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B i m o n t h l y ·Year 03 · N u m b e r 95 · 20,000 co p i e s · 20 Pages · O c to b e r 1 9 - N ovember 01 , 2 0 1 6


Los Dias de los Muertos

t h e p l a y at i m e s . c o m


Mexico celebrates life and death during the first two days of November. Learn more about the history and rituals of Mexico´s most well-know holidays

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2016 World Triathlon >P. 9

HEALTH & FITNESS Interview with Marco Velazquez

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“Ofrenda Zapoteca” Photo by: Jacciel Morales.





Find out more about this god of goodness and kindness and the polar opposite to Ek Chuah, his evil counterpart

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Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Oct 19- Nov 01

Catherine headed to Cancun with other tequila aficionados to experience a true tequila tasting paired with a shot of history

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Check out our What’s On section for a list of things to do including live music and dancing, yoga, markets and special events

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October 19 - November 01 2016


October 19 - November 01 2016

Photo: The Playa Times

Editorial DIRECTORY Rebecca Page General Manager & Editor

Edgar E. Mena Ian MacKenzie Copy Editors

Efrén Velázquez Art & Design

Ana Martínez Brand Manager Cell: 984 169 1637

ank You!

Erika Serra Public Relations Cell: 984 119 1586

2016 Mini Fun Run Success!

Octavio Moreno Sales Executive


Cell: 984 179 8347


n Sunday, October 9 The Playa Times held its Third Annual Mini Fun Run. What´s the Mini Fun Run? It´s a running race that includes a few obstacles along the way. The race is designed to encourage kids between the ages of three to twelve to participate in fun activities that focus on health, sport, and being outside. We had close to 500 children who participated in the event and honestly I don’t know if it was more fun to watch the kids or the parents! For the youngest runners, parents ran along side them and helped them through the obstacles that included two inflatable walls, a crawl through and the biggest hit, the foam party pit! The parents cheered and encouraged and laughed along with their little ones. I was by the

Omar Coral Distribution

CONTACT US AT: 984-803 1446 /theplayatimes

second obstacle, one of the inflatable walls and there was no fear in those kids as they made it over to the other side. I think I was more afraid than they were as some stood at the top and jumped to the bottom. It was a big jump for some of them, and they showed no fear - ready to move on to the next obstacle! This event is free for children and everyone receives a race t-shirt and a medal. The kids were very proud of their medals and having their pictures taken. We could not do this event each year without the support of our sponsors. I would like to take the opportunity to thank our sponsors for supporting this event. A huge thank you to Deli Playa, our main sponsor of the event and to Jeep for their support with our photo booth. We´d also like to thank Cinemex, Green Wash, Hot Casual Food, Personalika, Grupo Libelula, Artik Pop, Sky Zone, Starbucks, Mundo Joven, Powerade, Inflamigos, Cen-

tral de Medios and Dotto. Special thanks to Instituto Tepeyac for your support and your volunteers, El Maharaja for providing fruit for the kids, our friends at Costamed for providing the ambulance and to the municipality of Solidaridad for the use of the track and for providing volunteers. Finally, we can´t forget our masters of ceremony - Viva la Party! We look forward to having our Fourth Annual Mini Fun Run next year and maybe we´ll see you there too!

@ThePlayaTimes playatimes


Número de Certificado de Reserva otorgado por el Instituto Nacional de Derechos de Autor: (PENDIENTE). Número de Certificado de Licitud de Título: (en trámite). Número de Certificado de Licitud de Contenido: (en trámite). Domicilio de la publicación: Plaza Paseo Coba, 2do piso local 301, Playacar fase II, Playa del Carmen, Solidaridad, Quintana Roo C.P. 77710. Impreso en talleres Grupo Megamedia Prolongación de Montejo número 301, entre 40 y 42, fraccionamiento Campestre, Mérida, Yucatán. Distribuidor: Meridian Media, S.A. de C.V., Plaza Paseo Coba, 2do piso local 301, Playacar fase II, Playa del Carmen, Solidaridad, Quintana Roo C.P. 77710.


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October 19 - November 01 2016

Beach Erosion in the Riviera Maya:

A n I n t e rv i e w w i t h D r . Pau l G e er d e rs Dr. Paul Geerders is an independent consultant for sustainable development, and in this interview he shares his thoughts on the current state of erosion of the beaches in the Riviera Maya. of the hotel association, as well as local authorities and local government to see what’s going on and what are the perspectives. The government entities prefer investing in local, small scale, palliative actions instead of going for a holistic and integral approach, leading to sustainable solutions involving all stakeholders. What were you told about this situation? I was told explicitly “Forget about doing something about this problem.” That there’s no way that the government is going to invest to solve the problem, which is serious. Because it’s one of the main economic pillars of this area, if it disappears the tourists will disappear, because the tourists come here to see beaches. And a lot of people will be left unemployed. Dr. Paul Geerders / Photo: Dr. Paul Geerders



arlier this month I had the opportunity to meet with Dr. Paul Geerders, an independent consultant on information for sustainable development who was visiting from the Netherlands. We sat down and spoke about the current state of the beaches in the Riviera Maya, the effects of erosion, and what is being done to combat this. When did you first become aware of the problem of erosion here? My first time in Playa was in 1999/2000, and already then the beaches were at a point of worry. The process was already ongoing for a long time. Together with local groups I’ve been talking to the people of the hotels and to people

How does this compare to Europe? In Europe, we see mostly the hotels finding solutions to these problems. But here, I spoke to the association of hotels in the Riviera Maya, and they tell me “That’s not for us, that’s for the government. A major factor in the whole process is the way that the hotels are using the beach, and the way that the hotels have destroyed the ecosystem of the beach and the dunes. If you take away the dunes or you build on the dunes, and fill up the beach with chairs and other infrastructure, there is no possibility for the wind to bring sand to the beach and fill it up after a period of erosion. An additional problem is that there is less sediment in the seawater due to modifications of the hydrological system in the interior, and consequently the beaches cannot be replenished from the water side. So the equilibrium was destroyed, and there is no holistic vision on what should be done here.

( 1999, 2006, 2015) Aerial photographs of “Coco Beach” now Canibal Royal / Photos: Siente el Corazón de Playa ® /

The beach in front of the Gran Porto Real in PDC / Photo: Ian MacKenzie

October 19 - November 01 2016



Tourist Tips: Taxis Taxis are a hot topic in Playa del Carmen so we thought we´d give you some pointers on how to take a taxi without getting overcharged of the ADO bus stations, outside Playacar at the Oxxo on 10th, and at various locations just off of 5th Avenue, and outside grocery stores. Unfortunately, these taxis have a reputation for overcharging (especially the taxis near 5th) and, in our opinion, should be avoided. If you are on 5th, just walk one block up to 10th to have a better chance of a legal fare.

Photo: Theplayatimes

How to Take a Colectivo in Playa del Carmen BY IAN MACKENZIE If you live in Playa del Carmen and want to get around the Riviera Maya quickly for a relatively cheap price, then using the colectivos that run to Cancun and Tulum is the best way to go. The ADO bus station in Playa del Carmen provides a comfortable means to get almost anywhere you want in the Riviera Maya, but it’s best to use it for trips to the airport or destinations that are quite far, such as Valladolid or Merida. Colectivos are minivans that operate similar to buses, as they pick up and drop off passengers at many points en route. They depart from a parking lot on Calle 2 between 20th and 25th and you’ll hear the drivers or their assistants calling out destinations. Normally they wait until full as

possible, but as they operate on a regular schedule you won’t have to wait long to depart. The one way price to Cancun is 34 pesos, while Puerto Morelos costs 22 pesos. If you go to Cancun you can get off at Plaza Las Americas, while Puerto Morelos requires you to bit a bit more attentive and keep an eye out for the road signs. It helps if you let the drive know in advance where you are headed, but it’s not necessary. When you see your destination, yell out “Baja!” and they will pull over and drop you off. If you take a colectivo from Playa Del Carmen to Tulum you will need to switch to the other colectivos. For the return trip to Playa you can catch a colectivo near the middle of Tulum along the 307 main road. If you are someplace in between, like Akumal for example, stand next to the road and wave down a van when you see it approaching. Once you get the hang of using colectivos not only will you find yourself saving a lot of money, but your options for travel around the Riviera Maya will greatly increase, leaving you explore as much as you wish from Cancun to Tulum.

Taking a taxi from a taxi stand costs more money / Photo: The Playa Times



ew to Playa and need to get around? Taxis are one option, and there are some things you should know before you flag one down. Playa is broken up into zones. We do not have metered taxis. Why? Because the further out you live from the tourist zone, generally the lower your income is. If we had metered taxis, the poorest people would be paying the highest fares. There are three zones that most tourists visiting the city of Playa

del Carmen are likely to find themselves in: Zone 1: Centro (east of the highway between Playacar & Calle 34) Zone 2: Zazil Ha (east of the highway between Calle 34 & Calle 96) Zone 5: Playacar If you take a taxi from a sitio (places where taxis are parked waiting for fares), you will pay more money. They are legally allowed to charge 5 pesos more for this service. You will find them outside

Other tips from locals: Have small bills or exact change in pesos, not dollars. We don’t negotiate with taxis. We pay exactly what we know the fare to be. If they complain, we just politely shut the door and walk away. If you are staying in a hotel, as your concierge or front desk to advise you what you should be paying to/from the hotel before you get in a taxi. Use What´s App Taxi (check for their current numbers on Facebook). Send them a message via What´s App (yes, you can write in English). Tell them where you are and where you want to go. They will send you a taxi number and the amount you will be charged. It is the legal fare plus 10 pesos (service charge).


October 19 - November 01 2016



Los Días de los Muertos The Days of the Dead are celebrated throughout México where the idea is to celebrate the life of your loved one and not spend time in mourning BY REBECCA PAGE


lot of tourists ask if Halloween is celebrated in Mexico. While it is becoming increasingly popular, especially in regions with immigrants or visitors from the United States and Canada, like the Riviera Maya, Halloween is not the big holiday here that it is in other countries. In Mexico, the most important holidays this time of year are Los Días de los Muertos. Los Días de los Muertos are celebrated during the first two days of November and are said to be a blending of ancient Aztec rituals and the more modern Catholic Church practices. In the Yucatan, Hanal Pixán is celebrated following ancient rituals of the Maya. Whether celebrating los Días de los Muertos or Hanal Pixán, the idea is to celebrate the life of the loved one who has passed on, not spend time in mourning. On November 1, el Día de los Innocentes is celebrated to honor children who have died. On November 2 is el Día de los Muertos. This is the day most of you have probably heard of. Families celebrate loved ones who have died by creating ofrendas or small altars where they place flowers, candles, food (like candy and sugar skulls),

Hanal Pixán is celebrated throughout the Maya communities in the Yucatan Peninsula. Similar to Los Días de los Muertos, Hanal Pixán begins on October 31 with the arrival of the spirts of children who have died and celebrations continue over three days.

Photo: Alfredo Abraham Kuri

personal mementos of the person who has died. They even place favorite drinks and other items that the person loved when they were alive. The four elements of nature are rep-

resented on the altar. First, earth is represented through the presentation of fruits and other harvest items like corn. The scent of the fruits are said to help the soul find the altar. When they arrive,

they will also find the second element of wind. The wind is represented by the picados (artfully cut tissue paper like the colorful papers you seen strung from building to building on some streets in Mexico).

The lightness of the paper is said to catch the breeze coming through the house. The third element, water, is placed on the table to provide something for the soul to drink as the journey to the altar was a long one. Finally, candles represent the fourth element - fire - used to help light the way for the remembered souls. Families will light one candle for each loved one being remembered. Some will light at least one additional for lost souls. Other important items found on the altars are salt, the incense copal, and of course, marigolds. These orange and yellow flowers are an essential part of any ofrenda and you will often see them displayed throughout homes, towns, and cities during los Días de los Muertos.



October 19 - November 01 2016


A queen conch shell - a common sight in souvenir shops throughout the Caribbean / Photo: Wikimedia

Caribbean Royalty: the Queen Conch Their slow growth and tendency to aggregate in shallow waters make them easily exploited throughout the region BY FLORENICA CERUTTI


he queen conch (caracol rosado in Spanish) is one of the largest mollusks occurring in the Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean Sea. It can reach up to 35 cm (13.8 in) in shell length, and it is identified by a large whorl-shaped shell with numerous spines at the top and a pink interior. They are herbivores feeding on a variety of algae. Seagrass meadows are a key habitat for juveniles to grow and for adults to live. They can live as long as 30 years and grow very slowly taking four to five years to reach sexual maturity and reproduce. They are an important prey for many charismatic species such as spotted eagle rays, marine turtles, and nurse sharks. Their slow growth and tendency to aggregate in shallow waters make them easily exploited, and it has been one of the most important fishery resources in the Caribbean. For centuries, it has been used for food, tools, jewelry, decoration, fishing bait and musical instruments. Increased international demand resulted in overfishing and reduced stocks throughout the region. Queen conch were historically fished in the Yucatan Peninsula, such fisheries grew in the 1970s for export to the U.S.A., and the collapse of their populations across the Caribbean Sea started then. Queen conch populations in at least 15 Caribbean countries/states were overexploited by 2001. Overharvest, the harvest of juveniles, unregulated fisheries, and loss of habitat in the Caribbean and Florida has made them commercially extinct (CITES 2012 pr/2003/031001_queen_conch.shtml).

They are called tlacuaches in Mexico, comadrejas in Argentina, and zarigüeyas in the official Spanish language (they have different names in each country). The opossum is their name in English, although they are often called possums which is the name of another funny-looking little animal who lives in Australia. Remember kangaroos and koalas? Those are famous marsupials - pouched mammals in which the embryo is born and crawls into its mother’s pouch to finish its development there. As they get larger, they will venture in and out of the pouch (as with kangaroos) and sometimes ride on the mother’s back as she hunts for food (as with opossums). Opossums are the only marsupials in the American continent! They can be found from the U.S.A. to Argentina. There are more than 60 different species and can reach up to 76 cm (2.5 ft) from nose to tail. Their defense is to ‘play dead’ when threatened which is a comatose-like state induced by stress; opossums’ survival strategy is to bore its predator until it leaves it alone. Unlike the urban legend says, opossums (tlacuaches) do NOT carry rabies and are NOT related to rats. These misunderstood animals do not dig into the soil nor do they destroy property, yet they are methodically eliminated because of the misplaced thought that they carry rabies, because people think they are plain ugly, and because of urbanization. Instead, opossums are an asset to our gardens and neighbors! They eat nuts, fruits and

Opossum Facts Can be found from USA to Argentina. There are more than 60 different species. Defense is to ¨play dead¨. Can reach 76 cm (2.5 ft) nose to tail.

insects, and they also kill mice, rats, cockroaches, and snakes as they compete with them for food. They also eat carrion thus helping to maintain a healthy and clean environment! If your cat catches a baby opossum, or your neighbor casually runs over an opossum mom, or they start popping into your living room due to construction next door, you can get in contact with an animal rescue organization in Playa del Carmen, Facebook: ‘Claus denuncia, abandono y maltrato animal.’ They can tell you what to do and can look after these cute creatures until they are fit to be reintroduced into the jungle again.

Did you know…. the queen conch can reach up to 35 cm (13.8 in) in shell length? they can live as long as 30 years? they are an important prey for species such as spotted eagle rays, marine turtles, and nurse sharks?

Efforts are being made to recover its damaged populations in various nations: e.g. taking queen conch is illegal in Florida and Bermuda. In Quintana Roo, its fishery/ use is banned from the 21st of March to the 28th of February of 2017. From 2018 onwards, it will be in February and from May to November. However, despite the efforts this species continues to decline and it has much to do with illegal trade and the loss of key habitat such as seagrass meadows. From my personal point of view, any use of an animal that is in such a risk of extinction should be avoided, so think twice before your souvenir shopping and seafood cocktails anywhere in the Caribbean Sea.

The opossum´s defense is to ‘play dead’ when threatened / Photo: Florencia Cerutti

October 19 - November 01 2016


ITU 2016 In Cozumel This major sporting event took place in the island and as its chronological predecessor, Rio 2016, it was full of wellknown sporting personalities. BY RAQUEL GARZA GONZÁLEZ

Great Men`s Final. Great Britain’s Jonathan Brownlee’s attempt he International Triathlon Union of- to win the World Championships for the first fers an incredible competition experi- time ended in dramatic fashion at the ITU ence for amateur athletes, as well as Grand Final. Brownlee, the Olympic silver medallist at Rio the unique opportunity to see in action some of the best triathletes in the world. 2016, was leading by about 700 metres but startCozumel received 150 of the best Olym- ed too slow, as his legs began to give up on him. He seemed to have stopped at one pic distance triathletes, who vied world championship just one month of his return point, but older brother Alistair, the double from the Olympic meeting in Río de Janei- Olympic gold medallist, caught up and asro. It also featured a first-class competition sisted his brother over the finish line. An appeal was for amateur athletes lodged by the Spansprint and standard ish Triathlon Federdistance, who repreation to disqualify sented their respecSeveral categories and Brownlee for active countries seeking subdivisions for athletes cepting assistance to obtain world titles. from his brother Juniors and unOpen Race- Standard to finish the race. der-23-year-olds, as single category by age However, the ITU well as the aquathlon Competition Jury ripped the action Open- Age Group single unanimously of the week. More Sprint ruled against disthan 8,000 athletes qualifying him. gathered for five days Relief - Standard distance of competition. Although an The ITU Grand emotional scene, age categories ( male, Final and the World Jonathan lost the female, mixed) Championship were opportunity to presented by the devote himself as Triathlon Open división FMTRI (Mexican Triworld champion athlon Federation), since the Spanish the regent for the Mario Mola, who sport of triathlon in finished in fifth Mexico and Asdeporte. The ITU World Tri- place was the one who took the title by adding athlon Series, launched in 2009, it is tele- the most points, to came in first position this event. vised in over 160 countries. Visit for more information.


¨Art has been a part of my life since I was little¨ / Photo: Raquel Garza

Interview with Cozumel Artist: Georgina Anaya BY RAQUEL GARZA Artist Georgina Anaya arrived to Cozumel from San Luis Potosí, Mexico when she was 22 years old. How did you end up in Cozumel? I have been traveling since I was very young. At 18 years old I left México to live some adventures in Europe. Once you start traveling you can’t stop. After traveling in Europe, Africa and Central America, I felt the need to stop somewhere to stabilize a little bit. I was offered a job in Cozumel. I loved the idea because I wanted to live the sea life. I found the love of my life and I have a beautiful baby who is 20 months old and who was born on the island. Art has been part of my life since I was little. I have always been very creative and nimble with my hands. I wanted to do art for living. I always knew I was going to end up doing what I love. I have the certainty that my mission here is to express my soul through my art. It’s in my veins - the need to express and show my feelings and the motions of my heart, otherwise I break down. Art has been my best

choice to do this, a gift to expose my soul in its deepest way, a medicine to heal whatever disturb my heart and my mind and a big door to discover and bring parts of my conscience in union with the universe. Tell us about KamaR di Gintaras. My passion for books has made me very interested in bookbinding, so a few years ago I started my own project of artisan hand-bound books/notebooks and after making more than 60 original books I’m still not repeating a design, not even the combination of colors. Each book I have made it’s complete unique and original. My project is called KamaR di Gintaras which is a mix of two languages, KamaR means moon in Arabic, which I learned when I visited Morocco. Gintaras is a Lithuanian word that means Amber. So amber moon it is. You can find some of my work on my Facebook Page: KamaR di Gintaras and get inspired by my unique art. To read Raquel´s full interview with Georgina, please visit our website Cozumel received 150 of the best Olympic distance triathletes / Photos: Raquel Garza González


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The murals were created during the ten day festival in July 2015 / Photos: Vanessa Nini

T h e S e awa l l s : O n e Y e a r L at e r A little more than a year ago, the island of Cozumel sponsored one of the most important urban art festivals in Latin America BY VANESSA NINI


t has been one year now that the island of Cozumel has been beautified by these incredibles murals that bring the ocean to the streets. From 17 to July 26 2015, one of the most important urban art festivals in Latin America took place in Cozumel - Seawalls: Murals for the Oceans of the PangeaSeed Organization. During those ten days locals and tourists were able to see the talent of these artists working live on the streets of Cozumel. It was attended by 53 local, national and international artists who painted large-scale murals with the theme of ocean and conservation of marine lives. Unfortunately, as we know, sharks are not well-protected in mexican caribe and there are a lot of dolphins parks. The benefit of this event? The town of Cozumel has been beautifully colored as the murals are everywhere in town! What about renting a bike for a nice ride to see them all? What about the local artists? Veronica Ochoa a local painter and creator of the local movement “Colectivo La Quinta Cozumel “ explain

to me that during the Seawalls the governemnt of Cozumel try to keep them out of the festival. “One person of the government in 2015 told us that we did not have enough talent like the current artist of the seawalls to participate. But of course they did not know us. A lot of people of Cozumel started to bring us money to buy paint, food, water - everything we needed. Before the Seawalls, the governement of Cozumel did not really care about the local artists and we did not have any help from them. After the Seawalls they realized that painting murals makes Cozumel more attractive and the tourists have a lot of interest in this kind of art. The event has been very beneficial for us and the way people look at us now.” In total there were 12 artists working from this local movement, and they were not all from Cozumel. Some of them came from the center of Mexico to stand in solidarity, to lend a hand and to see this beautiful and huge mural on the 30th avenue. To view photos of the murals online visit: Facebook /Colectivo-La-Quinta-Cozumel


October 19 - November 01 2016


6:00 p.m.- Sunday, October 23 9:00 p.m. Fally Love & Richelle Morgan welcome you to the Art of Thai Yoga Massage Weekend Immersion! $349USD cost for entire weekend. Yoga Dicha Stuido, Avenida Tulum with Calle Geminis Sur,Tulum. For more information contact Richelle Morgan at yoga@


Saturday, October 22, 2:00 p.m7:00 p.m. Learn the art of loving yourself and blanacing your femininity and masculinity. Rancho San Miguel Bonito Playa del Carmen. Contact Cynthia Sanchez Sosa at or 984 1091263.



Fridays at 7:30 p.m. Chak Acoustic Session. Ahau Tulum Km 7.8 Carretera Tulum Boca Paila.


Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. Chak Acoustic Session. Encantada Tulum Km 8.7 Carretera Tulum Boca Paila.


YOGA Monday thru Saturday at 8:00 p.m. Sanara Tulum. Km 8.2 Carretera Tulum Boca Paila.


INTERNATIONAL Every Wednesday and Saturday at 9 p.m. at The Dirty Martini located on 1st Avenue between Calles 10 and 12. It’s a more international Karaoke night, not only for Mexicans.

DANCE CLASSES, Tuesday 11 a.m. & 1 p.m., Wednesday 4 p.m. & 6 p.m., Parque La Ceiba, corner of Calle 1 Sur and Avenida 60, For the month of April come try bachata, salsa, cumbia, & merengue. Fee: Donation

Every Saturday at 11:00pm join the band RockStaraoke to live your Rock Star Fantasy. Choose from 100 songs! La Drinkeria, Av. Petempich, Plaza Punto 115, Local 5, Residencial de los Olivos.

Wednesdays and Fridays 9-10 a.m. Free trial classes for adults at Parque La Ceiba 1st Avenue South and Avenue 60 Diagonal in the Ejido. Given by Aerofobia. Please wear pants or leggings.



SALSA LESSONS, every Saturday, 9:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m., Salon Salsanera Raices, calle 12 between 5th & 10th. Free.

Saturdays from 5:00 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Plaza del Municipio.






every Saturday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tenth St. between Ave. 100 and Av. 105, Colonia Ejido. Don’t buy pets, rescue them! Check Facebook /Acción Animal.


ber 23, 1:30 p.m- 6:00 p.m. Find within you the little goddess inside. Rancho San Miguel Bonito Playa del Carmen. Contact Cynthia Sanchez Sosa at cynthia332@ or 984 1091263.

every Saturday, 9 a.m. for 2 to 3 hours. Have fun helping dogs become leash trained, balanced and exercised. Volunteers are picked up at Mega Supermarket, 30th and Constituyentes. Contact info@



Saturday, October 29 12:00 p.m.7:00p.m. Fiestas y Eventos Riviera Maya. Next to Hotel Melia at the Beach Club of Playa. Contact 984 177 5881 or anglick19_88@hotmail


Every Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. PG´s Mexican Caribe Bar & Grille, 6:30 p.m., Calle 26 on the corner of 1st Avenue next to the Grand Hyatt.


every Saturday 1:00 p.m to 3:00 p.m. Volunteers needed to help socialize kittens. It’s also a great de-stressor! For more information, contact SOS el Arca DOG WASH, every Saturday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Have fun giving the dogs baths while allowing them to socialize. Check Facebook/SOS el Arca. Coco´s KITTEN CUDDLING,

OCT 19 - NOV 01


Saturday, October 29 6:00 p.m. A young very gifted fashion designer will present his collection in a very artistic way. It will be a stunning FASHION IN ART event with an auction for welfare initiatives of The Rotary Seaside Club...and live music and art. Make your reservations please at Le Lotus Rouge av 35 calle 2 norte. Entrance fee is 100 pesos or VIP 200 pesos.



every Tuesday, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Kava Kasa, 22nd St. and 10th Ave.

ECOTIANGUIS DESAYUNO, every Friday, 9 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Jardin de Todas Centro Comunitario, Avenida 80 & Calle 3 Sur (Ejido).

every Saturday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tulum Avenue, Local 6. Playacar Fase II.


PARQUE LA CEIBA TIANGUIS, every Saturday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m, Parque La Ceiba, corner of Calle 1 Sur and Avenida 60. COCO BEACH MARKET Every Friday from 9 am to 11 a.m. Les Alizes Condos Avenue Flamingo and Calle 46.https://www.facebook. com/Coco-Beach-Eco-Market196918897175462/?fref=ts

Every Friday from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. located on Calle 3 Sur between Avenues 75 and 80.


volunteers who can commit to one day per week to help at our spay & neuter clinic. If you would like to be part of our amazing team of volunteers please contact Coco´s at 9841200572 or

PLANETARIUM FOR KIDS Wednesdays at 5:30 p.m. Thursdays at 1:00 p.m. Saturdays at 12:00 p.m. Learn about properties of plastics and elasticity. Ages 4 years and up. $25mxn per participant. Sayab Planetarium Avenue Paseo Central between Avenue Kanthena and Avenue 125.


SPACE SHIP. Tuesdays at 1:00 p.m. Thursdays at 4:00 p.m. Fridays at 1:00 p.m. Want to be an astronaut? Start with learning to build your own space ship to take you on various space missions. Ages 8 years and up. $25 mxn per participant. Sayab Planetarium Avenue Paseo Central between Avenue Kanthena and Avenue 125.

Tuesdays at 4:00 p.m. Wednesdays at 1:00 p.m. Thursdays at 5:30 p.m. Review a bit of geometry make your own colored figures such as cubes and stars. Available different levels of difficulty to match your abilities. Ages 8 years and up. $15mxn per participant. Sayab Planetarium Avenue Paseo Central between Avenue Kanthena and Avenue 125.


THE BRAIN. Tu e s d a y s at 5:30 p.m. Fridays at 4:00 p.m. Sundays at 5:30 p.m.

Make your own brain hat and learn the parts that make it up and their function. Take the h o t h o m e to to h e l p you remember all that you learned. Ages 8 years and up. $25mxn per participant. Sayab Planetarium Avenue Paseo Central between Avenue Kanthena and Avenue 125. Fridays at 3:00 p.m. Sunday (July 24) at 12:00 p.m. Sayab Planetarium Avenue Paseo Central between Avenue Kanthena and Avenue 125.


FOSSILS. Sundays at 4:00 p.m.

Travel back in time and discover plants and animals that have survived until now. Learn about their story through centuries. Get your own fossil and paint is how you like. Ages 6 years and up. $25mxn per participant. Sayab Planetarium Avenue Paseo Central between Avenue Kanthena and Avenue 125. Wednesdays at 4:00 p.m. Saturdays at 2:00 p.m. Sundays at 1:00 p.m. You are invited to know about kaleidescopes and make your own to take home. Wonder at the diverse geometric forms that you decorate to your liking that transport you to your imagination. Ages 8 years and up. $35mxn per participant. Sayab PlaneTHROUGH MIRRORS.

tarium Avenue Paseo Central between Avenue Kanthena and Avenue 125 . Sundays at 2:00 p.m. Learn about the smallest micro-organisms that our eyes can see and some that we cannot without a microscope. Also learn about curious facts about fleas and bugs that have been taken to space. Ages 6 and up. $15mxn per participant. Sayab Planetarium Avenue Paseo Central between Avenue Kanthena and Avenue 125 .


BASIC CHESS. Saturdays and Sundays at 3:30 p.m. Learn the basics of the chess pieces, the rules of the game, history and legends. You are invited to practice this sport-science. Ages 7 and up. $15mxn per participant. Sayab Planetarium Avenue Paseo Central between Avenue Kanthena and Avenue 125. SPIDERS. Saturdays at 1:00 p.m. Sayab Planetarium Avenue Paseo Central between Avenue Kanthena and Avenue 125 .

Weekends 12:00 p.m. Sayab Planetarium Avenue Paseo Central between Avenue Kanthena and Avenue 125

MATINEE for kids.



October 19 - November 01 2016

G e t Yo u r V e g g i e s ! Crystal had the opportunity to interview Ricardo Vidal from the popular local band, Los Brockolis. Find out more about the band and where you can see them perform in Playa, Tulum and Cancun. BY CRYSTAL MITCHELL


was delighted to get this interview with Ricardo Vidal of Los Brockolis. I had heard of him around about town and tracked him down through a friend of mine. Here is my interview with him about his band Los Brockolis. TPT: How many members make up the band, Los Brockolis, and who are they? Ricardo: We are three members: Jorge Vidal - Vocals, Bass; Juan Gamboa – drums; and Ricardo Vidal Vocals, Guitar. What kind of music do you play? We play classic rock and not so classic, a little reggae, blues, and funk. What makes you stand out from other bands in the area? I think the time we have played together makes us more solid with the sound of the band. In the broad repertoire, and even in business, it is no longer, as we thought before, a hobby. We are a company. We deal with responsibility and respect but still we have so much fun doing what we do.

Fr i -

We arrived here in Playa with nothing. It made us appreciate everything again.

What is the meaning of the name of the band, Los Brockolis? It all started with the fun of people by our afro hair. How long has your band been together and how did the members come together to make a great combination of this kind? With this alignment, it took about 10 years. My brother, Jorge, and I started the band. We played with John before Jonathan, our cousin. He decided to focus on something else and then introduced John to the band, and we were slowly redoing repertoire and playing in all the bars in Guadalajara, Tonala, and Tlaquepaque, as well as private events such as weddings, birthdays, etc. What have been your most successful concerts here in Playa? I think it was just last September 15 where we shared the stage with Kitxen’s Saul Hernandez and Alfonso André from Caifanes - a band to which I grew up listening to. What are your greatest achievements as a band? Leaving everything in the city where

Ricardo Vidal Los Brockolis

Los Brockolis play throughout the Riviera Maya / Photo: Ricardo Vidal

we were born. We grow, we have many friends and know many people who have made us even more united. We arrived here in Playa with nothing. It made us appreciate everything again. We feel satisfied at having left the comfort zone and having known this beautiful place and following this rhythm. We expect better things will arrive every day. Where in Playa do you play so

that our readers can come to see you? For now, the itinerary is: Monday: Hard Rock Hotel, Cancun Hotel Zone (schedule varies). Thursday & Saturday: Kitxen, Playa del Carmen, 5th Avenue between 18 and 20 from 9:30 p.m. to 12:30 a.m.

day: Breakfast Buffet, Tulum, on the main avenue in front of ADO station from 10:30 p.m. to 1:00 a.m. Sundays: Fah Bar, Playa del Carmen, 5th Avenue between 8 and 10 from 9:00 p.m. to 12:00 a.m. To follow and find out more about Los Brockolis like their Facebook Fan Page Facebook/Los Brockolis

October 19 - November 01 2016

Tequila La Leyenda Keep up with Catherine as she samples blancos, reposados and añejos BY CATHERINE PAWELEK


auricio Diaz, Restaurant Manager of La Joya at the Grand Fiesta Americana Coral Beach, Cancun invited me and a half dozen other tequila aficionados to experience a true tequila tasting paired with a shot of history. Starting with a Herradura Blanco, Mauricio explained that blanco, the basic tequila, is associated with shots and that the reason most people get a hangover which can be attributed to the sugar content in this cheapest tequilas. He provided us with a method to lower the impact of the alcohol and any subsequent headache. Salt a lime wedge, suck the juice, keep much of the liquid in your mouth, swig the tequila and immedi-

ately, blow out the alcohol, then swallow. Flavor without the burn. This was followed by a reposado, aged in oak barrels up to 12 months. Its’ mellow amber color is meant to be enjoyed slowly. We finished with a Cuervo 1800 añejo in a snifter and, as with any fine cognac, to savor each sip, swirling it in our mouth while lightly blowing out the alcohol. Pure bliss, my friends. And knowing that the Cuervo family was one of the original distillers from the 1700’s, made it even more memorable. The mystery associated with tequila is not only because our next day’s memory is often shrouded in clouds, but its origin is somewhat of a debate. There is no discussion that the Olmecs, back in 1,000 BC, followed by the Aztecs, loved their “pulque,” a fermented libation made from the juice of the agave plant. But the actual distillation of agave started with the Spaniards, who upon arrival in Mexico, and soon running out of their much-beloved brandy, improvised with agave and mud, creating the well-known mezcal. Finally, in the 1600’s, the Marquis of Altamira built the first large-scale distillery in what is now Tequila, Jalisco. After prohibition was lifted in the U.S. a newspaperman named James Graham took his wife to Tijuana, where they wound up in a bar run by an Irishman called Madden, who was famous for his Tequila Daisy. Although initially created by mistake, it was the forerunner to the Margarita (meaning daisy in Spanish). A new cocktail was born. Go out and enjoy it frozen, on the rocks or straight up!


The Simply Irresistible Señorita Margarita BY CATHERINE PAWELEK 1 ½ oz Tequila blanco 1 oz fresh lime juice ½ oz triple sec 2 lime wedges Salt Ice Moisten the rim of your rocks glass with a lime wedge. Place the salt on a shallow plate, then dip the glass to rim it in salt. Fill a shaker 1/3 of the way up with ice, add the tequila, lime juice and triple sec. Shake vigorously. Pour the ingredients including the ice into the glass and garnish with the lime wedge. Salud! HINTS Never use a pre-made Margarita or sweet and sour mix. Add 2 OZ of fresh nectar of guanábana (soursop), prickly pear, pomegranate, starfruit, dragonfruit, papaya, mango, tamarind or passionfruit and wake up a humdrum Margarita in a flash. Make your next Margarita a Golden or Cadillac by switching out tequila blanco with a reposado and, instead of using triple sec, use Grand Marnier or Cointreau. Want to make a frozen version? Just place all ingredients in a blender and pour into a margarita glass. Photo:Agency





October 19 - November 01 2016 Catrinas are an important part of el Día de Muertos en Mexico / Photo: Wikimedia Commons

By Edgar Mena

Xaman Ek:

God Of Peace And Good Bgma^iZlmbglmZeef^gmh_mabl\henfg%p^`Zo^Z`eZg\^mh >d<anZa!Zg^obe`h]"Zg]mh]Zrp^aZo^abl\hngm^kiZkm as promised.


Calling All Artists! Mh ikhfhm^ F^qb\Zg mkZ]bmbhgl Zl iZkm h_ Lheb]Zkb]Z]l \nemnkZe diversity and spread awareness of the celebration of el Día de Fn^kmhlma^k^pbee[^Z+)*/<ZmkbgZZg]:e^[kbc^<hgm^lm BY ALEJANDRA CAMPO The categories are: A. Catrinas B. Alebrijes 9. Contest Rules 1. Only citizens over six years of age will be able to participate in the contest. Said participants will need to proof their residence in Solidaridad, Quintana Roo (Playa del Carmen). 2. They will participate in one category with only one piece. 3. The piece will have to be original, unpublished and made during 2016, and not previously part of any commercial or artistic exhibition. 4. A maximum of two artists will be accepted to participate per piece. 5. The techniques and materials accepted will be cardboard, paper mache, recycled wood, traditional materials and others. 6. The pieces must not exceed 1.60 m high (vertical) nor 1.80 m long (horizontal). 7. Request the pre-registration form the contest via email:, indicating the category they want to participate in. 8. The delivery of the pieces will have to be accompanied by the documents that offer proof their address in Solidaridad and the age. They will be




13. 14. 15.


delivered with a form (absolutely necessary) where they will write their phone number, email as well as the name of the piece, measures and materials used. The pieces reception will take place on Monday, October 31, 2016, starting at 12:00 pm and until 7:00 pm in La Quinta Alegría mall. The jury will be made of artists and recognized people from this cultural environment in Solidaridad. The jury will determine who the winner is according to the originality of the art piece, material and aesthetics. Their decision will be revealed on November 5, at 7:00pm in the Quinta Alegría Mall. The award ceremony will take place on November 5, with prizes to the first, second and third places on each category. Also, a diploma will be given to the rest for their participation. The pieces will be displayed for the public starting on November 1 - 6. Any case not covered by this call will be resolved by the jury and organizers. Participation in this competition implies acceptance of the rules of this call. The pieces must be picked up on Monday, November 7; otherwise, the event organizers and La Quinta Alegría mall will not be held responsible for anything happening to them.

e had already mentioned in a previous edition that the god Ek Chuah was an evil one and that he was part of a duality in which his counterpart was a god of goodness and kindness. His name is Xaman Ek, and it is curious that being polar opposites, it contains the same particle in their names, Ek, a word that officially translates as black. But has another slightly more common meaning in spoken Mayan language, star, as he is the god of the Polar Star (or North Star) Xaman Ek, like Ek Chuah, is also related to the merchants, only this one has a clearly stronger reason. His name is only a hieroglyphic and it is the same as the image of his head, a monkey. This hieroglyph is also part of the representation of the North cardinal point, confirming his status of God of the North Star, a star which does not radically change its position and guides the merchants in their long trips. With this in mind, it is easy to understand why the Maya considered him as a good god. It is he whom you turned to when you got lost. It is for this reason that he was seen by many as a kind and paternal figure. Although this god is also related to rain, winter and night, there are no signs at present of these features. However, there is an aspect of worship that prevails and that I’m sure all of those who have visited the Yucatan Peninsula must have witnessed, the use of copal (or incense). It is believed that the same merchants, in gratitude for his countless aids on the way left offerings of incense in high altars that covered most of the visible way they roamed. It is also believed that this tradition spread to other gods worships and thus has lasted until today.

A modern depiction of Xaman Ek / Photo: Wikimedia Commons

October 19 - November 01 2016



An Interview with

Marcos VeLAzquez,

Playa del Carmen’s Blind Triathlete On the eve of his 4th Ironman competition Marcos talks about this year´s competition and his project Cruzando Metas BY IAN MACKENZIE


arlier this month I had the opportunity to meet with a very special man. Marcos Velázquez is a blind triathlete who runs a series of conferences called Cruzando Metas, designed to encourage local businesses to be more inclusive of people with disabilities. I sat down with him two days before the competition to find out more about his work and why this event was so unique.

“I try anything, I achieve everything” / Photo: Marcos Velázquez

Photo:- Wikimedia Commons

Four Ways to Start Exercising

BY SARA JONES Running, walking, weight training, swimming, cycling, yoga, tai chi, volleyball, basketball the options for exercise are endless. The best thing you can do is to find a form of exercise that you love, and then start moving! • Doing Something Is Better Than Nothing. Get 30 to 60 minutes of exercise, three to five days a week and you will see an increase in your energy levels. At the same time, you will be preventing disease and building lean muscle mass. If you can only do three times a week, remember three is better than nothing. If you only have 10 or 15 minutes, you will still get the benefit and feel better afterward. Here

in Playa, we have one of the easiest and best activities right on our doorstep. Who doesn’t love a walk on the beach? Keep Track Of Your Activity. You can track your activity with a pedometer, fit band or the activity tracker on your phone that counts away your steps in the background. Once you are monitoring your exercise and activity on a daily basis and setting targets, you are bound to start increasing week on week. Strength Training. Lean muscle mass burns more calories. The more you have, the faster your metabolism will be. Strength training doesn’t mean you have to join a gym or buy equipment for lifting weights. By using just your body weight and perhaps a resistance band you can exercise your whole body. There are even apps with 7-minute workouts you can try. Who doesn’t have 7 minutes a day? Don’t Forget Your Core. Core training and balancing exercises strengthen your internal muscles to protect your spine and prevent back injuries. Change your exercise routine to challenge both strength and balance by incorporating one-legged balances in the warm up and some abdominal exercise like crunches, reverse crunches and twists at the end. Don’t worry about what you look like. Yes, it is hot and humid outside. Embrace it, sweat and most importantly, have fun!

Sara Jones Spa, Wellness & Lifestyle Expert, Spa Consultant and Founder of Spa & Wellness Mexico magazine

How many Ironman competitions is this for you? This would be my 4th Ironman, but it’s special because I’m doing it with a para-athlete, (Rubén Grande) who only has one leg which is prosthetic. The beautiful thing about this is that two people with a disability are going to support one another. We swim together, we are on the bike together and we run together. I’ve completed 30 events. Sprint, half marathons, full marathon, and this is my 4th half Ironman. One in Barcelona, another in Los Cabos and one in Cozumel. In the history of the Ironman there has never been 2 para-athletes supporting one another.

Tell me about Cruzando Metas. We’ve created T-shirts to help support our efforts. They have phrases that I say during the triathlon. For example, there’s one that my wife says to me which is “The goal is large but attitude is more”. There is also “I try anything, I achieve everything”. So we sell these to help support our efforts. As for the conferences, we’ve focused them on sport but also in regards to tourism. “Cruzado Metas” is designed to support the hotels and the restaurants so they will be open to being more accessible to people with disabilities. For example, if someone with a wheelchair is told that they are unable to access their 4th floor room in a hotel that is not being inclusive. Even though hotels may not have wheelchair ramps or lines for the blind, if they have the attitude that we are demonstrating then they can take the wheelchair up with the person as well. The infrastructure may not change but the attitude will. To read more about Marcos’ work with Cruzando Metas you can visit his website: or his Facebook page: marcosvelezquezrehabilitador


October 19 - November 01 2016

CLASSIFIEDS BEACH BOARD Want to sell something? Buy something? Find something? Why not take out an ad in our Beach Bulletin Board? For as little as 20 pesos per word (10 word minimum). Contact us at i nfo@me ri d i anmed i a. mx.

Dr. Erika Flores / Photo:

Empowering Local Animal Welfare in PDC International Fund for Animal Welfare in Playa del Carmen is helping to change the lives of companion animals and the people that care for them. Providing education and resources, they have successfully formed an alliance with local care providers to decrease the overpopulation situation and improve i^hie^lob^ph_ZgbfZel' BY NASH


nternational Fund for Animal Welfare IFAW believes in managing the well-being of companion animals at a population level, working with independent rescuers, local veterinarians, government authorities and all animal protection groups in the area to address animal welfare. We talked to Dr. Erika Flores, who joined the IFAW team in 2010 about their presences here in Playa del Carmen. IFAW partners up with local animal welfare organizations to provide financial aid, education, training about the protocol for shelters and clinics and solutions for disease control. When IFAW saw the amazing work Coco’s Animal Welfare was doing with their free or low-cost sterilization clinic, they joined forces to make the clinic larger and more efficient. They empowered Coco’s, providing financial resources, a van for transport and community service, and training. Soon IFAW will move on to assist another animal welfare project. IFAW also provides training for Cebiam (local pound) employees on animal handling and improving the community’s perception. Community outreach is a major part of IFAW. Dr. Erika travels into poorer areas providing monthly pet checkups, vaccinations, sterilization, flea and tick

A community will learn how to take better care of their animals when they are engaged instead of judged Dr. Erika Flores treatments, and treatment for injured animals. She routinely meets with groups of children, providing fun education about animal welfare and the importance of sterilization. Dr. Erika is always on hand to help out animals in need whether in the community or long hours of VIDAS or other sterilization campaigns, saving homeless animals or educating people on the importance of training and controlling animal behavior to avoid the abandonment of pets.

Riviera Rescue Riviera Rescue is a non-profit animal welfare organization dedicated to rescuing, rehabilitating and rehoming dogs and cats. We promote spay and neuter clinics, education and low-cost veterinary services. Based in Puerto Morelos in the Riviera Maya of Mexico. Riviera Rescue saves lives almost every day, coming across the most desperate cases, rehabilitating them back to good health, and ensuring they are adopted into a loving home. Riv-

iera Rescue is sponsoring their first free spay and neuter campaign in Puerto Morelos on November 12 and 13. The goal is 300 free sterilizations in just two days. Follow them on Facebook Riviera Rescue, and learn more about the amazing work they do. If you are able to donate, it only costs $250 pesos per sterilization; Donations can be made at Oxxo to the Bancomer card number: 4152 3132 1738 4663 Or via PayPal to

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