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Post by Trailrunner on Sun Jul 22, 2012 1:10 pm

Anyone know the dates of this year's (2012) festival??? Or even if they are having it this year. Any info appreciated.
TIA
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Post by CheenaGringo on Sun Jul 22, 2012 1:57 pm

The last dates that I saw were August 4 - 12. If you are considering going there, it is probably advisable to pick a route that doesn't go through Cherán as there are still blockades and roadblocks.

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Post by Trailrunner on Sun Jul 22, 2012 4:34 pm

Thanks, CG, for this. I googled and could find nada, here did you get this, I'd like to follow in case we do decide to go.
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Post by CheenaGringo on Sun Jul 22, 2012 4:44 pm

I originally saw the dates on the Michoacán Yahoo Group Board. When answering your query, I checked a bunch of the Michoacán info sites but in typical fashion, I couldn't find confirmation. I remember last year that for both the Paracho Festival and the Santa Clara Copper Festival - they didn't post the actual dates until a few days before. By the way, this weekend was the Paracho Globos Festival.

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Post by brigitte on Sun Jul 22, 2012 5:02 pm

I read somewhere that the 39th feria will be between the 4th and the 12th of August 2012

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Post by CanuckBob on Sun Jul 22, 2012 8:41 pm

We are leaving to Morelia, Patzcuaro, Santa Clara and Paracho on Sunday. Yes there is trouble in Cherán but I have checked it out with a very good high level government source in Michoacán and they say "no problemo" so away we go.......
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Post by CheenaGringo on Sun Jul 22, 2012 8:51 pm

CB:

My comment about Cheran wasn't meant to alarm but rather a simple warning about routing since there are a number of routes available to reach Paracho and other parts of Michoacan. In fact, a couple of contacts have been bold enough to drive through Cheran and simply commented that the checkpoints/blockades delayed their movements and nothing more.

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Post by Trailrunner on Sun Jul 22, 2012 9:13 pm

So, what kind of blockades? Narco, Military, cops, the Purépecha?

CBob, if you see posters or hear anything other than the dates 4th to the 12th, would you post it here? Thanks.

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Post by CheenaGringo on Sun Jul 22, 2012 9:45 pm

I won't claim to know or understand all of the details but it has to with a dispute over logging rights between the Purépecha, another indigenous tribe and the narcos harvesting timber illegally. A couple of weeks back, a couple of Purépecha were kidnapped and their bodies were found in Zacapu.

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Post by sparks on Sun Jul 22, 2012 10:30 pm

>>>> but I have checked it out with a very good high level government source in Michoacán and they say "no problemo

Come on now Bob .... you've been here a few months and know "high level government sources" in another state

I would go anyway but government sources .. no way
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Post by CheenaGringo on Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:24 am

Sparks:

CanuckBob, as neighbor to John, was provided a secret list heretofor unpublished with contact information of important people all over Mexico.

Trailrunner:

Here are two articles published today that attempt to explain the Cheran situation:
http://www.borderlandbeat.com/2012/07/the-fight-of-cheran-day-it-began.html
http://www.borderlandbeat.com/2012/07/cheran-and-its-revolt-against-michoacan.html


Last edited by CheenaGringo on Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:43 am; edited 1 time in total

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Post by CanuckBob on Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:42 am

sparks wrote:>>>> but I have checked it out with a very good high level government source in Michoacán and they say "no problemo

Come on now Bob .... you've been here a few months and know "high level government sources" in another state

I would go anyway but government sources .. no way

While I don't know them personally, I have friends here that do. They made a phone call for me and inquired about the situation.
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Post by Mad_Max on Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:02 am

Trailrunner wrote:So, what kind of blockades? Narco, Military, cops, the Purépecha?

CBob, if you see posters or hear anything other than the dates 4th to the 12th, would you post it here? Thanks.

Borderland beat has a good article about what is happening in Cherán - http://www.borderlandbeat.com/2012/07/the-fight-of-cheran-day-it-began.html

Plus http://www.informador.com.mx/mexico/2012/391302/6/redisenaran-estrategia-de-seguridad-para-cheran.htm
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Post by Trailrunner on Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:26 am

Oh, man. I was unaware of the Purépecha resistance and what they are suffering with. I thought things were a little too quiet over there and my friends who know the area all have said how tranquilo it is. not

God bless the mighty and brave indigenous of this country.

Thanks for the info, guys.
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Post by Mad_Max on Fri Jul 27, 2012 12:09 am

Mad_Max wrote:
Trailrunner wrote:So, what kind of blockades? Narco, Military, cops, the Purépecha?

CBob, if you see posters or hear anything other than the dates 4th to the 12th, would you post it here? Thanks.

Borderland beat has a good article about what is happening in Cherán - http://www.borderlandbeat.com/2012/07/the-fight-of-cheran-day-it-began.html

Plus http://www.informador.com.mx/mexico/2012/391302/6/redisenaran-estrategia-de-seguridad-para-cheran.htm
Here is an update from today - http://www.borderlandbeat.com/2012/07/62-mexican-policias-federales-kidnapped.html

62 Mexican Policias Federales kidnapped in Michoacan
by badanov
By Chris Covert
Rantburg.com


A total of 62 Policia Federal (PF) agents have been kidnapped in Uruapan municipality in Michaocan state, according to a several Mexican news accounts.

Twelve PF agents apparently happened upon a roadblock maintained by local indigenous Angahuan and Carapan Indians when they were taken prisoner Indigenous Indians are protesting illegal logging in the Meseta Purepecha area, according to a report posted on the website of El Sol de Zacatecas news daily.

According to a late article posted on thw website of El Sol de Mexico news daily, a total of 50 additional PF agents were kidnapped. The article failed to elaborate when and where the additional police were kidnapped.

The roads between Uruapan and Paracho, and Los Reyes and Zamora are being blocked as well as roads near Angahuan Capacuaro, Santa Cruz Tanaco and Tlazazalca. Those stretches of roads are less than seven kilometers from Cheran municipality, where continual protests against activity residents have claimed as illegal logging has taken place the past two years.

Wednesday a Michoacan government news release said that at least three mixed operating bases would be established in the areas around Cheran, Paracho and Santa Cruz Tanaco. BOM or Base de Operaciones Mixtas, is a mixture of federal and state security forces. The mixing of security forces from all levels of gvoernment is a practice in routine use in Nuevo Leon state to counter drug gangs operating in the area, and to provide patrols.

According to the El Sol de Mexico article the kidnappings are a response to the Michoacan state government plan to beef up security forces in the area. PF have also been asked to leave the area by indigent Indians.

The news release, which names Michoacan governor Fausto Vallejo Figueroa said a number of repeated meetings would take place to assess the security situation in the area.

The uptick in activity takes place in the wake of the murder of two Cheran residents two weeks ago near Cheran. The victims, Urbano Macias Rafael, 48, and Guadalupe Geronimo Velazquez, 28 were kidnapped as they attempted to bring in cattle from the fields. A protest by Cheran residents not only locked local officials in the town hall, but also took place in the capital of Morelia at the legislative palace.

The two men were later found dead.

Issues for local indigenous Indians in Michoacan boil down to illegal use of lands they consider tribal and sacred. Residents of Cheran have been protesting illegal logging and organized crime activity in the area for years.

Even so, indigenous Indians such as the residents of Cheran have allegedly themselves been involved in a number of illegal acts such as auto theft carjacking, illegal roadblocks and imposition of illegal duties, as well a number of other petty crimes.

Michoacan is one of the six most heavily reinforced states in Mexico with at least 8,000 Mexican army troops deployed to the area. Those troops along with elements of Mexican Naval Infantry troops and Policia Federal troops were ordered into the state to provide additional security for the November 2011 elections. Those troops have only been reinforced since then.

Chris Covert writes Mexican Drug War and national political news for Rantburg.com
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Post by Trailrunner on Fri Jul 27, 2012 8:04 am

Wow. Purépecha uprising. Thanks for this MM.

CBob, what are you seeing?
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Post by CheenaGringo on Tue Jul 31, 2012 6:22 pm

Trailrunner:

There appears to be some confusion over dates for the Guitar Festival. Now there is a real surprise!

From the Michoacan Yahoo Group:
"I just checked this site and it says Aug 2-9 for the guitar festival yet the Michoacan poster says Aug. 4 - 12. Fijate. I'm now on a search for the Pichataro festival which should be very soon as well as the Festival in Santal Clara del Cobre."

The website referred to is:
http://www.mexicoculturalcalendar.com/michoacan.html

It is probably a safe bet it is on for this weekend?

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Post by CanuckBob on Tue Jul 31, 2012 6:33 pm

Our tour guy who lives in Patzcuaro has just recommended that we scratch Paracho off our list for tomorrow. He didn't give much detail but said there is trouble on route there from Patzcuaro. He said to not go there. We'll be heading the other way now.
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Post by CheenaGringo on Tue Jul 31, 2012 8:28 pm

CB:
Did he happen to say whether it was the situation in Cheran or there have been a few incidents around Uruapan as of late. It is kind of an either or situation in getting to Paracho.

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Post by CanuckBob on Wed Aug 01, 2012 9:35 am

He mentioned Cheran. We went to Uruapan the other day and no problemo.
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Post by Trailrunner on Wed Aug 01, 2012 5:05 pm

Hey, CB, thanks for the boots on the ground. Keep it coming.

Thanks, CG. We're not going to try and do the festival this year.
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Post by CheenaGringo on Wed Aug 01, 2012 6:14 pm

It is too bad that the instability/insecurity makes this a prudent decision. If one has never attended one of the many festivals in Michoacan, they are really missing out. I was lucky enough to be in Santa Clara del Cobre for the Copper Festival on the day last year that the results of the "Concorso" were announced. To see the looks of pride on the faces of the winners in the youth competitions was a great experience.

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Post by CheenaGringo on Fri Aug 03, 2012 8:34 am

Interestingly, THE NEW YORK TIMES has a rather detailed article concerning the situation in Cheran:

"DIY justice: Mexico town expels cops, reclaims forest from illegal loggers":

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/48478168/ns/world_news-the_new_york_times/#.UBvPq5EkKSo

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Post by LMarkoya on Fri Aug 03, 2012 8:54 am

To get this thread back on topic, did anyone here get to the guitar festival? Any photos? Sounds like a great time
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Post by CheenaGringo on Fri Aug 03, 2012 9:10 am

From all reports, this weekend are when the large events and competitions are held. I am following a couple of conversations on a Michoacan message board and apparently some folk from both Morelia and Patzcuaro are planning to attend. If they follow form, there should be comments, reports and maybe even photos. I will keep my eyes peeled for any info.

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