Mexican ‘Theme Park’ Gives Illegal Border-crossing Experience Without the Danger


Anthony Bartkewicz
NY Daily News
September 10, 2012


La Caminata is intended to show how difficult and dangerous illegal border crossing can be, organizers say.

A “coyote” in a ski mask barks orders: “We have to cross! We’ll go in groups of three. Let’s go!”

A small group runs down a desert road. Sirens begin to blare, so they veer off the road and down a rocky hill.

There’s a shout of “This is immigration!” and agents tackle a man to the ground. The others hide in the shadows.

“They found him,” a boy says sadly. “Immigration.”

Alberto, Mexico, sits about 700 miles from the U.S. border. Illegal immigration turned it into what one resident called a “ghost town,” but now, ironically, a simulation of the clandestine border-crossing experience is revitalizing it.


About 100 Alberto residents play parts in La Caminata. Some act as “coyotes” shepherding illegal immigrants to the U.S., while others portray immigration agents.

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