Vallarta Tribune (continued)
Over the years, the Amigos de La Cruz, Philo and the residents of the community have successfully worked together to complete several projects, including building a much needed bathroom at the La Cruz Primary School, supplying local schools with donated and refurbished computers and building the Club de la Tercera Edad (Senior Center) in La Cruz. It took 2 years and 7 benefits per year to raise the necessary matching funds to complete the building. Each year Philo continues to hold at least one benefit to raise funds in support of projects for the seniors.
Another yearly event held at Philo’s is a benefit featuring all-you-can-eat-ribs, music (a mariachi band and Philo’s Mexican Shuffle Band consisting of local and visiting musicians), folkloric dancers and charros (Mexican cowboys in full dress showing off their rope tricks). Philo’s provides refreshments, and the money raised from ticket sales goes to the Amigos Medical Assistance Program.
Historically, street cleaning with the more recent addition of plastic recycling, has been limited to the streets of La Cruz. Last year the Amigos “adopted” the La Cruz section of the La Cruz-Punta Mita Highway. They even hired two full time employees, local to La Cruz, who provide landscape maintenance and trash/debris clean up. Street cleaning and recycling continues to be a function of the Amigos with the work being completed by the Amigos employees.
Some of the Amigos formed the Amigos de La Cruz Players’, an acting troupe, and this spring they produced Murder Mayhem and Green Marshmallow Salad raised a net profit of 33,546 pesos which goes into the Amigos environmental fund to cover the costs of their highway, street and recycling programs. Murder, Mayhem and Green Marshmallow Salad by Shelly Sellepack was produced by special arrangement with Contemporary Drama Service, Colorado Springs, Colorado.
To bring more awareness to the work being done, the Amigos organized the First Annual Zombie Fun Run which took place Saturday, April 11, 2015. Runners started the race with their “lives” (represented by streamers attached to their waists) fluttering behind them as they did their best to evade the “zombies” who were in hot pursuit. Prizes went to the fastest runners and to the zombie who collected the most number of “lives.” All proceeds from the run go to the Highway Beautification project. To learn more about the organization and how you can contribute go to their website http://www.amigosdelacruz.org
Going forward, the Amigos Medical Assistance Program has been invited to participate in the Altruism Festival to be held in the beachfront garden at the Marriott Casa Magna Resort at 6 pm on Sunday, May 17th. This festival offers everyone the opportunity to eat, drink, be entertained, win raffle prizes and learn more about the continuing and varying needs of some of our most important local charities and non-profit organizations. This year, for the first time, the Amigos Environmental Programs will also be featured. Not only will your 350 pesos help to support those with unmet medical needs, you’ll be helping the highway, street and recycling programs of La Cruz. Contact the Amigos de La Cruz at email@example.com. Tickets also available at Philo’s, or call Laurel Wilson at 329-295-5502, Steve Cross at 322-191-5275, Carmen Tapia 322-127-5978 or Cindy Bouchard at 322-127-5813.
Philo told me in a recent interview, he feels grateful for the opportunities he has had through his life and he is especially grateful for the opportunity to live and work in beautiful La Cruz de Huanacaxtle. His work with The Amigos de La Cruz is his way of giving back.