. Two days ago, the brother of one of the largest traffickers in illegal Cuban immigration was killed by police in Felipe Carrillo Puerto, 100 miles south of Tulum. They’d hoped to nab Juan Carlos Reyna Molas, the best known coyote for Cubans here in Quintana Roo. Last year 9000 Cubans illegally entered Mexico by landing on its beaches.  Since the plane crash and the death of Reyna Molas’ brother, 200 military vehicles with federal agents have been sent to Quintana Roo to monitor the situation and keep an eye out for any suspicious activity.

As you can tell, life in Mexico is quite a bit different from that up north, overflowing daily with drama, but unless you read the morning papers, you’d never know it.

Calderon Calls For More Immigration

By David Simmonds

Mexico president Felipe Calderon, calling immigration a “natural phenomenon that is economically and socially inevitable“, has called on U.S. lawmakers to make it easier for his countrymen to legally work north of the border. His request is not a surprise, and has some immediate-need merit. But at the same time he should be aggressively pushing for legislation in Mexico that will build a foundation of progress to create better job opportunities for Mexicans in Mexico. The social and practical impact of millions of young Mexican men leaving their families and hometowns to earn a living in el norte is far more harmful than helpful. Mexico is a resource-rich country blessed with hard-working, industrious people. At this time in history they now require a government more interested in addressing the majority of the public’s needs rather than the minority 
aristocracy that has controlled the nation’s wealth for far too many years. Both countries would greatly benefit, and both countries should be involved in solutions. The U.S is spending billions of dollars a week half-way around the world. A fraction of that money could be spent helping our neighbors better their country, which will create a stronger, united North America.

Oaxaca Market Project

Fiesta de 35 Aniversario

By Ron Mader

Oaxaca City’s Sánchez Pascuas Market specializes in fresh vegetables and fruits, local cheeses, good food and crafts. In 2007 this traditional market celebrated its 35th anniversary and the party was sublime!

Sánchez Pascuas is documented in the newly developing Oaxaca Market Project, an initiative of and friends in Oaxaca. We ask visitors to print photos (seen here archived on Flickr) and give them to the venders. This puts a new spin on the traditional “take only photographs” mantra by giving the photos back and raising awareness and increasing purchases of traditional crafts and local food.

New Canadian Ambassador to Mexico, Eh?

MP News Staff

Canada has named a new ambassador to Mexico.Guillermo Rishchynski,who graduated from  McGill University in Quebec in 1975, was most recently the ambassador to Brazil and prior to that post, Colombia from 1999 – 2002. Earlier in his career he worked at the Department of Internal Affairs and International Trade, serving in Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo, Amman, Chicago, Jakarta and Melbourne.

Mexico Ranks #1 in Retirement Index

MP News Staff

Every year International Living magazine ranks the the top retirement havens in the world. This year Mexico comes in at #1, up from #4 a year ago. Each country is evaluated and given a score in eight categories: Real Estate, Special Benefits, Cost of Living, Culture, Health, Infrastructure, Safety/Stability, and Climate. As stated in the magazine “Mexico offers the perfect mix of centuries-old traditions and contemporary lifestyles. Moving to Mexico means you can still have all of the amenities you grew accustomed to north of the border: cable TV, high-speed Internet, and modern home appliances.” The article goes on to say, “If health care is a concern, you should know that in much of Mexico the health care is first rate. Private clinics and hospitals are staffed by expert physicians (many who trained in the U.S., Europe, or in Mexico’s own world-renowned teaching hospitals), and medical care and prescription drugs will cost you only a fraction of what you would pay in the States.”

Mexico was followed by Ecuador, Italy, Panama, Australia, Malta, Spain, South Africa, Mayalasia, and France.

For more information on Mexico retirement go here:

Rock On Juany Appleseed… Mexico Goes Green

By: Lisa Coleman

 Juany Appleseed…. has a nice ring to it doesn’t it? In the last several years, Mexico has spent a tremendous amount of time and money on promoting ecotourism. The government and tourism programs have made a significant effort to educate nationals and foreigners about the country’s natural resources. Nonetheless, Mexico City has always been a sore spot with more cars and air pollution than they can even begin to overcome… but, the good news is… they are making that effort.

On the “Treehugger” website, it was recently published that Mexico’s new president has taken aggressive steps to things going green not just in Mexico City, but country-wide. Part of his strategy of change is to reduce CO2 by 25 million tons. It’s an optimistic plan, but we’ll take it. According to, the idea is to plant 250 million trees by the end of 2007 to help develop wood-based biofuels in forest communities and restore agricultural lands.

In and around Mexico City, there will be three million trees planted in 25 communities over 49,000 acres. I for one think it’s a grand and great idea. Hopefully, the children of Mexico City and rural Mexico will one day see clear blue skies!

Hats off to you Senor Calderon for making this effort!

To read the full article go to