by Barbara Sands
Make a note on your calendar for Sunday, March 29 to come to the Fiesta Ecologico at Restaurante La Huerta in Paso Ancho. There is no admission fee; the fiesta will begin at 2 pm and last till midnight.
The event will feature more than a dozen well known local musical groups as it did last year to keep things jumping at the attractive outdoor location along the Rio Cuale. The event is a fiesta of music, education, culture and art with the aim of identifying ecological problems and bringing them to the attention of city government along with recommendations for remedies.
Musical Groups Will Include, in Order of Performance:
- Benediktron y Connie (Musica alternativa)
- Querrique (Musica Huasteca)
- Los Frixoleros (Musica tradicional Mexicana)
- Paco Barajan con Steve York, Nacho Varela, Cristina y Miguel Salazar (Jazz Latino)
- Katmandu (Sitara Musica Indu)
- Los Bambinos (Musica Mexicana y Pop Original)
- Dave Gouthro con Bobby Tansen, Steve York y Dave Balmer (Country Rock & Pop)
- Azul (Musica Mexicana)
- Bobby Tansen (Rock & Roll and a Tribute to John Lennon)
- The PV All Stars (Rock & Reggae)
- Don & Rhonda con Marcos y Chuy (Rock & Roll, Rhythm &
- The Traveling Band (Rock Classico 70s & 80s)
- Joe King Carrasco y los MexiCubanos (Tequila Reggae)
- Martin Montenegro
Vallarta Verde (Green Vallarta) comprises a group of young, ardent ecology-minded activists who launched this initiative a year ago on April 6 on the Isla Cuale to foster “green” thinking among Vallartans. Its success attracted back last year’s musicians who created the memorable event along with a few more. Stilettos are not suggested for dancing, however!
Spearheading the group’s efforts as she did last year is dynamo Greta Fuentes, who with help from friends and business associates has again put together a fabulous afternoon and evening of music enhanced by paintings, crafts exhibits and informational and sales booths featuring environmentally aware products and information. Of course there will be newly designed playeras (t-shirts)! A kids’ corral will allow children to play under supervision, paint or model with clay and try hard not to be scared by the clowns.
A goal of the undertaking is to get people talking to each other about problems particular to their neighborhoods and to band together to develop awareness and seek remedies to present to government. Green Vallarta as an umbrella group also presents the aims of the many existing environmentally focused groups in the area.
We hope also to build public interest in saving the few green areas remaining to us and rehabilitating other places. Related efforts include helping those disseminating information on turtle egg preservation along with whale, bird and native animal (wild and domestic) well being.
For many years proposals have been made to turn the eastern end of the Isla Rio Cuale into yet another commercial corridor with more cement and lighting. Until today, the Isla has remained a micro-nature preserve containing iguanas, squirrels and an amazing assortment of birds and plants.
Vigilance will ensure this is the way the isla remains. It is a cool, tree-shaded respite on a hot day; an outdoor classroom for kids during summer months and remains a small, verdant natural microcosm in the Cuale.
Efforts to address current problems go hand-in-hand with public education through the press, in schools and in city-wide presentations to encourage ecologically sound waste management along with water and other natural resource conservation. Development has moved so quickly in Vallarta that concrete bastions rise before our eyes without warning.
Commercial development cannot be confused with progress. We must not forget that what put Vallarta on the map, besides Night of the Iguana and the torrid Taylor-Burton affair, was its serene Mexican beauty reflected in red tile roofs, glorious flowers and trees, friendly people and a leisurely demeanor. It is a city with proud roots where natives and long time resident expatriates want to preserve what is left of the “Old Vallarta” that they have loved for so long.
The regular La Huerta menu will be featured at the restaurant, but there will also be vendors selling drinks and lighter fare. It’s anticipated that there will be buses continually running from the end of the bridge in Las Canoas to Paso Ancho which is the end of Lazaro Cardenas from Insurgentes direction. Also, Ruta 04 buses go to the site. Parking could become a problem given the number of participants and visitors expected.