Traditions: Posadas and Nacimientos

Guatemalan Nativity scene (photo by Rudy A. Giron)

The nacimiento is still the star of the show in Guatemala. What is now the most important celebration of the year came to the Americas with the Spanish Christian evangelists. The Guatemalans, already an innately spiritual people closely in tune with nature and in whom creativity thrives, had no trouble adapting to the new religious event. The timing was good. […]

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Elizabeth Bell receives Orden Diego de Porres award

Elizabeth Bell receives award

The Orden Diego de Porres – Gold Award – was awarded to Elizabeth Bell at Capuchinas by the Consejo Nacional Para la Proteccion de La Antigua Guatemala on December 1st. The following is the speech she gave following the presentation. Autoridades eclestiásticas y civiles, Miembros del Consejo Nacional para la Protección de la Antigua Guatemala, Conservador de La Ciudad, y […]

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Elizabeth Bell receives the gold “Orden Diego de Porres” Award

Elizabeth Bell

Dec. 2, 2011 — Elizabeth Bell was honored in a lovely ceremony last night at Capuchinas where she received the highest award given by the Consejo. The gold Orden Diego de Porres was awarded to her for “her untiring work over many years in allowing people to know La Antigua Guatemala through her multiple books and lectures and constant activities […]

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Antigua International School

Director Jim Pastore

Teaching kids how to think, not what to think As the founding director of a new, international school in La Antigua Guatemala, longtime educator Jim Pastore is confident that the 21st century curriculum will launch kids on a lifetime of learning that will prepare them for the jobs of the future, those that may not even exist today. “My concern […]

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Xela Fair has scope like none other in Guatemala

Xela feria 2011 (photo by Dave Fox)

Xela’s annual feria came to a close the weekend of Sept. 17-18, and it was everything Guatemala has come to expect from the nation’s premiere Independence Day celebration. Everything offered won’t be new to a traveler who’s at least trolled the occasional market: fruit and knick-knacks, dance troupes and shows, and carnival rides that may have been assembled with scrap […]

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Civic fair draws a crowd in La Antigua

Libre al Viento

Musicians, artists, NGOs and community groups were among participants in Libre al Viento, a festival of civic and cultural activities that was held Saturday, Sept. 3, at the Palace of the Captains General in La Antigua Guatemala. Antigüeños and tourists alike streamed through the palace throughout the day to enjoy the activities and displays, which included an array of restaurants […]

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Paseo de La Sexta, Zone 1

Restoration brings new life to an old district Last year, the municipality of Guatemala City undertook a project to conserve and revitalize the city’s heritage, and it started with La Sexta Avenida, Zone 1: the backbone of el centro histórico. Historically, La Sexta was the fashion capital of Guatemala—the place to see and be seen—with shops selling luxury goods and […]

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WINGS celebrates 10 years of serving families

Sue Patterson (center) with WINGS supporters

Serving over 30,000 people in seven departments, WINGS recently celebrated over a decade of achievements in the fields of family planning, reproductive health and improving the lives of Guatemalan families. With the theme “It All Begins With Family Planning …,” WINGS’ 10th anniversary launch party in March brought 150 guests to Mesón Panza Verde in La Antigua Guatemala, where they […]

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Gourmet burgers arrive in La Antigua

Lava grand opening

Gourmet hamburgers have just arrived in La Antigua at the newly opened Lava Terrace Bar and Burgers, at 4ta Ave. Norte #3. The menu features everything from the standard hamburger and bacon-cheeseburger to imaginative concoctions such as the jalapeño popper burger, boomerang burger (sautéed onions, beetroot and fried egg), San Antonio Chili burger, Hawaiian burger (grilled pineapple and cheddar) and […]

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Magic Moments

Mayan wedding globe

‘I Do, Guatemala’ creates dream weddings amid Antigua’s romantic settings With volcanic backdrops, a signature arch, cobblestone streets and centuries-old ruins, La Antigua Guatemala couldn’t be more picturesque. Diana Sciarrillo of Guatemala City and colleague Romie Black of Atlanta (USA) want those and other images unique to Guatemala in wedding albums around the world. So last year they started “I […]

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Needy kids win big at Ocelot event

Guests packed Ocelot, the blues and tapas restaurant in La Antigua, for drinks, food and fun to support a good cause on Thursday night, Jan. 20. The fundraiser supported the Education for the Children Foundation, a Britain-based NGO that just opened a modern, new school for up to 510 children in Jocotenango. Several teachers from Escuela Proyecto La Esperanza were […]

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With transatlantic support, new school opens in Jocotenango

Education for the Children Foundation

Built with an outpouring of support from both sides of the Atlantic Ocean, a modern new school has just opened for over 500 Guatemalan children, many of whom might not get an education otherwise. Located in Jocotenango, just three kilometers from La Antigua, the spacious Escuela Proyecto La Esperanza has 20 classrooms, a computer lab, an audio-visual room, library, kitchen, […]

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Holiday Shopping in Antigua

text and photos by Jennifer Rowe If you are new to Guatemala, on a budget, or just having trouble coming up with unique ideas for gifts this holiday season, do not fret! Here are a few suggestions of what is available to you from some of the merchants in Antigua. If there’s someone on your shopping list that enjoys setting […]

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Packed house celebrates Rainbow Cafe’s 18th anniversary

Patrons flocked to Rainbow Café – restaurant, bar, book exchange, reading room – for its 18th anniversary celebration Saturday night, Nov. 13. A delight to travelers and locals alike in La Antigua, Rainbow offers some of the best breakfasts in town, along with salads, homemade soups, fresh-fruit smoothies, crunchy salads and desserts to die for. In addition to its menu […]

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Farming Organically

written by Dianne Carofino photos: George Carofino What makes a farm “organic,” one that grows organic produce? We put that question to Alex Kronick as we tour Caoba Farms, his five-acre organic farm on the outskirts of La Antigua Guatemala. Alex began his business six years ago, originally selling organic produce to one restaurant, and then quickly adding a second. […]

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Culture Unshocked: Toys and Play

Trees and friends, that is all you need (photo: Victoria Stone)

written by Ana Flinder Not long ago, while perusing the endless tables piled high with used North American clothes at the Saturday paca market in La Antigua, I found a little T-shirt that caught my eye. It was about the right size for a 5 year old, and on it read “I want it— You buy it for me— Got […]

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Culture Unshocked

Girl with knife (photo: Victoria Stone)

Written by Ana Flinder Culture shock is a strange phenomenon which most of us have experienced in one way or another. For those of us who travel outside of our own countries infrequently, arrival in a new and foreign culture can be absolutely overwhelming; every moment is filled with so many new sights and sounds, and new customs that we […]

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Out of the Blue

Out of the Blue (photo: Harris & Goller/

Written by Terry Kovick Biskovich Dateline: 1987 Northern California Grandpa Jones, 93-year-old tribal medicine man. From the Files of G.W. Sweetwater and B. Yates-Penny “It’s a matter of belief, there’s nothing else. You get what you give out or what you’re afraid of. Did you know that everything out there is a reflection? Let me tell you something … if […]

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