Summer 2018

Journal del Pacifico Summer 2018 cover by Paul Van Vleck, Todos Santos, Baja, MexicoWelcome to Summertime in Baja! Not even Tropical Storm Bud could keep us from distributing the Summer issue of Journal del Pacifico with our cover by Paul Van Vleck.

Todos Santos Brewing celebrated their first anniversary with fun events over the weekend of June 8th to the 10th, Cheers to one year! Did your see our JDPTv Todos Santos Brewing  and Gastrovino videos on Facebook? Check it out. You’ll be seeing more of JDPTv in the coming season.

Hacienda Sydney, Todos Santos, TheAgency, Baja, Mexico

Hacienda Sydney, Todos Santos, TheAgency

Many visitors to Baja dream of moving here, and perhaps, starting a business or boutique hotel. In this issue, we’ve selected some of the most desirable dream properties currently available: Soledad Cerritos, Gavilan Beach and The Osprey in Pescadero; Boulder Cove in La Paz; The Todos Santos Inn and Hacienda Sydney aka the ‘Taj Mahal’ in Todos Santos; and La Huerta in San Juanico. We hope that you enjoy reading more about these exciting opportunities in our current issue, and maybe, your dream will become a reality.

Newly opened in Todos Santos, Gallo Azul Lofts, are four loft-style, one-bedroom apartments with modern kitchens, dining, and living spaces. They are conveniently located next door to the Gallo Azul restaurant, just one block up from the park. They are perfect for a vacation rental, long or short-term stay.

Baja Beans, in Pescadero, has extended their hours and are now open 7 am to 6 pm all year, serving breakfast and lunch.

Escape the heat with a day at the pool at La Misión at Hacienda Cerritos. The one-day 900 pesos pass is refundable with your restaurant and bar purchases, and the pool is open from 12 to 8 pm daily.

Shaka’s Cantina and Gallery is open on the road to Cerritos with happy hour and delicious daily food specials.

Unfortunately, summer weather can mean pests. Let the people at Jal Fumigación help control these unwanted visitors in your home.

Stop into Como El Sol in Pescadero for all your solar energy needs. They can help you out with panels, inverters, controllers, batteries, refrigerators, freezers, fans, lights and more!

Going away this summer? Contact Pickle N Paws for your pet care needs.

No Straws logo, Todos Santos, Baja, MexicoAlso in the Summer issue, Kaia Thomson of Todos Caballos has shared photos and stories about some of the creatures that we see moving about during the summer season. Bryan Jáuregui of Todos Santos Eco Adventures tells two interesting tales this issue: the story of the sea lion colonies of Los Islotes in the Sea of Cortez, and the growing movement to eliminate plastic straws and containers in Baja.

You can read the whole Summer issue online here!

Core Yoga will be back at Cuatro Vientos in October. Enjoy your summer! We’ll be back with the Fall 2018 issue in September. Deadline is September 19.

Say No to Plastic Straws!

No Straws logo, Todos Santos, Baja, Mexicoby Bryan Jáuregui

There’s a sucker born every minute. That’s right. There’s a high possibility that you are personally a sucker, an even greater probability that most of your extended family members are suckers, and it is almost certain that your circle of friends and acquaintances suck too. How could we know such a thing? Simple mathematics. The United States is home to roughly 325 million people, yet the country uses 500 million plastic straws per day. That is to say, each person is using on average of 1.5 plastic straws per day. And that’s just one country. As a species, we suck on a global scale.
Of course, the thing that really sucks is that a huge percentage of these plastic straws are ending up in our oceans. The Earth Institute of Columbia University estimates that the Great Pacific Garbage Patch is twice the size of the continental United States. Of all that garbage, an Ocean Conservancy study concludes that fully 60% of it consists of items that society terms “disposable,” plastic bags, food containers, plastic bottles, and plastic straws. The Ocean Conservancy estimates that a plastic straw, used for 15 to 30 minutes to consume one drink, can take up to 100 years to decompose. A plastic bag that you use for 15 minutes to transport your purchase from store to home, can take 150 years to decompose. Plastic bottles can take up to 450 years.

So, that sucks, but why should us suckers care? Turns out plastic, it’s what’s for dinner. A recent study by the Ryan Institute concludes that 70% of fish in the North Atlantic have ingested plastic. Another study by Ghent University in Belgium estimates that shellfish lovers are eating upwards of 11,000 plastic fragments in their seafood each year. That plastic straw that seemed so harmless in your drink at lunch could actually come back to haunt you in your seafood dinner. And that’s the thing: plastic is personal. Which is why towns across Baja California Sur, including Todos Santos, Pescadero, La Paz, Cabo Pulmo, and Los Barriles are taking a stand against plastic straws and other single-use plastics. Baja is a strip of land bounded by two oceans, so what we do in our towns has an immediate impact on our oceans. Baja is the place where five of the world’s seven sea turtle species come to nest (sea turtles mistake plastic bags for their favorite food, jelly fish, and die from ingesting the plastic; plastic straws also get stuck in their nostrils and air passageways); it is home to 39% of the world’s total number of marine mammal species (sea lions and others are getting entangled in plastic bags and packing bands, and dying from infection or strangulation); it is where one third of the world’s whale and dolphin species spend their time (a dead sperm whale was recently found with 29 kilos of plastic in its stomach); it is a critical part of the Pacific flyway and home to over 430 bird species (National Geographic states that 90% of sea birds are ingesting tiny bits of plastic that they lethally mistake for food); and the Sea of Cortez alone is the home of 891 fish species that supply over half of Mexico’s fisheries, from whence we get our seafood dinners. So, ridding the area of single-use plastics is a deeply personal matter for residents of Baja. Says Mayra Victoria Gutierrez Sandoval, leader of the Déplastificate movement in Baja Sur, “Every time you personally consume a piece of plastic, you have to be personally responsible for what happens to it. That is the only way to eradicate the problem.”

Teresa Egea, Manager of Gardens, Sustainability & Spa at the hotel Rancho Pescadero and its Garden Restaurant, firmly believes in taking personal responsibility for reducing the use of plastics. “My philosophy is to practice the R’s, which are not only reduce, reuse, and recycle, but also reinvent and redistribute. I came to Rancho Pescadero six months ago and wanted to reinvent the use of the popote (straw). Our mixologist is from Oaxaca, where he developed a project of plant-based straws created by local communities with local plants, specifically Arundo donax, a type of cane. These straws are very beautiful, washable and reusable, and our guests love them, not only because they are enjoyable to use, but because they represent a sustainable alternative to plastic, and redistribute income away from plastic producers to local communities. Moreover, since we switched from plastic straws to the cane straws, our straw costs have declined by 2.5 times—it is a very profitable option and therefore a sustainable option for the business as well.”
Marimar Higgins, owner of La Esquina restaurant in Todos Santos, has long been a proponent of no popotes and eliminating single-use plastics. “We are serving straws less and less, and the ones we do serve are made out of paper. Almost all of our to-go containers are biodegradable, and we charge five pesos for all to-go items to make people think twice before taking away.”

Michael and Pat Cope of Michael’s at the Gallery restaurant gave up popotes and plastic water bottles long ago as well. Reflecting on such trends, Jürg Wiesendanger, owner of Hotel Posada La Poza says of the Déplastificate movement in Baja, “It is like banging on an open door.” And that is the exciting thing. While the movement to rid Baja of single-use plastics is gaining new momentum, restaurants like Posada La Poza’s El Gusto! gave up plastic straws a while ago and are currently evaluating how best to continue their forward momentum. Plenty of local companies are charging ahead. Alma and Manny’s, a much-loved local restaurant, stopped giving patrons plastic straws a year ago. New fish taco restaurant Santo Chilote not only doesn’t offer popotes to its patrons, it offers a discount to diners who bring their own takeaway containers. Landi Ortega eliminated popotes at her restaurant, Landi’s, over a year ago; Chef Sergio Rivera eliminated them from his restaurant La Casita a month ago; the Hotel Guaycura and its restaurants are celebrating their first popote-free season; and El Refugio owner Rachel Glueck has never had a popote on her premises. Feliz Ramon Vazquez Guluarte recently implemented a new program at his coffee shop, Cafélix, and now uses only compostable straws and glasses and environmentally-friendly take-out containers. Joella Parsons, owner of Pura Vida, is doing the same. Other businesses like La Morena, Fonda El Zaguán, La Santeña, Que Rico, Gallo Azul, Caffé Todos Santos, Café Santa Fé, Los Adobes and Cerritos Surf Town are actively working on their strategies for eliminating single-use plastics.

The Todos Santos Restaurant Association (Canirac) is totally committed to the movement. “To protect our oceans, sea turtles and other marine life, each restaurant that belongs to our association is committed to eliminating the use of plastic straws as a first step to becoming “green” restaurants. Our goal is to replace all single-use plastics with products made of compostable materials. The restaurant industry is united with the other sectors to make Todos Santos a town without single use plastics.”

That, most emphatically, does not suck! So next time you’re in a restaurant in Baja California Sur, don’t be a sucker. Ask for your drink “Sin popote por favor.” The sea turtles thank you!

RESOURCES FOR LOCAL BUSINESSES AND COMMUNITY MEMBERS:
For more information on the Déplastificate movement in BCS please visit their Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/DesplastificateMX/

If you’re a local business looking for suppliers of non-plastic solutions to your business needs, and/or artwork and other informational tools for your employees and clients, please email Mayra Gutierrez at ponguinguiolalpz@gmail.com or Bryan Jáuregui at tsecoadventures@gmail.com

For recycling solutions in Todos Santos and Pescadero, please contact Alex Miró at:
https://www.ecorrrevolucion.org

No plastics campaign, Todos Santos, Baja, Mexico

Carrera de Todos Santos 2017

Palapa Society Carrera de Todos Santos, Baja, Mexicoby Kathy Wernert

Crunch! Crunch! Inhale. Crunch! Crunch! Exhale. That’s the sound of this year’s Carrera de Todos Santos, the 5K Palapa Society benefit walk/run through the streets of this magical town scheduled for Saturday, December 30th.

The roots for this year’s Carrera de Todos Santos were planted in 2009, when a group of Todos Santos’ locals wanted to stage a 5K run to promote fitness while creating a fun event for the community. A course was selected using the streets of the pueblo and businesses got involved to provide vital sponsorship resources. A race for younger children was also staged as part of the event. The initial race was such a success that it became an annual community event. Each year, racers came from throughout Baja, the mainland, and as far away as the US and Canada to run in the event.

A past runner, Lisa Welsch had this to say. “The Palapa Society’s Todos Santos 5K was fun. The course was challenging with some hills. Running through our beautiful pueblo and seeing the well-wishers along the way made my run so special. With some dirt roads and some paved, it wasn’t hard on the knees. It was well managed with water stations and guides along the way. I’ll do it again. It’s a wonderful cause.”

The race took a break after Hurricane Odile and the major street improvement project in the historical centro. With the community recovered and streets improved, the event was enlarged to include a 10K along with the 5K last year. Once again, local businesses provided much of the financial resources needed to stage a quality event. With their help, an investment was made in sophisticated “chip” timing equipment allowing the Palapa Society to provide accurate timing for each runner. “This is how the major running events do it,” commented Dennis Naigle, chair of the race and Palapa board member.

This year’s race returns to its traditional schedule of December 30th. “December weather in Todos Santos is usually perfect and with the crowds of visitors who flock to the pueblo magico for the holidays, as well as motivated locals, we anticipate a large turnout,” adds Naigle.

The focus this year will be on only a 5K race, using a popular course last run in 2013. The chip timing will be used again to track the runners and have multiple racer categories with trophies and medals for runners of all ages and experience levels.

Staging the Carrera de Todos Santos is truly a community event and couldn’t take place without the support of the Delegado, police force, local business community, a lot of volunteers, and the people of Todos Santos.

Celia Devault, a frequent runner in the 60-something category, crossed the finish line first in her category last year. “This 5k is a great community event that gets people out on the street to walk or run and have some fun. I am looking forward to it again this year.”

All proceeds go to the Palapa Society of Todos Santos whose mission is to provide educational opportunities in the Todos Santos greater area. The recent opening of the new Palapa Learning Center includes the new Palapa School, offering a SEP-certified curriculum to middle students, the bilingual community library recently named Biblioteca Elena Poniatowska, and the Bridge to English program providing English to over 200 students ages five to adult.

Early signup takes place Thursday, December 28, at the La Esquina Farmer’s Market, 9 am – 3 pm and on Friday, December 29, from 10 am to 2 pm in front of Cafélix. Or, entrants can register for the race in the Plaza from 7 – 8:30 am. on Saturday, December 30 to receive a race bib and timing chip. Entry fee is 200 pesos for adults and 150 pesos for students. Race time begins promptly at 9 am.

To register online, or for more information on the Carrera and the Palapa Society, visit: www.palapasociety.org

Holiday 2017/2018 Issue

Baja Blooms: The Gardens of Los Colibris Casitas front coverHappy Holiday from Journal del Pacifico!

Thank you for all the wonderful compliments on our special Fall issue cover by Bruce Herman of Luz Gallery. This issue’s front cover features a botanical illustration by Dr. Esmé Hennessey. You can read more about Dr. Hennessey in Bryan Jáuregui of Todos Santos Eco Adventures’ story, “Different Continents, Same Problems”—which also has photos of some of Baja’s ‘local’ plants by Kaia Thomson, excerpted with permission from Baja Blooms: The Gardens of Los Colibris. Baja Blooms was edited and produced by Journal del Pacifico’s Janice Kinne, and is available at El Tecolote Bookstore in Todos Santos and Allende Books in La Paz.

Tim Means of Baja Expenditions, La Paz, Baja, Mexico

Tim Means of Baja Expenditions

“Go Together: It Takes a Village to Save a Peninsula” tells the incredible history of Tim Means of Baja Expeditions’ 40-year vision to spend the rest of his life exploring and preserving the natural world of Baja California Sur. At 73, Tim continues to share the inspiration he has found here, and his desire to preserve the health of these unique local marine and desert ecosystems.

This issue also has information on two very popular events: The Palapa Society of Todos Santos’ Carrera de Todos Santos 5K walk / run and the Todos Santos Artists Studio Tour. Both are fun and support worthy local causes.

Padrino Children's Foundation staff

Padrino Children’s Foundation staff

Also in this issue, is a feature on the Padrino Children’s Foundation (PCF) and the important work that they are doing for the Todos Santos / Pescadero community. Their mission is to promote wellness for the community and provide access to professional medical care for underserved children in Todos Santos and the surrounding area. To do so, PCF collaborates with health professionals and organizations that provide medical evaluation, treatment, medical aids, and family assistance. Read more about it and how you can help.

La Posta del Oasis in Todos Santos serves World cuisine—conventional, vegetarian and vegan—featuring fresh, local organic vegetables, fish, seafood and meats. They also have special event nights and wine flights with dinner.

Rancho Pescadero is offering two Yoga, Surf & Nutrition Retreats at the end of March and May. More than your average yoga and surf getaway, they offer practical advice on mindful eating from a nutritionist; participants learn how to nourish the body for optimal energy while engaging in what it means to eat mindfully in today’s fast paced world.

La Misión Restaurant and Sunset Bar at Hacienda Cerritos, situated on the point at Cerritos Beach, is now open to the public after 4 pm, for lunch and dinner, cocktails and breathtaking sunset views.

Carlito’s Place Restaurant in Pescadero, is newly remodeled and expanded, with an outdoor kitchen, sushi bar, and martini bar. Carlitos prepares Asian fusion and farm-to-table seafood, poultry and steak specialties. Check out their daily happy hour!

Dos Marias Spa, in Pescadero, invites you to come and enjoy a truly relaxing experience at their beautiful spa, nestled in a traditional rustic location near the beach.

Mini Super Munchies’ famous Tuesday Night Open Mic/Music Jams, with amazing food, wonderful people, and rocking music takes place from 5 to 9 pm, every Tuesday until spring! All ages are welcome.

La Bohemia Baja Hotel Pequeño, in downtown Todos Santos, has a daily happy hour, a local artisan market Thursdays, live music Fridays, and lots of fun events this December and January. See events for more details. Ask about their pool pass!

The popular Noche de Super Salud, delicious plant-based dinners, will return this season at Pura Vida Health Food Store, La Fuente Winery (formerly The Tasting Room) and, La Bohemia Baja Hotel Pequeño. For dates and times, check their Facebook page. They are also excited to announce Prana Foods and RAWHigh—their new assortment of food to go, available for delivery in Todos Santos, at Namaste Yoga Centro and other local markets.

Surf Casitas, on the beach in Pescadero, is located in a gated private beachfront property on San Pedrito Beach. They have six casitas with a shared kitchen. Just step out of the front gate and on to the sand!

Corazón de Té, on the otro lado in Todos Santos, is re-opened daily for breakfast, waffles, smoothies and tea.

We are very excited that Chocolates La Laguna has re-opened in time for the holidays! Their luxury handmade chocolates and truffles are always a popular gift, or treat for yourself. You can also find unique, handmade gifts for yourself and those you love at Étnica, Nomad Chic, Tony’s Arte, Décor y Muebles in Todos Santos and Allende Books in La Paz.

Looking for a fun time on Christmas Eve or the New Year’s Eve weekend? Check out our events page for parties, music and good times at La Esquina, Gallo Azul, Posta del Oasis in Todos Santos and the Oasis Bar & Grill and Cerritos Beach Inn in Pescadero.

Holiday 2017/2018 Issue of Journal del PacificoDownload Holiday 2017/2018 in PDF format

See you with our next issue in the new year! The deadline is January 10, 2018.