#1348 – Adventure Time!

From the depths of Puerto Rico to the mountains of Colorado, we’re taking you along with us for a few adventures this week. Join a reporter for an adventure in the kitchen. Hear the profile of a man who just put out his first album—at 80 years old. Come along with host Maria Hinojosa as she trains for her first race with help from an all-star runner. Learn about “Narco Cultura,” and the social impact of drug cartels in Mexico and the Southwest. And laugh along with Al Madrigal and Lalo Alcaraz.

Narco Cultura


Photojournalist and film director Shaul Schwarz’s new documentary Narco Cultura contrasts Mexico’s drug violence with the music and fandom of narcocorridos–a style of music that celebrates the anti-heros of the Mexican cartels. Host Maria Hinojosa speaks with director Shaul Schwarz and former narcocorrido marketing director Joel Vazquez about the film, the musical movement of narcocorridos, and the state of Mexican-American self-identity. She also speaks with economist Rodrigo Canales about cartels as a business.

A1 Shaul SchwarzShaul Schwarz is an Israeli photojournalist and film director. His work has appeared in National Geographic, Newsweek, Time, The New York Times Magazine, El Pais Magazine, GQ and Marie Claire. His coverage of the conflict in Haiti in 2004 received two World Press Awards. Most recently he was honored with the 2008 Robert Capa Award given out by the Overseas Press Club.

 

 

 

A1 Joel Vazquez 2Joel Vazquez: Joel Vazquez works in advertising and marketing for narcocorrido bands. He is the former marketing director for Twiins Enterprises, one of the largest narcocorrido labels in the U.S.

 

 

 

 

A2 Rodrigo CanalesRodrigo Canales is an Associate Professor of Organizational Behavior at Yale School of Management. He researches the role of institutions in entrepreneurship and economic development. Specifically, Rodrigo studies how individuals purposefully change complex organizations or systems.

 

Pavochón: Puerto Rican-style Turkey

When reporter Von Diaz was a girl celebrating Thanksgiving in Puerto Rico, her abuela ruled the kitchen. Each year she created a magical dish called a pavochón, a turkey cooked like a traditional Puerto Rican pork roast. This year, she tries to recreate the dish with her grandmother’s help.

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Von Diaz is a multimedia journalist based in New York City. Her reporting focuses on immigration, Cuba, and LGBT issues. She was born in Puerto Rico and raised in Atlanta, GA.She has published her work on PRI’s The World, WNYC, and New American Media.

Running Tips From A Latina All-Star

How do you embark on an adventure? Take it one step at a time!

Next month, Maria Hinojosa is doing something she’s never done before — training for a race! Ahead of her first 5k, we called all-star runner Brenda Martinez for some training tips.

 Photo courtesy of New Balance. 

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At the recent IAAF Track & Field World Championships in Moscow, Brenda Martinez became the first American woman to win a medal in the 800m. She ran her personal best and won the bronze medal. Martinez, 25, is from Rancho Cucamongo, CA and the only Latina on the national track and field team. Martinez started running at five years old and became the first person in her family to go to college when she attended UC-Riverside. She won the 2009 NCAA Outdoor Championship in the 1,500m and was a three-time NCAA All-American. Photo courtesy of Getty Images. 

Conquering Colorado’s Mountains

Fresh out of a divorce and going through depression, Stella Juarez decided to take up hiking. Now, it’s an addiction that has helped her heal. Juarez is on a mission to climb all 53 of Colorado’s 14,000 foot peaks, called “fourteeners,” and she’s inspiring others to follow in her tracks. Reporter Lesley McClurg joined Juarez and two young Latinas for a climb in Central Colorado.

This story is part of the RadioNature series which explores the ways Latinos connect with nature. RadioNature is supported by the REI Foundation.

Photo courtesy of Lesley McClurg, Diana Oregon climbing Mount Sherman, Colorado.  

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McClurgLesley McClurg is a reporter and producer for Colorado Public Radio’s daily interview program, “Colorado Matters.” She came to CPR after getting her start in public radio as a freelance reporter and producer for KUOW in Seattle, Washington. Prior to that, Lesley spent more than three years working in public television in Seattle, reporting on a variety of stories and producing long-form segments for KCTS 9 Public Television.
In addition to her work as a journalist, Lesley also has extensive experience in documentary filmmaking and writing. A seven-time Emmy Award nominee, she won an Emmy Award in 2009 for the documentary, “Green Prison Reform.” Lesley holds a bachelor’s degree in mass communications from Louisiana State University.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Al & Lalo’s Big Adventure

Our favorite funny men, Al Madrigal and Lalo Alcaraz return to Latino USA for their regular segment. This month they tell us the things they’re thankful for that they couldn’t discuss with their families. It’s not the stuff you’d expect. And we get to hear all about Lalo’s new adventure in television.

 Photo courtesy of Lalo Alcaraz.

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MADRIGAL-300x168A correspondent on “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart” since 2011, Al Madrigal has been named Best Stand-Up Comedian by the HBO/U.S. Comedy Arts Festival and his material dubbed “dynamic” by The New York Times. His unique, spontaneous and fast-paced lyrical storytelling style has made him a regular on television with numerous appearances on Comedy Central including his own half-hour Comedy Central Presents Special.

 

 

 

Lalo_hs-150x150Lalo Alcaraz is the creator of the first nationally-syndicated, politically-themed Latino daily comic strip,“La Cucaracha,” seen in scores of newspapers including the Los Angeles Times. He is also co-host of KPFK Radio’s popular satirical talk show, “The Pocho Hour of Power,” and co-founded the political satire comedy group Chicano Secret Service. His work has appeared in major publications around the world and he has won numerous awards and honors. Alcaraz received his Bachelor’s degree from San Diego State University, and earned his master’s degree in architecture from the University of California, Berkeley. He is currently a faculty member at Otis College of Art & Design in Los Angeles. Alcaraz was born in San Diego and grew up on the border.

The Real Spelunkers Of Puerto Rico

Forget the beaches ­– some of Puerto Rico’s most stunning natural environments are actually located under your feet. Our producer Marlon Bishop visits one of the island’s 2000 caves with a team of hardened local spelunkers on a journey in search of indigenous cave art. After a long journey hacking through the jungle with machetes, they arrive at a rarely-visited cave where Taino shaman may have once performed the sacred cohoba ritual.

This story is part of the RadioNature series which explores the ways Latinos connect with nature. RadioNature is supported by the REI Foundation.

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Marlon Bishop_new headshotMarlon Bishop is a radio producer, writer, and reporter based in New York. His work is focused on music, Latin America, New York City and the arts. He is a frequent contributor to WNYC, Studio 360, The World, Latino USA and MTV Iggy. He is an Associate Producer for Afropop Worldwide.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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How Does your Latino Family Celebrate Thanksgiving?

Latinos have a way of making American traditions all their own. We asked you on Twitter and Facebook, how does your family add some Latino flair to Thanksgiving? Latino USA producer Brenda Salinas joins host Maria Hinojosa in the studio to share your responses.

Photo courtesy of Alejandro Linares Garcia, Wikimedia Commons

Cheating Carnival Workers

At all-American carnivals, the workers who run rides and attractions are most often immigrants from Mexico and Central America. An estimated 5,000 workers are recruited abroad yearly to run rides and attractions in the United States.

And according to this report from the American University Washington College of Law and Centro de los Derechos del Migrante, many of these workers endure deceptive recruitment practices, high pre-employment fees and costs, wage theft, lack of access to legal and medical assistance, substandard housing and unsafe work conditions.

In a special report in collaboration with the Nation Institute’s Investigative Fund, we examine how these workers were left out of some federal work protections and how some are now claiming their rights.

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John Carlos FreyJohn Carlos Frey is a freelance investigative reporter and documentary filmmaker based in Los Angeles. His investigative work has been featured on the 60 Minutes episode, “The All American Canal;” a three-part series for PBS entitled “Crossing the Line;” and several episodes of Dan Rather Reports, “Angel of the Desert,” and “Operation Streamline.” In 2011 Frey documented the journey of Mexican migrants across the US-Mexico border and walked for days in the Arizona desert risking his own life for the documentary Life and Death on the Border”. John Carlos Frey has also written articles for the Los Angeles Times, the Huffington Post, Salon, Need to Know online, the Washington Monthly, and El Diario (in Spanish). Frey’s documentary films include The Invisible Mexicans of Deer Canyon (2007), The Invisible Chapel (2008), and The 800 Mile Wall (2009). He is the 2012 recipient of the Scripps Howard Award and the Sigma Delta Chi award for his Investigative Fund/PBS reporting on the excessive use of force by the US Border Patrol. He is a fellow at the Nation Institute’s Investigative Fund.