Erongaricuaro

Lake
Patzcuaro

Erongaricuaro, which means "place of waiting" or "place of the watchtower" in the Purhépecha language, is a mestizo village in the state of Michoacán, Mexico. It is located about an hour and a half drive from Morelia and Uruapan, and just 20 minutes from the famous colonial town of Patzcuaro. The estimated population is 5,000 people. 

Eronga, lies just across Lake Pátzcuaro from Pátzcuaro and the farthest Left Bank of the Lake. The native Purhépecha from the pueblos near Eronga come to market day on Tuesdays. This ancient town was one of the critical trade points for the Purhepecha empire. Friendly to outsiders, Eronga has hosted artists such as Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera along with the fathers of surrealism, Andre Breton and Leon Trotsky. Former president Lazaro Cardenas used it as his hideway across the lake before the road arrived to Eronga. Today Eronga hosts expatriates from Argentina, the United States, France, Germany, Switzerland, and Italy. 
The lively Eronga plaza has many exotic trees displaying the area's tolerant climate. 
Altitude above sea level: 2,080 meters or 6824 feet
Temperature: Maximum 24°C or 75°F;   Minimum 6°C or 43°F

Erongarícuaro is hidden high in the mountains of Michoacán.  To the East is Lake Pátzcuaro, one of Mexico's highest lakes.
The town retains its ancient atmosphere. It consists of largely one-story adobe or plaster-over-brick buildings with red tile roofs. The streets are dusty cobblestones traveled by horse and car. The plaza has a fountain, stage and amazing collection of trees. Wandering the streets uphill, there is a cemetery and a chapel.

The pretty Purhepecha village of Eronga lies on the west side of the lake about 17km/11mi from Pátzcuaro. During the Second World War a group of French Surrealists found refuge in Eronga.
Notable residents of Eronga
Lázaro Cárdenas The popular President of Mexico, was rumored to take his boat across the lake where no road reached. He began from his large mansion in Patzcuaro, which now houses CREFAL  and upon reaching Erongaricauro was free to make fiestas with his girlfriends in Mansion Las Rosas, right on the plaza. 

During Mexico's postwar art scene:
Trotsky, Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera, Jean Charlot, Andre Breton. 
Roberto Matta, Remedios Varo, Esteban Francis, Pierre Mabille, Benjamin Péret 
Gordon Onslow Fordand his wife Jacqueline Johnson, an American writer. 
Peruvian poet César Moro, anthropologist Miguel Covarrubias, painter Carlos Mérida 
Surrealist painter Wolfgang Paalen with painter and poet Alice Rahon, and photographer Eva Sulzer.

Don’t miss these Eronga attractions:
The Plaza. 
The furniture factory. 
The Church The naturalistic crucifix above the altar is known locally as 'El Señor de la Misericordia'. It is an example of 16th century "Pidgin Plateresque" architecture, a style unique to highland Michoacán. 
The large plaza hosts large Banda concerts. 
Monastery. The Church and monastery was founded by the Franciscans. Occasionally the door to the seminary is open and you can see the gardens and views of the lake. Occasional concerts.
In Eronga,  with David's back  in front center. Going left, Carlos, our barrista,  then me,  Louise, back center is Juan,  our contractor, his son, Fernando, wife, Maria, then Travis. Not shown in empty chair is photographer, Tom Smith. 
The El Molino camp, the primary activity of the Centro de Actividades y Servicios Educactivos A.C., is situated in the village of Erongarícuaro near Lake Pátzcuaro in the state of Michoacán, about 20 minutes beyond the small city Pátzcuaro. The altitude is 7000 feet so it can be hot in the day and cool at night. It is very quiet except on market mornings and has little through traffic. The children are housed in a converted grain mill from the XVI century, called El Molino, set in well kept gardens, with football fields, fish ponds, etc. They sleep in dormitories designated for boys or girls and the number of children per room varies. There are rooms for children from 6-8 years old, from 9-10 year olds, and from 11-13 year olds. Bathrooms are attached to each room and two counsellors sleep in the room. Care begins at the moment of arrival, at the time of boarding a chartered bus in Mexico City , or in the airport. On arrival to the Molino a meeting is held in the child's room and the room counsellors explain what is expected, how to keep the room tidy, etc. These counsellors take charge of the room banks (children's money); supervise the daily hot showers, usually after the morning workshop when it's warm and sunny. The counsellors are experienced and caring and will follow out any special instructions e.g. take the child to toilet in the middle of the night. Further meetings are held to discuss children's feelings or any problems. One of the first room group activities is an earthquake drill. There is a high ratio of counsellors to children. They come from a variety of backgrounds. Peter Smith is the director, and Fidel Maldonado (a local primary school headmaster), along with Carmen Hernandez (an anthropologist and outdoor specialist), QFB Claudia Nava, who administers all medicines, Martin Ruiz and Claudia Solorio. All share the organization and supervision. Quite a number of the counsellors are native to Erongarícuaro, have a certain level of education and have trained and worked in El Molino over years to be sensitive to children's needs. There are other counsellors, who are graduates in other fields and are having years of experience in camps. The director is always around and involved in all aspects of the camp. There is comfortable relationship between all members of the staff-a very discrete hierarchy. The ethos is child centred and different personalities and varied needs of the children are accepted. There are clear limits. With a high ratio of staff all areas of the camp are well supervised. When the children go to their workshops through the village, the helper who accompanies them has very specific instructions on how to look after the group. Care is taken at all times to insure the children's safety. Claudia Nava, an experienced staff member, receives the medical forms and any medicine which children are currently taking. She immediately notes any instructions and is responsible for administering the medicine. All staff members administer first aid. Parents will be informed about any medical treatment required during the camp. For minor accidents, cuts, grazes, etc. the children are given excellent immediate attention and on going care. For anything more serious, children will be taken to the doctor. Contact from home by telephone, electronic messengers and fax is not encouraged during the camp. Were there to be an emergency or medical question the parents would be contacted. The workshops are at the centre of the camp activities and there is a strong educational element from both the academic and social points of view. This camp provides a unique opportunity for the children to extend and apply their learning beyond the classroom and home environments. The workshop leaders are knowledgeable in their fields and the children participate in activities which are not available to them in school. A variety of workshops are provided. Many are field sciences that include natural resource management and have specialist teachers: field biology, bacteriology, ecology, botany, alternate energies, linology, and the animal care in their habitats workshops. Some of the crafts workshops are sedentary and in the home of local craftsmen(women): weaving, paper mache, hat-making, “alebrijes”, “deshilado”, and traditional cooking. There are also artistic workshops lead by professional artists: music, writing, linoleum engraving and printing, radio production, geometric design and a jewellery workshop. There are schools that design the camp around academic themes such as “water” or “16 th century history and science.” The workshops are then integrated into the field studies. There are many sport activities and games including soccer and volleyball. In the summer a mini-world cup and a mini-Olympics are organized. Evenings include night hikes, camp fires, team games, singing, dance classes, art, and theatre games. The www.elmolinomich.com site has the medical forms and lists of what to bring to the camp. The medical form serves as the inscription form. Deposits to reserve a place in the camp are organized with the office in Mexico D.F. at telephone 55-55-40-63-73. The Mexico D F. office's e-mail is: caseac@prodigy.net.mx For the summer camps the deposits and payments are organized through the México D.F. office. The schools that participate during the school year inform the parents directly about the deposits and payment schedules.
El Molino 
There are several excellent lodging choices in Eronga. 

Hotel Jardin Calles Ignacio Zaragoza 14 (At the upper corner of the plaza), 01-434-34-40168 y 01-44-31-29-3230  There are 15 rooms, $250-$350 pesos. Very clean triples, doubles and singles available. The friendly manager, Sandra Bass Ibarra, speaks English, French and Spanish, but she might not be there.  She can direct you to local guides as well. Open 24 hours. Food is available but perhaps it is best to arrange that ahead of time. Since this hotel is right on the plaza, there is food available nearby from morning till night. Tour groups of all kinds use Hotel Jardin. The hotel has a bathroom which charges $3 pesos for non-guests. More rooms to be added soon. 

La Orilla, Salida a Napizaro, phone number 01 434 34 40106, [11]. Open 24 hours. 5 single and double rooms, Meeting area. Secured Parking (not necessary for security in Eronga.) This hotels has its own covered basketball court, handball, and gymnasium. Two hundred meters from the plaza, with a peaceful friendly, ambiance. The conference room and dining areas have spectacular views of the lake and Janitizo island and the volcanic mountains which form the Cuenca del Lago de Pátzcuaro. This hotel could be part of your conference rental. 

Granja Lolita  This is a great place for families. Has backbacker and regular rooms, and camping. Resturaunt. Horsebackriding, and tours of various kinds. Located a short walk downhill from the plaza. Event space and kids areas. RESERVACIONES: Ing. Rafael Arriaga Zaragoza. Cabalgatas guiadas, Country Resturaunt, Special events park for rent.  GRANJA LOLITA has horses for rent. Telephones: 01 434 342 1645 y 01 434 3440183. Cel: 01 434 100 2924

Raul's Out on the end of Ocampo street. Rustic. Charming handbuilt spaces, including some of the old troje style cabins which are available as well. Bring a sleeping bag if you have one. A studio with mirror for dance classes. Campfires at night. 
Intercultural Music Festival of Erongaricuaro
Central Plaza in Erongaricuaro, October 29 & 30, 2011