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RV Caravans to Puerto Peñasco..Welcome Part 1

Back before the days of the condo boom  RVing was the way to go.  There were RV’s coming and going constantly.    They came in groups of all Winnebago’s, Prevosts, Allegro etc.  At one time, it was not unusual to see 30-40 Prevost’s  in a caravan and that meant a lot of money on the highway.  Sometimes  a group of single women would drive down and stay for a week or two.  In most cases the ones coming from Arizona, the West Coast and Rocky Mountain areas met up at the Elk’s Lodge in Gila Bend.   From there they would come down in small groups to cross into Mexico.  They came from Elk’s Lodges, FMCA, Escapes, Good Sam and other clubs.

View to the Old Port.

Shop, relax and enjoy Puerto Peñasco

RV Caravans Playa Bonita (6)

In those days, many of the RVers  made friends with each other and then over the next few years they would all plan their trips together.  Friendships were made at Manny’s Beach Club with the locals that had moved here from the USA.  At that time there were 9 RV Parks starting in the Mirador area with Playa Elegante, San Rafael, Playa del Oro, Senorial, Playa Mirador, Playa Miramar, Sunrise and Playa Bonita and The Reef rounding off on Sandy Beach.  Many of the folks spent at least 3 -6 months in Puerto Peñasco and loved calling Rocky Point home for that period of time. Now there is only  Playa del Oro and Playa Bonita. The Reef is currently not taking reservations at this time.

A Rocky Point Sunset

What more could they ask for?  Beautiful  warm sunny skies, stunning sunsets, fishing, sitting on the beach, mingling with each other or just going into town to shop.  They also would caravan in their vehicles for day outings to Caborca and Pitiquito to go leather shopping and have lunch.  I personally was delighted to always go with them and show them around.  In those days, once past the Mayan Palace area it was dirt road for many miles.  Sometime it was smoother driving in the desert rather than struggling with the ruts.  In some places the road had 4 lanes going each way.

Before the new coastal highway from P.E.Calles (which now leads to El Desemboque, Puerto Libertad, Punta Chueca and Kino Bay) you could drive through the asparagus fields, snow pea fields  and Thompson grape vineyards  and buy a case of which ever you would like directly from the processing plant.  Within that area there was and is so much agriculture grown including olives, pecans  and citrus as well as cattle ranching.  The folks in the RV’s loved to stop by a local ranches  and buy the fresh citrus they could offer.

Back to the caravans.  Many of the groups consist of 20 or more rigs, so getting through the border was not easy.   Now a local Rocky Point businessman Russ Black (organizer of the Mermaid Market) has a program that will meet the caravan on United States side of the border and then they have a police escort to get everyone through Sonoyta in an orderly fashion.  If you are interested in bringing down a caravan and would like the information for Russ Black  send me an email to nocomosi@msn.com and I will get it for you.  If you a Wagon Master and would like information sent to you again please let me know and we can bundle some things up and get them delivered to you.

Take a Sunset Cruise every night of the week.

There are some things you do need to know about what you can and can’t bring into Mexico. No need to haul a lot of groceries, as there is Sam here as well as 2 great butcher shops and numerous FRESH produce markets.   Please follow Puerto-Peñasco.com blogs this month as we will publish this list.  It like everything else is subject to change.  As of this blog, one group from the Sun City Elk’s Lodge is already making plans for their 2018 trip.  Planning to bring a large group down, start planning now as the RV parks are filling up rapidly.

For the first timers coming here, there is really a lot to do and see, so I hope you will take a day or 2 and look around.  Bring your golf clubs or fishing poles and enjoy what Rocky Point has to offer or just sit in your chair and watch the water go by.  Once you are hooked on Puerto Peñasco, you will want to return every year.  If you have any questions or comments that need immediate attention email to nocomosi@msn.com.

Gillespie's Gold Mine and Sonoran Mining

If you go towards the Mayan Palace south and east of Puerto Peñasco and go just past it, there is a road that goes off to the left and goes to the Gillespie Gold Mine.  It is located in a pretty rugged area, so I would say 4 wheel drive is a must and it would not hurt to have a traveling companion.  On our trip to the mine, we stopped at an old open well and one of the men threw a stone down into it and from the sound it appeared to be about 90′ deep.  I choose to walk along the railroad track and pick up old railroad spikes, which I still have a plan to have one of the local welders make a cross out of them for my cross collection.  We passed a couple of cars from the late 20’s-30’s that were just left there to rust.

Old  Well
Old Well

Recently while having stone  work done on our home, we were introduced to Ray Sandoval who owns the property right next to it.  He explained how he chips away by hand the different colored rock with basically a chisel and hammer. The rock come in all different colors and sizes and many of them have traces of gold, silver, copper and quartz in them.  It was interesting to see the pieces with the ore in them.  They can lay them in various size pieces on your walls of your home or stack them in pieces anywhere fro 1/2″ thick to 1″ thick.  This work is a labor of love and it shows in the finished product.

At the Gillespie Mine years ago there was a man and his two sons who mined gold.  I accompanied a group of winter visitors out to the mine one year and was shocked to see the mine shaft that they used to enter.  There was about 20 of us and everyone was so excited to go down into the mine with Bobby Unser being the lead dare devil.  As we descended, we were about 30 -40 steps down into the mine when the woman behind me stepped the wrong way and I heard this loud noise like something cracking.  Needless to say, I was headed past her and out of there and volunteered to take their photo if and when they came up.

Amazing what they could do with what they had to work with
Amazing what they could do with what they had to work with

The old man explained that they were getting about an ounce of gold per month by hand picking the ore.  At that time gold was worth about $300 USD per ounce.  We all shook our heads that they were so determined to do this sort of job, mind you there is no OSHA in Mexico.

Now in later years, the mining industry has really grown up and now there are many new ones between Puerto Peñasco and Caborca as well as all of Sonora.  They are getting a lot of silver, gold, copper and more out of the stone due to the modern techniques they are using.  There several hundred mines in the State of Sonora that are in either the exploration or production state.  They are owned by companies from Canada, USA, Korea, Chile, Japan, Australia, China, USA/Mexico just to name a few.  You can go to the General Director of Mining Development website to learn more of them.  This is now a very large business for Sonora and Mexico.

There is a book called Gillespie’s Gold written by Earl Mac Pherson and I managed to buy a signed copy years ago off of E-Bay.  It is the story about Bernard A. Gillespie and it was a book I could not put down.  If you ever take the back road from Phoenix to Gila Bend you will traverse over the old earthen Gillespie Dam which goes over the Gila River. The dam was built somewhere between 1920 and 1935 and it is a narrow one lane bridge, but it is amazing to drive over it and the last thing you want to do is meet an 18 wheeler coming towards you.  It was also somewhere in this time frame that B.A. ( as he was known) acquired the Sierra Pinta mine.

A great read o Rocky Point history.

Bernard Gillespie was loved by the Mexican people of the area and became known as “Patron.”  Beside owning the gold mine, he owned a large parcel of land which is now known as Bahia San Jorge and the last time I was there his old stone house was still standing.

So pack a picnic lunch and head out to Playa San Jorge to go clamming, fishing,  shelling or just relax on the pristine beach. Turn at the entrance to where it says Playa San Jorge and you will see several homes out there where folks  have escaped the city life of quads and rhinos that speed up and down the city streets.

If you have the time on one of your trips down to Rocky Point and take the back roads over the old Gillespie Earthen Dam.  It is a narrow 2 lane bridge but the scenery is well worth the time as you drive over the dam and through a lot of agriculture and you will end up just east of Gila Bend, Arizona.  Bernard had a vast holding of land in that area as well.

Pictures from the book Gillespie’s Gold.

Vacation in Puerto Peñasco Condos vs. Homes vs. Hotels

If you are planning a vacation to Puerto Peñasco, you have a lot to think about as to where you want to stay. Be it a hotel, condo or home, most all of these are located right on the Sea of Cortez.  There are many things to take into consideration when choosing a place.  You also will want to choose the right company to do your reservations.

Let’s start with the rental company.  You have many to choose from and one of the most popular is Puerto-Penasco.com and they are all very knowledgeable with the properties but also with what is happening in Rocky Point.  There are many beach front homes in Las Conchas and they range from 2 bedrooms to 10 bedrooms and larger if needed.  Any of the rental specialists can customize just the right property for you.  If you are planning to come down during the busy holiday weekends but want quiet time then staying in Las Conchas is probably the best choice for you.  It is a gated community and quads are not permitted on the beach nor tearing up the streets, so if you are bringing toys down, bare in mind you will be asked to park them by the guard station.

If you have never been to Puerto Peñasco you can ask any of these companies for recommendations for activities and restaurants and they can point you in the correct direction.  You may want to  take a sunset cruise, rent kayaks, rent horses to ride on the beach or rent quads or Rhinos. If you are in Rocky Point and the Tiburones are playing baseball, go watch a game.  This is inexpensive entertainment for the entire family.  There is also a new aquarium in town which is interactive for all ages.  All of the above mentioned companies have agents that have lived in Rocky Point for many years or are natives of the area and they can definitely help you out.

Sonoran Sky Resort
Sonoran Sky Resort

Next if  choose to rent a condo on the beach you have several developments to choose from and they are all on the Sea of Cortez and the beach.  These developments come in all sizes.  Sonoran Resorts consist of the Sonoran SKY, Sonoran SPA, Sonoran SEA and the Sonoran SUN.  Then you have Las Palomas which is the largest of the developments, followed by Casa Blanca, The Princesa, Las Palmas, Bella Sirena and Esmeralda.  If you have children a good choice for you would be Las Palomas or Las Palmas as they have lazy rivers and water slides.  Every property with the exception of the Sonoran SPA have swim up bars.  Most of the properties have a community BBQ area as cooking with charcoal is prohibited on the condo balconies.  The Sonoran SPA does have a Santiago Pharmacy as well as gift shop and a display of art and crafts from local artisans and the Sonoran Grill is located there.  The SKY has the TIKI  Bar as well as a sports bar on the beach level.  Las Palomas also has a restaurant as does the Sonoran SEA.  Even though the months of June, July, August and September are hot and humid, there is always a breeze off the ocean and all the properties are air conditioned.  You can rent any of these properties by the night, week or month.

This is your view

Enjoy the view

You have the choice of 3 main hotels that are on the water or have a water view and they are Peñasco Del Sol, Playa Bonita, Laos Mar or Vina Del Mar in the Old Port.  All feature pools, restaurants and bars as well as El Tapeo Wine Bar at Laos Mar.

Playa Bonita en Puerto Penasco
Hotel Playa Bonita

Whatever is best for you, know that you will be treated in a professional manner from any of the companies listed above.  If you have any questions don’t hesitate to email me at nocomosi@msn.com and I can answer your questions or point you  in the right direction.  As we say Mi Casa es Su Casa, so come on down and enjoy the beautiful clean beaches and the warm Caribbean Blue waters of the Sea of Cortez and sit back, relax and enjoy Puerto Peñasco.

For more information you can also Call Free of charge to 1-800-997-9431

Puerto Peñasco, a Wedding Destination & Vacation Destination

April 2017 has proved once again to be one of the busiest months of the year.  Not only did 135,000 tourists come here for Semana Santa (Easter weekend) from Arizona, California, Texas, Baja California, Chihuahua, Sinaloa and Sonora filling all lodging to 100%, it also increased revenue by 15% over last year.  Add to the fact that the weekend before Semana Santa there were at least 6 weddings in Puerto Peñasco.  The month is barely half over and there are more things coming up like the Triathlon and more weddings.  Puerto Peñasco has rapidly become a destination for beach goers as the beach and the Sea of Cortez  are crystal clear and clean. The Sea of Cortez and it’s beautiful sunsets make for a great back drop for a wedding and oh so romantic.

Sunset Time
Your friends and family will be in awe.

Rocky Point Sunsets

If you are planning a wedding in Rocky Point, it now has become a fact that you need to do so a year in advance if it is to be in April, May or June.  The city is still learning about these sort of things, but there is a limit as to how many suppliers there are for equipment rentals for an outside wedding,  DJ’s, photographers, caterers, cake makers, florist, bartenders and so much more to say nothing of lodging accommodations for  families and friends.  If you are having a large reception with a sit down dinner at one of the resorts, that will take some extra planning.  If you plan to be married in one of the churches, that is another consideration.

Custom Wedding Cakes

Most of the cake makers in Puerto Peñasco can custom design your cake.

Start your Beach Wedding with Marachi Music

Most people who decide to be married in Puerto Peñasco, get legally married in the United States where they reside and then have the party here.  This is much easier that going through the paperwork do be legally married in Mexico.

Luxury condo developments for weddings and the beach.

Although there are several  wedding planners here, the fact still remains you have to have the suppliers of everything that goes into an event like this, to get the things you want.  You may want to interview the wedding planners to see which one best suites your needs and get references and the same goes if you are using a caterer, DJ and photographer.  This will insure that you have no last minute surprises on your wedding day.

Another beauitul sunset.

Due to the fact the Rocky Point has a huge tide swing on full and new moons, it is best to check that in advance as well as sunset times.  The sunsets are some of the best anywhere, but you want to time it so the ceremony is prior to sunset so there is plenty of time for your guests to get back to where the dinner or reception is being held.  You can check these things usually near the end of the year when all the new tide chart calendars are out.

A typical Rocky Point day

If your group loves wine, there is no need to haul any of it from the USA.  Wines from The Valle de Guadalupe in Baja Norte can be gotten via a source like El  Tapeo Wine Bar or you may be able to contract with a winery directly if you are familiar with any of the wines from that area.  There are so many good ones to choose from and Laura from El Tapeo can point you in the right direction.

Saying your wedding vows near the water.

A fun event for the day after the wedding is to have all the guests that have stayed over an extra day is to take a sunset cruise or perhaps do it the day before the wedding.   This is a great way for all of your guests to meet ahead of time.

Take your guests on a sunset cruise

Be assured that the suppliers and wedding planners are well versed in their fields and are 100% professional .  A wedding in Puerto Peñasco, will be one that you and your family and friends will truly remember and cherish for a lifetime of memories.  Start making your plans now.  If you have any questions, we are here to help.

Vendors can provide everything for  your specail day

Don’t forget we are only a one hour drive south of the border and it is safe and an easy drive.  Go to www.Puerto-Peñasco.com to check out lodging today to start making plans.

Tiburones New Baseball Stadium In Puerto Peñasco

Be prepared to come out on April 11, 2017 for the Inauguration and game one of the 3 day home stand with the Tiburones De Puerto Peñasco versus Centinelas de Mexicali at our new stadium.  The stadium currently has 1300 seats including the new seats as well as the old 1st base side stadium seats.  It will also feature 260 new V.I.P. seats.  When complete it will have 1860 seats.  It offers both the home team and the visitors a new dug out, locker rooms, office for the managers, showers and more.  Down stairs there is a team gift shop with shirts, hats, and all sorts of souvenirs. Here you can buy beer at several locations as well as food. All the bathrooms have been re-done and new ones added.

Bird's Eye View Tiburone Stadium in Rocky Point

Looking at the stadium

The Cream de la Cream, however is in the center top of the stadium, next to the announcers station is where you will find a SPORTS BAR/ RESTAURANT.  Here you can buy cocktails, wine, beer as well as have food.  It will seat about 55 people and will offer a couple of big screen T.V.’s.  There is no extra charge to see the game from here and as you can see from the picture, the view is awesome.

Sports Bar/Restaurant in Tiburone stadium in Rocky Point Mexico

Baseball stadium sports bar in Puerto Penasco

The stadium project is being done in 2 stages.  The 1st stage is what you will see on the 11th.  The second stage will include the redo of the 1st base stadium in addition to adding a parking lot as well as the relocating of 2 of the light posts.  All the lighting is new so it will seem like day light.

For those who have lived here in Puerto Peñasco for years you probably have attended a Tiburones baseball game.  The stadium really was not a place the city or team could be proud of as it had gotten shop worn.  So under the administration of Mayor Ernesto “Kiko” Munro, the Municipal Stadium is getting a complete make over.  Francisco Leon Garcia stadium will once again be something that Rocky Point can be proud of and offer it’s residents a great deal of inexpensive entertainment.  From seeing the stadium, the $30,000,000 peso investment should pay off very nicely.

New visitor seating in stadium if Puerto Penasco

Puerto Peñasco new baseball stadium

After spending some time with Wilfredo Guzman the Director of Municipal Sports Institute, I learned the team has been around since  1960 and has had several names.  It has been in the existing stadium since 1979, so it was time for a make over.  The season runs from April – July and longer if there are play off games.  The official opening day of the season was April 4.  The 6 team league that they play in use to be called Liga Norte De Sonora but is now known as Liga Norte De Mexico.

V.I.P. seating in Rocky Point baseball stadium

The 6 teams that comprise the league are Tiburones De Peñasco, Rojos De Caborca, Algodoneros De Mexicali, Marineros De Ensenada and Freseros De San Quintin. These teams are development teams for Triple A clubs.  Each Triple A club has 2 development teams to work with and draw from. The coach of the Tiburones is Raul Cano who is a very famous man in Mexican baseballThere are a few other notables on the team of 30 and 6 coaches.  Jeremy Acey hails from Sacramento, CA and plays on 1st base.  You also have Sergio Mitre who played with the New York Yankee’s for 5 years.  The head pitching coach is Vincente “Huevo” Romo who is in the Mexican Hall of Baseball Fame as well as having played for 8 years for the L.A. Dodgers and the San Diego Padres teams.  He is one of the most famous pitchers in Mexico.

Logo-Tiburones

Marineros De Ensenada

Team 3 in the League

Team 4 in the league

Team 5

Rojos de Caborca

If you have not been to a game, it is not expensive by any means.  No $10 hot dogs or $15 beers here!     Admission to the games is inexpensive to say the least.  General seating is $60 pesos, V.I.P. seating is $100 pesos and children will be $30 pesos.  Beer will probably be $1.50 USD as in the past. You can go on game day anytime after 4 and purchase your tickets.  Get there around 5 to get a great seat and sit back and relax.

Liga Norte De Mexico

So whether you a local or visiting, come out and show your pride for the Tiburones Aprill 11th at 7 p.m and be prepared to be amazed!  The Grand Opening happens to fall in the middle of Semana Santa (Easter Holy Week).  There are still rentals to be had, but they won’t last long, so book your room today.

Baja Wines Come To A Puerto Peñasco Wine Tasting

Everyone knows about Napa, Sonoma, Paso Robles and Lodi  wines, but many people do not know about the wines of the Valle de Guadalupe, San Antonio, San Vincente and other regions in the Ensenada area of Baja Norte, Mexico until Laura Palacio opened El Tapeo, a wine and tapas bar.  In the past 3 years she has done several wine tastings all pared with small plates to compliment the wines.  In this region there are well over 200 wineries and including those south of Ensenada.

El Tapeo Wine Bar in Rocky Point
Photo by Beverly Arrowood

The Valle de Guadalupe, San Vicente and others are known for their award winning red wines as well as their Chardonnay/Chenin Blanc blends.  On March 16th, Alex Macias of Vinos ATP y Familia introduced over 40 people to the wines of Iker Turcott (Terra Turcott) and Kruger Wines from San Antonio de las Minas.  No one was disappointed. Three of the four wines could be put up against California wines any day.  Iker did an outstanding job of teaching the guests how to hold the glass, smell the wine and sip the wine.  He also did a great job of talking about how the wines were aged and for how long and in what type of barrels.  Although many of the guests  already knew some  of this it was great as  refresher.

Wine Tasting in Rocky Point

About 3 years go, El Tapeo put on it’s first wine extravaganza and it was a huge success.  Although it was delightful and fun, it is nice to be able to spend quality time with the wine makers and learn of their techniques and how they got started.  Sr. Macias has introduced Puerto Peñasco wine drinkers to the wines of Mundano, Luneo, Dubacano, Alximia, Las Nubes, Vinos ATP y Familia and many more.  We also learned that unlike California wineries, they are taking what is normally used to blend like Chenin Blanc and Nebbiolo for example, are being used as a stand alone varietal. Vinos ATP y Familia is doing a  2013 Nebbiolo that is without a doubt one of the best we have ever had.

Wine Tasting in Rocky Point
Wine Tasting in Rocky Point

If you go to www.bajamexicowines.com, you will be able to see the map and find pictures of many of the beautiful wineries.  There are a couple of the large bulk wineries in that area like L.A. Cetto and Domecq, but these small boutique wines have so much to offer.  We learned that in these growing areas there are places for lodging as well as getting a sandwich to take and have a picnic in the vineyards.

Wine Tasting in Rocky Point
Wine Tasting in Rocky Point

Ensenada, Tijuana and Mexicali have also come into their own with micro breweries.  Many people from  Rocky Point spend time in the region of Ensenada in summer as it is cooler than Rocky Point.  It also gives them a chance to tour the wineries frequently.  From what I have been told, the wineries of this area do not charge outrageous tasting fees unlike what every area other region in California other than Lodi, CA do.

Wine Tasting in Rocky Point
Wine Tasting in Rocky Point
Wine Tasting in Rocky Point

After the event, several people have talked about chartering a bus to go over and spend a few days tasting the wines and sight seeing.  If you choose to drive over, it is only about a 7 hour drive from Rocky Point to Ensenada and it is a beautiful drive.  Russ Black from Puerto Peñasco also has guided tours traveling in a van.  The one thing beside wineries that is a must see is La Bufadora which is about a 20 minute drive south of Ensenada.  The La Bufadora also means “blow hole” which is the sound the water makes as it enters the blow hole and is awesome.

Puerto-Peñasco.com blogs will also keep you updated as to the upcoming wine and beer festivals here at El Tapeo so that you can plan  your trip around them.

Spring Break- Semana Santa..What do they have in common?

It is that time of the year again here in Puerto Peñasco, the college and high school folks are celebrating SPRING BREAK 2017 with a lot of partying going on.  So what do Spring Break and Easter Holy Week (Semana Santa) have in common?  The word is PARTY!  It is amazing that it seems like just a short time ago we were talking about Spring Break 2016 and Semana Santa 2016 and now here we are again as we prepare ourselves for the deluge of kids and families for both events.

Easter-Spring-Beach-RockyPoint

They arrived on Ash Wednesday of last week. We spotted 2 of the Fariceos or Pharisees as they are also known are in town and surely there will be a few more.  In 2016 there were 4 groups of 2.  These are the people that walk the streets dressed in masks made of fur or cow, deer or goat hide and long robes or blankets wrapped around them.  You can usually hear them coming as they also wear leggings with  shells and or  bells that make sounds as they stroll around the neighborhoods and the Malecon as well as beating drums.  The masks come in all shapes and forms from clown like faces to animals and anything and everything in between.They never speak to you or take off their masks in front of you but sometimes they will gesture that they would like food. So no one can recognize them, they place a small whistle under their tongue to communicate with each other.   When you first see them, it is scary until you learn the history behind the process.

Fariseos in Puerto Penasco

Fariseos dancers

The Fariceos travel the region of Sonora for 40 days prior to Easter and travel from town to town and house to house and performing their dances in order to raise money for their celebrations.  Their travels start in Júpare, a small town near Huatabampo, Sonora.  It is estimated that there are well of 500 of the Fariceos in the State of Sonora.

Fariseos in Puerto Penasco

For the most part, these people are chosen to be Fariceos by family or friends and it is their task to be alone for one year.  It is said that this is a way of giving thanks for something good that happened to the family member or friend.  They do not take this duty lightly.   So when the 40 days are over, there is always a party with music, dancing and food.

Now to current times, Rocky Point is the closest Seaport for Mexican Nationals to come from many neighboring states and cities.  Combining all of these people who have come to visit family and friends as well as the Mexicans that come from the United States, the town is jam packed.  On Good Friday after the procession, all heck breaks loose.  If you have plans to go into the Malecon on Good Friday, you had better be there by 9 am and get a place to park and then you won’t leave until late in the afternoon.  These folks party all day and all night and you will hear music going until the wee hours of the morning.

So now you know what Spring Break and Easter Holy Week have in common… it is  and called a PARTY.  Come down and enjoy the festivities and learn about the culture and history of these holidays and enjoy the beautiful Sea of Cortez. However, if you are the type that is in a rush to get somewhere, perhaps, you need to reschedule your visit.  Remember the long lines of vehicles coming in to Mexico and how long it may have taken you, well bear in mind you will probably meet these folks again on your way home, so be patient, sit back and smile.

If you don’t have a reservation, check out www.puerto-peñasco.com, or any of the other companies that handle condo and beach front house rentals.  There are still some units available, but they won’t last long.

Words of Hope Community Center in Puerto Peñasco Needs You!

It seems that our Puerto-Peñasco.com blogs are being read by people from all over.  Recently  Paul and Nikki Schifano from St. Louis contacted me as they have a foundation formed in the United States and wanted to see what they can do to be make a difference here.  Enter Loly Martinez of Rocky Point Medical Clinics and the Words of Hope Community Center.  We sat down over lunch at the Kaffee Haus to discuss the needs of the Medical Clinic and community center and how to be able to reach more people in the poor San Rafael area of Puerto Peñasco.   As was mentioned previously in a story, the center was feeding 120 children and older people 2 times per day, but do to lack of funding to buy food, it had to be reduced to 1 time per day.

Words of Hope Community Center in Puerto Peñasco

Loly  took Paul and Nikki on a tour of the facility, which now has the dental clinic almost finished, Physical therapy building and kitchen complete.  It also has it’s own pharmacy, an eye clinic as well as the area for fitting prostheses.  The were impressed to say the least and donated money on the spot for food.  They along with other family members will be coming back in May to see how they can help.  This community center is in that area that  need people like Paul and Nikki.

Words of Hope Community Center in Puerto Peñasco

The medical clinics are being held twice a month at the center, where they generally see over 150- 200 people with all sorts of needs.   They have teams of doctors and nurses who come from the US to help treat all of these people.  Loly explained to me today, that in the future, eye appointments, dental appointments and fitting for the artificial limbs will be by appointment only as they can only handle about 3 or 4 per day.  She then showed me a picture of a lady who got new dentures made at the clinic on March 11th and what a happy beautiful smile she had.  They are not just giving these things away, but having the people make a small contribution to receive these things.  This is to insure that once fitted, they will come back.  Recently they fitted a woman for an artificial leg and these are custom made to fit the person and run about $5,000.00 USD.  The leg came in and she has never come back and they can’t use it on someone else, so it is a total loss.  They also feel the people appreciate it more when they feel like they are contributing to get what they need.

Words of Hope Community Center in Puerto Peñasco
Words of Hope Community Center in Puerto Peñasco
Words of Hope Community Center in Puerto Peñasco

The driving force behind this Words of Hope Community center is Dr. George Stavros and his wife Susie.  They give tiredly of their time and resources to see that this center keeps moving forward.  Today my husband Bill and volunteered to go out and package pills.  One of the other helpers, remarked, some people count money and some are counting pills.

Dr. George stated that at the clinic being held on April 8th they will also be doing 2 hernia operations out at the Rocky Medical Center just north of town.  They recently did a hip replacement at the same clinic and have another one that will be done soon.  The 2nd clinic will be held on April 22nd and that is just a regular clinic that goes from 9 am- 3 pm.

If you would like to know how you can help, please feel free to contact Loly at 383-3480 or 638-690-1531 or email her at Loly.martinez@rpfog.com.  You can also check out their website at www.rockypointmedicalclinics.com .  There is always a need for volunteers to help with something out there, so don’t hesitate to call her.  If you have food or cash to donate she can arrange to meet you where ever you are at.

You can also always contact me at nocomosi@msn.com or via Puerto-Peñasco.com comment below and I will point you in the right direction. The weather here in Puerto Peñasco, Mexico is beautiful so come down and stay at any of our  hotels like Playa Bonita or Laos Mar or any of the condos that are on the beach like one of the Sonoran Resorts.

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Sandy BEach Hotels

Gala For Young Life .. A Huge Success In Puerto Peñasco

Young Life Puerto Penasco

On February 27, 2017 the 2nd Annual Red Carpet Gala which benefits the “AT RISK” youth of Puerto Peñasco, Mexico kicked off at 6:00 p.m. at the Sandy Beach Convention Center.  As you will see from the pictures, the room was decorated in 1st Class style.  Julio Valenzuela of Mare Blu did a fantastic job of catering the gourmet dinner for 240 guests.  The food service was done by many young people and they did an outstanding job.  Most of them had never waited tables before, but they didn’t let that stop them.  The GALA opened with music from Agua De Coco and ended with music from Sol De Noche. 

Young Life Puerto Penasco

Young Life Puerto Penasco

The event started with a Welcome to Young Life Puerto Peñasco given by Alberto and Loly Marteniz.  Alberto is the Area Director for  Young Life.  Dr. George and Susie Stavros presented the Friends of Young Life Award to Grant and Judy MacKenzie.  Following this there was a presentation about YOUNG LIFE in LATIN AMERICA.  Mayor Ernesto “Kiko” Munro also spoke at the event.

Young Life Puerto Penasco

Young Life Puerto Penasco

Young Life Puerto Penasco

Just so you can learn a little more about YOUNG LIFE.  It started in 1941 and the founder of it had a vision and approach to youth that was revolutionary in that era.  The plan was to go where the youth hung out and through humor, music, adventure and to show the youth that adults cared about them.  A world class camping program was formed and the youth were encouraged to make new friends through the weekly “Club”.

Currently, 75 years later, the Young Life program reaches out to over 2 million teens and college students in 99 countries all over the world.  Puerto Peñasco  YOUNG LIFE serves over 150 at risk youth with weekly social gatherings and annual camps.  Because these youth are at risk, the week they spend at camp is vitally important as they learn new social skills and how to make friendships.  These 150 that  are at risk due to many elements, some being lack of spiritualism and perhaps a family that can not teach their children right from wrong and therefore the kids never understand right from wrong.

At this writing, money is still pouring in so we don’t have the final amount that was raised.  The event was hosted by 39 sponsors from the community as well as private donations and a huge thank you goes out to all of them.

Young Life Puerto Penasco

Young Life Puerto Penasco

Mark you calendars for next year to be a part of this event and be assured that the money is going to the right place.  Investing in the youth of Puerto Peñasco is an investment we can’t afford to not be involved in. This is a great way to give back to the community we live in and call home.

2017 Taste of Peñasco.. A Success

With months pf planning this wonderful what was to be an outdoor event on the beach, was not going to happen at least on the beach. The committee along with half the city had been watching both WINDYTY.COM and WEATHERUNDERGOUND.COM to keep up on the massive storm that was about to hit not only Southern California but the Baja of California as well as Puerto Peñasco. So on Friday afternoon February 17th the committee decided to move the event inside the Hotel Penasco del Sol Hotel.  This was not an easy task, but when you live here you learn to adapt and go with the flow so to speak.  There we found ourselves  moving tables into place to make certain everyone had space and utilizing every salon along with foyer and hallway leading into the what quickly became a convention like setting.  Tape measures in hand Jonni Francis, John Fowler, Cinthy  Aguirado, Sarina Brown and  Beverly Arrowood set out to mark the tables for both the regular competition as well as the tables for the salsa contest.

Top Chef Penasco 2017

It could not have turned out better.  Every RV park, Playa Bonita, The Reef and Playa del Oro, as well as the dry camping area near Playa Bonita was packed to capacity.  The group became very nervous that if they  got the rain, it said we were going to get, that no one would come out.  WRONG!  When you are in an RV and it is raining, you can’t go to the beach and sit in the sun.. so where did they go… you guessed it, The Taste of Penasco.  The doors opened at noon and there was already a long line formed despite being sprinkled on.

Top Chef Penasco 2017

Although not officially on the committee, my job was to gather volunteers for the event and because we have a need for a lot of volunteers for Bike Week registration, I already had a built in list for the team.  Everyone was on board ( all 28 of them) and they were so excited to be a part of it.  Many of them live in Las Conchas, so if you have ever been in Puerto Peñasco when it rains, you know those roads are almost impassable.  These folks are troopers as the worried about getting home after the event.

Top Chef Penasco 2017

Little did anyone know how large this event was going to be!  As guests began filing in, it soon became apparent that we were breaking all records  for the Taste of Penasco.  The event drew a crowd of 1,400 and they came from all over.  Those from Washington and Oregon felt right at home even though they had not counted on the rain.  Everyone was prepared with umbrellas and in some cases had on  rain jackets an boots.

Top Chef Penasco 2017

The Chef’s are to be commended as they had to unload all of the food and equipment in the rain and then try to look nice as they greeted everyone.  The setting was beautiful with the clouds, rain and the beach.  No one complained about the weather or not having a lot of room to move and sit.  If they had a table, they got to make new friends, after all that is what a festival is all about.  The vendors from the  Mermaid Market also had to contend with unloading in the rain, but they made the best of it and did a great job.

Top Chef Penasco 2017

Tickets sales for food and drink were brisk and exceeded all expectations.  The hotel even ran out of red wine for awhile.  Raffle tickets were selling well as there were over 120 gift certificates and physical items to take home.  The music was great and people were dancing where ever they could find space to dance.  Joshua Ellis started the music off at noon and was followed by Heber and Vania (that lady can really sing).  then came Los Hijos de Mauricio and lastly Los Ponchos who played a lot of oldies so many were doing the twist.

Top Chef Penasco 2017

Certain the waiters had a hard time delivering the samples to be judged as they had to hoof it from the convention site around the pool and then into the restaurant, where the 5 judges had been waiting.  It did start to sprinkle again as this process was going on.

Top Chef Penasco 2017

Each and every chef really out did themselves both in taste and presentation but right down to decorating their booths.  This was the 1st time for the Salsa Competition and there were 8 entries.  Taking 1st Place was Sr. Amigo’s and 2nd Place went to El Tapeo (this was their first time entering The Taste of Penasco).

Top Chef Penasco 2017

In the main judging, 1st Place went to Southside Jillz,  2n Place went to Mare Blu and 3rd Place went to another newcomer Empanadas La Argentina. 

Top Chef Penasco 2017

Thanks to the judges for their hard work and they were Max McBride, Chef at Sonoran Grill, Chef Julio, Personal Chef at Julio’s Healthy Meals, Chef Andrea Smith a Personal Chef,  Jack Ava and Bill Bailey, Guest Judge.

This was a great way to show off what Puerto Peñasco has to offer.  Think we may just pray for rain next year as well!  Through so much effort on the behalf of the committee, the restaurants, the community, the tourists and winter visitors and the tireless work of the volunteers $6,000.00 was made and divided between the charities.

Well done Puerto Peñasco.. well done.  Enjoy some of the pictures and the Taste of Penasco 2018 will be waiting for you.

Top Chef Penasco 2017
2 Fish and some of the volunteers