Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas
Wednesday, August 13, 2003
Chamber told Fall Fair adding Old West events
By ROSIE FLORES
PECOS, Wed., Aug. 13, 2003 -- Old West re-enactors will be on hand for this
year's Reeves County Fall Fair, along with other events depicting the area's
history and a new chuckwagon cook-off, Pecos Chamber of Commerce members
were told on Tuesday.
"This year will be doing re-enactments and living history," said Debbie
Thomas, during the monthly Chamber Board of Directors meeting, held at the
Pecos Senior Center.
Thomas told the group that Gary Clay Allison, a descendant of the famous
gunfighter Clay Allison, would be on hand during the annual event.
"The museum will be doing living history and Mr. Allison, who also travels
to Fort Stockton for events such as this, will be here," said Thomas.
Thomas said that the group has scheduled a gunfight, "rowdy behavior"
and a toy monger will also be depicting American history. "We want to draw
more people out to the fall fair," said Thomas.
"We're also waiting to hear from some 'scandalous' women from El Paso,
that might come to Pecos to participate in our living history," said Thomas.
The Chuckwagon Cook-off is also a new addition to this year's fall fair.
"There will be eight chuckwagons that will participate," said Jason Garduno.
"They will set up Friday night."
The Chuckwagons will cook and be judged on several food items and then
the food will be offered to the public.
The Annual Barbecue Beef Cook-off will also be taking place that weekend
with few changes, according to organizer of the event Cody West.
"I would like to see more businesses and organizations involved this year,"
said West. "In that past few years entries have declined and before that,
there used to be a lot of businesses that participated," he said.
West said that he would like to see more entries in the annual event and
welcomed everyone to join.
Ranch rodeo events have also been expanded to be a two-day event. "Thanks
to the community, we had a good response when we went out to look for sponsors,"
said Garduno. "There are still a few sponsorships left if anybody is interested."
Chamber members were also given an update on the Hawaiian Beach Party
planned for Friday, Aug. 29 with a reception planned for 5-7 p.m., at West
Texas National Bank.
"We had a great response last year and hope this one is even better,"
said chamber director Linda Gholson.
Gholson said that if anybody wanted to start decorating now they could.
Chamber members voted not to have the Wayana Inka group back this year.
"The price keeps going up and we lost money the last time they were here,"
said chamber president Al Gomez.
Pecos Police Officer Mike Balog was guest speaker at the chamber luncheon
and talked to the group about implementing a "Business Watch," which would
work something like the neighborhood watch.
"We had our first neighborhood watch last Friday and had a great response,"
Balog told the group that neighborhood watches were important, but that
businesses also needed to look after each other. He offered his assistance
in implementing one or in offering tips to deter shoplifters and keeping
the businesses safe.
"I have about 40 different community projects that I am working on,"
said Balog, adding that businesses need to stick together and help each other
out, to deter criminals from vandalizing their businesses.
"They should also share information about shoplifters, to keep them from
coming to their businesses," he said.
Balog said that he also had a lot of material that businesses could use
to help them. "They can also do a map of their business and that way, when
we get a call we know where everything is," he said.
Balog said that he was available to the public to help with either a
neighborhood watch or business watch. "You can contact me at the police
department and I will be happy to help organize something," he said.
Balog also told Chamber members that the new group for the Citizens Academy
would be meeting on Tuesdays. "This will be for 10 weeks from 7-10 p.m.,"
There will also be two Saturdays that the group attends. "We go out to
the shooting range and learn and have a good time," he said.
Construction of the Skateboard Park at Seventh and Alamo streets is underway,
and the community has been really helpful, according to Balog.
Two employers were honored during the meeting by the Texas Workforce
Commission. Best Western and Swiss Clock Inn Restaurant employers, Jean
Wingett and Silvanna Licon received an award for demonstrating an extra
effort to benefit the workforce.
Wingett is manager of the Best Western Motel, while Licon is the manager
of the restaurant.
Rain fails to help raise Red Bluff Lake's level
By JON FULBRIGHT
PECOS, Wed., Aug. 13, 2003 -- Farmers downstream on the Pecos River still
aren't getting any water releases from Red Bluff Lake this summer, but that
didn't stop the lake from losing almost 3,000 acre/feet of water during
July, Red Bluff Water Power Control Board members were told during their
monthly meeting on Tuesday.
Meeting in Pecos, the board voted to keep the water allotment item on
the board's future agenda, but again opted not to authorize any water release
for irrigation from Red Bluff Lake, which has not had enough water to provide
irrigation downstream since the summer of 2001.
Levels last year dropped as low as 40,000 acre/feet at the lake, which
needs to release two acre/feet of water for every one that makes it downstream
to the seven irrigation districts. Meanwhile, the earthen Red Bluff Dam
needs at least 20,000 acre/feet of water in the lake to maintain structural
Winter water releases from New Mexico helped boost the lake's level as
high as 60,000 acre/feet earlier this year, and board members discussed
a late release if more rains hit the area. However, managing director Randal
Hartman said the lake lost water due to heat and wind evaporation in July,
falling to 54,376 acre/feet on Aug. 1, from 57,029 on July 1.
"During a rainstorm last week we didn't gain an inch. We actually lost
storage during the storm," he said, adding that the lack of significant
summer rains means a late-season water release is unlikely.
"I don't want to rule it out, but we'll just keep it on there (the agenda)
at this late date," he said. "We don't have enough water to wet the canals
Despite the lack of revenue from water sales, board members were told
the district's finances were in good shape.
"At the end of October we should be at or above where we were last year,"
he said. The district has $233,492 on deposit at Security State Bank in
Pecos and another $529,745 in its interest account at U.S. Trust in Fort
Worth, which is part of the 1989 settlement between Texas and New Mexico
that paid the Red Bluff District $14 million in damages for violations of
the 1946 Pecos River Water Compact.
Board members were also updated on the Malaga Bend salt alleviation project
during the meeting. Hartman said the district would file papers in Carlsbad,
N.M. to allow Loving Salt Co. to increase its pumping at Malaga Bend by
an additional 200 acre/feet.
Loving Salt is pumping water from a salt spring that feeds into the Pecos
River into man-made ponds, where water is evaporated and the salt eventually
will be mined for sale. Currently 450 gallons of water a minute is being
pumped into the ponds, and Hartman said, "For every gallon, it has 2.2 pounds
"The city of Pecos' water probably has about 1,500 parts (of salt) per
million. This is 15,000 parts per million," he added.
With the increase in pumping, Hartman said Loving Salt would build additional
ponds in the Malaga Bend area.
As of now, the pumping has not lowered the salt content entering Red
Bluff Lake, but board member Lloyd Goodrich said it would take time to lower
the water level of the spring that bubbles up into the river at Malaga Bend.
"There's no way to gauge how much is running in the interface right now,"
Hartman also told Goodrich that information on salt levels above and
below Malaga Bend should soon be available on-line. Earlier in the meeting,
the board tabled another issue involving the Internet, declining for now
to pay for part of the satellite Internet service at Red Bluff Lake for
employee Tommy Moseley.
Moseley is seeking a one-year payment of $50 per month for the satellite,
while he would pay the $59 monthly access fee.
"I don't see any problem if we had more money coming in, but I'd like
to wait on it," said Hartman. "He is isolated up there, and his wife uses
it and his children will need it."
Goodrich said Moseley can also use the service to check the gauges on
the Internet, when those figures are put on-line.
Amigo's owner to open bids on sale of holdings
By JENNIFER GALVAN
PECOS, Wed., Aug. 13, 2003 -- Rio Grand Distributors plans to hold a liquidation
sale Thursday in Midland of its West Texas convenience store and retail
gasoline operations. But founding partner, Jerry Smith said that neither
of Amigo's Texaco stores in Pecos would be shut down.
"There are no plans to close anything," Smith said.
Both of the Pecos Amigo's stores are located on South Cedar Street, one
at 14th Street and the other on Interstate 20.
The auction, which begins tomorrow, will also include stores in Marfa,
Alpine, Fort Stockton, Odessa, Midland, Sonora and Toyah. It will also include
the company headquarters and a half-acre vacant lot in Fort Stockton, the
bulk oil plant in Marfa and a handful of tanker trucks and trailers.
"We will receive bids tomorrow and then decide from there," Smith said.
In regards to whether one of Pecos's Amigos was sold to an outside bidder
and the other one was not, Smith said that they would still continue to
run the remaining store.
"If we don't sell it all, we will continue to operate what is left,"
Smith told the Big Bend Sentinel for its August 7 edition.
According to the Sentinel, sealed bids were being accepted until Tuesday,
August 5, at 5 p.m. When the deadline had passed, the Amigos in Marfa and
one of the three Alpine properties had received bid but the names of the
bidding parties were withheld.
Properties left unsold will be offered at tomorrow's noon auction held
at the Midland Hilton.
Texaco gas card accounts currently run out of the Marfa bulk oil plant
would likely be transferred to the new owner, Tranzon Haley told the Sentinel.
Council changes time for meeting
PECOS, Wed., Aug. 13, 2003 -- The Town of Pecos City Council has rescheduled
the time for its regular morning meeting on August 14.
The time was changed from its normal 7 a.m. start due to that fact that
a quorum would not be in attendance because of a teacher workshop in Odessa
The meeting will be held at 5:30 p.m. in the council chambers at City
Commissioners set meeting on hiring attorneys
PECOS, Wed., Aug. 13, 2003 -- Reeves County Commissioners will hold a
special meeting at 4 p.m., Thursday, in the third floor courtroom.
The group will discuss a proposal to hire attorneys to investigate and
file all claims for under-valuations of real property (mineral interest only)
for purposes of determining liability for ad valorem taxes, and underpayment
of ad valorem taxes, and underpayment and non-payment of royalty interests
and for any further recovery of all related claims.
The group will also take action on semi-monthly bills.
Caverns' yearly bat flight event set
PECOS, Wed., Aug. 13, 2003 -- Carlsbad Caverns will be hosting its 46th
Annual Bat Flight Breakfast at sunrise on Thursday at the entrance to the
caverns, located 95 miles northwest of Pecos.
The event, which will go from 6 to 8 a.m. CDT, gives visitors the opportunity
to see the bats return to the Carlsbad Caverns after a night foraging for
insects. The bat colony, estimated at 300,000, is capable of eating literally
tons of insects a night.
Before entering the cave the bats circle several hundred feet overhead
and then dive in clusters into the natural entrance.
The price of the outdoor breakfast will cost $6 for adults and $3 for
children ages 12 and under, and will be served by National Park Service
employee volunteers near the bat flight amphitheater.
Park rangers will serve up eggs and sausage, as well as interpretive information
about the bat colony and their early morning return flight.
The first 75 visitors will be treated to a special guided tour into the
Carlsbad Caverns via the natural entrance. Entrance to the self-guided portions
of the cave will be free to all Bat Flight Breakfast participants.
The annual event was started in 1958 by park employees as a way to encourage
visitors to come and watch the spectacular morning return flight of the
Mexican free-tailed bats to the caverns. The event is held on the second
Thursday of August and has attracted 300 to 500 spectators.
For more information you may call (505) 785-3024 or visit the park's
website at www.nps.gov/cave/.
PECOS, Wed., Aug. 13, 2003 -- High Tues. 96. Low this morning 70. Forecast
for tonight: Partly cloudy with isolated thunderstorms. Lows in the lower
60s. SE winds 5 to 15 mph. Thurs.: Partly cloudy with a 20 percent chance
of thunderstorms. Highs in the mid 80s. SE winds 5 to 15 mph. Thurs. night:
Mostly cloudy with a 30 percent chance of thunderstorms. Lows near 60. Fri.:
Partly cloudy with a slight chance of showers and thunderstorms. Highs in
the lower 80s. The chance of rain 20 percent.
Victor Prieto and Janie N. Rodriguez
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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Copyright 2003 by Pecos Enterprise