A Distinctive Hillside Inn • Boletín de temporada • FEB - APR 2014
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Lots to look forward to during this season when the flowers emerge from their dormancy. The gardens at Casa Estrella are becoming full with color. Perched on the hillside with the city of Guanajuato below, what a spectacular setting in which to relax and rejuvenate your mind, body & soul!

World Rally Guanajuato México
MARCH 6–9,2014
In the mountains surrounding the cities of Leon, Silao, Irapuato and Guanajuato, standard cars that have been modified to drive on surfaces ranging from gravel & tarmac, to snow & ice in mountainous or rugged terrain. The average price of these enhanced vehicles is about $1 million US dollars. World Rally Championships (WRC) takes place in 13 countries across 4 continents. For more information, visit: www.wrc.com.
Make your reservations now knowing that you can enjoy the rigors of the race and later retire to the casual luxury and comfort offered at Casa Estrella de la Valenciana!!
St. Patrick’s Day
March 17, 2014
St. Patrick’s Day is celebrated in Mexico as well as in the U.S., but for different reasons than green beer & green margaritas; the history is somewhat more complex. The Irish and Mexican share values of family, work ethic, Catholicism and they share a “war” – the Mexican-American War of 1846-48!! Irishman, John Riley, formed the Saint Patrick’s Battalion or Los San Patricios with disenfranchised immigrants from Ireland, Germany, England, France and escaped African slaves. This battalion grew to over 700 men who chose to fight with the Mexican army in that war of 1846. While held prisoner in Mexico City, John Riley wrote to a friend in Michigan:
“Be not deceived by a nation that is at war with Mexico, for a friendlier and more hospitable people than the Mexicans there exists not on the face of the earth.” A tidbit of nearly unknown history!
Day of the Flowers
This beautiful traditional festival is unique to the city of Guanajuato when everyone celebrates Viernes de Dolores (Friday of Sorrows) , the Friday before Palm Sunday. Elaborately designed altars are prepared in honor of the Virgin of Dolores starting in the wee hours of the morning when the flower vendors arrive at the Jardin de la Union. Soon the jardin is literally covered with fragrant and colorful flowers of all kinds.
Starting on Thursday night, people gather in the different clubs and other venues dancing the “Baile de las Flores”.
As the dawn arrives, throngs of young people descend on the Jardin de la Union to walk around the garden…young men giving gifts of flowers to the ladies who have caught their eye! Others are buying flowers to complete their altars to the Virgin de Dolores. But not only flowers are being sold, many people have set up shop selling their handmade creations for the altar decorations, baskets of Easter eggs, puppets and other handicrafts fit for the season.
. In the background, the municipal band is playing adding to the festive ambience. Groups are gathering for breakfast at the restaurants that line the jardin and other makeshift temporary food stands that have been erected for the festivities! Later, the crowds enjoy viewing the many altars in the city and also at the various mines where fresh sweet juices and shaved ice treats are waiting for visitors! This is truly a gala celebration with which to enter into Holy Week or Semana Santa as it is known in Mexico!
Holy Week
April 13 – 20, 2014
From Palm Sunday (Domingo de Ramos) to Dia de Pascua, Mexico celebrate the most holy week in the Christian religious calendar. There are solemn but colorful parades, Mass and often fireworks. Some of the most elaborate ceremonies occur on Thursday, Friday and Saturday before Easter. On Easter Sunday, there are few if any activities as it is a day to spend in church and with family.
This is an important vacation period all over the country, so make your reservations early!
Last year, a group of friends and colleagues created a non-profit organization based in North Carolina, to support the work of the Community Foundation of the Bajio (Fundacion Comunitaria del Bajio) headed by Adriana Cortes Jimenez. Adriana and her staff work tirelessly for the benefit of rural communities in the Bajio region of Mexico. They are dedicated to promoting local development of basic services, infrastructure, social and economic development in an effort to help migrants and their families. Adriana has established partnerships with numerous US institutions such as the Center for International Understanding, universities and various cross-cultural programs. For more information about the projects sponsored by the Fundacion Comunitaria del Bajio, please visit: http://fcbajio.org

We are delighted to support the work of the Fundacion Comunitaria del Bajio and now 100% of U.S. contributions are tax deductible and go towards supporting this most important cross-border work in Guanajuato. To learn more about how you can become involved, please email Millie Ravenel, President of American Friends of the Bajio for more information at: theamericanfriendsofthebajio@gmail.com.