Giving back to the community: The trio behind Mercado Huanacaxtle
By Cindy Bouchard
Three amazing folks exemplify what I cherish about the people who make up La Cruz!
You might know Mayra, Pia and Jason as the founders of the La Cruz Sunday market (http://www.mercadohuanacaxtle.com/), which they created to support people selling their goods and to provide locals with produce (and more) so they don’t have to travel far to shop. Culture was paramount! Market rules: the vendor has to bake it, grow it, sew it or transform it; no factory produced items allowed. Every person working at the market gets paid, including organizers, maintenance, advertising, bathroom and venue cleanup, children’s event organization and more. They attract tourists and locals, foreigners and nationals.
The cultural portion spreads into the community, taking place even when the market isn’t running. They participate in schools with book and writing programs, teaching English, mind/body respect and awareness, music and more. They’ve brought counselors to families to help when challenges arise. They created a sports field for local children to run, play and do what kids do, and now they’re creating a volleyball court as well.
As always, I wanted to know about the people behind the scenes. Jason was born in England and raised in Mexico City and both Mayra and Pia were born and raised in Guadalajara.
Jason always wanted to live by the ocean and Mayra loves the tranquility. Enchanted by our small fishing village and its mountains, they moved here eleven years ago; they have two delightful teen daughters.
Pia too enjoys the oceanfront town for its tranquility, she moved here eight years ago. She and her hubby have two babies.
All agree they were looking for a better quality of life and wanted the opportunity to be involved in the community. La Cruz is an excellent place to raise their children; it’s safe, has a natural environment and is multicultural. They like having their children brought up as the community is growing.
Jason’s commitment at the La Cruz Market and Huanacaxtle AC is in event coordination and logistics. He’s also involved in events such as Fiesta del Ceviche and a Musik Festival. He enjoys most “finding solutions in situations where others freeze, finding the extra energy to achieve goals, both in myself and to see it in others.” Success to Jason is “when both community and businesses work together in making La Cruz a better place for visitors and themselves.” His greatest reward? “Seeing faces smiling with pleasure!” He’s inspired by the way humans can adapt to situations (in a peaceful way) and that we are capable of resolving them for a common good.
Mayra’s responsibilities include administration, accounting and coordinating the venders at the Sunday Market and Huanacaxtle AC and running the market online. She appreciates, “Feeling the synergy produced between vendors, customers and workers at the market. I also enjoy working on my own schedule, and when something has to be done I simply do it.” She feels successful when “creativity and work meet.”
Pia’s works Monday to Friday as an Interior and Graphic designer. For the La Cruz Market and Huanacaxtle AC she’s the graphic designer, social media expert and coordinator of the vendors. She enjoys having social interaction with others, finding unique art and artisan pieces and seeing happy clients. Success to Pia, “with the interior design; having plenty of work with nice clients and at the market when I see small vendors growing their businesses”. Art inspires her, especially Mexican artisans with contemporary designs. She enjoys the beach with her children.
Creating value for those who live here is their passion… I’m so grateful!