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Activity Update For The Maya Conservancy

Actualizado: 20 jul 2019

Activity update for the Maya Conservancy

Maya Conservancy website

In spite of the fact that we have other projects planned for Guatemala; we decided to focus on our Izapa project due to the world focus on the Maya 2012 Calendars.  But starting in about 12 months we will be refocusing on other Maya Conservancy projects in Guatemala.

- Fundraising: In January Mary Lou Ridinger and Georgeann Johnson started a series of phone calls with grant writer Lauri Tanner. Lauri Tanner gave us really good advice on how important it was to upgrade our website. Our website is now ready to handle more communication and better fundraising efforts. It is possible that Lauri will help us with grant writing in the near future.

- Website Upgrade: Website improvement was facilitated by David Bau, our first website designer.  We used a friend of David´s for the development of our new website.  The website definitely addressed the areas that Lauri Tanner suggested.  With the new recent addition of an Architectural Plan for Museo Izapa, the website is now ready to be used for fundraising.

Events and Conferences

- At the end of March Georgeann Johnson and Mary Lou Ridinger attended The Explorer´s Club Annual Dinner in NYC.  The theme for this year’s event was 2012. As we were handed the event program, on the cover was a dark pyramid with a rising sun behind it.  Some people realized the pyramid was an Egyptian pyramid. So much for little details.  We were successful in making good contacts and there are fertile grounds for TMC in the future. For promotion of TMC Georgeann had a post card made with a sepia tone photo of Tat Rigoberto Itzep on the front and information of TMC on the back. This post card was eye-catching and started conversations.  Also TMC member Jim Reed made a new Izapa DVD that focused on the Sky/Ground relationship at Izapa.

- From NYC Mary Lou returned to her Cruise ship onboard lectures and Georgeann went to University of Texas Annual Maya Meetings.  There she attended, along with TMC members V. Garth and Cheryl Norman, a Popol Vuh Workshop.  On one of the afternoons we joined TMC member Mark Van Stone´s Glyph Workshop. There we heard Barbara McLeod give a talk on the latest findings onTortuguero Monument 6, involving the 2012 date. We have made good contacts at these events and we hope this will help in our fundraising efforts.

More Travels and Events:

- Mary Lou has been traveling extensively on cruise ships.  There she gives talks and includes The Maya Conservancy. The primary focus of her talks is Maya Archaeology, but she has talked about Izapa as well.  She has received very enthusiastic, even standing ovations, from audiences on cruise ships.

- In the last two months Mary Lou has traveled to Izapa about eight times to attend Museo Izapa Non-Profit business, and a lecture series sponsored by the state of Chiapas Development and Director of Tourism of Tapachula.  The title of the six part series is: “Izapa Workshops”. She has found the Lecture Series, given by Abelino Becerra, extremely interesting and informative.  They have covered Maya Cosmology, Archaeology, Iconography, the Popol Vuh, and the history of Izapa.  Over 100 people have attended each lecture and this has been a good beginning for the education of local citizens about the importance of Izapa.

Architectural Plans

- Tapachula Architect, Thomas Rubiera, has recently finished architectural plans for a Museo Izapa project. His fees were paid by Garth and Cheryl Norman. In San Miguel Allende there is an environmental construction group called “Tierra y Cal”.  Builder Jim Hallock flew to Tapachula to ascertain the soil for adaptability for pressed-earth blocks.  This ecological building method may or may not be used but now we know it’s a possibility.

We have not been focused on fundraising but have been focusing on the preparations for fundraising. Our goals for 2011 and 2012 are to build Museo Izapa near the archaeological site of Izapa. We worked briefly with local fundraiser and grant writer, Rebecca Mueller, and we have also worked with New York lawyer Rina Patel, who has been a helpful consultant during several question and answer sessions in Antigua.  This has enabled us to sharpen our vision for a botanical garden and children´s museum.

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