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Progreso’s new boardwalk strikes a festive note

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Progreso, Yucatan — The port city inaugurated a new merry-go-round and all the other attractions in the Malecon Internacional, reviving the old, abandoned Playon.

The Malecon Internacional de Progreso brings the action further west, on the other side of the large pier, starting at Calle 84. It complements the adjacent Muelle de Chocolate, which was also recently restored on an old fishing pier.

Friday’s opening attracted numerous officials, including state authorities and Mayor Julian Zacarias Curi.

The atmosphere was in contrast with the malecon to the east, where beach bars and shops proliferate. The attractions here were whimsical and family oriented. Lights were strung on palm trees, adding a soft glow to the new attractions.

The beach carousel was the star of the evening, but guests also enjoyed an open-air cinema, fashion show and live performances by guitarist James Ponette, saxophonist David Sax, violinist Yaxil Berdura and the singer Javier Alcala.

A colorful, make-believe pirate ship, fish, flamingos and other novelties were made with recycled material.

But at the end of the boardwalk, on Calle 104, is something very real: A re-assembled whale skeleton, displayed on a metal structure.

It’s the remains of a four-ton, 15-meter / 49-foot whale, which was stranded in Progreso in 2016. A local university, UADY, sent scientific academics to tow it away and create the exhibition at Calle 104. Its bones have been treated to withstand the elements, faculty assured the public.

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