Blog Archives

EDR Lot for Sale


  • Solar lot for sale in Los Medanos South EDR.
  • Includes septic and pad. Asking $2500 obo

Contact: Arlene  Or, call:  541-840-8398.

For photos go to the For Sale or Rent Page:


EDR Dog Park (Continued)

Just a little update on the EDR dog park.

img_0660The dog park appears to be approximately an acre or s0 of flat, sandy ground with about a 10 foot chain-link fence all around the exterior.  There is an “unleashing/leashing up area” at the entrance. A bench and an assortment of pooper scoopers and bags are located on the far fence.  There is a goodly amount of space to throw balls and frisbees. Please be advised that there is NO separate small dog area.  Extra caution should be maintained if you own a small dog.  We were not aware of anyone monitoring the area while we were there.

(Note:  The rules are clearly posted in English. It might not be a bad idea to have these rules posted in Spanish, as well, since 1.) we are in Mexico and, 2.) we do get Spanish-speaking visitors to EDR.    It might also be helpful if the sign included a contact number.)

The rules read as follows:

  • This off-leash facility is maintained by volunteers–please scoop the poop and take the bag with you!
  • Use of this facility is at your and your pet’s own risk.
  • Dogs must be current with their vaccinations.
  • Aggressive dogs, females in heat or puppies under four months old are not allowed.
  • Owners must be with their dogs within this area at all times and are responsible for them.
  • Dogs should be leased when outside the enclosure.

Main Gate to Leash-Up Area


Main Gate to Leash-Up/Unleash Area

EDR Has New Investor

Just in off of the SF chatter pages:

Stephanie Summers from Mississippi has signed on as the new EDR investor.  Rumor suggests that even though she is in for 50%, Butler will continue to run the show.  At the Developer meeting on the 3rd of November, it was implied that completion of all past projects will begin immediately, with a 6 month deadline for getting everything done. (Holding ones breath is not recommended quite yet.)  It is not clear which projects are on the docket for completion. Perhaps those of you who attended the meeting could be so kind as to give us all an update.

In the meantime, the following is a brief bio of Ms. Summers.  Any thoughts that she might be interested in joining the Nasty Baja Mujeres Group should be considered a stretch. But, having said that…stranger things have happened.


Biography of Stephanie Summers, CEO, DTC

Stephanie Summers’ life journey evolved from her birth place in Jackson, Mississippi – through the oil fields in Yazoo City, Mississippi, into full time employment as the Chief Operating Officer of the largest minority mental health care company in Mississippi owned by her father, to becoming a successful businesswoman involved in International Business. Exposed to business as a child, Stephanie has always been dedicated to the achievement of excellence. Her business spirit is inspired through the legacy of her maternal grandfather, George W. Stutts, Sr., who owned the first oil producing wells in Mississippi and her motivation comes from her paternal grandfather, Business Pioneer and Philanthropist, William James Summers, owner of the late Summers Hotel and home of one of the acclaimed “Mississippi Juke Joints”, Subway Lounge, in Jackson, Mississippi. Her first real exposure to Capitol Hill and the integral activities of politics was in 1987, as a Congressional Intern for Former U.S. House of Representative, Mike Espy (D2-Mississippi), later U.S Secretary of Agriculture. In 1998, Stephanie ventured out and with her first husband and founded Diversified Trade Company, LLC. As Chief Executive Officer of Diversified Trade Company, LLC, Stephanie has assisted several U.S. and foreign companies to increase their market share both in the domestic and foreign markets and assisted foreign governments and private companies to implement economic development plans. Offering business development services and international trade management, Stephanie has traveled throughout the United States, the continent of Africa, Europe and Asia, the Caribbean, Canada and Mexico From 1999 and for four (4) years, Stephanie was a Board Member of the Small Business Exporters Association, a trade advocacy association in Washington, D.C. that represented the interests of over 25,000 U.S small business exporters. As a Board Member, Stephanie worked with Exim Bank, OPIC and U. S. Members of Congress to encourage the development of programs that favor the interests of U.S small businesses. This work included issuing the opinions about the reauthorization of EXIMBANK. Stephanie is a dynamic speaker and has been a presenter for USDA Agricultural Marketing Outreach conferences and has given numerous presentations, including “Business Development for Inventors”, “Farm Management to Enhance Marketability” and “Market Information: How to Find It and Use It”, which was published in the Agriculture Marketing Outreach Training Manual, USDA, 1999. In 2000, Stephanie was one of only thirty (30) companies represented to participate in the National Trade Education Tour with the Former U.S. Secretary of Commerce, Honorable William Daley. In September 2003, Stephanie was a U.S. NGO delegate to the World Trade Organization’s 5th Ministerial Conference hosted in Cancun, Mexico. Eager to make a difference in the lives of Mississippians, Stephanie was heavy in politics. In 2004, Stephanie was a Republican Candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives, District 2, Mississippi. Active in Mississippi politics, Stephanie was a Co-Chairman of the Inauguration for Governor, Mississippi, Haley Barbour and was a Mississippi delegate for the 2004 Republican National Convention. Recognized by Mississippi as one of Mississippi’s most successful businesswomen, Stephanie was chosen to be one of Mississippi’s “50 Leading Business Women 2004” by the Mississippi Business Journal. In 2011, she was featured in Forbes, January 2011 Issue, Mississippi Women in Business. In 2015, Stephanie began the execution of the expansion and growth plan of Diversified Trade Company, LLC (DTC). She made some hard choices and some personal and financial sacrifices and began to reshape DTC into a holding company. Her first acquisition targets were oil and gas companies. Her goal is to create one of the largest oil and gas companies in the world during the downturn of the industry. Currently, Stephanie has ownership in companies with assets in real estate, oil and natural gas reserves, industrial minerals, mining and exploration, construction, manufacturing, health care, financial services, and transportation. Stephanie is a Hampton University graduate and the proud mother of one daughter.–PDF bio found on Google

Linda Whedbee (emphasis mine)

EDR “Original” Juanito’s Cantina ReOpens

For those of you who haven’t heard, Juanito’s has reopened.  A group of us decided to try it out on Thursday night, March 6th.  We had heard mixed reviews.  So, we have to admit to being a little apprehensive.  However, it turned out to be a wonderful evening.

It was great to be back in our familiar old stomping grounds and to see so many old friends from the older neighborhoods.  The band was a roadhouse variety of country western (Sorry, didn’t catch their name.)  They were quite good; very reminiscent of old style El Dorado Ranch entertainment.  Even more heartening was to see some of the “original” EDR line dancing gals up and line dancing!

We had arrived relatively early in the evening and snagged a good table before the larger groups began arriving.  The place was packed.  It appeared as if the establishment had not anticipated such a large turnout.  Service was okay for us, but, looked a little on the slow side for others.  Ken and Julie, the owners of Juanito’s,  have opted to go with a “dual choice” style menu.  In other words, each night customers can select from one of two main entrees. And, there are a ton of possible appetizers available as well, should you choose to simply have a drink and a little something to nibble on. We were delighted and amused to see quail back on the menu.  That hasn’t been an option around here since the old Juanito’s.  I might also add that they have a full bar and their wine selection is fairly good, for having just reopened.

Since we went on Thursday, we had an option of ribs or chicken.  It was served with a side of coleslaw, baked beans, and a half an ear of corn.  The sauce for the ribs and chicken was quite tasty.  It is apparently an “in house” recipe of Julie’s.  Our chicken and ribs were cooked beautifully.  However, people who ordered later in the evening complained that their ribs were burned.  I wouldn’t let this discourage you from giving Juanito’s a try.  As with all new restaurants, they will have to work out some of the “first days kinks.”

As the menu below indicates, they are opened Thursday through Monday, 1 p.m. until 9 p.m.  We give this restaurant a “Baja Sister 4 stars” for old timer ambiance, entertainment, and a good attempt at providing good food.  We will be trying it out again on a Friday night to see what they do with the seafood!  If anyone else goes, please let us know!  Comment below, or, better still, write an article about your experience! (hint, hint)


EDR/LVDM/Villas “Town Hall” Meeting

February 28th, 2015
10 am
PAVILION Events Room

Equestrian Facility Tour for Baja Sisters

equestrian center On February 24th, Lynn and Paco have invited our group to a tour of the new horse facility that they are creating in our desert. It is located on the northwestern area of EDR and has been sanctioned by EDR developer, Pat Butler. Lynn and Paco are private concessionaires and no HOA fees are used to support this venture.

The event will begin at 3:30 pm on February 24th and consists of an equestrian center tour–including meeting all the critters. Lynn and Paco will share information on how this wonderful facility is being made possible, as well as their future plans. A potluck BBQ and bonfire will follow. With a little luck, there will also be some singing around the old campfire. Star gazing will be a special treat as the sky out there is amazing.



  • A chair,

  • plate & utensils,

  • what you would like to BBQ, and,

  • a side dish to share.

  • Beer, tea, sangria, and water will be provided.

prohibidoperrosDogs: NO DOGS on this activity, PLEASE! There is a guard dog at the equestrian center. Although she is people friendly, she may not be so happy to see your dogs. For everyone’s safety and comfort, leave your dog(s) at home.

RSVP required to:



LHDD-membersonly*This Activity is limited to Las Hermanas del Desierto Members.



Disclaimer:  The following poll is anonymous and informal.  It may or may not reflect accurate numbers interested in attending.

EDR Movie Nights Continue

popcorn-movie1The following is the schedule for remaining movie nights:

  • Tuesday, Feb 10:  Boyhood
  • Friday, Feb 13:  The Imitation Game
  • Tuesday, Feb 17:  The Theory of Everything
  • Friday, Feb 20:  Selma

All of these films have been nominated for Best Picture Oscar Award for 2015.

Movie time is  6 p.m.  Seating is always tight, so it is advisable to arrive early.  In our experience, the event has, on occasion, dovetailed with “Dollar Night.”  Some people like to get dinner at the Pavilion before the movie.  The Pavilion is also available for drinks.


Week in Review: Rumor Pot Continues to Simmer

From time to time we will bring readers a slice of some of the major (and minor) rumors floating around EDR and the North Beach communities. We will attempt to elaborate (and, speculate) on some of these stories to get at what might be something close to the truth. But, we don’t guarantee a hundred percent accuracy.  Final judgment is left to the reader. We encourage our readers to jump in and further illuminate, elaborate, or muddy the waters. Chances are you probably know a lot more than we do! When it comes to rumors around SF, you can rest assured that we are always certain, but, often wrong!

If you have rumor-worthy items you would like to include, please feel free to mention them in the comments, or, pass them along to, or, contact us so that you, too, can become an author!

Updated and New Rumors

poolclosed#1 Update: The Big Pool is Closed

Short Answer:  Well, it might as well be—closed–forever.

Longer Answer:  Before I retired, I attended faculty meetings once a month.  At every meeting there was this one colleague who made a habit of asking the same question about a particular issue we were dealing with that year.  And, every time, he would get the same answer.  Finally, one day, we asked him, “Why do you persist in asking the same question every time we meet?  After all, you know what the answer is going to be!”  He responded, “Because I hope that circumstances will have changed and that I will eventually get a different answer.”

That is sort of what it feels like living with an avid lap swimmer. Every day for the past month, this group of die-hard swimmers ask the question: “When is the big pool going to be open for lap swimming?”  The pool guy will shrug and say, “When new part comes.”

To everyone’s surprise, last week they got a different answer.

Lap swimmer: When is the big pool going to be open for lap swimming?

Pool guy: (shrugs) There is not enough money to heat pool. 

Lap swimmer: (eyes widening) What? I thought you said the big pool needed a new heater or a new pump or something?

Pool guy: (shrugs) Yes. That, too.

Moral of this story:  Don’t hope for a different answer.  It might be worse than the original answer.

And, so it is with the pool complex.  Apparently $8,000/month was budgeted to heat the pool(s).  According to reliable sources, this would have been an appropriate amount to budget had the ORIGINAL pool design been built.  However, since the ORIGINAL pool building committee got the sack, the replacement pool building committee (#2 )redesigned the pool complex and did not account for the fact that it was going to cost almost double to heat the larger, redesigned pool.  To make matters a tad big more prickly, the dynamics between the second pool committee and the second set of pool builders (oh, did I forget to mention them?) have disintegrated.  The people who actually wound up completing the pool are not happy about honoring guarantees to parts they didn’t install.  So, the long and the short of this is that our brand new, less than a year old “HOA owned” pool complex is experiencing a few “hiccups.”

roadrunnerclosedno#2 Update: Roadrunner: Closing? Again?

Short answer: Still, not true in 2014.

Longer answer:  Stop! Hold the bus!  Well, it just goes to show, NOTHING in life is static.  Last time I checked in with you on this subject, I had it on good authority that The Roadrunner Upstairs would be open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner at least until June, 2014.  This week, because of something having to do with the new tax reform and business incorporation papers, The Roadrunner has had to develop a new strategy.  So, for all of you Roadrunner fans, here is their latest schedule as of Sunday, 26 January:

The Roadrunner Upstairs

Beginning January 29–open from 5 until 9 p.m and serving DINNERS ONLY.  Open Wednesday through Saturday (ONLY)

The Roadrunner Downstairs (Deli)

Beginning January 29–open from 7 am until 2 p.m. and back to serving breakfast and lunch. Open every day but Tuesday.

Old News Becomes New Again: The Fideicomiso is Going Away.

Short answer: Before you run down to the bank….hold your horses. The law has not changed, yet.

Longer version:  Stories about eliminating the fideicomiso have been floating around for years. Last season, when the new President, Enrique Pena Nieto (PRI party), took office, a bunch of bills–that had been sitting dormant– floated to the surface.  One of those bills had to do with eliminating the fideicomiso.

But, let’s back up a minute. I think it’s safe to assume that when many of us first came down to check out property on the Baja, we knew as much about fideicomisos as we did about the desert brittlebush. Under this new President, and with a different Party in office, it behooves us to have a rudimentary working knowledge of the fideicomiso: what it is, and, what, if any, impact it will have on foreigners “owning” property. An informed and educated public is a responsible citizenry, or, something like that.

What follows is just the tip of the iceberg on this subject. I don’t Pretend to know what I’m talking about. So, if you need or want more information, I encourage you to speak with a Mexican attorney or do a lot of reading. Consider this my disclaimer.

Fideicomiso 101 in a very tiny nutshell

A fideicomiso (pronounced: “fee-day-ko-me-so”) is similar to a “Trust.” The word comes from the Latin word “fideicommissum.”  Fides meaning “trust,” and, comissum meaning “to commit.”  One can assume that the most ancient origins of fideicomisos can be found in Roman Law.  This makes sense since at that time there were restrictions on who could and couldn’t inherit property.  No surprise, women, slaves, and foreigners were excluded from inheriting property. Apparently there must have been people back then who wanted to circumvent this restriction, thus they creating this “wiggle room.”

Later, in England, during the Middle Ages, the fideicomiso became an institution known as a “Trust,” whereby the trustees have legal title to the property and the beneficiaries hold the equitable or beneficial ownership. Some historians speculate that this might have been a way for wealthy landowners to get around paying property taxes.

The Mexican fideicomiso was created early in the last century and is based on the Anglo-Saxon institution of Trusts.  It was described initially as an:

“irrevocable mandate by means of which specific assets are delivered to a bank, as fiduciary, for him(sic) to dispose, according to the intention of the person who gave them to him (called fideicomitente), for the benefit of a third party or beneficiary, called fideicomisario or beneficiary.” –Sergio Monserit Ortiz Soltero.

I think the most important thing to remember here is the terminology.  From my understanding, a fidecomitente is the person who initiates the trust.  The fiduciary (in terms of real estate) is the bank.  The fideicomisario is the beneficiary or the person who is currently benefiting from the property thanks to the fidecomitente and the bank.

Why do “real estate fideicomisos” exist in Mexico?  Initially, a fideicomiso was created with Mexican National Security in mind.  The Mexican Constitution prohibits non-Mexican citizens from owning real property located within 100 kilometers of Mexico’s inland borders or within 50 kilometers of its coastlines.  These areas are referred to as the “restricted zone.”  Only Mexican citizens — or, Mexican corporations whose bylaws forbid the ownership of stock by non-Mexican citizens–are allowed to directly own real estate within the restricted zone.  The whole of the Baja is a “restricted zone.”

During the early 1970’s, the Mexican government decided that it would be to their benefit to allow foreigners to purchase real estate property in the coastal areas of Mexico.  The government explored ways to balance Mexico’s needs of maintaining secure borders and encouraging foreign investment.  Their solution was to allow foreigners to purchase the “beneficial interests” in a fideicomiso, under which legal title to the restricted-zone real estate is held in the name of a Mexican bank. They tweaked their Constitution in 1997 so that foreigners could have unrestricted use of the property (almost as if she/he owned it outright), but the Mexican bank’s legal ownership of the property would technically satisfy the prohibitions against foreign ownership in restricted areas as found in Article 27 of the Mexican Constitution.

For years, foreigners owning homes in Mexico have complained about the recurring administration fees for their fideicomisos. The fiduciary banks don’t appear to do much to earn their $400 to $600 annual fees.  And, for years we have been hearing about the government doing away with the fideicomiso altogether. Last year a bill was presented to the Federal Congress to get rid of the fideicomiso.  And, it passed with an amendment that says they will allow direct ownership of restricted-zone property by foreigners as long as use is for residential purposes only. No commercial activities will be allowed (i.e. rentals and leases).  It goes now to the Senate for discussion. While in the Senate, Senators and others will have to hammer out the “ Calvo Clause” to decide how foreigners will have “escrituras” (title that a Mexican national receives when they purchase land).  The Calvo Clause is used all over the world. In Mexico it would be an agreement you would sign saying that you would behave like a Mexican national and would not try to invoke the laws of your native country when it comes to issues about your property.  In addition, Senators and others need to discuss and agree on something called, the Investment Clause. This clause says that if you have land larger than 2,000 square meters, you must develop it within 24 months and spend at least $250,000 on the improvements. There are other provisions, but, those appear to be the big issues.

Once approved by the Senate, it goes to President Pena Nieto. Some speculate that the President will sign it if:

  • The US doesn’t do something objectionable that affects Mexico between now and then.
  • The banks don’t decide to muddy the waters.
  • The bill doesn’t have too many additions or deletions that the President doesn’t like.

But, wait.  Even if the President does sign it, it still has to go to the States for ratification. (Does all of this sound like a familiar process?)  A simple majority of the State Legislatures need to approve it before it becomes law.  That could take another year. And, then, should it be ratified, there is the process of implementation. I don’t imagine that that is something that will happen– shall we say—“smoothly.”

Even though it’s unlikely that we will see the fideicomiso totally gone anytime soon, I do think it is looming on the horizon. The real estate people are rubbing their hands together with glee already over it.  One of their contentions is that once Americans and Canadians can be assured of outright title to property they will come in droves. Consequently, with so much pressure from realtors and developers, it doesn’t hurt to be prepared and understand the implications should it actually come to pass.

What happens when we eliminate the fideicomiso?  Realtors and developers are quick to point out that closing costs will be reduced.  I’m not one hundred percent sure what they mean when they say, “closing costs.” The only closing costs I’ve seen referenced are filling the fideicomiso.  Those include: the $1,000 bank fee and the $4,000 notario fee.  If there are other fees, I’m not aware of them.  Okay, so let’s assume for the sake of argument that the fideicomiso costs are the closing costs and that they go away. But, wait.  It ain’t that simple.  The fideicomiso cost may go away but it will be replaced with another filing cost. It has to. Indeed, in order to receive title to the property we will have to file a yet-to-be-determined-new-for-foreigners “escritura” and pay all associated fees that go with it—like a notario fee and a bank fee. So, personally, I’m not buying the “this will reduce closing costs” argument, quite yet.

Next argument from the real estate people is that you will be saving $400 to $600 annually in fideicomiso fees. True enough. They are quick to emphasize that $400 to $600 annually will buy a lot of tequila. I think they are trying to be funny.  But,what if you are part of a master trust as we are at EDR?  Are our yearly fees for the master trust deducted from our HOA dues?  If so, how much are they?  If the fideicomiso goes away, and we pay for that out of our HOA dues, will we see a drecrease in our HOA dues?  These are all questions for which I have found no answers.  And, I couldn’t even begin to tell you where to go to get answers to these questions!

Starting Next Week: All Banking in Mexicali Only

Short answer: Not totally true

Longer answer:  While it is true that Bancomer got rid of its branch on the Chetumal, its main office for San Felipe is still on Mar Caribe across from the orange indoor mall.  Banamex on the Chetumal, will, according to the note on the door will be closing its doors next week.  If you have an account with Banamex, you will have to go to Mexicali or figure out how to bank on-line with them.

In terms of ATMs, three still remain in town.

  • La Palapa at LVDM
  • OXXO on Chetumal next to Agua Express
  • Bancomer downtown

If anyone knows of any others, or has any info on these bank office changes, please pass it along under the comments for this post.  Thanks.

EDR/LVDM/LV Plan Future Community Center

On Saturday, 25 January, the “Ranch Community Center Committee” will host a meeting to discuss the future Ranch Community Center.  Owners in EDR, LVDM, and/or Las Villas are invited to attend and give input.  This event will take place in the Pavillion Meeting Room from 10:30 until noon.

Week in Review: Or, What Rumors are Flying Now?

From time to time we will bring readers a slice of some of the major (and minor) rumors floating around EDR and the North Beach communities. We will attempt to elaborate (and, speculate) on some of these stories to get at what might be something close to the truth. But, we don’t guarantee a hundred percent accuracy.  Final judgment is left to the reader. We encourage our readers to jump in and further illuminate or elaborate on a story. Chances are, you know a lot more than we do!

If you have rumor-worthy items you would like to include, please feel free to mention them in the comments, or, pass them along to, or, contact us so that you, too, can become an author!

EDR HOA Manager Cliff Ulman Given the Boot

Short answer: I know, I know, some of you out there would like to hear that this rumor is true.  But, it is Untrue.

Longer answer:  Official word is that Cliff Ulman has resigned.  What precipitated the resignation is still under investigation. Some speculate  it is because many of the EDR staff have been asked to take a ten percent salary reduction, including Mr. Ulman.  But, reliable sources say that in Mr. Ulman’s case, he was offered a better job working on the Mainland for a tequila company. (Yes,  you read that correctly.)

The following is a copy of the official letter from the EDR head shed:

January 17, 2014

In response to Pat Butler’s notice of Cliff Ulman’s resignation notice, we would like to take this opportunity to sincerely thank Cliff for all his very significant contributions and accomplishments during the past nine years at El Dorado Ranch.  Cliff’s decision is his as he wanted to continue to explore other avenues of opportunity.  The Supervisory Committee’s are already working in concert with Roberto Islas, the new Administrator, to ensure both a smooth transition and that the projects in the “pipeline” will proceed without interruption.

 We wish Cliff all the very best in his future, and welcome Roberto Islas to the El Dorado Ranch HOAs.

 El Dorado Ranch Supervisors 

El Dorado Ranch La Ventana Del Mar Las Villas 

Steve Kimmey, Denise Laven, Michael Schwartz, Ed Jones, Hans Wildschutte, Gary V. Lambert, Bob Miller

Roberto Islas was managing the Red Lobster, another of Pat Butler’s holdings.

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