By: Armando Acevedo, Public Relations Officer from San Carlos, Caja de Seguro.
Policlinica de San Carlos.
Movil/Whatsapp: (507) 6062-5880
During summer month’s resorts located the region of Panama West and Cocle are packed with visitors in search of fun, sun and sand.
Sometimes, what begins as a pleasant day quickly turns into a medical emergency.
The Emergency Room of Caja de Seguro Social Juan Vega Mendez in San Carlos provides this important service 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to the entire Pacific beach area (from Rio Hato to Capira).
In the CCS Emergency Room, Dr. Ovidio Almanza, chief of emergency, along with his staff, physicians, nurses, nursing technicians and others, are on alert to treat emergencies that arise in this region of the country. The medical professionals here provide quality care to insured and uninsured people, Panamanians and foreigners.
Joshua Henry, a young expat living in Coronado, did not think he would have to save someone’s life when he went to the beach near Punta Barco on Carnival Monday. Being a holiday there were a lot of people on the beach and in the water.
At the early age of 23, Joshua is already a trained lifeguard and is one of the youngest full time firefighters in Canada. Saving lives comes naturally to him. So when Joshua saw someone struggling in the ocean he recognized the signs of drowning. He immediately took off running into the water towards the young swimmer being pulled down by a strong undertow. Undertows commonly occur where the river meets the ocean.
When Joshua reached the drowning man the he grabbed and clawed in a panicked frenzy, a natural reaction for a drowning person. Luckily for the man, Joshua was trained in how to deal with such a situation and was able to secure him.
Thank you all for your help in getting the word out on our Blood Drive - 30 people came and donated blood, all 30 were accepted which is very usual. We have great blood donors here in the Coronado area, lots of different blood types and the Blood team were thrilled.
Sadly, I had to call 4 people as the Blood Team only had 30 units to fill; it is always sad to turn away a volunteer. The event was very social with lots of laughter and people staying long after they needed to as they were enjoying the good company and refreshments.
Refreshments were provided by playacommunity and the Cafe Viana cookies were very well received. The ones left over were quickly devoured by the Blood team who had just spent 4 1/2 hours working steadily.
Although it’s fun to change up the routine and try some new rose’s (see last month’s column), it’s also nice to try some mid-priced reds as well. This month I’m highlighting 4 lovely red wines ranging from $18.00 to $28.00. While not exactly low end bargains, they offer excellent value for the quality. If you’re lucky enough to find a good restaurant locally without an outrageous corkage fee, these would be good candidates to bring along.
2010 Morande Gran Reserva Cabernet Sauvignon, $18.00 14.5% alc. Chile
Light aromas of oak, vanilla, toast and black currant. Some notes of cassis and burnt plum with earthy, barnyard, black cherry and blackberry aromas. Full-bodied with ripe fruit flavours such as black cherry and blackberry, along with cassis, licorice and eucalyptus. Complex with good structure and mouth-watering acids. Long, warm finish. Highly Recommended
Join a big celebration this Saturday March 21st, starting at 2PM into the evening at El Palmar beach apartments. The gathering is to celebrate the grand opening of the first tower. The second tower is just about to start and there is still availability at pre-construction prices. There will be food, drinks and music, so come and check it out.
El Palmar Residences has direct and private access from the main Pan-American Highway and its unique location, makes this development like no others. Come and see what we mean.
Quality finishes, personal touch by the builder, the unique location and affordable pricing are waiting for you at El Palmar Residence. Located 10 min.. from Coronado heading West, just pass Carlitos restaurant, entrance on the left.
Discover the hidden treasure by the beach.
Learn more about El Palmar:
Read more for more pictures of the area.
The PCF Soccer camp (Escuelita de Futbol) has been running continuously for almost a year now in several locations in the area. We’ve been serving the needs and aspirations of boys and girls alike from the ages of 3 to 15. We’ve been very happy to see more girls and infants joining the program as well as they older boys. The soccer school will be ending it’s first season and taking a pause for a couple of months before starting up again for the sub 15 league season which starts in June. Special thanks to everyone who has supported the program. Watch the kids ‘work it’ on our video here on YouTube: https://youtu.be/t8KZWWMUUbE
Recently, the Boquete Jazz and Blues Festival transformed the quiet town of Boquete. The 4 days festival held in February, could have easily called itself the Boquete ‘BLUES’ and Jazz festival. With world class Blues musicians headlining the event, Blues and Boogie-Woogie were the mainstay that rocked the slopes of the Baru Volcano.
The festival officially kicked off with a Mardi Gras style parade through the town, led by a local trumpet band playing tunes like “When The Saints Go Marching In”. Residents in colorfully decorated golf carts followed the band. Multi colored wigs, feather boas, angel wings and painted faces were a few of the details dressing a rainbow of celebrating music lovers, dancing their way through Boquete’s main streets. Candies and beaded necklaces were tossed to scampering children who followed the parade to gather as much treasure as they could.
On Wednesday March 18th there will be a blood drive in Coronado in the Coronado Equestrian Club’s administrative building (Casa 106). The blood drive will go from 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. Those interested in giving blood should make an appointment to avoid added wait time, to make an appointment call Sheila Scott at 6656-9929.
In the U.S. less than 5% of healthy adults donate blood, in Panama this percentage is even less. Due to this fact, there is a severe blood shortage. There is a need for all types of blood in Panama, specifically O-negative blood which is needed for premature babies. For those of you who do not know your blood type, attending a blood clinic is a good way to find out! Generally the age cut off for donating blood in Panama is 65, however the Dr. screening the donors can use their judgment, often accepting donations from those over 65 who are in good physical condition.
On Saturday March 21st Grupo Corcione invites you to celebrate the inauguration of PERLAMAR, one of four luxury residential complexes within the CASAMAR development. The event will take place in the social area from 3:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. There will be complementary food, drinks, live music and fun activities for children.
Guests will have the opportunity tour the PERLAMAR social area & model apartment, and learn more about the CASAMAR development. Come enjoying a magical summer evening on the Pacific Ocean.
These dogs were abandoned in December by a family who lived in Coronado for nearly a year & half…these beautiful animals were pets who loved and played with their 6-year old little girl. They were neglected and literally left behind when the family moved away.
I began caring for them when I accepted the task of managing a remodel at the house. The contractor and neighbors began bringing food and giving love to these dogs as well. It was early in January when we realized Chiquita was pregnant. I was impressed by how these two dogs stuck together, always. They are best friends and are inseparable. With Chiquita expecting, it now made sense why she and Coronado were so close; Mom & Dad expecting a litter.
There is no question that one of Panama’s greatest allures is it's wildlife. The landscape is lush, boasting rainforests, dry forests and cloud forests, each ripe with biodiversity. These unique environments are home to hundreds of species, some of which are only found in Panama. As the country develops, these habitats and the wildlife that thrives within begin to disappear.
From large mammals, like ocelots and jaguars, to tiny amphibians, each species, equally important in preserving the country’s biodiversity, faces a list of obstacles. One NGO, Conservación Panamá Inc., is working with locals to conserve a variety of species. Among these species are large wild cats.
Conservación Panamá's mission is to preserve wildlife by educating and engaging local urban, suburban and rural communities on the management of natural resources.
In recent years, the Bay of Chame has ranked as a top destination for kiteboarding, by publications including Kiteboarding magazine’s travel guide. Punta Chame draws more visitors each year as the sport gains popularity worldwide. This has created the opportunity for local business in Punta Chame to grow, while new businesses open their doors.
Itzick Lalo, owner of Machete kites, has been kiteboarding in the Bay of Chame for almost two decades. Machete Kites has been growing the sport in Panama, offering lessons on the point for over 15 years. Itzick has watched both the sport, and the area develop.
Itzick explained that kiteboarding is a relatively young sport. When he started, there was little literature, and definitely no videos or tutorials. The sport has developed quickly, becoming both safer and easier. There are higher quality products available and techniques for riding and teaching have improved a lot.
The answer is upwelling. What is upwelling you ask? Upwelling is the movement of surface water due to northern winds and the resulting rise of cold, deep, nutrient rich waters. The process of upwelling occurs on the Eastern side of all major oceans.
Throughout dry season (Jan – April) the Pacific Coast, particularly the Bay of Panama, becomes the regional center of upwelling. The change in season brings with it a shift from warm, low salinity, nutrient-poor water to cold, high salinity, nutrient-rich water.
Not only does upwelling mean colder water for the Pacific coast, it also means a shift in the aquatic ecosystem. Factors including a decrease in temperature, a rise in salinity and food abundance can be associated with increased productivity throughout the summer on the Pacific coast of Panama. (Journal of Plankton Research, 2008)
The Azuero is a large peninsula located in the south of Panama. Cultivated over 10,000 years ago, it was one of the first parts of the country to be settled, before the arrival of the Spaniards. The peninsula is often referred to as the “heartland” of the country, upholding traditions of farming, culture, and celebration. It is also home to one of Panama’s most secluded national Parks, Cerro Hoya.
The Azuero peninsula is divided into three provinces: Herrera, Los Santos (both of which are entirely on the peninsula) and Veraguas, which extends into the west of the peninsula. It is surrounded by the Pacific Ocean on the south, the Pacific and Gulf of Montijo to the west, and the Gulf of Panama on the east.
Spay the Strays is happy to announce that our beloved Dr. Velez is back in action! He will be participating in STS clinics after struggling with health issues over the past several months.
Dr. Velez joined Dr. Alexis for our second clinic of the year in Las Lajas. Together these two vets spayed and neutered 54 animals! We processed 38 dogs and 16 cats.
Outside the Casa Comunal we discovered 3 kittens huddled together under a log. They were about 6 weeks old. We managed to get them out and within 30 minutes all three had homes.
Pictured here is one of our longtime volunteers, Freddi (woman in red), who left on her motorcycle with a kitten tucked into her shirt. On the right is a volunteer and one of the kittens that we found.
A very happy ending for all!
Yesterday, February 23 at approximately 10:00 a.m. Coronado residents, living on the the Coronado Golf course, realized there was a two-toed sloth hanging out in their front door planter! The 5' high ornamental bamboo plant seemed like an odd place for a sloth. So, concerned about the animal's well-being they called several people in the community for advice on what to do.
When PlayaCommunity received news about the sloth, we reached out to our friends at Conservación Panamá. While many community members offered to relocated the sloth to a more secluded environment, Ezekiel Jakub of Conservación Panamá advised otherwise. Zeke told us that unless the animal was in clear distress, the best thing to do would be to let him be. "Often animals come into areas where it is odd to see them" explained Zeke, "usually they are just passing though".
In this case it seemed likely that the sloth was a juvenile, and indeed just passing though the territory. so we passed along Zeke's advise, "so long as the sloth seems generally protected from predators, let him move on his own, when he is ready."
The pollera is the national dress of Panama, worn by Panamanian girls and women on important occasions. The Panamanian pollera is a descendant of a dress worn by Andalusia females in the XVI century. There are a few variations of the national costume, while each has a unique purpose, they can all be defined by a few simple elements.
Miss Nieves de Hoyos, director of the Museo del Pueblo Espanol, published an article, "La Pollera Panamena," in 1963. She wrote:
"[…] white with a full skirt of two or three ruffles embroidered or appliqued in floral designs. This description is, simply, the pollera.”
The traditional dress is accompanied by a complicated hairstyle using gold combs resembling the ornamental pins once common in Valencia and Salamanca, Spain. Much like the evolution of this richly decorate hairpin, the pollera has evolved, becoming quintessentially Panamanian.
Author: M Stefan
As the season changes to summer (dry), I like to change up my wine repertoire to include something pink. No, not that sweet, fruity, blush stuff. The 4 wines reviewed below are serious, dry and full of complex flavors. If you think you don’t like rose wine, give these a try. You will be very pleasantly surprised. Served chilled, versatile enough to go with a variety of foods or served alone.
Juve y Camps Brut Rose’ Pinot Noir, Cava, $20.00 12% alc. Spain
Produced from Pinot Noir grapes this sparkling wine is a pretty, deep pink, almost red color. On the nose there are both floral and berry fruit notes in perfect harmony with alluring cherry blossom and strawberry aromas and flavors. Broad on the palate with savory, spicy fruit, it will make a superb match for jamon Iberico and other charcuterie. Long bottle aging – 3 years -has brought balance, length and weight while retaining freshness and vivacity. What a wonderful bubbly! HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
Today (Monday Feb. 9 2015) The Home Owners of Avenida Boulevard shut down the Boulevard Road of Coronado in Protest. We spoke with several home owners this afternoon (1:30 p.m.) to find out more about the protest.
We were told by residents of the Boulevard who were in attendance at the Coronado SA meeting yesterday (Sunday Feb. 8 2015) that their protest is in an effort to prevent construction vehicles and workers from passing though the backroads that connect Gorgona to Coronado. These residents feel that developers have a responsibility to ensure their trucks pass though the main Coronado gates and that all workers have a ID card and sign in.
The 7th annual Discovering Surf Talents Levis Cup, brought over 50 young surfers from around the country, to Playa Serena in Coronado. The event, originally scheduled for the 18th & 19th of October, was proponed as there was no swell. The waves predicted for the following weekend (October 25&26) were small, ranging from 1-3ft, but learning to compete in unfavorable conditions is one of the many challenges competitive surfers face; with this in mind, the event went on.
The first day of competition began with a reminder from Technical Director, Stanford Raúl. “It is not the quantity, but the quality waves” he said. This means, judges score the best maneuvers, not the numeber of waves each surfer rides. Playacommunity was on the sidelines as young compeitiors Veronica, Marita, Maria, Andrea and Vivian took to the water. All under the age of 12, each girl raced to the water with a smile. The younger of the compeitiors were accompanyed by a parent or coach.
The Panama Christian Foundation (PCF), are a group of business people who operate from Christian principals. The core of their operation is to lead by example. It is by these principals, that the PCF has created a futbol (soccer) team that has been participating in Chame District of Panama at the official league level.
The foundation runs soccer camps 4 days a week in Coronado and Bejuco for boys and girls aged 3 - 15. “Our membership is open to all”, says Francisco Oñate the sports coordinator and managing director of PCF. “We have different levels of culture, social economic levels and people from all walks of life coming together to play.”
World famous author and Coronado Resident, Greta Sherman, will promoting her new book “The Humpty Dumptys", Tuesday February 10th at La Teca. The book signing will begin at 6:00 p.m. and go until 8:30 p.m. A Tapas dinner with salad and dessert will be offered for $12.00. Regular signature entree dishes will also be available.
Guests will have the opportunity to meet the author and purchase a personalized English edition of the book for $10. The retail price is $16.99. The book has received good reviews on Amazon—75 five star reviews and two four star reviews, with comments including: “I couldn’t put it down and read until the wee hours of the morning.”
“Defy written.” “You learn to love and hate the characters—they are so real I felt as though I knew them personally.” and "The author takes the reader on a journey so descriptive that it feels as if one is a part of the experience.”
Carnival, or “Los Carnavales” as described by most Panamanians, has been celebrated nation wide since the early 1900’s. Each year for the four days leading up to Ash Wednesday, the country shuts down to party; enjoying parades, live music and fireworks.
Among the highlights of carnival is the crowning of a new queen. Typically the town is split into an upper and lower section (calle arriba y calle abaho), crowning their own rival queen.
Each section boasts being better than the other, having a better party and the more the beautiful queen. During carnival, the competitive emotions of the towns run high. Being crowned queen is a tremendous honor, not only for the young woman being crowned but also for her family.
Elssy Vasquez Barrera, from the small town of Parita in the province of Herrera, was a carnival queen in 1981. Today she lives in Coronado, and continues to participate in Carnival annually as part of the Parita Carnival organizing committee.
Elssy spoke with us about some of the responsibilities of being queen. “The queen is the ambassador of the town for the year. She has to organize activities, be present at important events and raise funds for the following year’s carnival.”
Last Sunday, the Bejuco sub 20 'futbol' team (sponsored by PCF) earned their spot in the District Championship Final game, beating Espave 1-0 in the district semi-final game.
The two teams battled to a frustrating tie at the half. The battle continued for much of the game when Bejuco finally scored about midway through the second half. Espave mounted several challenges but the goaltender, Mario, was able to block every attempt to even the score.
The Championship game will be Sunday in Bejuco La Paz field. Win or lose, both teams will advance to the 'Provincial Tournament' played in 'La Muquita' stadium in La Chorrera. Check our facebook for time and more details. www.facebook.com/fcpcf
PCF needs community support to continue this work. You can help at: www.pcfpanama.org
El Hato Del Volcán, better known simply as Volcán, is a small mountain town located in the Chiriquí province of Panama. Nestled in the foothills of Panama’s tallest peak Volcan Baru (3,475m), this dormant Volcano was first inhabited by indigenous tribes thousands of years ago. Volcán and the surrounding communities, including the agricultural capital of Panama Cerro Punta, are still home to many indigenous people belonging primarily to the Ngäbe or Guaymí commarca.
Over the last century, groups of Swiss immigrants have settled throughout the highlands leaving their mark on the area’s architecture. Today the town is praised as one of Panama’s top retirement destinations boasting coffee farms and national parks.
As you begin to climb in altitude passing through the small village of Cuesta de Piedra, the breeze gets a bit cooler, the air misty, and you can almost begin to taste the coffee. Driving through the clouds, past tall pines growing up towards the volcano’s peek, the sleepy town looms. Despite its appearance, Volcán is actually quite an active town. Almost 80% of Panama’s milk, meat and vegetables pass though here. The town is a highland hub for locals, expats and tourists alike with amenities like banks, grocery stores, restaurants and hotels.