To celebrate the Día de Amor y Amistad (Valentine’s Day), two races, sponsored by the Municipal Sports Advisory Committee (Comude), will be held on Sunday, February 14 along two areas: the Malecon and the Rio Pitillal linear parkway.
A total of 150 people will be able to take part in each of the two 4.5-kilometer races, both of which begin at 8 a.m. Runners will be spaced 30 seconds apart and must wear face masks. Registration is 150 pesos and will include a kit with a T-shirt, a runner’s number and a medal for all those who cross the finish line. The race is open to all.
To sign up, go to the athletics track at the Agustin Flores Contreras sports complex, open 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. or at Comude’s offices in the Alfonso Díaz Santos de la Bobadilla sports complex, open Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.
PV & Covid
Like much of Mexico, the people and economies of Puerto Vallarta and the Bay of Banderas region continue to struggle under government-issued lockdown and Covid-19 mitigation efforts.
At a time of year when beaches in Vallarta would be packed from dawn to early morning hours, they are now cleared at 3 p.m., a measure that’s in place until February 12, when a reassessment will take place and guidelines either iterated or new ones issued.
While bars and nightclubs are closed, and restaurants must close by 10 p.m., it’s well-known that there have been a plethora of private parties crowded with revelers not wearing masks or social distancing. Also, while some are cheering the re-opening of gyms, others have lamented doing so will only exacerbate the already-dire situation in a city of 350,000 people.
Complicating matters in Vallarta and Jalisco is the identification of at least four people with one of the new, more-easily transmissible strains of the virus at a time when public hospitals in Vallarta are reported to be at or near capacity (see story page one). One of the infected reported having contact with a foreigner in Puerto Vallarta.
Jalisco Governor Enrique Alfaro said earlier this week that there will be sanctions for mayors who do not enforce measures and the message was clear: An ultimatum for mayors to guarantee that regulations are being followed, and if not, that individuals and businesses will be sanctioned.
However, many area residents say it’s no secret that Puerto Vallarta Mayor Arturo Dávalos Peña has not ruled with a “heavy hand” in monitoring and penalizing those businesses and individuals not following restrictions and mitigation efforts.
And many are looking ahead to March with dread when U.S. students on spring break are expected to descend on Vallarta, followed by Semana Santa, when many residents of Guadalajara and other cities and towns in the region will travel to Vallarta and surrounding communities for their Easter holiday at the beach.
How will Alfaro find out about such violations? Some area residents suggest he and his staff will use social media to find and enforce sanctions against violators.
Meanwhile, the mitigation efforts are making day-to-day life challenging for some, including prohibiting those over 60 from shopping at many big-box retailers, including Costco and La Comer. As one person quipped on Facebook in a closed group for locals, “We used to have to get a fake ID as kids to get booze – now, as seniors, we have to get one to get groceries!”
Meanwhile, a temporary lab at Vallarta’s Gustavo Díaz Ordaz International Airport is offering Covid-19 PCR and antigen tests for travelers leaving Mexico obliged to conform with new regulations from the U.S. and Canadian governments. According to guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control, all passengers must have a Covid-19 test within 72 hours before boarding a flight to the United States. Canada requires a PCR test.
The cost of the antigen test is 450 pesos ($US22) and 1,450 pesos ($US72) for the PCR test. The PCR test takes 24-48 hours for delivery and the antigen test takes 30 minutes.
Additionally, many resorts and hotels in the region are offering on-site testing.