Gringo Gazette

Rosarito Claims, Ensenada Clings. The Santa Anita Saga!

It seems like there’s a bit of confusion stirring in the air between Ensenada and Playas de Rosarito over the Santa Anita area. Despite recent buzz in some media outlets (including this) originated by a post on the official Rosarito government website claiming that Ensenada had waved the white flag, allowing Rosarito to take over Santa Anita without a fuss, the reality paints a different picture.

Carlos Ibarra Aguiar, the acting mayor of Ensenada, stepped in to set the record straight. According to him, the paperwork needed to hand over land records and government permits from Ensenada to Rosarito hasn’t even started yet. This clarification comes after the IX Municipality of Playas de Rosarito boasted earlier this year that the transfer process had kicked off.

Ibarra Aguiar explained that while there was indeed a meeting between officials from both municipalities, it was merely a response to a request from the State Congress. This request wasn’t about giving up the fight but was aimed at sorting out how the transfer should eventually be handled, should it come to that.

Despite a 2023 ruling declaring Rosarito the victor of this decades-long territorial tiff over an area spanning 168 square kilometers—which includes the town of Santa Anita—Ensenada isn’t backing down. Ibarra Aguiar emphasized that the State Congress’s resolution merely suggested that both parties start discussing the matter. As of now, there’s no set process or timeline for the transfer, and Ensenada continues to police the area and provide public services in Santa Anita.

The tussle over this territory isn’t new; it dates back to 1995 and remains unresolved, much to the frustration of everyone involved. So, while rumors fly and officials post, it looks like the saga of Santa Anita is far from over. Stay tuned, as this local drama is sure to offer more twists and turns.

“Bluefin: The Pacific Tuna” Makes a Splash at Caracol Science Museum in Ensenada

Last Thursday afternoon, the Caracol Science Museum in Ensenada had its soft opening for the new exhibit “Bluefin: The Pacific Tuna.” Julia Bendímez Patterson, the museum’s director, was thrilled to introduce the exhibit, emphasizing its goal to highlight the historic significance of bluefin tuna to Ensenada, as well as its economic and cultural impacts over the years.

The museum, a non-governmental organization committed to spreading scientific knowledge and fostering curiosity, extends a heartfelt thank you to the Caracol team for their two months of hard work in bringing this exhibit to life. A special mention was made to Baja Aqua Farms for their substantial contributions, along with Bluefina, Fidemar, Cemaa Almar, Cuidemos el Océano A.C., and the Ensenada Naval and Craft Modeling Club for making this exhibit possible.

The “Bluefin, The Pacific Tuna” temporary exhibit provides crucial information about the bluefin tuna, including its global history, interaction with humans, and its importance to the region. It also offers a virtual reality experience that simulates a helicopter flight over tuna pens and diving into these waters.

Manuel H. Vázquez Escudero, CEO of Baja Aqua Farms, expressed his gratitude to all attendees and discussed the company’s dedication to sustainable fishing and bluefin tuna conservation. He proudly noted that the long-term goals they set to restore the bluefin population, initially viewed as a ten-year project, are being met in 2024, much ahead of schedule.

Carlos Carral Montejano, president of the museum’s board, also participated in the ribbon-cutting ceremony. Following the official opening, Rebeca Zertuche, head of the Sea Room Project, led a guided tour of the facility. She announced that the exhibit would officially open on Saturday, May 4, 2024, and would be available for the entire year.

It was also said that there are plans for a permanent exhibition at the Sea Room, that will feature several large aquariums showcasing the local sea life and is planned for future installation, as the museum continues to seek sponsors for this ambitious project.

This captivating exhibit is a must-see! The Caracol Museum is open from Thursday to Sunday, 10 AM to 5 PM. General admission is just 80 pesos, and 50 pesos for children aged 6 to 12, while kids under 5 enter free. Don’t miss this intriguing experience!

Paris Hilton’s ‘Trapped in Treatment’ Sheds Light on Troubled Teen Industry’s and its Shadow Over Baja California

Paris Hilton is back with a bang with the latest installment of her podcast series, “Trapped in Treatment.” Teaming up again with Caroline Cole and Rebecca Mellinger Grone, the second season promises an even deeper look into the shadows of the troubled teen industry.

Yesterday, April 30th, marked the launch of the first episode, “Then There Was WWASP.” This premiere episode uncovers the beginnings of the Worldwide Association of Specialty Programs and Schools (WWASP). Founded by Robert Lichfield in the late 1970s, WWASP grew from its roots at Provo Canyon School into a global network that has faced considerable scrutiny.

This podcast really hits home in Baja California, as WWASP had, at some point, three facilities operating here: the infamous “Casa by the Sea” in Ensenada and the even worse “High Impact” in Tecate—both closed by the Mexican government due to abuse allegations. There’s also Sunset Bay Academy in Playas de Tijuana, which is still operating, although it is unclear if it is still managed by WWASP.

This season, the investigative lens zooms in on how Lichfield’s early visions blossomed into a reality that has influenced countless lives — and not always for the better. The hosts meticulously outline the rise of WWASP, exploring the structures and outcomes of its programs. The tale is both eye-opening and heart-wrenching, particularly as they share a chilling clip from a survivor of the High Impact program in Tecate, Mexico, who recounts days of torment in dog cages under the harsh desert sun.

The series is more than just a podcast; it’s a beacon for those who’ve suffered in silence, offering them a platform to share their stories and spark discussions about the urgent need for reform and accountability within the industry.

Listeners eager for a blend of thorough investigation and impactful storytelling can tune in to new episodes of “Trapped in Treatment” every Tuesday. Paris Hilton continues her relentless quest for truth and justice, making this series essential listening for anyone passionate about advocacy and real change.

Stream the compelling saga of “Trapped in Treatment” and join the movement to shine a light on the dark corners of the troubled teen industry. Listen to “Trapped in Treatment” and be part of a necessary conversation that could reshape lives and industries alike.

Baja’s Best Shine at Bacchus 2024 as Local Wines Triumph Globally

As the sun sets over the vine-laden landscapes of Baja California, our local vintners have once again proven that when it comes to wine, they’re not just on the map—they’re stars on the global wine chart. The recent Bacchus 2024 in Madrid was not just any event; it was a stage where our Baja wines shone brightly, bagging an impressive slew of medals that have us all brimming with pride—and our glasses brimming with the finest vino!

Bacchus 2024: A Stage for Global Titans

This prestigious international competition, set in the heart of Spain, draws the crème de la crème from the wine world, turning it into a fierce battleground of aromas and bouquets. Over four days, esteemed judges from around the globe sampled wines blind, ensuring only the best of the best prevailed. And prevail, Baja did! Our beloved region outdid itself, smashing previous records and setting a new benchmark for excellence.

The Secret Behind the Success

What makes Baja California’s wines so spectacular? It’s not just the Mediterranean climate or the uniquely suited terrain—it’s the passion and dedication of our local winemakers. From robust reds to crisp whites, our wines reflect a legacy of agricultural excellence and a future filled with promise. This year, Mexican wines, with Baja leading the charge, clinched a total of 56 medals, growing a staggering 47.4% from last year’s haul.

A Cultural and Economic Boon

Each medal is not just a win for the winery but a win for Baja California. These accolades serve as a beacon, drawing wine lovers and tourists alike to our sun-soaked shores, eager to sip on world-class wines. The recognition from Bacchus 2024 reaffirms our place as leaders in the wine industry, promising continued growth and innovation.

The list of medals obtained by the wineries affiliated with Provino is described below:

Special Recognition “Best Wine of Mexico Bacchus 2024”:

  • Roganto: Cabernet Sauvignon 2019

Grand Bacchus Gold:

  • Decantos Vinícola: El Peor Vino del Mundo White 2021
  • Roganto: Cabernet Sauvignon 2019

Bacchus Gold:

  • Bajalupano: Merlot 2020
  • Bajalupano: Chardonnay 2022
  • Bodegas Domecq: Château Domecq White 2022
  • Bodegas Domecq: Reserva Real Viognier 2022
  • Châteu Camou: El Gran Vino Tinto 2018
  • Concierto Enológico: Allegro 2021
  • Corona del Valle: Tempranillo 2019
  • Finca La Carrodilla: Astra Alba 2020
  • Finca La Carrodilla: Tempranillo 2019
  • Hacienda Guadalupe: Merlot 2020
  • Hilo Negro: Tricot 2023
  • Las Nubes: Stratus 2017
  • Las Nubes: Nebbiolo 2019
  • Lomita: Singular 2016
  • Monte Xanic: Cabernet Sauvignon 2022
  • Monte Xanic: Calixa Blend 2022
  • Monte Xanic: Sauvignon Blanc 2023
  • Roganto: Chardonnay 2023
  • Rolu: Blend 2021

Bacchus Silver:

  • Emevé: Los Nietos 2022
  • Monte Xanic: Cabernet Franc 2022
  • Roganto: Pinot Noir 2022
  • Roganto: Valle Colorado 2018
  • Rolu: Nebbiolo 2021
  • Vinos Martlot: Rey del Valle 2019

Come Join the Fun at the Vineyard Fiesta in Valle de Guadalupe!

Mark your calendars for an unforgettable family-friendly event in the heart of Valle de Guadalupe! The “Fiesta de los Viñedos en Flor” is happening on June 8, 2024, at Jardín Decantos, and it promises to be a day full of sun, fun, and some fine wine.

Imagine a day where you can taste over 160 wine labels from 84 local wineries, munch on gourmet dishes from food stations run by guest chefs under the guidance of the acclaimed Chef Miguel Bahena, and shop for unique regional products at the Mercadito Campestre. All of this is set against the backdrop of large-scale live art creations, with three big paintings being auctioned off right where they’re made!

Kids will have a blast too, with plenty of arts and crafts, kite flying, and even a little farm to explore. Local Baja California tribes will be there as well, showcasing traditional cooking and crafts.

The event runs from 12 PM to 7 PM, and while adults need to grab their tickets for 750 MXN (about $45 at the current exchange rate), kids under 18 can join in for free—just remember, no pets allowed!

For a smooth experience, be sure to bring your QR-coded ticket and ID, and follow all health guidelines to keep everyone safe and happy.

So, bring your family and friends to Jardín Decantos for a delightful day among the vines. It’s not just a wine tasting; it’s a celebration of local culture and community spirit!

Tinted Car Windows and Public Drinking Get the Green Light in Rosarito!

Good news for all drivers in Rosarito! The local government just rolled out a new set of rules that are about to make life a bit easier for those of you sporting tinted windows. Starting now, you can cruise around with your windows tinted without sweating over fines or being pulled over, as long as your tints aren’t too dark. Think California-style rules, and you’re on the right track.

But that’s not all—Rosarito is also introducing a more laid-back vibe in its tourist zone. You can now sip your favorite drink openly in designated streets and even on public transport within this area, no hassle. This move aims to keep the festive spirit alive and kicking, without the nagging interruptions for enjoying a drink.

The move aims to avoid unnecessary fines by the local police, which only amount to extra opportunities for extorting our precious tourists.

Whether it’s keeping cool behind your tinted windows or enjoying a casual drink in the breeze as you stroll through the tourist spots, Rosarito’s new regulations are here to improve your day-to-day. Just remember to check out the specific streets listed as part of the tolerance zone, and you’re all set to go!

Jellyfish Alert in Playas de Rosarito

Playas de Rosarito is on high alert due to a sudden influx of jellyfish, prompting local authorities to warn beachgoers about the potential for painful stings. Aaron González Casillas, who coordinates the aquatic rescue unit, reported spotting hundreds of Velella velella jellyfish washed up along the shoreline late Saturday afternoon, April 27, as the tide receded.

So far, there has been one incident involving a four-year-old boy who suffered a jellyfish sting but was quickly treated with oxygen and clean water rinses by the staff. Paramedics from the Red Cross also attended to him promptly. The child received immediate care, highlighting the potential dangers these marine creatures can pose, especially to those with allergies, as stings can cause severe respiratory reactions.

The jellyfish identified in this occurrence is commonly known as the ‘sea raft,’ or ‘by-the-wind sailor,’ a species familiar to the area but appearing earlier than usual this year; they typically start showing up in May and last about a week. Another variety known as “agua mala,” recognized for its bubble-like body with tentacles, tends to appear during July and August.

Casillas explained that the presence of these jellyfish is linked to climate change and shifting ocean currents from the north and south. Once ashore, jellyfish have a very short lifespan—approximately four minutes.

For safety, people are currently advised only to enter the water up to waist depth due to strong currents and dangerous underwater pits. Additional safety tips from authorities include avoiding contact with jellyfish. If contact occurs, it’s important to wash the affected area with salt water and seek medical attention immediately. Special care should be taken to protect children from potential harm.

SOURCE: Periodico ZETA / Mara Yañez

Outcry in Ensenada Over Egret Chick Deaths from Tree Trimming

Ensenada, B.C. – The community of Ensenada is in shock following the deaths of twelve Snowy Egret (Egretta thula) chicks, a consequence of indiscriminate tree trimming in urban areas, coinciding with preparations for the upcoming off-road races organized by NORRA.

The incident, which occurred on Lázaro Cárdenas Avenue in front of the State Arts Center, was denounced by wildlife activist and photographer “Damianimals” through his social media. He expressed his outrage and sorrow over the situation, highlighting that the recently trimmed trees contained numerous nests. “Look at this, I’m going to put my hand in, I shouldn’t do it, but see for yourselves,” he said while trying to return a bird to what was barely a nest.

The response was swift, with thousands joining the protest, emphasizing the lasting damage: “An event that lasts just a couple of days has forever ruined the lives of many birds,” they commented on social networks.

Baja California Governor Marina del Pilar Ávila Olmeda reacted to the events on Thursday, April 25, instructing the State Environmental Department and the Environmental Protection Agency to address the issue. “They will coordinate with federal authorities to protect this species and determine those responsible,” she assured.

Meanwhile, the Ensenada Municipal Government argued that the tree trimming was part of an annual program to prevent hazards for pedestrians and motorists. However, they acknowledged the negative impact on the nesting egrets and announced an administrative process to clarify the facts and prevent future tragedies of this nature.

It was also clarified that the NORRA race organizers were not involved in the decision to trim the trees, and the Federal Environmental Protection Agency (PROFEPA) is already following up on the case.

In collaboration with civil associations and environmentalists, the Ecology Sub-Directorate is looking for alternatives to ensure the protection and care of the affected birds, while the governor promised to keep the community informed about the progress of the investigation and the actions taken to safeguard the egrets and penalize those responsible for the ecocide.

Photos courtesy of Damianimals

Baby Owls Turn HR Department Into a Nesting Ground

In a surprising turn of events, the staff at a factory in Rosarito discovered six baby owls in the human resources office, prompting an unusual rescue operation by local firefighters.

On a typical Tuesday morning around 10:00 AM, the call for help came from Manufacturing, a local factory nestled in the Lucio Blanco neighborhood on Balbino Obeso Street. The human resources manager stumbled upon the little owls and quickly reached out to the firefighters for assistance in safely handling the feathered foundlings.

The owlets were promptly taken to a veterinary clinic managed by Francisco Ayala, a well-respected figure in the community and former president of Rosarito’s Veterinarian Association. According to Ayala, the owlets were barely over a week old and needed immediate care.

To provide the best environment for their recovery, the decision was made to house the baby owls in a residential setting temporarily. Here, they could be closely monitored and fed until they were ready to grow their full plumage. Once mature enough, the plan is to move them to a wildlife refuge located in Ensenada.

Ayala explained that owls are primarily nocturnal feeders, and currently, the rescuers are feeding them meat. However, he noted a concerning detail; two of the baby owls showed little interest in food, a potential indicator of health issues that will require close observation.


Rosarito Steps Up: A Commitment to Protecting Youth in Tourism

In a significant move towards safeguarding children and adolescents, the administration of Playas de Rosarito has officially joined the fight against exploitation and abuse in the travel and tourism sector. This commitment was formalized through the signing of the National Code of Conduct Declaration for Protection in the Tourism Sector.

The mayor of Playas de Rosarito stressed the municipality’s dedication to implementing the six actions outlined by the declaration. These include enforcing the national conduct code guidelines, training public officials, fostering a culture of reporting abuses, promoting responsible and ethical tourism practices, and calling for proactive engagement from all stakeholders.

The signing of the declaration marks only the beginning of what promises to be a comprehensive journey toward change. The mayor emphasized that signing the declaration isn’t enough; it must be followed by tangible actions that transform how the tourism sector operates. She highlighted the necessity of turning these commitments into concrete steps that genuinely protect the youth involved in or affected by the tourism industry.

The mayor made a direct appeal to everyone in the tourism industry—hotel operators, travel agencies, tour guides, host communities, and government authorities. She urged them to unite in this critical cause to forge a tourism sector that is not only more responsible and ethical but also actively safeguards children’s rights.

Expressing her vision for the future, the mayor shared her ambition for Playas de Rosarito to become a national leader in protecting children’s rights within the tourism industry. She pledged relentless effort towards achieving this goal, signaling a proactive and protective stance that sets a new standard for tourism operations.

The event was well-attended, with representatives from the State DIF (System for the Integral Development of the Family), the Secretary of Tourism, and various tourism organizations from across Baja California, underscoring the broad support for this initiative. This collective presence highlighted the widespread recognition of the importance of this issue and the strong commitment to making a difference in protecting the youngest members of our communities.

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