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June 2011  Issue 102

Return to Home Page   2009 Index  2010 Index   2011 Index

Happy Memorial Day

Enjoy the long holiday weekend


The Staff insisted we get this issue out a little early, so they could wish you all a glorious long holiday weekend, so enjoy.

June 1st is the start of the 2011 hurricane season, but if the weather stays the way it has been – very dry – through April and May, there won’t be much of anything happening; fingers crossed.

Considering the time of the year, there has been a fair amount of ‘comings’, and it has continued right through to the end of May. 

The Staff cannot access the mailbox for so we are missing out on some updates and news.  If you have ‘replied’ to one of the recent monthly notices, please be advised that we have not seen it; you are not being ignored.

            It has been at least 2 ½ months, if not three, since we had any substantial rain here in Akumal.  Things are VERY DRY.

Please be advised that The Staff has worked over the Memorial Day weekend to update the Akumal Telephone Book(s) and Birthdays/Anniversaries.  We KNOW these are neither complete nor totally 100% accurate, proving the old axiom of GIGO.  If you have the interest, time, and inclination, you can check out your entries at The Akumal Telephone Book(s) and/or Birthdays & Anniversaries.  Any errors or omissions can be reported to The Staff

 Two other things to note.

1.      Up in the top left hand corner is a Subscribe box where you can add family and friends as Subscribers to the Akumalian.  This can also be used if you are accidently unsubscribed.

2.      Over on the right hand side is the ad for the Sale of Casa Colibri in South Akumal, and this is another place where you can direct family and friends who may want a piece of Caribbean beachfront with a 3 bedroom, 3.5 bathroom house with pool and garage; sorry Hyacinth, there is no sauna and room for a pony.

 Do not forget the other local publications, Sac-Be The Costal Source for Travel in the Riviera Maya, the Pelican Free Press, and the CEA Newsletter


Several stories are passed around to show how the month of June was named.  The most widely accepted explanation is that it is named after the Roman goddess Juno, wife of Jupiter and equivalent to the Greek goddess Hera.

 Gemini   May 22 - June 21

Cancer   June 22 – July 22

 June Birthstone:  Pearl
Aphrodite's tears of joy, Cleopatra's love potion, Krishna's wedding gift for his daughter.  The legends stretch fast and far, however one fact is undeniable: Pearls are the oldest known gem and were considered the most valuable, for centuries!  In fact, the Roman General Vitellius allegedly financed an entire military campaign with just one of his mother's Pearl earrings!  The only jewel that is not made by mother Earth, the Pearl is created from a secreted resin of the oyster.

 June Flower:  Rose
One of the earliest flowers known to man, symbolize love magic, hope, passion.  The rose represents beauty and perfection.  The name rose comes from the Latin word rose which means red.  Nebuchadnezzar used roses to decorate his palace.  They were grown for perfume oil in Persia.  The Greeks associated roses with the blood of Aphrodite's beloved Adonis.  There are more than a hundred species of wild roses.



Birthdays and Anniversaries
3          Nash Cost / Knod
4          Betty McElhatten
4          Sharon Goby
5          Paige Wright
8          Harry Bittner
10        Salvador
11        Kathy Sonheim
13        Richard Mazzola
14        Ellen Eanet
15        Zoe Pargot
16        Ingrid Clouther
18        Stephanie Motley
19        Hans Schmitthenner and Joan Potenza Anniversary
20        Demetrio’s girls
21        Steve Cole
21        Jim & Kathy (Sonheim) Farrell Anniversary
21        Susanne Van Lierop
22        Kristi Chapman
22        Sam & Sharon Goby Anniversary
25        Janet (Tricia’s mom)
25        Michael Schwartz
25        Katie & Joel Datica Anniversary
26        Beryl Van Lierop
29        Lunda Schwartz
29        Bud & Alice Blatner anniversary 

There must be more than this.  Let’s hear about YOUR birthday.

 Missed May Birthday
May 4              Kai White/Brown,       Marieke & Scott



The Akumal Council held a general assembly meeting on Friday the 13th, and the meeting was pretty much dominated (over 1 ½ hours) by a presentation by CAPA, which had at least six representatives on hand for this very important discussion. CAPA’s presence at this meeting was prompted by reports in huge increases in the April water bills; some reporting increases of 250%, 300%, and even 400%.   GULP!!  No wonder there were so many Akumalians in attendance.

The Akumalian Staff felt CAPA gave a very good, detailed PowerPoint slide presentation that seemed to address the Hows, Whys and Wherefores of the rate increases, many other attendees felt it did not really address the issue, and many questions went unanswered.  In fact, it seemed that some ‘questions’ were really dissertations that went on and on for 5, 6, and even 8 minutes.

As might be expected, the CAPA presentation was all done in Spanish, and Paul Sanchez-Navarro was doing the translation into English.  Towards the end, one woman from CAPA went on for about 7 minutes before Paul could translate, and that turned out to be a 1 minute summary??  The slides really helped a lot.

During the meeting, The Staff did some quick calculations on some examples on the rates for RESIDENTIAL and COMMERCIAL.  These, while quick and dirty, showed that the increase in RESIDENTIAL bills from the March to April rate schedules should be about 50% - 60%, and in the COMMERCIAL sector, the rates were actually decreasing.

After the meeting, The Staff returned to the offices of The Akumalian and developed an Excel spreadsheet to very quickly show the percent increase in bills from March to April based on cubic meter consumption; just enter the cubic meter amount and the difference is done.  In a very, very worst case scenario in the RESIDENTIAL sector, the maximum increase – from March to April – is 87%.  If somebody has really experienced a 300% or 400% increase in the April bill, then it appears that CAPA mis-calculated the amount on the bill.  Look at the spreadsheet and check it out yourself. Let know if you want a copy.

Go to The Akumal Council web page for a lot more information on this meeting.



The 2011 Hurricane Season in the Atlantic Ocean begins on June 1, 2011, and ends on November 30, 2011.  Atlantic hurricanes affect the eastern and Gulf coasts of the U.S. and the Caribbean nations.  Those with interests in hurricane-prone areas must heed federal and state advice on preparedness, the season in general, and each specific storm in the season.

The experts are predicting a busier-than-usual hurricane season for 2011.  These early forecasts, however, will likely be modified depending on the evolving climactic conditions. If the early forecasts prove to be accurate, the 2011 hurricane season will stand in sharp contrast to the relatively mild 2009 season. 

The Colorado State University forecast team predicts an above-average 2011 Atlantic basin hurricane season based on the premise that El Nino conditions will dissipate by this summer and that anomalously warm tropical Atlantic sea surface temperatures will persist.

The team predicts 17 named storms to form in the Atlantic basin between June 1 and Nov. 30 with nine expected to be hurricanes, and five developing into major hurricanes (Saffir/Simpson category 3-4-5) with sustained winds of 111 mph or greater.

Long-term averages are 9.6 named storms, 5.9 hurricanes and 2.3 major hurricanes per year.

“We expect current moderate El Nino conditions to transition to neutral conditions by this year’s hurricane season,” said Phil Klotzbach, lead forecaster on the CSU Hurricane Forecast Team. “The dissipating El Nino, along with the expected anomalously warm Atlantic ocean sea surface temperatures, will lead to favorable dynamic and thermodynamic conditions for hurricane formation and intensification.”

The 2011 forecast marks 28 years of hurricane forecasting at Colorado State, led by William Gray.  The hurricane forecast team makes its predictions based on 59 years of historical data.

“Based on our latest forecast, the probability of a major hurricane making landfall along the U.S. coastline is 69 percent compared with the last-century average of 52 percent,” Gray said. “While patterns may change before the start of hurricane season, we believe current conditions warrant concern for an above-average season.”


The 2011 Stanley Cup Finals will be the championship series of the National Hockey League (NHL) 2010–11 season, and the culmination of the 2011 Stanley Cup playoffs.  It will pit the Eastern Conference playoff champion,  the Boston Bruins, against the Western Conference playoff champion Vancouver Canucks.  The Canucks will have home ice advantage in the Finals by virtue of winning the Presidents' Trophy as the team that finished with the best regular season record (117 points).  This will be the 118th year of the Stanley Cup's presentation.

The Stanley Cup Finals begin on Wednesday, June 1st in Vancouver, and the Bruins are 2 -1 favorites.


Navy Day is an official Mexican holiday.  The day is held on the June 1st and has been recognized every year since 1942.  Go to Navy Day for additional information.



Marieke White reports.

“We all know that Akumal is a home to, and vacation destination for, all manner of people from around the world, but did you know it’s also the playground for some of the fastest rising stars of American stand-up comedy?  For the last three years, comedian, actor, and producer Gus Lynch has hosted a comic's retreat at Villa de Valhalla in Akumal.  Every year in late Spring a group of stand-up comedians gather in Akumal for a week of fun and frolic, daydreaming about mounting a show on the beach and wondering if it's possible to perform after 5 days of soaking their brains in tequila and cooking them in the hot Riviera Maya sun.

“Thanks to the hospitality of La Buena Vida, we will answer that question on Thursday, June 2nd.

“Stand Up! Records Presents: COMEDIA DE LOS (BRAIN) MUERTOS!

A showcase of the very best in American Stand-Up Comedy.

Erik Allen             See at rooftopcomedy/ErikAllen
Gabe Noah           See at rooftopcomedy/GabeNoah
Nate Abshire        See at rooftopcomedy/NateAbshire
and Gus Lynch          

 “So take a break from the rich culture and stunning natural beauty of the Riviera Maya to watch 4 fat white American guys tell jokes for an hour.

“Show starts at 9pm.  "R" rated for adult content.  FREE!”


The Akumal Council’s Marketing and Events Committee has scheduled a Brain Storming Get Together for 11:00am on Friday, June 3 at CEA.  The Committee feels there have been some really great informal conversations about ways in which we can bring more people to Akumal, and they want to capture some of that enthusiasm for implementation.

The Committee says, “Everyone that we speak to has fantastic ideas, so we thought that it would be good to have a meeting where everyone who is interested in getting involved can come along, have a good brain storm, and start making and action plans.  Let’s get together and let’s get started!”

 Marketing and Events Committee
Dan Freeman
Dave Zucker
Marieke White 


Come one, come all, to the Beach Bar, where we’ll have a ball.

It’s time for the “Best Shirt Award”, which is held on the first Friday of each month during Happy Hour at the Lol Ha Beach Bar.  This award is based on Robin’s penchant for good, classy Beach Bar shirts, and his sister, Mary Henderson, is ready to once again be the judge and jury as she selects the “Best Shirt” for June.  And, as we go to print the criteria are still somewhat nebulous, but it looks like “coolest”, “neatest”, and “most colorful” might work.

The May award for “Best Shirt” went to Steve Wandler, who had to go through some very tough scrutiny by the judges, because there was some serious competition.  See May Best Shirt for more photos.



The 2011 French Open (also known as Roland Garros, after the famous French aviator) is a tennis tournament played on outdoor clay courts.  It is the 110th edition of the French Open, and the second Grand Slam event of the year.  It is taking place at the Stade Roland Garros in Paris, France, from 22 May to 5 June, 2011.

The women’s finals is on Saturday, June 4, and the men’s final is on Sunday, June 5.


Paul Sánchez-Navarro Russell, Director, Centro Ecológico Akumal, reports, “On June 7, CEA will be named a National Water Commission "Space for the Culture of Water" "Espacio para la Cultura de Agua" which means we will offer more information to a wider audience about water management in the Riviera Maya.


The 143rd running of the Belmont Stakes will be held at Belmont Park on Saturday, June 11 ABC-TV and ESPN will provide live coverage of the day’s events.

Because of its distance and status as the race that can make or break a Triple Crown champion, the Belmont Stakes has been the venue for some of the most famous moments in American racing.

The first Belmont in the United States was not the famous stakes race or even the man for whom it is named.  Rather, the first Belmont was a race horse that arrived in California in 1853 from his breeding grounds of Franklin, Ohio.  The Belmont Stakes, however, are named after August Belmont, a financier who made quite a name and fortune for himself in New York politics and society.  Obviously, Mr. Belmont was also quite involved in horse racing, and his imprint is even intertwined within the history of the Kentucky Derby.

One thing the Belmont does have over the Derby is that it is the oldest of the three Triple Crown events.  The Belmont predates the Preakness by six years, the Kentucky Derby by eight.  The first running of the Belmont Stakes was in 1867 at Jerome Park, on, believe it or not, a Thursday.

Here's a tidbit you didn't see in Derby or Preakness history.  When Grey Lag won the Belmont in 1921, it marked the first running of the Belmont Stakes in the counter-clockwise manner of American fashion.  This 53rd running was a mile and three-eighths over the main course; previous editions at Belmont Park had been run clockwise, in accordance with English custom, over a fish-hook course which included part of the training track and the main dirt oval.

It’s been 33 years since Affirmed swept the Derby, Preakness and Belmont to give racing its 11th Triple Crown winner.

The Preakness Stakes was run at Pimlico on May 21, and the Kentucky Derby winner, Animal Kingdom, was second by a half-length, so for the 33rd consecutive year, thoroughbred racing will have no Triple Crown winner.

 On May 7th, The Akumalians gathered at the local Churchill Downs at Lol Ha Beach Bar to celebrate and participate in the Kentucky Derby.  Photos can be seen at 2011 Kentucky Derby Party.


Comings, in May, for Best Shirt Award, Kentucky Derby, and other things:

  • Donny & Cheryl Hall were back in Playa Blanca with their dogs.
  • Ron Stern was in town for mother’s day, albeit without Shari.
  • Terry & Lisa Turner were back in the middle of May.
  • Tammi Ruffin Wood was back for a very brief visit.
  • Macon & Susan Gravlee were reportedly also back.
  • Gary & Oveta Vardell were back in S Akumal.
  • Jack & Ann Kennedy were in Las Casitas; Ann is still here with girl friends.
  • Bob & Sherwood Anders came back for their 15th wedding anniversary.
  • David Poor returned for the Akumal Council Meeting.
  • Jim & Jackie Power are back at Jade Beach.
  • Paul Rasmussen has also returned from snowy Colorado.

·         Tom & Judy Baxter have returned to South Akumal.

·         Beryl & Susanne Van Lierop are back at Yal Ku Cai

·         Mike & Peggy Stone are here at Iguana.

·         Laura & Dave Wolfe are back getting things ready for the summer.

Dan & Dave went back to Philly for a week of catering.
Kevin “Red Beard” McKee has departed for the Pacific Northwest.
Memo & Marcy Essay have returned to Iowa for the season.
     Isabel Schober has returned to Colorado on a short vacation.


The American Theatre Wing's 65th Annual Antoinette Perry "Tony" Awards will be broadcast live from Radio City Music Hall on Sunday, June 12, 2010 (8:00-11:00 p.m., live EST) on the CBS Television Network.  The awards honor theatre professionals and distinguished achievement on Broadway.  The cut-off for nomination eligibility on the 2010-2011 Broadway Season was April 29, 2011.

The Antoinette Perry "Tony" Awards are bestowed annually on theatre professionals for distinguished achievement.  The Tony is one of the most coveted awards in the entertainment industry and the annual telecast is considered one of the most prestigious programs on television.

While the theatre-going public may consider the Tony Awards to be the Oscars of live theatre, critics have suggested that the Tony Awards are primarily a promotional vehicle for a small number of large production companies and theatre owners in New York City.  Only shows playing in one of 39 "Broadway" theatres designated by the Tony Awards Management Committee are eligible for the Tony Awards.  The 39 "Broadway" theatres are all large venues located between 40th and 66th Streets and 6th and 10th Avenues in New York City, an area surrounding Broadway from Times Square to Lincoln Center.  Shows playing in "off-Broadway" or "off-off-Broadway" theatres, or shows playing outside of New York City, are not eligible.  Since there are only 39 theatres, only a portion of which will be featuring a "new" production in any given season, and 27 award categories, it's likely that many "new" shows will reap at least one award.

Neil Patrick Harris has been selected to host this year’s show, and he wants to see if he can get a second Emmy for his "Tony" hosting duties.  The “How I Met Your Mother” star is set to return to the Tony Awards stage as host of the awards show on June 12.  According to the Los Angeles Times, Harris did such a solid job hosting in 2009, he also nabbed the primetime Emmys gig that same year.

Harris said in a statement that he’s “honored” and “stoked” to be back.  "It should be a great show - we've got a fantastic mix of live performances, a few secret surprises, and since they're closed for retooling, we're using all the rigging equipment from Spider-Man,” Harris joked.  “What could possibly go wrong?"



 Lol Ha - The Envelope Please
The Lol Ha Restaurant will be handing out “Secret Envelopes”  - only one per table while supplies last - to local guests dining during the month of June.  The “secret’ might be specific appetizers, main courses, wines, desserts, and chef's specials, and on your next dinner visit to Lol-Ha, your waiter will open the envelope to reveal what you will be receiving as a token of appreciation for your continued patronage.  The envelope has to be opened by a waiter or staff member in order to validate your gift, and Lol Ha only asks that you dine back and redeem the ‘secret’ before July 31st.

NARC Takes to the Firing Range

            NARC (North Akumal Road Committee) took to the Punta Sur / South Akumal firing range for some bio-degradable water balloon practice.  Led by Russ Motley and Rhett Schober, with assistance from Kevin “Red Beard” McKee, NARC set up on a roof top in Punta Sur to practice for distance and accuracy.  They had plenty of encouragement and support with the ammunition and targets (that’s Bob Rademacker in the water), and over time, the team became very proficient.

            The reason for the practice session could not be definitively confirmed, but word has it that NARC will be utilizing these skills in North Akumal, against those who are not supporting their efforts in paving the road.  While only water balloons were used during the practice range, there was a whispered mention of paint balloons and/or rotten eggs.  With a fairly accurate range of about 50 meters, this NARC brigade will be difficult to detect and defend against, especially when their strikes come at dusk. 

The North Akumal Road Paving is Underway
            As scheduled by NARC, work has begun on the North Akumal road, and it is progressing very nicely.  As planned, the work has commenced just around the curve by the Las Casitas’ tennis court, and work is being done to widen and pave the inside of the curve.

As seen in these photos, NARC has a good size crew on board, so everything seems to be on target to have the entire road paved by December 1st.  Of course, this is somewhat dependent on other owners stepping up to the plate with their donations, as well as the number of people who convert to Pepsi’s bottled water.

Lol-Ha Restaurant Summer Hours
The Lol Ha restaurant is initiating its summer hours, effective June 1st.  Between June 1st and August 31st, Lol-Ha will be closed to the public every Saturday for Breakfast and Dinner, but it will provide service to its guests who have breakfast included. 

Every other day:
Breakfast: 7:30 -11am
Dinner: 6-9:30pm
Pizzeria: 12 noon to 8pm
Prime Rib Night - Thursday and Friday
Snack bar 11am -9pm; Kitchen 12 noon to 8pm

Que Onda Hotel and Restaurant Are Closed
It is official.  Maribel reports, “Que Onda is closing as hotel and restaurant at the end of May in order to become a Residency for artists starting July!  We will keep a bar & shop, mini Que Onda, where we will serve breakfast, and be a bar with some food open to public, but separated from the Residency !”  

Happy Hour for Locals Continues at La Buena Vida
La Buena Vida reports that in June, all drinks, not just happy hour drinks, will be half price to locals, and there’s 25% off food.  Both discounts are ALL DAY!


The Highway Overpass Is Open!
The new highway overpass project through central Playa del Carmen is now open.  On The Staff’s first experience with this in mid-May, they made it through Playa del Carmen with only two red lights, and the time to the bull ring in Cancun was about 1 hour and 20 minutes, somewhat less than the usual ‘just about 2 hours’.  This definitely beats the Arco Vial to the west of the highway.

 Fonda Argentina Is Open
            The Fonda Argentina restaurant has finally opened.  This is on the south bound side of the highway, just at the light where the new highway overpass ends as you drive north.  If this is anything like the one in Cancun, be prepared for large portions.


Hospital San Carlos Is Open
There’s a new hospital, Hospital San Carlos, on the south bound side of the highway, between Av. Constituiente and Av. Juarez.  No reports on this, but it is there and Open.


Costco Implements Validated Parking
   Costco and Mega have finally implemented the validated parking.  You get a ticket when you enter the parking lot, and this needs to be validated at the check-out counter.  The charge without the validation is $10 pesos.

New Airport Hotel
        For whatever it is worth, the Courtyard by Marriott Hotel is no longer the hotel closest to the Cancun Airport.  A new hotel – The Staff has a mental lapse on the name – has opened right at the Cancun Distribution Center by the Pemex station north of the airport entrance road.

FLAG DAY, JUNE 14th          

The Fourth of July was traditionally celebrated as America's birthday, but the idea of an  annual day specifically celebrating the Flag is believed to have first originated in 1885.  Go to Flag Day for additional information.

In the United States, Flag Day is celebrated on June 14.  It commemorates the adoption of the flag of the United States, which happened that day by resolution of the Second Continental Congress in 1777.

In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson issued a proclamation that officially established June 14 as Flag Day; in August 1949, National Flag Day was established by an Act of Congress.

Flag Day is not an official federal holiday, though on June 14, 1937, Pennsylvania became the first (and only) U.S. state to celebrate Flag Day as a state holiday.  One of the longest-running Flag Day parades is held annually in Quincy, Massachusetts, which began in 1952 and celebrated its 57th year in 2009.

Did you Know? If you like to study flags, then you are a Vexillologist!




It has been reported that the Annual Akumal Fishing Tournament will take place on Saturday, June 18th.  Unfortunately, no further details have been forthcoming.


The Championships, Wimbledon, or simply Wimbledon, is the oldest tennis tournament in the world and is considered the most prestigious.  It has been held at the All England Club in the London suburb of Wimbledon since 1877.  It is one of the four Grand Slam tennis tournaments – the other three Majors are the Australian Open, French Open and US Open – and the only one still played on the game's original surface, grass, which gave the game of lawn tennis its name.

The tournament takes place over two weeks in late June and early July (20 June – 3 July), culminating with the Ladies' and Gentlemen's Singles Final, scheduled respectively for the second Saturday (July 2) and Sunday (July 3).  


Historians have recorded that there was a tradition to celebrate Father's Day even thousands of years ago.  Their studies say that 4,000 years ago in Babylon, a son called Elmesu carved a father's day message on a clay card.  In his message Elmesu wished his father a long and healthy life.  There is no knowledge as to what happened to this father son duo, but it is believed that several countries retained the custom of celebrating Father's Day.  Go to Father’s Day for additional information.


This is the first day of summer!!

Solstice, from the Latin for sun stands still, in astronomy, either of the two points on the ecliptic that lie midway between the equinoxes (separated from them by an angular distance of 90°).

At the solstices the sun's apparent position on the celestial sphere reaches its greatest distance above or below the celestial equator, about 23 1/2° of arc.  At the time of summer solstice, about 2:06pm on June 21, the sun is directly overhead at noon at the Tropic of Cancer.

In the Northern Hemisphere the longest day and shortest night of the year occur on this date, marking the beginning of summer.  At winter solstice, about December 22, the sun is overhead at noon at the Tropic of Capricorn; this marks the beginning of winter in the Northern Hemisphere. For several days before and after each solstice the sun appears to stand still in the sky, i.e., its noontime elevation does not seem to change from day to day.


The Kukulcán pyramid at Chichen Itza is notable for the fact that at the spring and fall equinoxes (March 21 and September 22) the sun projects an undulating pattern of light on the northern stairway for a few hours in the late afternoon—a pattern caused by the angle of the sun and the edge of the nine steps that define the pyramid's construction.  These triangles of light link up with the massive stone carvings of snake heads at the base of the stairs, suggesting a massive serpent snaking down the structure.

FULL MOON, JUNE 15th     

The Full Strawberry Moon occurs on June 15th at 10:30am AST.  This name was universal to every Aztec tribe.  However, in Europe they called it the Rose Moon.  Also, because the relatively short season for harvesting strawberries comes each year during the month of June, so the full Moon for June was christened for the strawberry!


During the month of May, there was one other “Event” beside the Best Shirt Award, and that was the Kentucky Derby “party” on May 7th.  For photos, go to Kentucky Derby.


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