Jeikel Jokhansel Mora represents the first baby born in Costa Rica after the world population surpassed 7 billion last week. Mora was born Monday, Oct. 31 at 12:32 a.m., in the San Juan de Dios hospital in San José. His mother, Fressy Avendaño, 18, holds the newborn.

Photo by Alberto Font

To see more of the world’s 7 billionth babies, check out this photo blog from MSNBC.

If the situation continues as it has, the world, not just Costa Rica, is going to have to take increasingly strong measure to protect the lives of the weakest who are being bulldozed by an attitude that does not agree with the values that the government of Costa Rica represents
—  Solis, president of Costa Rica. Taken from the Tico Times paper

President Laura Chinchilla praised Costa Rica on Wednesday as a guest speaker at the 100th birthday celebration of technology giant IBM in New York. IBM, who announced a $300 million investment in Costa Rica on June 30, has held several events to commemorate the company’s centennial year. The New York-based company turned 100 on June 16.

To read the full story by Adam Williams, click here.

It is imperative that we continue collecting information on the importance of maintaining the environmental integrity of our coasts, as much for the economic development of our local communities as for the protection of threatened species,
—  Andy Bystrom, consultant for Costa Rica’s Marine Turtle and Restoration Program, commenting on the Costa Rican government’s recent rejection of industrial tuna farms.
Flights at Costa Rica's Juan Santamaría airport Cancelled Due to Volcano Eruptions

Costa Rica’s Turrialba Volcano erupted several times on Thursday afternoon, causing 14 inbound flights and four outbound flights to be cancelled or delayed, an airport spokeswoman said.

The airport was set to reopen provisionally at 4:00 a.m. Friday.

Turrialba Volcano is located some 67 kilometers northeast of the capital San José in the province of Cartago.

Eruptions closed down the airport last month for some 18 hours, stranding thousands of passengers.

Earlier this month, scientists with the University of Costa Rica’s National Seismological Network (RSN) said they believed they had found fresh cooled lava at Turrialba, which could indicate that the volcano has moved into a more active phase.

Still, other experts said it was too soon to tell.

Residents in San José and as far away as the town of Grecia, some 100 kilometers away, reported falling ash. (Ticotimes News)

Swiss recipe a hit at local cheese factory

In this small town near San Gerardo de Rivas, a short drive from the Southern Zone’s crossroads city of San Isidro de El General, visitors will find one of Costa Rica’s pioneer businesses. Quesos Canaán is a small, family-run sustainable cheese company that produces types of matured cheese that are often hard to find in Costa Rica. 

Wilberth Mata and his wife Kattia Hernández have been making cheese for the past nine years. Their expertise is a result of both coincidence and hard work.

To read the full story by Karla Arias Alvarado, click here.


Rains rip through Central America

The wrath of Mother Nature ripped through Central America this week, as torrential rains, landslides and flooding killed at least 105 people.  

The Red Cross of Costa Rica reported that five people drowned in different regions of the country. All five were killed by rising rivers.

By Tuesday, government leaders in Guatemala, El Salvador, Nicaragua and Honduras had declared national states of emergency.

Photos by Alberto Font. To read the full story by Adam Williams, click here.


Carnival festivities highlight weekend in Limón

Carnival began last Wednesday in Limón, the port city on the Caribbean coast. The yearly celebration coincides with the day that explorer Christopher Columbus anchored in Limón.

In an effort to give the ruckus of Carnival a more tranquil name, the event was renamed “Limonense Cultural Week I.” The Municpality did not allow liquor to be sold at street stalls this year.

Although many of the events are the same as in previous years, this year the emphasis was placed on culture. An all-night national calypso festival was held at Vargas Park on Friday.

The annual Carnival parade started at 2 p.m. Saturday and continued until almost 7 p.m. The parade featured colorful floats and bands marching through the main streets of Limón.

The festival came to a close Sunday afternoon with a concert in Vargas Park by Banton y Toledo, La Solución and Madera Nueva.

Photos by Alberto Font. Story by Dominique Farrell.

Tim Rogers is a journalist’s journalist. He’s the guy that parachute reporters, radio hosts and news editors turn to when they need the skinny on Nicaragua.

His stories run the gamut from exclusive interviews with Nicaragua’s rich and powerful insiders to features on poor Nicaraguan kids pursuing dreams on a dusty baseball field.

Rogers is starting his own venture, an English-language publication called the Nicaragua Dispatch. The free online news site launched Monday, just ahead of the country’s Nov. 6 presidential elections.

Photos courtesy of Tim Rogers. To read the full story by David Boddiger, click here.


On Sunday more than 6,000 people and their pets attended the 3rd March Against the Mistreatment of Animals which began at San José’s Plaza Central and concluded at Plaza de la Democracia. The event was sponsored by several animal rights groups including the World Society for the Protection of Animals and the Assocation for the Promotion of Vegetarian Ethics.

Photos by Alberto Font.


PUNTO MIRA – The skinny stretch of rutted mud-and-gravel road that connects Tierra Morenas, Punto Mira and Lagunas, in the mountains east of Quepos, is being eaten away by wet-season rains, earthquakes, rivers and mudslides. Some 300 families who live in this lush region, which sees clear-day views of Chirripó, Costa Rica’s highest peak, as well as the Nicoya and Osa peninsulas, depend on the road to get to work, reach medical services or to go to the market. They say their municipal government, despite repeated requests for help, is not maintaining the road in passable condition.

To read the full story by Clayton R. Norman, click here.