Hey! We are halfway through summer already! That means we are mere weeks from snow falling up north and our tourist season beginning once again. One of the (few) benefits of growing old; time really does seem to fly faster. Still lots of music going on, new businesses opening and here we go…

Thursday, August 1, the day you can actually hold this latest issue in your hand: 6 to 9 pm, the Grand Re-Opening of Ropero de Jovany, in Centro at the corner of Guerrero and Hidalgo. New owner Cris will have bubbly and excellent snacks and door prizes. Lovely Lilia will also be on hand, I am sure, to answer all your questions on all things vintage. At eight pm, Thursday, Act II’s Main Stage theatre will be packed for the Led Zeppelin Tribute, performed by Tequila Rush. Honestly, when I went to the LZ Tribute at theRoxy in March, it was with great trepidation. To my complete astonishment, Tequila Rush pulled off the impossible and delivered the finest tribute show Vallarta has ever had and we have had some spectacular ones. This performance will be at least two and a half hours long without an intermission. Get tickets fast! I will see you in Act II’s art deco bar, Encore, beforehand for cocktails.

For fans of Spanish-language theatre, get over to the Red Room for a very funny reprise of the comedy “Las Anecdotas del Miembro” to celebrate Grupo de Teatro Dionisio’s seventh anniversary! Their opening night is Saturday, August 3 at 9:30 pm. I will get to see three of my favorite character actors NOT be in drag! It was funny when I saw it years ago, even with my wretched Spanish. Just know this: if you liked Naked Boys Singing, you will love Anecdotas! It gets to the heart of all things masculine… ahem.

Sunday, August 4, all day at Babelbar, be prepared to party with live music, good bar food, and crazy team games as we again celebrate the legacy of Cheryl Schrean. Find a short read elsewhere in this issue on why we are filling shoeboxes.

Last week, over smoothies at the Vallarta Cigar Factory with Lady Zen, we decided to meet up that very night to see the newest bar on Lazaro Cardenas where Lady Z. will perform early next week. The bar, Ella, is upstairs over Kooky Karaoke, formerly Kinky (no, I don’t know why the name has changed). Ella is a shout-out to all things female. The décor is simple, stylish, and welcoming, lush with plantings, animal prints scattered sparingly, a retractable roof, everything served on silver trays to nooks and niches and banquettes strategically spaced. The waiters are attentive and buff—we could stop right there! The menu looks delicious, well-presented, and prepared by a chef born here in Jalisco.

Lady Zen takes the stage, Tuesday, August 6 at 8:30 pm to sing songs of her idol,the late Aretha Franklin. If you have not had the pleasure of hearing Lady Zen, do yourself a favor: Get a bunch of gal pals together and take a much needed night out to celebrate our collective SOUL. While there is not a bad seat in the house, go early to get a great one! I hope Lady Z’s Opening Night will be the start of something great at Ella. I will have a review and updates on the calendar of events in two weeks.

Update on the Artist’s Cooperative. Our proposal has been verbally “liked,” but a few things have to be ironed out. Stay tuned and do email me if you make something with your hands and would like to share with other artists in our co-op.

I had a terrific lunch at Co-exist with my colleague and dear friend Ricardo Mazcal, our herbalist from the Marsol Friday Market by the Pier. He is off to various parts of Mexico and Cuba on vacation. I do have a supply of his herbal tinctures and creams if you need some. Come by Marsol Market on Friday and find me.

Our jungles are rejoicing with the rainfall, and Puerto Vallarta is clean and shiny. Guard our water with your lives—we depend on it. Get out and share the music this week and next. Smile at everyone you pass in the street; within two blocks, strangers will be approaching you with smiles first. Try it, From Here.

Marcia Blondin