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Latina Hope Program Continues to Grow, McAllen

Latina Hope Ladies


The Latina Hope Program encourages women to attend.  By providing financial literacy and mini workshops, we are helping women, gain the knowledge they need to establish a micro-business.  Wells Fargo offers the financial literacy classes at no cost to any women who are interested in the program.  At our last session, participants learned about Profit Margin. The ladies also had mini-craft workshops, making Wreaths and Pots out of recycled material. 

 “At the next Latina Hope meeting in December the ladies, who have attended 4 to 5 classes can present their Business Plan to a panel of judges for an opportunity to win a $250 dollar supply grant.  We are excited for the ladies who are ready to embark on their new journey.” said Yajaira Villarreal, Latina Hope Coordinator “The program has witnessed great growth and we look forward to announcing the next session soon.”

For more information on future classes contact Laura Robles at 956-687-2787 or Yajaira Villarreal at McAllen Chamber of Commerce, 956-682-2871.

EDITORIAL: A big, Texas Christmas: City of McAllen........

plans ‘fantastic’ holiday parade in Texas, everyone seems to pride themselves in trying to be the biggest, the best and the most outstanding. And we’re pretty darn good at it. Or, at least we try the hardest.

Take, for instance, the planned Dec. 6 absolutely new and improved Holiday Parade and its associated day-long activities that the City of McAllen is sponsoring with a multitude of other organizations will be unlike any other holiday event in Texas.

Take a listen to some of the superlatives bantered about on Monday morning during a news conference announcing this fete. According to city leaders it will be: “great,” “spectacular,” “fantastic,” “unique” and “totally different.”

Of course, the City of McAllen has long had a holiday parade, but Assistant City Manager Joe Vera, chief organizer of this year’s event, says we’ve never had anything of this size in the Valley, or any such holiday event south of San Antonio to rival it.

So what will make this event so extraordinary? Apparently 40 riveting, illuminated floats and 16 giant, helium-filled and cold-air Macy’s-Thanksgiving-Parade-type-balloons, we’re told.

Vera told a member of The Monitor’s Editorial Board that a “Kermit” balloon that plans to make an appearance stands 60-feet tall; an “Animal” balloon is 50-feet high. They’ll tower above our beloved palm trees and tropical skyline at around 80-feet high, he said.

“The McAllen Holiday Parade of 2014 is transforming what we had in the past to something extraordinary and magical,” Vera said. “McAllen will be a destination location for people coming here to this event in the future,” he promised.

The parade is being sponsored by La Plaza Mall and the balloons and floats will be supplied by a New Orleans company that caters to the world famous Mardi Gras parades.

We all know how well that party to the East goes over every year and so we are excited and optimistic that ours will be equally entertaining — albeit much more family-friendly.

The parade route will start at Business 83 and go north on Bicentennial Boulevard, ending at the McAllen High School Veteran’s Memorial Stadium. Five continuous rows of bleachers will be set up for viewing stands along Bicentennial Boulevard. Nearby Municipal Park will be ground zero for fun, entertainment, food, arts and crafts and other surprises.

Folded into this year’s event will be the McAllen Tamale Fest; the McAllen Kids Fun Run; the premier McAllen Kids Marathon; and La Posada.

The festivities are scheduled to start at noon and the grand parade itself is scheduled to kick off at 6 p.m.

At least 12 marching bands, a military band and a university band from Mexico will participate in the parade, as will the Clydesdale Budweiser Horses.

And, if our numbers hold true and the 5,500 children and parents who participated in the Sept. 6

Kids Marathon Kickoff event — when they ran their first mile — all show up on Dec. 6 to run their last mile, then we will have thousands of runners up the parade route beginning at 4 p.m. to receive their marathon medals for have completed 26.2 miles over four months.

The Monitor is especially proud to be a co-sponsor of the Kids Marathon, along with the City of McAllen, McAllen Independent School District and the Boys & Girls Club.

We hope the run (to be done in conjunction with the Kids Tamale Fun Run for ages 5 to 13) will promote healthy exercise and instill confidence in our youth that they can take on a marathon and accomplish this goal.

There is still time to sign up for the marathon and parents may also run the last mile with their children. The fee is $10 per participant. To enroll, go to and click on Kids Marathon Program.

After the run, stick around for the parade, enjoy some delicious tamales and other foods and beverages and bask in our mild December night as a community united.

McAllen City Manager Roy Rodriguez told us they’ve planned this to the T and have even studied historical meteorological wind speeds, which pointed them to this day as being the best to host this event.

We hope so.

“We have totally taken the parade to another level and this is really something that you should come and see,” Vela said.

Holiday Parade resized 600

Article courtesy of The Monitor.

TYFA State Cheer Competition 2-minute video recap

McAllen hosted the TYFA State Cheer Competition, and it was an amazing experience for the cheerleaders and spectators. Take a look at this short video and see for yourself why McAllen is a premier sports destination in Texas!


South Texas College Theatre is off to Neverland

South Texas College Theatre is ready to fly off to Neverland with their first main stage production of the season - J.M. Barrie’s Peter Pan, or The Boy Who Would Not Grow Up, which will run from Nov. 20 – Nov 22 at 8 p.m., including a Sunday, Nov 23 matinee at 2 p.m., at STC’s Cooper Center for Communication Arts Main Stage, located at 3201 W. Pecan Blvd. in McAllen.
This is the beloved story of Peter, Wendy, Michael, John, Capt. Hook, Smee, the Lost Boys, pirates, Indians, and, of course, Tinker Bell, in their adventures in Neverland. However, for the first time, the play is restored to Barrie's original intentions by John Caird and Trevor Nunn.
In this new revision, Caird and Nunn have taken the many different versions of Peter Pan and created a new character, the Storyteller, who is the author himself. As the play progresses, the audience has the opportunity to hear Barrie’s commentary parallel with the other characters which gives the audience a deeper understanding of the Darling family and his own conclusion to Peter and Wendy’s story.
“I have loved the story of Peter Pan since I was a child. My mom took me to see the film and from that moment on I desperately wanted to be a Lost Boy and live in Neverland,” says Peter Pan Director Joel Jason Rodriguez. “As I grew older, I started to appreciate the complexity of the story and its themes of family, adolescents, imagination, and love. This is a story that has proven to have something for everyone. This is going to be an incredibly fun and amazing production.”

General admission tickets are $10. Student, faculty, staff, military, and senior citizens are $5. No children below the third grade are permitted entry due to the length of the play which is 2 hours and 15 minutes long. The Sunday, Nov. 23 matinee production will be interpreted in American Sign by graduates of STC’s Interpreting Training Program.
Tickets can be purchased one hour before the performance at the box office or in advance online at

For additional information about the show or for group rates, call (956) 872-2301 or email or

Peter Pan

McAllen Chamber’s Art Council Solicits New Members

The McAllen Chamber of Commerce’s McAllen Arts Council (MAC) is accepting applications for new members.


“We are making some changes in the Council,” said the newly appointed MAC Chair, Mark Hanna. “Changes include quarterly meetings and shifting the focus to supporting existing events through promotion to increase participation. What we want to do is to strengthen attendance at the various arts events that the Council organizes,” Hanna said. “This, and being the epicenter of networking for those who are involved in and support the arts, are the ways we can be of most benefit to the community.”

MAC Application 

The McAllen Arts Council’s primary programs are an annual Fine Art Exhibition held at the McAllen Creative Incubator; the City Poet Laureate Program; a Sub-Granting Program offering grants to artists and arts organizations that benefit McAllen; curation of exhibitions in the McAllen Public Library Art Gallery; and Semi-Public Art Program to match artists and public venues that would like to display local artwork.
Meetings are held quarterly. A background in the arts is not necessary, but an enthusiasm for art and the betterment of the City are required. To apply, go to or Deadline for applications is December 15. For more information contact Laura Robles at or 687-2787.

Aurora Vite’s Art Exhibition, McAllen Incubator


Aurora Vite

"La fragilidad de la vida"

Art captivates and fills our emotions, making art part of us.  The McAllen Creative Incubator knows the importance of art in society, every month we feature a different artists. 

For November’s exhibition, Aurora Vite will share her art in our Galley.  In her art work, Aurora shows the different stages of her development in art, from early, middle, and current stage. Based on her experiences, Aurora Vite brings to art the life of current objects and everyday things that surround us.  When captured on canvas with abstract color, contrast and actual figures, the artist creates a unique connection between exhibitor and art.  “There is strength in capturing the sensitivity and fragility in animals”  Sais Aurora Vite of Art One Studio “The important thing in art is to feel, hear and see what the work tells and teaches us about ourselves and our planet. I invite you to stop by the Creative Incubator and enjoy my exhibition.” 

Aurora’s art will be displayed at the McAllen Creative Incubator at 601 N. Main St. in McAllen.  Enjoy Aurora’s work this Art Walk  on November 7th and all this month. 


ArtOne Studio

Aurora Vite


Incubator Tenant Studio #10

Lionel Richie in the Rio Grande Valley!

Explore Slider Lionel resized 600Date: Sunday November 9, 2014
Time: 8:30 pm
Doors Open: 7:00 pm
Ticket Prices: $245.00, $145, $100, $75


For more information click here: 

Festeja Halloween en IMAS

Fecha:          Octubre 31, 2014

Hora:            9:00 am. A 8:00 p.m.

Lugar:           IMAS (International Museum of Arts & Sciences)

                    1900 Nolana

                    McAllen, Tx.


Halloween en IMAS, Oct. 31, 2014 resized 600

Festival de Día de los Muertos en McAllen

El Museo Internacional de Arte y Ciencia (IMAS) tendrá su 4to. Festival del Dia De Los Muertos, en donde habrá diversas actividades tradicionales para niños y adultos, incluyendo una demostración de pintura de arena por el artista Shinzaburo Takeda, pintura de caras, papel maché, una charla sobre curanderos, cráneos de azúcar decorados,  espectáculos de danza y mucho más! !

Este Festival incluirá una recepción de apertura de "Recuerdos" Honrando a Sam Z. Coronado, el sábado 02 de noviembre 2014, de1:00 a 3:00 p.m. con una exposición retrospectiva de la herencia de uno de los artistas Chicanos más importantes, así como el co-fundador de Mexic-Arte Museum de Texas y el Museo de Arte Mexicano-Estadounidense.

El Día de los Muertos es una fecha en el que las familias decoran las tumbas de los parientes fallecidos y se instalan altares conmemorativos, en donde las ofrendas especiales se presentan con la intención de llamar a la casa de los espíritus de los muertos. Estos altares pueden incluir todo, desde muñecas de papel de seda, velas y pan de muerto (panes recubiertos de azúcar) fotografías, vasos de agua, instrumentos musicales y una variedad de otros regalos. La tradición consiste en incluir elementos que serían atractivos y reconfortantes para las almas que regresan.

Fecha: Sábado 1 de Noviembre de 2014, 9:00 a.m a 5:00 p.m.

            Domingo 2 de Noviembre de 2014, 1:00 p.m. a 5:00 p.m.

 Lugar: IMAS (International Museum of Arts & Sciences)

             1900 Nolana

             McAllen, Tx.

 Más información en el tel: 956-682-0123 o

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Franquicia de $500 dlls. de Invierno 2014

Del 1 de noviembre de 2014 al 8 de enero de 2015, el gobierno de México incrementó  la franquicia terrestre de $300 a $500 dólares. La mayoría de los compradores mexicanos que gustan de hacer sus compras en McAllen, aprovechan esta temporada para comprar un mayor volumen de mercancías sin pagar impuestos, ya que esta cantidad de $ 500 dlls es acumulable en los miembros de la familia que viajan juntos en el mismo vehiculo asi es que en los que viajen 5 pasajeros, pueden cruzar hasta $2,500 dlls. Se consideran como pasajeros inclusive los niños.

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