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Archive 2002

Area Newspapers
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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Top Stories

Thursday, May 30, 2002

Onion harvest for area fields gets underway

Staff Writer

PECOS, Thurs., May 30, 2002 -- Harvest has already begun on onions in the Pecos area and  things are looking really good, according to onion growers.

"We've already begun the harvest part and things are coming along really good," said Randy Taylor with Pecos Cantaloupe.

Taylor said that the company would start running some through the Pecos processing facility next week. "We've already begun the harvest on the fields and will start running some here at the facility on Monday," said Taylor.

Reports came out this week that Georgia's Vidalia onion crop has been hit hard by a fungal disease and changing temperatures, cutting back sharply on the projected 2002 harvest. However, Taylor said the Georgia problems won't affect the price of onions coming out of Reeves County area field.

"Since it's a specialty onion, it won't affect us at all," said Taylor.

Onions are the first major crop grown in the Trans-Pecos region to come in each year. Taylor said that they would start the cantaloupe harvest, a Pecos specialty, about the first of July.

Officials plan tight security for graduation

Staff Writer

PECOS, Thurs., May 30, 2002 -- Local law enforcement officials will take extra precaution  Friday night, when Pecos High School graduates will be saying  goodbye to their high school.

Graduation ceremonies for the Class of 2002 are scheduled to begin 8 p.m. at Eagle Stadium. The names of the top four graduates for the senior class, including the announcement of the valedictorian and salutatorian who will deliver speeches during Friday's commencement exercises, had not been released as of press time.

Officials have been receiving some reports of possible problems on Friday night, and Pecos Police Lt. Kelly Davis said, "We'll have extra officers on duty, especially at night."

Davis, who will also be attending this year's graduation as a parent, said that every year rumors fly before graduation day about events that are going to take place. "Every year we have some troublemakers that make threats and we usually up our security during that time," he said.

Reeves County Sheriff Andy Gomez said that all Reeves County Sheriff's Deputies would be out tomorrow. "I'm going to try to have all of them out there," said Gomez. "We don't know what can happen and we want to prevent it before it does," he said.

Gomez said that he hopes it will be a quiet evening and that nothing happens, but that his department will be prepared and ready. "We'll be taking extra precautions and taking care of our community," he said.

Monahans boy is eliminated at spelling bee

WASHINGTON - The devil really was in the details for Alyssa Coltrain.

Satan ousted the 13-year-old from the finals of the Scripps Howard National Spelling Bee early Thursday - she reversed two letters in "Beelzebub," a Hebrew word for the devil that literally means "lord of the flies."

Coltrain, of Glenmoore, Pa., spelled it "beezlebub."

Of 250 contestants who began the competition Wednesday, only 58 remained at the end of Round 3. The winner was expected to be crowned in late afternoon, taking home an engraved trophy and $12,000.

Ninety spellers survived a 25-word written test Wednesday, with words that ran the gamut from elementary ("allot," "solvency") to advanced ("decoupage") to nearly impossible ("geusioleptic," "boswellize," "scagliola").

The only area competitor, Monahans' Ryan Henson, was eliminated on Wednesday in the written portion of the competition. He correctly spelled 15 of 25 words given contestants on the written exam, but the field was cut to 90 by taking only those who corrently spelled 16 or more of the words.

Henson, a Walker Junior High School student, correctly spelled "lebkuchen" in the opening round to advance to the written portion of the competition.

Thursday's finals were broadcast live on ESPN, the cable sports network.

First lady Laura Bush opened the broadcast with taped comments, telling the contestants, "I am very proud of you. I hope you'll always work hard at spelling and at reading. The more you read, the better your spelling will become and the more your vocabulary will grow."

In early competition Thursday, contestants successfully worked their way through "gamopetalous," "perestroika," "stultiloquence," "remunerative" and "opusculum," among others.

Pratyush Buddiga, 13, of Colorado Springs, Colo., repeated his word, "deuterogamy," a second marriage, a half dozen times before slowly ticking off each of the letters.

Nathan Hammes, 13, of Sheridan, Ind., took only a second to correctly spell "bacciferous," bearing berries.

But several minutes of deep thought couldn't get the job done for Bria Wash of Anderson, Ind. She barely missed "antinomy." She substituted an "a" for the "o."

Others stumbled on these tough nuts: "gnotobiotic," "etymon," "basmati," "schloss," "syntrophism" and "wasteweir."

Sarah Troutman, 14, of Chana, Ill., missed that last one, after hearing the word had a French derivation.

`"Weir' sounds German to me, rather than French," she said, watching the competition after being eliminated.

Sarah, who was also eliminated in Round 3 last year, said she was disappointed, especially since she's an eighth-grader and ineligible to compete next year.

"It's not the greatest feeling right now. I did the best I could, though. That's the best anybody could really ask for."

Balmorhea receives state award, money for efforts

Staff Writer

PECOS, Thurs., May 30, 2002 -- A lot of hard work and dedication to keeping their city clean has  paid off for citizens of Balmorhea after receiving a prestigious state  award this week.

Balmorhea is one of only nine cities in Texas to receive the Keep Texas Beautiful's Governor's Community Achievement Award, which they received for their achievements in litter prevention, beautification programs and minimizing solid waste.

Diane Birdwell, the director of public relations Keep Texas Beautiful (KTB), said that every town and city in Texas is eligible to receive this annual award.

"Every community, no matter how big or small, may apply," she said.

Birdwell explained that the cities are judged in different categories set up by population.

Along with Balmorhea, the winners of the awards include Breckenridge, Corpus Christi, Lufkin, Muenster, Southlake, Sugar Land, Taylor and Waco, according to a KTB press release.

The different communities will share a $1 million landscaping prize to use for the communities.

The 527 residents of Balmorhea would receive a total of $60,000 at a luncheon banquet during the state KTB convention in San Antonio on Friday, July 12.

According to a KTB fact sheet about the achievement awards, their mission "is to empower Texans through education to take responsibility for enhancing their community environment," which is something the organization, Keep Balmorhea Beautiful, has done.

Outreach person for the Balmorhea group, Ellen Weinacht, said she described the efforts that Keep Balmorhea Beautiful, along with essentially the whole community, have made to keep their town clean in the application for the award.

The committee has their own mission, which is "to encourage attitude, action, and accountability for the enhancement of the environment of the Madera Valley community."

Keep Balmorhea Beautiful is funded by donations, dues, and fund-raising events and is staffed by volunteers.

Weinacht explained how the group does encourage people to enhance the community, also known as the "Oasis of West Texas."

"The Balmorhea News is the `mouthpiece' to promote, publicize, and encourage participation in the efforts of our partners to accomplish our shared mission," Weinacht said in the essay.

The small newspaper, published by the group, allows the volunteers to communicate to the general public about their efforts to conserve, recycle, cleanup and beautify Balmorhea.

Keep Balmorhea Beautiful uses several methods to help beautify their city, including education to the community and school children, public awareness, litter prevention and cleanup, paying attention to illegal dumping and enforcement, beautification and property improvement, and solid waste management.

Balmorhea's efforts to bring the community together to succeed in these items earned them recognition at the state level.

Weinacht said she did not receive the call that they had won the award until Tuesday of this week and was quite surprised to hear the good news.

"I was floored," she said.

Birdwell said that the citizens of Balmorhea are very honored to receive this "very prestigious" award.

"This is just a huge, huge award for a community of that size," she said.

The members of the group plan to meet tonight to discuss who would be attending the convention in July.

Weinacht said they also have to prepare to give a presentation during the convention.

"We will make a video presentation for the convention in July about what we did around town," she said.

Weinacht said that the group would continue to beautify Balmorhea and hope to be able to apply for more funding in order to help with the cost of taking care of their city.

"The money's out there," she said. "But you're not going to get it unless you ask for it."

Pecos, Balmorhea graduation section to appear Friday

PECOS, Thurs., May 30, 2002 -- The Pecos Enterprise will be publishing their graduation special section for Pecos High School and Balmorhea High School students on Friday, as a special addition to the newspaper.

The tab will contain pictures of all the graduates for both Pecos High School and Balmorhea High School. Balmorhea seniors held their graduation ceremonies this past Saturday, while Pecos High School's graduation will take place at 8 p.m. on Friday.


PECOS, Thurs., May 30, 2002 -- High Wednesday 98. Low this morning 66. Forecast for  tonight: Partly cloudy. Lows in the mid 60s. East winds 5 to 10 mph. Friday:  Partly cloudy. Highs 95 to 100. East winds 5 to 10 mph. Friday night: Partly  cloudy. Lows in the mid 60s. Saturday: Partly cloudy. Highs near 100.  Sunday: Partly cloudy. Lows in the mid 60s. Highs in the mid 90s.

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Pecos Enterprise
York M. "Smokey" Briggs, Publisher
Division of Buckner News Alliance, Inc.

324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
Phone 915-445-5475, FAX 915-445-4321

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