Lakeside Living – August 2009

Lakeside Living
By Kay Davis

Phone: (376) 766-4774
or 765-3676 to leave messages


      Events are listed by date, like a calendar: past events, then those planned for the future. Some organizations offer multiple events or dates, and these items appear toward the end of the column.
      July 3 Chapala Country Club members and guests gathered for a festive joint celebration of Canada Day and the Fourth of July. The 18th green was transformed into a game area, featuring a miniature golf course, a putting mousetrap, golf pitching over a sand trap and horseshoes. The CCC House Committee, chaired by Ernie Sowers, organized the event.

Perry, Yara & AJ at Chapala Country Club

      July 12 was the grand opening of Efrén Gonzalez’s new gallery and studio. The new facilities are large enough for every kind of display in a series of rooms on two floors, and the building is close to the school for his young trainees. There was a room dedicated to their charming artwork. Those of us attending enjoyed works  excellent local artists, including photographers Jill Flyer, Xill Fessenden and Rebecca Ford. In the back yard there was a guitarist, Louis Pavao, a Portuguese-blooded, Hawaiian soul musician who has adopted Ajijic as his retirement home.
      July 21 Sydney Gay and the Amazing Axtell Puppets performed at La Bodega. This was an original show created by singer-actress Sydney Gay, aided and abetted by her engaging puppets, Sam (the grandfather), Mister Froggy (who warned us to beware of the Flim Flam Man), Miss Tortuga (the turtle, performed with the assistance of Joy Phoenix) and Lulu (the alligator). Sydney has a beautiful voice. It was Lulu, the alligator, however, who stole the show with her vow to choose vegetarianism and her song on the Alligator Waltz. The show was charming, spirited and full of song but with a serious side to it on values.

Sydney & Lulu with Joy Phoenix &Tortuga

      July 29 was a DIF sponsored, unique fashion show: Wig Out with Yoli in Riberas del Pilar. All colors, all lengths shown, benefit for Abused Women.
      ACÁ, officially known as Asociaci?n Comunitaria de Auto Suficiencia, A.C., offers workshops (emphasis on “work”) Thursdays from 12 – 3 at the ACÁ Eco Center in Jaltepec. Here is the schedule for August:
      Aug  6          Kitchen Herb planters & baskets
      Aug 13         Flavored Oils & Herbal Vinegars
      Aug 20         Local Medicinal Herbs, prevention & uses
      Aug 27         Safe Cleaning Products, Homemade Insect Sprays
      Sep  3          Mad Hatters Party, All about Tea & Tea Biscuits
      ACÁ Tours: 
      Abastos Bus Tour (guided):    Aug   4, Sep   7 $200 pesos
      Organic Bus Tour:                 Aug 22, Sep 26
      Tickets and information at ACÁ Eco Center, or tickets from Bertha at LCS,
      Diane Pearl or ACÁ Eco Center.
      The American Legion post #7 schedule for August:
      No US consulate/social security this month.
      Sundays, all month: 12 – 3 p.m. Legion Grill (burgers, beans, salad)
      Aug  1 – Battle of the Legions chili cookoff (Legion #7 vs. Legion #9)
      Aug  3 – 11 a.m. Legion Executive Board Meeting; 1 p.m. Events Mtg
      Aug  4 – 11 a.m. Auxiliary Executive Board Meeting  
      Aug  7 –  8 a.m. – 1 p.m. Yard Sale
      Aug  10 –  5 p.m. Enchilada Contest
      Aug  20 –  5 p.m. Are You Smarter than a Fifth Grader?
      Aug  27 – 3 p.m. Lone Star gathering – be a Texan!
      Sep  14 – 5 p.m. cocktails, dinner – Fiesta de Mexico (advanced tix only)
       Menu: fajitas, guacamole, refried beans, rice & flan
       Entertainment: Los Pios from Guadajara
       Info: Barbara Prince, 765 – 3418 or

      Legion Post #7 Trips:
      Regional Museum of Guadalajara, Aug 7, 9 a.m.

Opals from Magdalena

      This museum, located in front of the “Rotunda of Illustrious Men” is a beautiful building, housing a mammoth from the Pleistocene Era and found in Catarina, Jalisco in 1918. There is a vast collection of archeological findings from western Mexico, Colima, Nayarit, Sinaloa, Guanajuato and Michoacán. Upper floors display exhibits from the conquest and colonial times; temporary exhibits change every other month. Cost of trip is $300 pesos per person, including bus, entrance to museum and a bilingual guide, lunch separate. Departing the legion at 9 a.m., the bus aims to return to Chapala by 4 p.m. Contact Susannah Kelly, 765-3757.
      Hacienda de San Andres, Magdalena Opal Mines        Aug 21, 7 a.m. (yes, 7)
      At the hacienda, with its 892 hectares, founded originally by Don Zenon Orendain in 1800, you can see bullet holes in the walls from the War of Independence, the Revolution and the Cristero War. You will learn the history surrounding this place. Magdalena offers an open mine where opals can still be found on the roads, or you can dig for them. Cost of the trip is $1,125 pesos per person, air conditioned transportation. There will be fresh water in Magdalena and lunch in Tequila, followed by an hour for shopping. Contact Susannah Kelly, 765-3757.
      The American Legion post #9 is also devoted to serving veterans, raising funds through charitable events and serving the community. Post #9 current activities include support for a youth soccer team, scholarship support for the Hacienda La Labor School, maintenance of the school, and contribution to a scholarship fund for the Golden Strings. Meetings are the second Wednesday of each month at the Smokehouse Cantina at 12 noon. Turn onto the divided street across from Mom’s. Look for the American Legion sign on the right. Contact Tim Stern, Commander at

Kids at Hacienda La Labor School receive two new classrooms

      July 25 was a fiesta day at the Lake Chapala Society. It was definitely not business as usual. Food booths, drinks (including libations) were scattered around the campus. There were family fun activities, and music to entertain one and all. A judge presented awards to winners in the category of Kid’s Art. Their art was also for sale with an additional cash award to the artist selling the most. Each summer LCS sponsors this popular fiesta as a fund-raiser for its programs.
      Healthcare Week in July ran as a community service, including blood pressure monitoring, pneumonia shots, hearing testing, hearing aid testing, diabetic and skin cancer screening. There was an optometrist and a seminar on what to do before Cruz Roja arrives. Cruz Roja provides our community with life-saving services, and should you should need help, there are ways you can help the ambulance team and the medical support group so they can help you better.
      The Lake Chapala Society’s Board of Directors has adopted a new governance structure including establishment of  the position of Executive Director. This action will professionalize LCS’s operation and bring it into line with the best practices recognized by non-profits the world over. The new structure outlines the decision-making powers of the Annual General Meeting, the Board of Directors, Board Standing Committees and the position of Executive Director. The new Executive Director will be accountable to the Board of Directors and recommend to the Board and ensure implementation of the general orientations, strategies, plans and policies of the organization. The Executive Director ensures the efficient management of resources, programs, services to clientele and operations of the organization.
      To this end the Board of Directors has initiated a strategic planning process with the assistance, at no charge, of Conrad LeBlanc from New Brunswick, Canada. Conrad is a consultant and group facilitator who has led strategic planning and governance workshops for non-profits across Canada and the New England states for the past 20 years. He is also an LCS member with a Master of Arts in Philosophy. Conrad has worked as a high school teacher, community developer, family counselor and organizational developer. Retired “in principle,” he continues to act as a consultant in the areas of strategic planning and decision-making structures.
      For full information and a chart of the flow from vision to results, check the LCS website at While you are there, check photos on the July 25 fiesta. You may find yourself, or someone close to you, having fun.
      Lakeside Little Theater: In the July column I mentioned the success of the summer play Passengers. There were two actors who particularly caught the hearts of the audience. I listened to comments, and part of the appeal, certainly, was that these were good characters as written, but it was how they were portrayed that gave them heart-wrenching appeal. Maureen, the street person from scenes three and eight, was played by Katie B. Goode. Her costume lent charm to that character, but nothing could take away from her acting. Chris L’Ecluse played the ticket seller at the bus station in scene seven, and it was her debut appearance. Her lines were spoken as conversationally as if she were sitting beside each of us, and it made her character seem real. We cared about these two characters. Facilitation  by Graham Miller and his enthusiastic group of new directors (Don Chaloner, Fred Koesling, Russell Mack, Ann Swiston, Harry Walker, Michael Warren, and Liz White) led a large and talented cast through the play.
      There will be two auditions in August, first for the political comedy Regrets Only, written by Paul Rudnick and directed by Barbara Clippinger. Auditions will take place Friday & Saturday, August 7 & 8; four women and two men are needed. Performances will be September 26-October 4. For scripts & information, contact Trish Conner at 766-5233 or email Barbara at
      The second August audition is for the classic murder-mystery The Mousetrap, written by Agatha Christie and directed by Roseann Wilshere. Auditions are Friday & Saturday, August 28 & 29, looking for three women and five men. Performances are October 31-November 9, with no performance on November 2. For scripts & information, contact Diane Jones at 765-2414 or email at
      If you would like to volunteer behind the scenes, the LLT is always looking for people to train in lighting, sound, wardrobe, props, make-up, stage managing and other positions. Contact Don Chaloner at 766-1975 or email at
      To reserve a seat at all of this season’s line-up of shows, be sure to come to the Season Ticket Renewals & New Sales event in the LLT lobby on September 8 & 9 from 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. Season tickets for six shows is $800 pesos per person, compared to $150 pesos for individual tickets. See you there!
      Mexican Holiday for August:
      August 25    Mezcala celebrates fiestas patronales honoring La Virgen de la Asunci?n (Virgin of the Assumption).
#11 – Open Circle at LCS on Sunday mornings at 10:30 a.m.:
      Aug   2         Robert Kleffel – a scientific view of happiness
      Aug   9         Ann Lewis – Fun getting there: Jerusalem, Cairo, Petra
      Aug 16         Blue – Chinese astrology: outer, inner, secret YOU
      Aug 23         Jim Tipton – poetry
      Aug 30         Alice McNamara
      Sep   6         Tim Schubert
      On July 19 Arden Murphy talked about recent discoveries about the causes of many illnesses we thought we understood, at least the basics, and how easily life style changes could have avoided or alleviated symptoms.

Arden Murphy

      VIVA! La Musica’s schedule at the Auditorium in La Floresta (7:30):
      Aug 27         Jose White Quartet from Aguascalientes
      Sep 10         Opera The Elixir of Love by Donizetti conducted by Luis
                            Rodriguez, 50 person chorus, 4 soloists, costuming and more
      Oct 8           Cuauhtemoc García Jazz Flute combo
      Per concert $200 pesos for members, $300 pesos for non-members, except the September opera which will be $300 pesos for members, $400 for non-members
      Auditions:    Aug 9   for VIVA scholarships; contact Rosemary Keeling at 766-1801
      Future:         September – Mariachi Festival, Degollado theater, Guadalajara; overnight in a hotel; contact Rosemary Keeling at 766-1801;
      November 14-28 Internacional de Musica de Morelia;
      20+ concerts, many free; Rosemary Keeling, 766-1801

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