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Man sentenced to 5-year prison term

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A Mexican man living in the United States illegally after having been deported was sentenced Thursday in federal court to 60 months in prison for his conviction on methamphetamine trafficking and illegal re-entry charges.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office said Rogelio Delgado, 25, of Roswell, will be deported after completing his prison sentence.

Delgado was arrested on Nov. 17, 2016, on charges of possession of a firearm by an illegal alien and possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute.

According to the criminal complaint, law enforcement officers seized 4.05 pounds of methamphetamine, drug paraphernalia, a handgun and ammunition during a search of Delgado’s residence in Roswell on Nov. 16, 2016.

On April 14, Delgado pleaded guilty to possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute and re-entry of a removed alien. Delgado admitted that on Nov. 16, 2016, law enforcement officers found about 1.8 kilograms of methamphetamine in his residence while executing a search warrant, and he acknowledged that it was his intention to sell the drugs to others.

Delgado also admitted he was a citizen of Mexico without any legal right to be present in the United States and previously had been removed from the United States on June 13, 2013.

The case was investigated by the Las Cruces office of the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Chaves County Metro Narcotics Task Force.

Two men die in head-on collision

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LOVING — Police say two men, one from Artesia, were killed in a head-on collision Wednesday south of Loving in Eddy County.

Around 11 a.m., New Mexico State Police responded to a double fatal crash involving a 2008 Ford pickup and a 2015 Chevy pickup on U.S. 285 at approximately mile post 14 south of Loving.

The initial investigation indicated the Ford, registered out of Texas, was traveling north on U.S. 285. The Chevy, driven by Chad Rodriquez, 26, of Artesia, was traveling south on U.S. 285.

For reasons not yet determined, the Ford crossed the center line and collided head-on with the Chevy. Both Rodriquez and the driver of the Ford were killed.

The driver of the Ford will not be identified until notifications to next of kin have been made.

This case remains under investigation and no further information is available at this time.

Jessie Mae Towndrow

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Jessie Mae Towndrow, 82, of Roswell, NM, passed away peacefully in her sleep at Eastern New Mexico Medical Center, at 8:30 PM on Tuesday, October 24, 2017. Memorial Services will be held at Highland Baptist Church, Friday, October 27, 2017, 3:00 PM. Celebrate Jessie’s life by visiting www.andersonbethany.com to offer a memory or expression of sympathy for her family.
A Native of Oklahoma and soon after making a life in New Mexico, Jessie was born on December 10, 1934, to Mr. and Mrs. Jessie (Bertha Lyons) Hopper. She was a homemaker to Veteran, Herb E. Towndrow for thirty-seven years until he passed in 1992. Jessie was a very strong and loving wife, mother and grandmother. She will be very missed and is now at home, and at peace with our Heavenly Father.
Those left to cherish Jessie’s memory are sister, Roberta Skates; brother, James Hopper; daughters: Donna Hargrove and George Parker, Jeanette and Steve Louton, Beverly and David Taylor, Bertha Richardson and Jerry, Keith Louton; grandchildren: Sherry and Dennis McGraw, Heather and Sean Pitman, Joanna, Andrea, Kathy and Harold Morgan, Larry and Daneca Liges, Steven and Christina Louton, Beverly and Robert Ortez, Dianna and Videl Chavarria, Dallas and Cody Heath, Lisa and Joe Pringle, David Hargrove, Faith Richardson; and numerous great-grandchildren; great-great-grandchildren; and several nieces and nephews.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Herb E. Towndrow; children: Kathy I. Towndrow, Charles A. Towndrow; father, Jess Hopper; mother, Bertha “Lyons” Hopper; siblings: Juanita Kayler, Sonny Hoper Josie Hankins, Laverne Castro, Katherine Sue Morgan.
This tribute was lovingly written in honor of Jessie by her family.

Peggy Jean Ritch

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Peggy Jean Ritch, 90, passed away peacefully on October 24, 2017 in Austin, TX.  She was born Peggy Jean Mullis on September 17, 1927 in Austin, TX to parents Samuel and Winifred Mullis, an only child.  Peggy grew up in Austin and Ft. Worth, attended the old Austin High School, and attended University of Texas in Austin, where she met her future husband, Alden Ritch in 1947.  They were married in 1950 and moved to Galveston, TX so that Mr. Ritch could attend medical school there.  Following graduation and internship, she and Alden moved to Freeport, TX, then to Denver, CO, back to the Houston area, and finally to Roswell, NM in 1961.  Peggy and Alden had four sons, in order:  Thomas Alden Ritch, Jr., Michael David Ritch, Scott Samuel Ritch, and Randall Hugh Ritch, all still alive.  Peggy was a volunteer in the Pink Pantry cafe at St. Mary’s Hospital in Roswell.  Peggy and Alden divorced in 1973.  Peggy moved back to Austin, where she retired from the Texas Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Services in 2010.  She enjoyed reading fiction, and was most interested in needlepoint, movies, and her pets.
She is survived by her four sons, six grandchildren (age order, all Ritch surname: Shane, Joel, Jeremy, Matthew, Amelia, and Elijah), and a great-grandson, Harrison.  Her ex-husband, Dr. Alden Ritch, still lives in Roswell.
The family wishes to thank the staff at Brookdale Parmer Lane assisted living facility in Austin, her residence from 2010 until her death.  No formal services are planned.

Joe Anton Albrecht

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Joe Anton Albrecht, Jr. was born July 26, 1961 in Pueblo, CO to Joe and Shirley Albrecht; and passed into heaven on October 11, 2017 in Albuquerque, NM.
Joe graduated from South High School in Pueblo, CO in 1979. He received his Bachelor of Science degree from University of Southern Colorado in 1984. He and Janet M. Harrington were married on June 27, 1989 in Pueblo. Joe received his Certification in Special Education from Eastern New Mexico University of Portales in 1996. He was a counselor for Chaves County Youth Services from 1990-1997. He then worked for the Roswell Independent School District from 1998 to 2015 in Special Education. From 2015 until March 2017 he was a substitute teacher for the Roswell Independent School District. Joe had a gift for helping people. No matter who needed help, he was always there to help in any way he could. He will be missed by many.
Those left to cherish Joe’s memory are his wife, Jan Albrecht, of Roswell; his son, John Albrecht and his wife Ashley of Roswell; grandsons Nicholas Albrecht, Devin Joe Albrecht, and Logan Albrecht of Roswell; granddaughters Maddison Albrecht, and Emma Albrecht of Roswell. A sister, Debbie Richardson of Pueblo, newphews Chris Wright and his wife Bekka; Niece Chrystal Wright of Pueblo; sister-in-law Judy Johnson and husband Jerry of Wolforth, Tx; nieces Caitlan Krause and Heather Krause, nephews Jimmy Johnson, David Johnson and wife, Jamie, Patrick Johnson and wife Jessica; In-laws Jerry and Pat Harrington of Roswell; brother-in-law Ron Harrington and wife Lara, nephews Brantley Harrington and Peyton Harrington of Midland, Tx. Joe is also survived by numerous aunts, uncles, cousins and many friends.
Joe is preceded in death by his parents Joe and Shirley Albrecht; maternal grandparents George Arnold and Josephine Finnigan; and paternal grandparents Joseph Neal and Emma Albrecht.
A memorial service will be held at First United Methodist Church, 200 N. Pennsylvania on October 27, 2017 at 2 p.m. A very dear friend, Rev. David Wilcox, pastor of Grace Methodist Church in Albuquerque, will officiate.
In lieu of flowers, please send contributions to the Chaves County Cancer Fund, P.O. Box 193, Roswell, NM, 88202-0193 or the charity of your choice.

District playoff picture to clear up this week

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(File Photo)

One thing the methodical Roswell Coyote offense can’t do against the quick-strike offense of Lovington is play catchup. It’s not built to come from behind. Their offense is meant to wear teams down late in the game and force them into mistakes.

Against Artesia last week, the Bulldogs scored touchdowns on their first three possessions to make the score 21-0 in the first quarter. Before fans had a chance to settle into their seats, it was 35-0 at halftime.

“Artesia got after us pretty good,” said Roswell coach Jeff Lynn. “It just kind of got out of control. They had us schemed up pretty good, you could tell coming out of the bye week Artesia had a good game plan for us. They picked up our pressure and knew what to shift in, and they knew where to hit us. They were really prepared for us. Their quarterback Taylor Null was the difference in the game to me.”

Roswell returns to the friendly confines of the Wool Bowl tonight when they welcome in surprise team of district play this year, the Lovington Wildcats. Both teams know this game will have district and possibly state consequences for the winner.

Win or lose, Lovington has to travel to Artesia next week, and Roswell has its annual street fight with Goddard to end the season. Lovington has surprised many in the state with the resurgence as a contender for the district title. Second-year coach Anthony Gonzales was hired out of Dallas four months before their first football game. Gonzales has put in his system and hired a new offensive coordinator, and leaned heavily on a mix of seniors and sophomores to fill in the holes.

Before any of that happens, Roswell faces another pass-happy team in the Lovington Wildcats. The Wildcats will run a spread offense and look to throw the ball 60 percent of the time. Their quarterback is sophomore Casey Perez, who has thrown for 2,046 yards and 18 TDs, while being intercepted six times. He is also their leading rusher with 380 yards and eight TDs.

Evan Cesareo is Perez’s favorite target, with 787 yards and eight touchdowns. Cesareo will run the ball from multiple formations, and has 323 yards on the ground with five rushing TDs. Some other receivers who have more than 200 yards are Sebastian Newman, with 360 yards and two TDs. Isaiah Brown has 344 yards and four TDs and JJ Gutierrez has shown a knack for getting open with 301 yards and two TDs.

“In order for us to beat Roswell, we must get off the field on third downs,” Gonzales said. “We cannot turn the ball over. Last week, we won the turnover battle, and we have to do that this week. Roswell will run a lot of motion and multiple formations, and shifts, but they really want to line up and run the ball down your throat, and we have to be ready for that.”

Lynn thinks that when Roswell has the ball, the Wildcats will flash multiple defenses at them from a 4-3, to a 5-2 and a split-six. He thinks that the Wildcats will game plan the Coyotes almost like they did Goddard, since both teams have similarities. Lynn looks for them to play zero coverage and a lot of man-free looks.

“I look for them to get after us and bring pressure,” Lynn said, “and kind of dare us to throw. We will play Michael Ponce and Daniel Sosa at quarterback. Our Achilles’ heel is our passing game. I felt like we had receivers running wide open against Artesia, and we failed to hit those guys.”

Coach Lynn feels like his team is ready to move on. In fact, after last week’s 42-7 loss, he didn’t show the Artesia film to his team, instead choosing to focus on this game.

“Nothing surprises me anymore,” Lynn said. “Today, anybody can be anybody. Lovington’s a good football team.”

To win this game, the Coyotes need to stay away from penalties, and they cannot get behind or turn the ball over.

“We’re locked in,” Lynn said. “We had a good week of practice, and I think the Coyotes are going to show up.”

Goddard at Artesia

For 365 days, all the Artesia Bulldogs thought about was payback — payback in a victory that was theirs until the last 10 seconds of the game. Artesia may say it’s another game, but a little payback is the order of the day.

Fast rewind, to the controversial ending of last year’s game. In a back-and-forth affair, it looked like the game was over when Artesia’s quarterback, Taylor Null, threw a TD with less than four minutes to go in the game. Null went from hero to goat as he threw an interception with 32 seconds left in the game.

It took three consecutive penalties by the Bulldogs to put Goddard in field goal position to win the game. With 10 seconds left in the game at the Wool Bowl, Goddard’s field goal kicker, Rusty Ross, kicked a 20-yard field goal to upset the No. 1 ranked Bulldogs at the Wool Bowl, 37-35.

“I’m sure in their mind that this is a revenge game,” Goddard coach Chris White said, “It’s always a knockdown drag out kind of a game. Whether it’s a rivalry or not, it’s a district game, and a district game is one of the playoff implications, and we’re fighting like crazy to get into the playoffs. We’re only guaranteed two more games.”

All summer long as the Bulldogs worked out in conditioning drills, this game was on their minds and lips. The Bulldogs have opened district play with a sound thumping, 42-7, in a game many expected to be a nail-biter, but was really over at halftime as the Bulldogs led 35-0.

Goddard feels like for them to win, they must control the ball, the line of scrimmage and the clock. With the Bulldogs, they have a host of receivers who can turn a short catch into a pose in the end zone.

Many teams try to stop Artesia’s passing game, but they used senior running back Robert Fernandez expertly with short passes out of the backfield on screen passes, or wheel routes. The Bulldogs like to run a sprint draw action to him and let him pick his own hole; the next thing Fernandez is into the next level and looking to score.

“They have a fantastic running game when they want to run the ball,” White said. “That’s what makes them so hard to defend. Artesia gets you so concerned with trying to stop the pass the next thing you know, they have just ripped off 15-20 yards, almost at will. Their quarterback is fast as well.”

Tonight’s game has not only district implications, but payoff consequences as well. Artesia comes into tonight’s game as the No. 1 seed in District 4-5A. Goddard is in a must-win situation after losing to upstart Lovington at their place last week, 35-28.

“Our boys are doing good,” White said. “We lost a heartbreaker last week to Lovington. You can break our heart, but you can’t break our spirit. Artesia is the No.1-ranked team in the state for a reason. We’ll have to go down and execute better than we did last week, and bottom line make more plays than we did.”

White feels like no one is giving his team a chance against the Bulldogs tonight, yet, he believes in his team. He thinks that maybe three teams could get into the playoffs.

“To win it, we have to be in it,” White said. “I believe we have a good enough team that on any given night, we can beat any team in the state. We definitely have to play flawless.”

Reflecting on last week’s District 4-5A opener versus Roswell, Artesia Head Football Coach Rex Henderson called the win at the Wool Bowl,”the most complete game we played all year.”

As a final postscript on the game he said, “our kids played really well.”

This week the Bulldogs focus on the Goddard Rockets. Henderson said the Rockets look like a typical Goddard team, “just younger in spots,” he said.

Henderson said Artesia will need to be sound in their defensive techniques and the offense will, “need to line up and play hard nosed tough football.”

The Bulldogs’ offense has scored 358 points this season and of course it all starts with senior quarterback Taylor Null.

Heading into tonight’s contest at Bulldog Bowl he has passed for 2,308 yards and 30 touchdowns and he’s averaging 288.5 yards passing per game.

Henderson is concerned about Goddard’s backfield.

“They run the ball well,” he said.

Henderson expects Rocket senior Diego Miranda to see a number of carries in tonight’s match up.

“He’s developed into a good football player,” Henderson said.

Henderson said Artesia is in a good spot and place this week. “The big thing is to improve every week.”

Henderson is looking forward to the team wrapping up the regular season at home. After tonight the Bulldogs will face Lovington Nov. 3  at 7 p.m.

Henderson said the front part of the Bulldogs’ schedule was loaded with some long road trips to Deming, Rio Rancho and Los Lunas. Those games were played last month.

Gateway vs Cloudcroft

Gateway head coach Shaun Wigley called last week’s win over Carrizozo, “a step in the right direction.”

“Winning is fun and losing is not,” he added.

The Warriors closed out the home portion of the regular season schedule last week with 64-26 win over the Grizzlies.

Tonight, Gateway(3-3, 2-2) head to Cloudcroft(5-3, 2-2) to take on the Bears in the regular season finale.

Wigley said his team was able to get some confidence after hunting down the Grizzlies. He was also proud of the play of the younger Warriors.

In the high country of Otero county, the Warriors will be on another Bear hunt.

“(Cloudcroft will be) pretty much the same team as last year,” he said.

One Bear that has Wigley concerned is sophomore quarterback Daniel Eldridge.

“They have a good quarterback,” Wigley said. “They throw the ball pretty well.”

Eldridge has completed 36 passes in 59 attempts and he’s thrown 12 touchdowns this year.

He’s also passed for 486 yards and has thrown three picks.

“They got good coaching,” Wigley said. “It will be challenging.”

At one time, Cloudcroft competed in 11 man football. Wigley said the Bears still play on a 50-yard field. The playing field at Warrior Stadium in Roswell s 40 yards wide.

Wigley said the game should be,”more wide open. It changes the angles.”

The Warriors will be traveling to a higher altitude tonight. Roswell is 3,573 feet above sea level and Cloudcroft is 8,668 feet above sea level.

Wigley isn’t concerned about the change in altitude.

“(Gateway has) played up there before. The way we condition we should be fine,” he said.

Wigley said the Warriors have 14 kids on the roster. “We condition pretty hard,” he said.

The Warriors will be counting on senior Dominic Gomez to lead them up the mountain.

Wigley called him the, “x-factor as far as the offense goes. He plays hard and wants to win.”

Wigley added that Gomez made some good plays on defense in last week’s win over Carrizozo.

Wigley said injuries have hampered the Warriors this year. Gomez missed a couple of weeks and Wigley said some kids were banged up against against the Grizzlies as well.

“Our season has been up and down,” said Cloudcroft head coach Matt Strickland.

The injury bug has plagued his team as well. He added that the Bears haven’t been able to land the knock out punch against the opposition this season.

“Our inability to finish the close games has been disappointing,” he said.

Along with the Bears potent passing attack, Strickland said Cloudcroft has a solid running game.

Junior running back Nathan Toddy has rushed for 1,775 yards this season and senior running back Jacob Toddy has rushed for 362 yards.

Lady Panthers down Vaughn

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Lake Arthur seniors Champayne Diaz, Marisol Gonzales, Jazmin Pando, and Jaque Velo celebrate a big district win. (Evelin Orona Photo)

LAKE ARTHUR – The Lake Arthur Lady Panther volleyball team came up with a huge win on their home court Thursday evening as they downed the Vaughn Eagles 25-19, 11-25, 28-26, 25-21 to clinch the runner-up spot in district 3-1A, but more importantly finally put to rest a dubious skid of losing district games. The Lady Panthers had not won a district game in five years and used a strong showing from their four seniors in their final home game to snap that streak and move to 5-11 on the year.

The Panthers played inspired ball in winning set one; survived a meltdown in set two; and then won the battle of attrition and nerves in sets three and four to win the match and the right to host a district playoff game – the first time since 2012.

“This is our first district win since 2012 and I’m very, very happy for our seniors,” stated a relieved coach Tim Shea. “They worked their butts off all year for this and to get a win in their last game for being seniors it was absolutely icing on the cake.”

The Eagles (5-7) got off to a quick 5-1 lead in the initial set until a kill by freshman Nayeli Caro stopped the run and got the hosts moving. The Panthers would tie the set at 6-all after a kill by 8th-grader Carla Lopez and then they would slowly take the lead. The Panthers would lead 9-8 after a service winner by Jaque Velo and then take control.

Jazmin Pando would serve up some winners to make it 14-9 and then the Panther hustle would shine as the score grew to 18-12. The Eagles’ Kyra Lozano, who would give the Panthers fits all evening, would serve up some bombs to cut the lead to 21-19, but the Panthers would get a kill by Lopez and the she would serve up three straight service winners to give Lake Arthur the 25-19 win.

Set two was all Eagles as they ran out to a 10-1 lead and would watch the Panthers make error after error in a 25-11 whitewashing.

Set three was a very close, tense affair throughout. A Pando kill would tie the game at 3-all early as there would be many ties and lead changes in the set.

Both teams would swing away and do a good job defensively as Vaughn would use the hitting of Lozano to lead 11-9. Champayne Diaz would give the Panthers their first lead in a while with a kill down the middle as both teams tried to make a defining run.

The set would be tied at 22, 23, 24, 25, and 26 (both teams had opportunities to close out the set) until a great dig by Candace Romero made it 27-26 and Velo served up the last winner to garner the 28-26 win and keep the momentum heading into the fourth set.

The Panthers, who had lost in five sets earlier in Vaughn, jumped out quickly 7-1 after back-to-back kills by Lopez from the right and one from Pando from the left. With Tatiana Balerio floating over every serve, the score ballooned to 10-1. The Eagles would make a couple of runs to keep things interesting, but the Panthers managed to lead big 22-14.

Lozano then came to the service line and – seven winners later – it was 22-21. The Panthers would not fold and managed to get the side out and the final two points for the 25-21 win and the Lady Panthers could celebrate with their family, friends, and fans who had waited a long time for a coveted district win.

“We came out really hard in game one, but in game two, I like to use a quote from The Replacements is that we got stuck in quick sand and every time we took a step we got deeper and deeper in the quick sand and couldn’t get out,” explained Shea. “I told the girls all we could do was come out in the third game and fight and fight and that’s what they did and we got the big win that carried the momentum into the fourth game…and we finally got that monkey off our back in district.”

The victory gives the Panthers a home match on Halloween night with a rematch with Vaughn at 6 pm. The winner travels to district champ Hondo on Thursday with a state tourney berth awaiting the victor.

Roswell defeats Artesia

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Roswell High School senior Kaitlyn Holl goes for the score against Artesia Thursday night at the Coyote Den. Roswell defeated Artesia in four sets, 26-24, 12-25, 25-20, 26-24. (David Rocha Photo)

Roswell High School October Students of the Month

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The Community Players host a haunted house in Hobbs

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Hobbs
Oct. 27-28 and 31
Eighth annual haunted house
The Community Players of Hobbs present the eighth annual haunted house, featuring the “Legends Haunt” directed by Nathan Gibbs. It’s the last chance for the audience to take a trip to ancient Egypt to visit King Tut’s tomb where trouble has been brewing amongst the pyramids. Afterwards, the audience can face everyday fears with its second haunt exploring both popular and obscure urban legends. The haunt runs from 8 p.m. to midnight at the Hobbs Community Playhouse, 1700 N. Grimes St. For more information, visit communityplayersofhobbs.com.

Fort Stanton
Oct. 27
Fort Stanton After Dark
Fort Stanton Historic Site is hosting its tour, Fort Stanton After Dark, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Fort Stanton is located at 108 Kit Carson Road, in the Bonito Valley between Lincoln and Capitan. Follow the signs. The event is a one-of-a-kind chance to explore the grounds and buildings of Fort Stanton after dark while interacting with costumed living historians, storytellers and investigators from the Lincoln County Paranormal Historical Society. Fort Stanton’s contributions to the history of New Mexico is unparalleled, and during its 160 years in operation, it served as an Army post, tuberculosis sanatorium, internment camp and correctional facility. Although the gates are open every day for visitors, few get to experience the fort after dark. For more information, call 575-354-0341.

Ruidoso/Mescalero
Oct. 27
Scotty McCreery in concert
Scotty McCreery won the 10th season of “American Idol” on May 25, 2011. His debut studio album, “Clear as Day,” was certified platinum in the United States in 2011. The album includes the top 20 country songs, “I Love You This Big” and “The Trouble with Girls.” McCreery released a Christmas album, “Christmas with Scotty McCreery,” in 2012 and it has been certified gold. He released his third album, “See You Tonight,” in 2013. The first single from the album, also called “See You Tonight,” became his first song to reach the top 10 on Billboard’s country charts. McCreery is going to perform at 8 p.m. at the Inn of the Mountain Gods, 287 Carrizo Canyon Road. For more information, visit innofthemountaingods.com.

Artesia
Oct. 28
Trick-or-Treat MainStreet 2017
The third annual Trick-or-Treat MainStreet offers free candy with downtown merchants, games and music. From 1 to 4 p.m., Dia De Los Muertos is celebrated at the Artesia Historical Museum and Art Center, 505 W. Richardson Ave. There will be sugar skulls to decorate, Museum Ink Master Stephanie will be on hand with temporary tattoos, Craft-Meister Viveca will be helping with tissue paper flowers, plus jewelry, chalk art and two selfie stations are set up. There will be also refreshments. From 3 to 5 p.m. the Artesia Public Library, 205 Quay Ave., hosts a halloween craft event. At 2 and 7 p.m., the Ocotillo Performing Arts Center, 310 W. Main St., shows “An Evening with Edgar Allan Poe.” For more information, visit artesiamainstreet.com.

Alamogordo
Oct. 28
Art & Wine Walk
Heart of the Desert Pistachios & Wine is hosting the Art & Wine Walk, Pistachio Groves 7288 Hwy. 54-70. The event features local artisans, wine or craft brew and live music by Rudy Wood & Julia Cozby (country, blues and southwestern songs), alternative rock meets classic country at the outdoor pavilion at Eagle Ranch, 7822 Hwy. 54-70. For more information or to become a vendor, email events@heartofthedesert.com or call 575-434-0035.

Cloudcroft
Oct. 28
Annual Cloudcroft Harvest Fest
The Cloudcroft Chamber of Commerce is hosting its annual Cloudcroft Harvest Fest at the Burro Street Exchange. There will be pumpkin roll contests (bring your own pumpkin). After the roll, there will be a piñata break at 3:30 p.m. with a costume contest and parade on Burro Avenue. For more information, visit coolcloudcroft.com/harvestfest.

Lincoln
Oct. 28
Dia De Los Muertos Festival
Lincoln’s fourth annual Dia de Los Muertos Festival will have live music, family activities, historical presentations, raffles, handcrafted vendors, face painting and food and drink specials. Lincoln after dark tours are at 6, 7 and 8 p.m. For vendor or other information, call 575-653-4045.

Hobbs
Oct. 28
Dia de los Muertos Family Fun Day
The Western Heritage Museum, 1 Thunderbird Circle, invites the public for its free Dia de los Muertos Family Fun Day. The event takes place from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Families will learn about the cultural significance of this tradition, which has become increasingly popular throughout the country. Craft stations include sugar skull decorating, paper flower construction, face painting and the 2016 animated film, “Day of the Dead.” For more information, visit nmjc.edu/museum.

Hobbs
Oct. 28
‘The Rocky Horror Picture Show’
The Western Heritage Museum, 1 Thunderbird Circle, presents its annual Halloween event: The Rocky Horror Picture Show. The audience is invited to dress in costume and bring the typical props for the movie. Adults only. No one under 18 will be admitted. No alcohol is permitted. The movie is free of charge and starts at 9 p.m. For more information, visit nmjc.edu/museum or call 575-492-2678.

Lovington
Oct. 28
Halloween on the Plaza
Lea Theatre and Lovington MainStreet present its annual Halloween on the Plaza. There are many attractions planned, including Trick-or-Treat safe stop, a costume contest at the Lea Theatre, a haunted house at Old Fire Station and a spooky dance at the Lea County Museum. For more information, visit lovingtonmainstreet.org or call 575-396-1418.

Ruidoso/Mescalero
Oct. 28
Carnaval Fantastique
The Inn of the Mountain Gods, 287 Carrizo Canyon Road, hosts the Carnaval Fantastique at 8 p.m. Come one, come all. Carnaval Fantastique is a dazzling combination of acrobatics, beautiful showgirls, stunning costumes, hysterical comedy and spectacular laser effects that will transport audiences into the heart of Carnaval. World class technology and renowned gymnasts provide for a truly unique Vegas-style show accentuated with toe-tapping original music and fanciful characters for the entire family. For more information and tickets, visit innofthemountaingods.com.

Tinnie
A Haunted History
Tinnie Silver Dollar, 28842 US-70, is hosting A Haunted History at 6:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. The audience learns about the history of Tinnie dating back to 1873, the role it played during the Lincoln County War and its ghost stories including a walk around the grounds. Who knows, maybe you will see William Wilson walking about. Wilson was twice hung for the murder of Robert Casey — after all he is buried in Tinnie.

Artesia
Nov. 2
3 Redneck Tenors
The 3 Redneck Tenors perform at the Ocotillo Performing Arts Center, 310 W. Main St., at 6 p.m. The 3 Redneck Tenors are a new breed in the tenor genre — their musical comedy featuring classically trained veteran artists like “Duck Dynasty” goes to Carnegie Hall — down home laughs with big city music at 7 p.m. For more information, visit artesiaartscouncil.com or call 575-746-4212.

Ruidoso/Mescalero
Nov. 3-4
Wait For What?! in concert
The music duo T David Wiggins and Elane Wiggins are known as Wait for What?! They are going to perform on Friday in the 1852 Treaty Room at 8 p.m. and on Saturday at 7 p.m. at the Wendell’s Lounge at the Inn of the Mountain Gods, 287 Carrizo Canyon Road, at 6 p.m. For more information, visit the Facebook page of Wait for What?!

Artesia
Nov. 6
Mr. Blue Shoes
Mr. Blue Shoes performs at the Ocotillo Performing Arts Center, 310 W. Main St., at 6 p.m. Mr. Blue Shoes is the brainchild of Michael Dyson, Grammy award-winning producer, youth entertainer, guitarist and performer. To date, Dyson has shared his unique version of the blues story with over 240,000 children. For more information, visit artesiaartscouncil.com or call 575-746-4212.

Santa Fe
Nov. 4
Noche de Muertos Gala and Post-Noche After Party
The Museum of International Folk Art invites the public to their gala and after party. Location is On Museum Hill, 706 Camino Lejo. The gala takes place from 5:30 to 8 p.m. and the after party from 8:30 p.m. to midnight. For more information, visit museumfoundation.org.

Moran should rethink his choices

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Before the sun had even risen on Tuesday, our very well-trained and well-loved family dog, as usual, bolted out the front door and raced down the driveway, only to skid to a stop so that she could sniff and fetch our RDR newspaper. She immediately started to growl so loudly that I was afraid she would awake all of her four-legged neighborhood friends to make a cacophony of displeasure and outrage.

Her sensitive nose had alerted her that the lovable Roswell Democratic Party pit bull, Fred Moran, must have written another letter to the editor, and he had the audacity to deposit in her driveway and in her neighborhood. Having been forewarned, I rushed into the garage to get a shovel, a clothespin for my nose and a flashlight so that I could read page A4 without soiling the interior of our abode.

It is now late October and early voting at city hall for our citywide election races doesn’t begin until Feb. 14 and ends at the close of the business day on March 6. OMG, there’s still over 125 days until silly season is over. You must realize that winter is coming. It’s bad enough that I might have to shovel snow, but the thought of having to shovel your future steamy letters to the editor just might force me to rent or buy a snow blower for the duration of this election.

My advice to you would be to reconsider your political philosophy and candidate choices, or people will really know that you’re as “loonie” as that Canadian dollar from your homeland, and your ticket to the loony bin might get punched.

Larry Connolly
Roswell

Artesia PD thanks Concho

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The Artesia Police Department would like to thank the Concho Oil and Gas Co. for their donation of $1,000 to help move our opioid antagonist program along.

Based on growing trends concerning opioid overdoses nationwide, in April 2017, a bill was signed into law mandating that local law enforcement agencies develop training and policy concerning opioid overdose recognition and treatment as well as supply treatment options to officers to use on the streets. The generous grant of the COG Co. will allow us to purchase storage options for the treatment medication that coincide with our desert environment. It will also help with tracking and securing the medication as well.

There are several aspects of a protection program come from a different angle than just illicit drug users. They are aspects of protection of children who might accidentally be exposed to these substances; children who might be intentionally given these substances unlawfully by an adult to a level where they were affected adversely; or a public safety official, through some type of lawful act like searching a person or place, accidentally being contaminated by a substance capable of immediately effecting them. Another possible example is an elderly person who takes their prescribed medication but does not remember doing so and takes a second dose. Any or all of the above persons could be contaminated to the point of showing symptoms and subsequently being adversely affected in an immediate, emergent sense and/or a long term chronic sense because of such contamination. Realistically, the legislation is pointed primarily at those that might have undergone some diagnosis with a continual problem with addiction, but the fact remains the drug Naloxone (the treatment option mentioned above) works on innocent people who were contaminated just as well as those who intentionally ingest controlled substances into their bodies. This is the basis for our program.

Again, thank you to COG for their support.

L. Smith
Artesia Police Department

 

Driver happy for Good Samaritans

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On the afternoon of Oct. 19, I was driving my 1953 Chrysler north of Main Street in the vicinity of the Fairfield Suites when the car was suddenly filled with smoke and I was forced to stop and get out of the car. As I waled back along the passenger side of the car I suddenly saw flames on the rear door panel on the drivers side of the car. I walked around the back and opened that back door.

There had been a traffic accident a relatively short distance ahead of where I stopped and a fire truck was parked there with his emergency lights on. However, they were not aware of my situation. Traffic was moving slowly because of the accident ahead of me, and as cars passed me they could see the flames on my rear car door. Fortunately, a lady in one of the passing cars saw the fire and stopped, and I believe she handed a container of water to a man who had gotten out of his car and was tying to put out the ire with a cup of cold drink.

I think the man took the container of water from the lady who had stopped her car and he quickly doused the flames as there was enough water in the container to put out the fire, or so it appeared anyway. Shortly afterward, firemen from the parked fire truck became aware of what was happening and came running over with a fire extinguisher and made sure the fire was out.

As it was, only the lower half of the door panel was severely burned. However, without the quick action of the lady who supplied a container of water and the man who poured it onto the fire, the flames could probably have quickly spread to the interior of the car and cause a lot more damage before t firemen got there with a fire extinguisher.

I was pretty much in shock with what was going on so I neglected to recognize, and thank the woman and man, who were both shortly our of sight. I very much hope they will see this letter as I want to commend them and thank them for the quick action they took to help me out in a difficult situation.

The fire was actually started by a very unusual circumstance. There was a six-volt car battery on the floor of the car near the drivers side back door, and it apparently tipped over and the positive and negative terminals of the battery simultaneously contacted a metal strip which ran along the base of the door panel, thus shorting out the battery and starting a fire.

Again, I am so appreciative of the woman and man who stopped and provided assistance at just the right time.

Ed Eaton
Roswell

 

Senior Circle offers free flu shots

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Senior Circle will provide free flu shots to the first 200 members from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday.

Members must show their membership card to get their flu shots.

In addition, non-members may sign up for an annual fee and get their flu shots as long as supplies last.

Senior Circle is located next door to Family Dollar at 2801-D N. Main St.

For more information, call 575-623-2311.

Editorial cartoon 10-27-17

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(Cartoon drawn by Eddie Macias)

Zoo forum brings out ideas for changes; Consultants tell attendees zoo is popular but acknowledge validity of concerns

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Ivan Hall, a retired city manager, talks with Ace Torre of Torre Design Consortium Ltd. of New Orleans during the Wednesday night public forum about the future of the Spring River Park and Zoo. Torre Design is a subcontractor working with MRWM Landscape Architects of Albuquerque to develop a master plan for the zoo. (Lisa Dunlap Photo)

Much can be done fairly soon without a huge outlay of money to improve the Spring River Park and Zoo, people attending a Wednesday night public forum heard from the consultants working with the city to develop a master plan.

People attending the public forum Wednesday night about the city-owned Spring River Park and Zoo broke into groups to name at least three “big ideas” regarding the future of the city attraction. Seated at the table with his hand to his temple is Robert Loftis of MRWM Landscape Architects of Albuquerque, the primary consultant working with the city to develop a master plan for the attraction. Subcontractor Ace Torre of Torre Design Consortium Ltd. of New Orleans stands behind him after having given a presentation about some of the 40 zoos and aquaria the firm has worked on over the years. (Lisa Dunlap Photo)

According to city staff, completed citizen surveys indicate the zoo is popular and appreciated, yet it has drawn concern from some animal rights activists. Representatives with the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals have circulated online petitions against the zoo’s “concrete pits” and “obese” animals, called for a U.S. Department of Agriculture inspection and offered the city $10,000 to improve the mountain lions’ enclosure if they would turn over the two black bears for relocation to an animal sanctuary.

The crowd of about 23 people attending the forum at the Roswell Museum and Art Center with about five city staff and the two consultants did not offer any protests or angry remarks. But consultants acknowledged the concerns.

“Whether or not you agree with how they delivered their messages, some of those are warranted criticisms,” said Robert Loftis of MRWM Landscape Architects of Albuquerque. MRWM is the primary consulting firm for the zoo, having received a $35,000 contract to develop the master plan. Its subcontractor is Torre Design Consortium Ltd. of New Orleans.

L. Azeo “Ace” Torre told the group that his firm has worked on 40 small and large zoos and aquaria in the United States, Canada and China. Elaborate and exotic animal exhibits can cost $4 million an acre, he said, but more agricultural, riparian or rural-type exhibits that could be appropriate for the Roswell zoo cost significantly less.

He also said that zoos are developed in phases and that the local zoo could take some immediate steps to improve both the visitor experience and the animals’ habitats. The consultants mentioned replacing chain-link fence with different types of barriers, adding landscaping inside and outside of enclosures and combining enclosures to expand the areas available for some animals.

Torre also said that zoos can serve great missions, with some providing rehabilitation for wounded animals that then are released back into their natural habitats or engaging in breeding programs for endangered species. He said good zoos also serve visitors, entertaining them, giving them an educational experience not only about animals but about their region and the larger world, providing dining and gift shops, even water attractions and hands-on learning activities.

“How do we create conservation of these resources and preservation of these critters? We do that by building exhibits that create change, that make an emotional bond between critters and visitors,” he said. “The things that a zoo can do in addition to being a vital part of your life … is creating change.”

The city now pays about $840,000 a year to support the zoo, which does not charge admission, City Manager Joe Neeb said. A small amount of support also comes from donations and sponsorships of exhibits. According to presenters, the zoo is popular, with about 50,000 to 60,000 visits a year. A zoo that attracts an equal number of visits as the area’s population is a strong attraction, according to the consultants.

Still, people’s ambivalence about what consultants called “outdated” exhibits, many of which lack natural vegetation or adequate space for animals, is also evident. Of about 350 to 370 citizen surveys completed, 174 said that the animals were their favorite part of the attraction while 149 said the animals were their least favorite part of the zoo. Elizabeth Gilbert, director of administrative services, said the latter response indicated how people felt about the enclosures. Yet only 24 survey respondents thought the zoo should be closed. Most responding to a question about needed changes said infrastructure improvements were necessary.

People attending broke into small group discussions to come up with ideas for changes. Former city manager and current Eastern New Mexico University-Roswell Community College Board member Ralph Fresquez suggested a “unique zoo made up of a compilation of animals native to New Mexico” rather than a zoo that had animals from other environments that require expensive habitats. Other people mentioned butterfly and insect gardens, more revenue, better habitats for the mountain lions and bears, trees and shade for animals and visitors, better signage and landscaping, and more educational information.

Annie Nelson of Roswell said she thought the ideas presented were interesting, but that so much about changes will depend on funding. “I think it is a great idea to make the enclosures better and to make the zoo more friendly and enticing for visitors,” she said. Nelson visits fairly regularly and is a supporter of staff efforts to care for the animals and keep the enclosures clean.

The consultants will meet today with city staff to discuss not only public comments but obtain more information from zoo workers and city leaders. Torre visited the zoo for the first time Wednesday, while Loftis has been there a few times. Neeb said that no pool of money has been set aside to improve the zoo, but that the first step is to develop the master plan, a draft of which is expected in three months.

“Right now, we don’t have a clear idea of what the zoo is,” he said, explaining that most zoo animals are rescue animals. “Is it a zoo. Is it a rescue? Is it both? We need to have a clear understanding first.”

Senior Writer Lisa Dunlap can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 310, or at reporter02@rdrnews.com.

Fire department acquires new trucks

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Former state senator Tim Jennings, right, admires the Berrendo Volunteer Fire Department’s two new firetrucks alongside a member of the East Grand Plains Volunteer Fire Department. (Trevier Gonzalez Photo)

Volunteer firefighters from all around the area reached the Chaves County Administrative Center Wednesday afternoon, but on this call, no fire was in sight.

Instead, the Berrendo Volunteer Fire Department was displaying their two newly acquired firetrucks.

Jamie Higgins, deputy chief of Berrendo Fire said the last time the department had received a new firetruck was in 2002. He said while obtaining these new vehicles has been a long process, about two years in the making, it’s been worth the wait.

“This truck was built, designed, for Chaves County,” Higgins said. “So hopefully, it lasts for 20 years and does what it’s supposed to do.”

Bill Williams, public services director for Chaves County, said an equipment-replacement schedule is set for the volunteer fire departments in Chaves County.

“It all goes through the state fire marshal’s office, and they determine with the help of the departments, of course, they know what they need and want,” Williams said. “These firefighters, they know what they want, they know what they need in their individual districts, and they go through a lot of trouble to specify how these trucks are built. It’s a very time-consuming thing.

“Then, they go over them with a fine-toothed comb, making sure that the truck is built to their exact specifications and nothing is skipped. Normally, we would not have two trucks at once like this, but one fire truck that was ordered on the replacement schedule two years ago failed the final inspections. They just tried to cut some corners.”

The deputy chief said the new trucks are capable of doing anything from handling dumpster fires, to car wrecks, and so on.

“We look at the fact that — being one of the biggest county districts in Chaves County, we may be 60, 70 miles out of town,” Higgins said, “We’ve got to be able to work on whatever’s out there.”

Williams said the fact that the county can replace equipment before it becomes a safety issue occurs is wonderful.

“As a community, we’re very fortunate to have such good quality volunteer fire departments that strive to maintain their equipment, have good staff and just response times that they have. I just think that we’re just really fortunate that all of our volunteer fire departments are in that shape, and that there is a funding-mechanism from the state that provides monies to replace this equipment before it becomes a hazard.

The trucks were built completely to their own specifications by HME Inc. out of Wyoming, Michigan.

“That’s how we set these trucks up, to be able to attack whatever task is thrown at us,” he said. “This is what county taxes do. I mean, the county owns these trucks, so the people that pay their county taxes — they paid for these.”

Multimedia-Crime reporter Trevier Gonzalez can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 301, or at breakingnews@rdrnews.com.

City committee approves Boys & Girls club four-year lease

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Tim Coughlin, president and CEO of the Roswell and Ruidoso Boys & Girls Clubs, discusses a lease agreement Wednesday for the Roswell club with the city’s General Services Committee. The committee unanimously approved the agreement, which will go before the city council next month for final vote. Sitting next to Coughlin is city employee Tara Tave. (Timothy P. Howsare Photo)

The city’s General Services Committee on Wednesday unanimously approved a four-year lease agreement with the Boys & Girls of Roswell beginning on Dec. 1.

The lease is for $1,000 month and can be renewed after four years. Either party can request to dissolve the lease agreement with 30 days written notice.

The city of Roswell owns the club’s building at 201 S. Garden Ave.

The mission of the Boys & Girls Clubs of America is to provide after-school programs that help children develop essential skills and play in a safe environment.

The Roswell club has recently merged with the Ruidoso club, called the Boys & Girls Club of Sierra Blanca, with Tim Coughlin overseeing both clubs as president and CEO.

The General Services Committee is comprised of four City Council members, with Tabitha Denny as chair and Natasha Mackey as vice chair, along with Steve Henderson and Art Sandoval.

Elizabeth Gilbert, director of administrative services, serves as the staff coordinator.

The lease agreement will now come up for vote at the City Council’s next regular meeting on Nov. 8.

Coughlin said after the meeting he is optimistic that the city will approve the lease agreement. He said the proposed agreement for the Roswell club is similar to the agreement the Ruidoso club has with the village of Ruidoso. The difference is in Ruidoso the club pays an additional $1,000 a month to the village for utilities, where in Roswell the club will directly pay for its utilities.

The Roswell club is in need of several major repairs that include fixing significant roof damage. Coughlin said he has closed off the room underneath the most severely damaged section of the roof for the safety of the children.

“There are a lot of issues,” he said. “There’s been a lack of maintenance.”

The Roswell club has a defunct outdoor swimming pool that is partially filled in with dirt. Coughlin said he would like to completely fill in the pool and create a community garden.

Coughlin also said over time he would like to set up community centers at various locations in the city to provide after-school programs similar to those at the Garden Avenue location.

“My plans include spreading into Roswell instead of just one corner of it,” he said.

Coughlin told committee members he has just hired a front desk person, who also serves as a program aide, and plans to hire a resource development coordinator.

Coughlin said after the meeting there are 40 kids that attend the Roswell club, but he hopes to expand that number by hiring more staff.

The Boys & Girls Clubs of America have committed to support the Roswell/Ruidoso partnership with a $75,000 grant that requires a one-to-one match from the community.

The clubs can receive $75,000 in 2018 and another $30,000 in 2019, Coughlin told the committee.

Coughlin said other plans include creating a governing board that would function similar to a parent-teacher organization and help with fundraising.

He added that he plans to host a “grand reopening” that would present the Roswell club as centerpiece of the community.

Community News reporter Timothy P. Howsare can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 311, or vistas@rdrnews.com.

Samaritan injured while helping

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A Chaves County Sheriff’s deputy tests his radio out around mile marker 134 of North Main Street as authorities began to leave the scene of where a woman flagging down traffic had allegedly cut someone for reasons currently unknown. (Trevier Gonzalez Photo)

A person traveling along U.S. Highway 285 that had stopped to offer assistance to a woman on the side of the road was cut for reasons not yet known.

At about 2:20 p.m. Wednesday, authorities and Emergency Medical Services were dispatched to mile marker 134 of North Main Street, approximately 24 miles north of central Roswell, in reference to a stabbing.

Multiple Chaves County Sheriff’s deputies responded to the scene, but said the New Mexico State Police was handling the investigation.

According to the NMSP’s public information officer, Carl Christiansen, a woman had her vehicle on the side of the road and was flagging down traffic.

A passerby had stopped to assist.

“Sometime during that time frame, the female cut the person on the hand and then fled the scene,” Christiansen said.

“They were not related and (it is) unknown what escalated the situation.”

Police said the cut individual had refused medical treatment.

At 4 p.m. Wednesday, the NMSP informed the Daily Record that officers were attempting to locate the vehicle with the female.

Multimedia-Crime reporter Trevier Gonzalez can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 301, or at breakingnews@rdrnews.com.

Many render aid to fallen woman

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A member of the Roswell Fire Department removes his gloves as a woman that had fallen along a street is placed in the back of an ambulance. Around 5:45 p.m., Emergency Medical Services and the RFD were dispatched near the corner of North Main and 19th streets in reference to a middle-aged woman that had fallen. Medics were called and passersby also helped the woman. After medics arrived, they examined her and determined that she was OK. The cause of the woman’s fall could not be confirmed. (Trevier Gonzalez Photo)

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