Mid May will be an exciting time for Puerto Peñasco, with the arrival of the Mexican Navy Ship “Cuauhtemoc” or as it is known Caballero de los Mares which means The Gentleman of the Seas. It will carry a crew of 240 including 8 captains, officials as well as 100 male and female cadets. The cadets will be able to come on land while in Rocky Point to learn about this part of the Sea of Cortez. While at sea the cadets will undergo training and studies.
The ship will be anchored 1 mile offshore in front of the Malecon for locals and tourists to be able to view it. This incredible ship has made 36 training voyages and traveled to 209 ports in 59 countries. It has traveled over 5522 days at sea and traveled 705,000 nautical miles which is equal to 33 times around the world.
The history of the ship is amazing. It is 220′ long and 39′ wide and is named after Huehi Tlatoani Cuachtemoc. Built in Bilboa, Spain it was known as Celaya. It had 3 sister ships as well. It was launched Jan. 8 1982 and commissioned July 29, 1982. For its 39 years of service is home port is Acapulco, Mexico. It is a Class A ship and sails under the Mexican Flag. In its years of sailing it has won the Tall Ships’ Races two times.
Tall ships are amazing and are used many time for people who like to cruise, but want to do it on a smaller size vessel. Tall ships also can accommodate much smaller amounts of cruisers than a regular cruise ship, thus allowing them to more access to remote areas. You normally think of them for cruising not as a training ship for the military.
We are hoping to perhaps be able to go onboard like people of Rocky Point did when the Astoria Cruise Ship came last year for its cruises. It is not often that the small ports get so much attention. As of this writing it looked like it was near Ensenada and then will turn, go south and come up around the tip of Baja and into the Sea of Cortez to Puerto Peñasco.
Although Semana Santa (Easter Holy Week) had a large crowd, it was not as large as previous years, judging from the photos. The bars and restaurants that were open open were pleased with the business they had. By Sunday most of our visitors had left until next year. There were food vendors on every corner selling tacos, churros and hot dogs. A great time was had by all.
At the same time the OAXACA Exhibit has come to town for a month. They bring with them apparel, leather goods and so many crafts, cosmetics and perfumes, artwork as well as regional food from the area and many flavors of home made ice cream. They open at 10 am and are located in Shrimp Park across from the Municipal Building on the corner of Benito Juarez and Blvd. Freemont. Look for the brightly colored tents.
The last Mermaid Market has been delayed from April 17th to May 29th. So if you are here for the Memorial Day weekend, please plan to stop by and spend some time visiting with the local artists. The last show is always a fun event with vendors dressed like Pirates and always some great music. Here will also find the best BBQ in town and tamales wrapped in Banana leaves that are to die for. You can also buy fresh baked breads and some of the best Marmalades anywhere. They have them all to sample so please do, you won’t be disappointed. If you want a great hamburger while you are in the park, check out the little white building next to the bandstand. Here you can get a cheeseburger, grilled onions and great french fries for $75 to $80 pesos or around $4 USD. They have a nice little seating area to enjoy your lunch and some fresh air. Stop by and visit Russ Black and enjoy one of his special Mermaid Margaritas.
Puerto Peñasco is rapidly becoming a year around wedding destination. There are several wedding planners in town to help you make you special day one to be remembered. You have several caterers to choose from and you can find some great bands for your reception. If you want a beach wedding, that can be arranged complete with canopy and chairs. Check with Olympia Watson or Shayna Sargent who are wedding planners and they can make all the arrangements. If you want to have your wedding at a hotel, check out Playa Bonita Hotel or Penasco del Sol Hotel.
There are some events coming up in April, May, June and July that you might want to mark you calendars for and get your reservations made. April 23-24 at Banditos Roger Clyne Solo Songwriters Show, May 1 at Las Palomas is the Annual Golf Tournament, June 10th Roger Clyne Circus Mexicus and July 16-18 at Manny’s Beach Club is the Manny’s Country Bash. Follow Puerto-Peñasco.com for more info on these events.
Over the years of being in Puerto Peñasco, I have seen so much generosity from the American community that live here. It can be something as simple as adopting a family for the Christmas Season to adopting puppies form Barb’s Dog Rescue and everything in between. The expats living in Mexico are such a generous bunch.
One of the oldest charities is The Santa Claus Club in Cholla Bay and it has been spearheaded since it started in 1983 by John Fowler of JJ’s. The first year they had 40 children and fast forward to 2017 when they served 12,000 children. Throughout the year, John works tirelessly in getting donations of clothes, blankets, etc. and distributing them in the barrio (poor) areas of Rocky Point. He starts every year gathering toys and money to provide a meal and toys and bikes to hundreds of children from the area at Christmas.
The largest one would be the Rocky Point Rally. This year was the 18th anniversary. The bikers make a donation when they register as well as funds from a local Poker Run and other things. In November of 2018, the founder Oscar Palacioalong with myself , Sami Rivera and Linda Plant, presented cash to our 8 local charities along with Mayor Kiko Munro. The total funds raised came to $415,050.00 pesos. This was a banner year for the monies collected. We have 22 volunteers who spend 2 days registering the riders and that group of volunteers has been together for nearly 8 years. They love to help the bikers and also are able to help them navigate the area. The group of local riders and some from the USA also come down on King’s Day in January to pass out toys to the children in the poor areas of town. When the registration notice goes out for the rally, there is also a note about bringing toys. So think about this for next year.
A new charitable group has been formed and it benefits the woman who have been abused or need a place to stay and get their lives together. This group is called “Women Helping Women”and was formed by Nancy Britos, a resident of Puerto Peñasco for a few years. They had a shelter, that had been falling apart but with the help of the other volunteers and donations, they have been able to fix the roof as well as pay the electric bill ahead for the winter months. On November 27th, the held their first fund raiser breakfast in the Sonoran SKY at Cielito Lindo Restaurant. Here 80 women gathered to support the women who are so less fortunate than they are. The attendees were served a wonderful breakfast while enjoying a classical guitarist. This was followed by the raffle drawing, auction and Silent auction. The sales from tickets was $1600.00 USD, sponsorships raised aprx. $1800.00 USD and Raffle ticket sales raised $2315.00 before some expenses. A wonderful time was had by all and a heartfelt thank you to the volunteer team who made it possible. This won’t be the the last you hear of this group. The committee was headed by Nancy Britos and along with Linda Plant, Sylvia Cox, Susan Sharp, Charlotte Keller and Carole Robertson put in many hours putting this together. They will be making gift bags for Christmas so if you have anything you would like to donate, please let one of these ladies know.
Although not a fund raiser, the Las Conchas homeowners group, provide candy and other goodies for the children of Rocky Point at Halloween. The homeowners dress in costume as do the local children and the look on their faces when they see all the candy is priceless.
People like Linda Plant also do a lot of buying of back to school supplies to make sure the children are off to a great start on the beginning of the school year. Thanks to Linda and all the people who donate and bring the items down from the USA. Another project of Linda Plant and Kris Nichols from the Satisfied Frogis to collect blankets for the needy. This year their goal is 250 new or gently used blankets. Also if you pass by a Dollar Store, it is amazing how much you can buy in toys for the children with very little money. These will be passed out with the help of the Tequila Bar the weekend of Christmas.
Barb’s Dog Rescue, please stop by.The last group I will touch base on is Barb’s Dog Rescue, which has been in operation for 17 years in Rocky Point and was started by Barb Mumaugh. This lady works seems to work 24/7. The rescue is funded by donation and fund raising only. Here again there are many volunteers that go out and help socialize with the puppies and older dogs by holding them and loving them, so that they know the kindness of humans, as they have seen the worst. Every year she adopts out over 1100 dogs of all ages. These dogs have been abused and abandoned not only in Rocky Point but other cities near by. To learn of the horror stories these helpless creatures have gone through makes you cry.
These are just a few of the chartable groups in Rocky Point. We hope you will help one of them.
Puerto Peñascowill once again be host to the “Largest Bike Festival this side of the border” and will be held November 7th – November 12th. Oscar Palacio started this bike rally 18 years ago and we had maybe had 1,000 bikes. The main highway was blocked off to get the bikers to the right and give them some welcoming gifts as they donated to our charities. I volunteered in one of the early years and when I see how far we have come from then, I am still amazed. Now Rocky Pointwill welcome over 8,000 bikes. The riders come from all over the United States, Mexico and even Japan. The come in groups and many trailer their bikes and then ride them in town. Most hotels have been booked since last year for this event. If you don’t have a reservation, you had better hustle your bustle.
Stop by at the Rocky Point Rally and register to get you official pin, patch, koozie and more. Spend some time with our volunteers to learn about the city and parade events. These are full time residents of Rocky Point and love to talk about the place we call home.
The committee has put together a star studded group of entertainers for the events that are held all over town. Below is the list as of this writing of the entertainment locations and times. Beside the musical part of the rally, the Bike Parade will be held on Saturday starting in front of the Cruz Roja. Line up is at 11:00 with the parade starting at 11:30 .
This year we are adding a second registration area and if you have pre-registered, you can pick up your things there as well. It will be at Playa Bonita Hotelon Wednesday from noon until 5:00 p.m. and Thursday from 9 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Look for the Register Here Banner.
There will also be a ride to the Pinacate Grand Biosphere Reserve on Thursday and Friday. No charge. Starting place is Barklin Gas Circle K.
Here is the line current line-up: Thursday November 8th Banditos, Kick Off Party7 p.m. The Black Moods, 9 p.m. Christopher Shane, 12:30 a.m. The Summer Wrecked at the Reef , 6p.m. La Merca Boo Bar, 8 p.m. – 11 p.m. The Moonshine Voodoo Band Friday November 9th Islas del Mar Taco Fest, 11 a.m – 2 p.m. (those on the Pinacate tour can wind up here after visiting the Visitors Center. Open to all!! Drink ad taco specials Tequila Bar 4 p.m. – 7 p.m. “Backroads” Playa Bonita HotelSunset Party 5 p.m. – 11 p.m. Matt Farris Banditos 5 p.m. The Summer, 8 p.m. 50 Shades of Rock, 10:30 p.m. Christopher Shane Wrecked, 6 p.m. La Merca, 9 p.m. Mogollon Boo Bar, 8 p.m. – 11 p.m. the Moonshine Voodoo Band Skullyz, 8 p.m. – 11 p.m. Backroads Saturday November 10th Tecate Main Stage in the Old Port, 1 p.m. Mogollon, 3:30 p.m. – 6 p.m. Mr. Skynard Tequila Bar, 1 p.m. Playa Bonita, 5 p.m. – 8 p.m. Matt Farris Banditos, 6 p.m. The Summer, 9 p.m. The Black Moods, 10:30 Christopher Shane Wrecked 6 p.m. Crown Kings, 9:30 p.m. La Merca Boo Bar, 8 p.m. – 11 p.m. The Moonshine Voodoo Band Skullyz, 8 p.m. Backroads Sunday November 11th Manny’s Beach Club 3 p.m. – 6 p.m. Backroads Boo Bar, 8 p.m. -11 p.m. The Moonshine Voodoo Band
If this is your first time here or 18th time, We encourage you to register and receive you registration package, which will have the official patch and pin, tube face coverup, Koozie’s, wrist band to get you on the Harbor Cruise aboard the Pirate Ship Rey del Mar and many other things from various businesses in town. Registration is only $25.00 USD or $450.00 pesos. All of money collected goes to 6 local charities. The charities are Bomberos de Penasco (fire department), DIF Puerto Penasco and Sonoyta (helps coordinate family needs in the communities), Red Cross, Jose Davalos Valdivia Casa Hogar (home for the elderly), La Montana (school for special needs children) and Women’s Cancer Awareness and Prevention, Puerto Penasco chapter of George Papanicolau Registration is held at Barklin Gas Station/Circle K just south of the over pass as you are coming into town. If you have pre-registered, you can pick up your information here. You can also buy your OFFICIAL BIKE RALLY apparel. For your money you will also be treated to a fish taco and nice cold Tecate.
While you are there, check out Barb’s Dog Rescue and be prepared to hold a few fur babies. We have not only volunteers for the rally but participants as well adopt from Barb’s Dog Rescue. She is located north of Rocky Point if you want to ride out and say hi. Barb’s Dog Rescue will be holding a raffle fund raising event with such things as condo stay, sunset cruise on the Pancho Villa and more.
Fall is the time of festivals in Puerto Peñasco. October 18th – 21st, Rocky Point will host the 1st class XLVI Cervantino Festival. The event is held on the Malecon area of the city. Here you can enjoy music, art, food and more while over looking the Sea of Cortez. The festival is family friendly so bring everyone.
This festival features musicians from all over Mexico along with local dancers and musicians. Below is a list of when each group will be performing and the times. Come and enjoy the culture of the music and dance that is so well known all over Mexico and we are so lucky to have them entertain us.
XLVI FESTIVAL INTERNACIONAL CERVANTINO EXTENSIÓN PUERTO PEÑASCO 18 AL 21 DE OCTUBRE 2018
Get there early to the Plaza de Governors in the Old Port Thursday, October 18th
7:00 Blessing by Etnia Madre Tohono O’odham
7:10 Áfrika Duste big show
8:00 Inaguration: Entrega de reconocimientos al Escritor Guillermo Munro Palacio, Universidad de Sonora Unidad Regional Norte-Caborca por su 40 Aniversario, Hermanamiento de Ciudad Cultural con Tecuala Nayarit. Palabras de autoridades.
8:30 Presentation by Ballet Folklórico Mextil de Tecuala
9:30 Concert with María Inés Ochoa “La Rumorosa”
Friday October 19
6:00 Danza Alerta Amber by the Academy Causa y Efecto
6:10 Singer song writer Lian Fertin in concert (Argentina)
6:40 Danza de los concheros por el Ballet Folklórico Magisterial-Casa de la Cultura bajo la dirección de Adan Bautista
7:00 Concierto del Tenor Francisco J Rodríguez (Estados Unidos)
8:00 Samandar Khan Manganiar Rajashtani Folk Music & Dance Group (India)
9:15 Danzas Polinesias by Angélica Sotomayor Martínez
9:35 Banda de Marcha Municipal bajo la dirección del Maestro Rubén Barrera
10:05 Flor Amargo in concert
Callejoneadas con la Estudiantina Dr. Alfonso Ortiz Tirado (Álamos)
Saturday October 20
6:00 Orquesta de Cámara & Orfeón in concert “Unidos por la paz” (200 members)
7:00 Concert by the group 34 Puñaladas (Argentina)
8:40 Grupo Danza Folklórica “Sones de mi Tierra de Evangelina Magaña” (San Luis, R.C.)
9:00 Grupo Luceros Danza Toninho Ferragutti (Brasil)
10:00 Grupo Danza Folklórica “Sones de mi Tierra de Evangelina Magaña” (San Luis, R.C.)
10:20 Big Band Jazz de México Callejoneadas with la Estudiantina Dr. Alfonso Ortiz Tirado (Álamos)
Sunday October 21
5:00 Ensamble y Coro Musical bajo la dirección de Germán Esquer Delgado
5:50 Intérprete Rosael Hernández Hernández (Islas Canarias, España)
6:00 Coral Luis María Valencia bajo la dirección de Aracely Lozano Herrera y Martín Ramírez Domínguez
7:00 Make a Wish de Elite Dance bajo la dirección de Pablo Fabián Jáuregui
8:00 María Cristina Plata (Colombia)
9:00 Programa especial de cierre con grupos artísticos de la Universidad de Sonora URN: Grupo Contraste y Búhos Cantores bajo la dirección de Marcela Denogean Torres; Danza bajo la dirección de Marisol Ivette Izaguirre Montaño. Sunday October 21
The long awaited opening of the newest restaurant in Puerto Peñasco is nearly here. Be prepared to have your taste buds get really happy. GARUFA will formally open their doors in PUERTOPENASCO on October 5th. This upscale chain restaurant is one of 19 GARAFU restaurants thro0ught Mexico. However, this is the 1st one to be built in northern Mexico and the 1st one in a tourist/beach town.
Their menu is fantastic and includes some of the best cuts of steak around, fresh seafood and the ever popular Argentinian Empanada. There is something for everyone! They will feature wines from the Valle de Guadalupe, Mexico as well as from other areas including California. Besides being known for outstanding beef, their deserts are to die for.
GARUFA will be open 7 days a week for lunch and dinner. Their hours are Sunday – Thursday, 1:00 pm to 10:00 pm and Friday and Saturday from 1:00 pm to 11:pm. The bar will be open until midnight.
The summer traffic is finally winding down and the schools are back in session, so that means that fall should be following by shortly. With fall comes a lot of events for everyone.
If you have never been here on September 15th for the call to El Grito or the “Call for Independence” it is quite a production. This tradition dates back to 1810 when Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla gave the call in Dolores, Guanajuato to gather all the people to revolt against the Spanish colonizers. It is on this evening that all eyes are on City Hall at the intersection of Benito Juarez and Blvd. Freemont. City Hall and the surrounding streets are all decorated with Mexican Flags and red, white and green streamers. Normally they attach fireworks to the light posts. This is the night where the previous Mayor passes the guard to the new Mayor. In this case Mayor Kiko Munro will be Mayor for a second term. It is here he is surrounded by his family and friends and makes a speech starting at 11:00 p.m. The crowds are huge so if you want to see the festivities, make sure to get there early to find a place to park. Throughout the city there will celebrations in the streets with bands, food vendors and vendors selling Mexican Flags and apparel. At the end of the ceremony, the crowd will sing the Mexican National Anthem and then the party begins.
The long awaited Grand Openingof Garufa is scheduled for September 28. This restaurant chain from Zacatecas has been around for many years, but this is the 1st one opening in a tourist beach city. While you are visiting Rocky Pointmake sure you add this to your place to have a great steak or seafood. It is located next to Chango’s between the Sonoran SPA and the Sonoran SEA.
Planning ahead for a visit to Rocky Point in October mark your calendar for the Dirty Beach Run. The event takes place October 20th and will consist of an obstacle course and a 5K run.
Check out these events for October. On the 6th is the One Club Open, on the 13th you will have the Rocky Point Beach Vollyball Tournament,also on the 13th you can view the Regattafrom Sandy Beach. One of the great cultural events will be held October 18 – 20th in the Old Port and it is the Cervantino Festival . The last event which is held in Cholla Bay is the Cornhole Tournament. This event draws huge crowds so get there early for a good parking spot. We will give you more information on each event later in September.
We all have known someone who has been in a “Soap Box Derby” or helped to build a Soap Box car. It has been around in the United States forever. Well, April 14th, Puerto Peñasco Mexicowill hold it’s 3rd Annual Charanga Derby. The proceeds from the event will go to the Jose Davalos Casa Hogar, which the home for the elderly here in Rocky Point.
The event will start on top of the hill on Calle Campeche which is the road that leads to the Mirador area. There will be a mini car show starting at 2:00 p.m. The presentation of the teams will be at 4:00 p.m. The first of the dare devils will take off down the hill at 4:30p.m. and the event ends at 5:30. From the videos I have seen, this is quite a trick to come down the hill and then have to hit a “speed ramp” in order to come to a stop.
Teams consist of 6 people including the pilot and if you have a 2 seater a co-pilot. Team members push the car to the start line and then push it so it goes down hill being gravity fed. The team members must run behind the car to make certain it crosses the finish line which is a ramp or in the event it tips over, get it up and going again. Once over the ramp the car begins to slow down. The cars can built of anything but other than wheels they can have no motor nor pedals. It must have a steering wheel but brakes are optional. There are several safety factors for the pilots as well as the spectators. The pilots must wear full helmets that meet DOT motorcycle laws, no flip flops or sandals and long pants. The spectators are protected by straw bales all the way down the hill on both sides of the street.
Winners will be awarded gift certificates which are provided by the sponsors for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place for the fastest cars. There will also be a an award for the most creative car. All you need is to come on down and be prepared to be entertained. There will be food and beverages on site. Hope you enjoy the photos and videos from last year’s event. Video courtesy of Richard Scott and photos courtesy of Santiago Ruis and Tony Ballesteros.
You must sign up before April 11that the RP360 office and the cost for entering your soap box car and your team is $600 pesos or about $33.00 USD. The event is open to all people 15 years and older.
It is that time of the year when our little city of Puerto Peñasco hosts college Spring Breaks and then is followed by Semana Santa or Easter Holy Week. All condos and hotels are already being booked, so if you are planning on coming in March, I would suggest you make your reservations today. Not to scare you off, but if you are looking for a time to come here and relax, you might want to put it off until April. Spring Breaks begin March 1, 2018 so plan accordingly. If you don’t want your family or kids to drive down, please check out Head Out To Rocky Pointas they will have shuttles running all the time right from your door. Please remember TAP bus line has pulled service from Phoenix to Rocky Point.
Semena Santa is without a doubt the most important holiday in Mexico. For the calendar year 2018 it begins on March 25th or Palm Sunday and ends on April 1st or the Sunday of Resurrection (Easter Sunday). Last week I noticed the Fariseo’s are in town. You will see these Indigenous people walking the streets in groups, in their outfits made of goat or pig skin with their drums and their bell leggings called Tenabaris and of course masks. The dance they do is called “pascola” and the bells make the characteristic sounds of this dance that you can hear from quite a distance. The masks represent Kings, animals, clowns and so much more but share one thing in common and that is having long pointy noses and big ears. They also wear a wooden beaded cross under their shirts to be protected . Do not be afraid of them, they are harmless and are on a mission. They will not speak to you or anyone through the entire time they are here. In most cases they are taken in by locals so they have a place to stay while on this mission. They will let you take a photo of them but a donation to them is how they make money for the party on Saturday the 31st when they burn their masks and take away all evils for the year. The Mayan and Yaqui culture is where much of this began in Mexico and has spread to Sinaloa and now Sonora. The Fariseo’s will be here the entire Lent season.
Let me give you a little back ground of Carnaval and what it means. Carnaval is an official Mexican holiday that is the start of a 5 day celebration before the Catholic season of lent which begins on Ash Wednesday. The history of this goes back centuries. It is wildly celebrated with parties that go on to the wee hours of the morning. The word Carnaval is taken from the Latin word meaning “take away or goodbye flesh” as the devote Catholics will give up meat for Lent. In Mexico the largest Carnaval is in Mazatlán and it attracts over 300,000 people annually with people coming from all over the world. It is the 3rd largest Carnaval celebration behind Rio de Janeiro and New Orleans. Carnaval is equal to Mardi Gras in New Orleans. Amongst all the things to do a popular one is to throw Cascarones, which are egg shells filled with confetti at one another.
If you have never been to Carnivalin Puerto Peñasco, it is something to put on your list of things to do. This year it will March 1-4 which is later than Carnival in other places like New Orleans and other cities in Mexico. It is filled will parades every night that stretch the entire length of the city and are comprised of huge floats, marching bands, stilt walkers, local business groups, bars and restaurants and more. There will be plenty of street vendors as well. Need to get there early to get a good seat, so bring your lawn chairs or sit on the curb, no matter which route you go, you will be entertained. This year the parade route will start by the Cruz Rojo (Red Cross) and wind it’s way north to just south of Sam’s Club. here it will turn right and proceed to the place where the Carnival rides and food booths are set up. This year Carnaval will start right around “Spring Break” so much goes into the planning with security and all. There will a car show contest, Carnaval Queen contest, King of Joy contest, children’s pageant and King of Children Joy contest.
As always Guille Salazar will preside as the Eternal Princess. Guille has been the Eternal Princess since 1975 and always gets the crowd cheering. Guille has been a large part of the Cultural scene here in Rocky Point for many years, along with Nina Mier, Eddie Wharez, Victor Aleman just to name a few people. These people strive to keep cultural events coming year after year and it takes so many hours of planning for these type of events.