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Top Stories

Wednesday, September 29, 1999

OC trustees OK Pecos campus' building plans

By PEGGY McCRACKEN
Staff Writer

PECOS, Sept. 29, 1999 -- Odessa College trustees on Tuesday hired Frank Spencer as construction manager for repairs and remodeling of the former White's building that will be used for extension classes in Pecos.

They also voted to hire an architect as required by the government.

Dean Ned Pilcher, who oversees all of OC's extension campuses, said that the application for an $800,000 grant was pushed into the new fiscal year that begins Oct. 1, and formal approval is expected shortly thereafter. Funds could be received before November 1, he said.

"We received a letter from EDA giving us permission to go ahead and start construction on our own risk," Pilcher said. "They voted to start construction. When the grant comes in, we will just refund the money we are going to spend."

In the event the grant application is rejected, local taxing entities and businesses that have pledged funds to refurbish the building would be liable for the costs, and the plans would be scaled back, Pilcher said.

With the grant, the completed campus will be a Cadillac facility, Pilcher said.

A new roof with 10 to 12 new air conditioning units installed is part of the plan, although repairs to two sections would suffice if necessary, he said.

Inside, the college plans to partition the large showrooms into offices and classrooms. The automotive bays will be used for diesel mechanics and other vocational programs, and they could be used as-is, he said.

"Diesel mechanics programs are pretty anxious to come in," he said. "With contributions from engine manufacturers, we could set engine stands out there on the concrete floors and put engines in very quickly."

Other classes will be meeting at various school campuses and possibly the Reeves County Civic Center until the building is completed next April.

Center director Michelle Workman said today that she is arranging for classroom space and for teachers for the spring semester while providing orientation for prospective students.

Already 95 students are enrolled in academic classes, including high school students who are taking college courses along with their high school curriculum.

Barbara Scown is teaching a high school biology class that qualifies for college credit. Students who have enrolled and paid OC tuition get dual credit for the course, Workman said.

Some students are in self-paced courses, while others use the Internet. Another 70-80 are enrolled at Pyote.

Pilcher said the Pyote campus will remain active through the spring semester, and then will likely be closed. Once those students move to the Pecos campus, and other prospective students enroll, Pilcher expects Pecos' enrollment to increase to 300-400 students.

Monahans, Kermit and Wink students attending classes in Pyote will still have classes, but in a different location, Pilcher said. He is considering Wickett, which would be a shorter drive for all three locations.

Workman said she has had good response, both from prospective students and from Pecos people wanting to teach classes.

"Everyone is taken into consideration based on their credentials and what they want to teach," she said. "For academic classes, they have to have a master's degree and 18 hours of graduate work. It has been very difficult for me to find people."

All classes are in the evenings now, except for the high school courses, but once the center is available, classes could be at any time of the day students request, Pilcher said.

Once a secretary is hired for Workman, she will be able to get out into the community and hold orientation sessions for parents and students, Pilcher said. Workman has been working with them individually in her office, and "telling each one the same thing."

She said she hopes to meet with both parents and students at Pecos High School to help them get acquainted with the college catalog of courses and possibilities for financial aid.

She will also go into the classrooms to recruit students, but feels the parents need to know about the process as well.

"It has been fun and interesting," Workman said of the job she began in the summer. "I am learning every step of the way."

Pilcher said that Workman faxed him a list of classes people have been asking for. "We will try to get with the department chairs and build those classes, then house the classes all over Pecos," he said.

Class size must average 15, but that doesn't mean every class has to have 15 enrolled, he said.

"If we have a small group who needs a class to complete a degree, we may make it with five or six. But we would make it up with another class of 30 to make our average," he said.

In addition to formal enrollment, many non-credit students are taking the courses, he said. Introduction to computer systems is one course that has 12-16 enrolled for credit, but numerous others sitting in that are not counted, he said.

Once the building is finished, they will be moved on campus.

Pilcher said that the OC board chose Spencer as construction manager for the remodeling based on his credentials and other jobs he has done.

"They were quite satisfied," he said. "He has been involved since the early stages of the planning and has basically designed what we want to do. We are looking good."

Hiring a construction manager relieves OC of having to take bids for a general contractor. He engages sub-contractors to do the work.

"I am real gratified to see the response," Pilcher said. "I am just antsy. I have been working for this a long time. I am hoping to see it finished before I retire."

Homecoming events to begin Thursday

By ROSIE FLORES
Staff Writer
PECOS, Sept. 29, 1999 -- One lucky Pecos High School girl will be crowned 1999 Homecoming Queen this Friday evening at the Eagle Stadium, one of several events planned in conjunction with the Eagles' home football game against the Kermit Yellowjackets.

Vying for the title of Homecoming Queen are seniors, Syra Rodriguez, Sara Matta and Dana Warren. Junior Duchess is Nicole Payne, Sophomore Princess is Mireya Gomez and representing the freshman class is Abby Romo.

Theme for this year's homecoming is, "That Was Then, This Is Now," and events will begin with the 1999 homecoming parade on Thursday afternoon.

Line-up for the parade will begin at 4:30 p.m., at Second and Eddy streets. The parade will start at 5 p.m. and will travel down Eddy Street, then travel in front of the high school and continue down Park and Jefferson streets past the baseball field, tennis courts and practice field. It will end in the parking lot of the football field on Iowa Street.

Thursday was named, "The 80's," everyone is encouraged to dress in the punk rock era, spiked hair, colored hair and far-out clothes.

The bonfire _ which was vandalized Tuesday night _ will be rebuilt and will be held as scheduled on Thursday, beginning at 8 p.m.

Friday is "Purple and Gold Future," use your imagination.

An ex's tea is scheduled for 1 p.m., in the high school library, sponsored by the PHS National Honor Society.

At 2:40 p.m., the pep rally will be held in the new gym, with introduction of the Homecoming Court.

The Eagles will face Kermit at 7:30 p.m. at Eagle Stadium, and the Homecoming Queen coronation will be held during halftime.

Students to rebuild torched bonfire

By PEGGY McCRACKEN
Staff Writer
PECOS, Sept. 29, 1999 -- Bonfire!

It was a little early, but the Pecos Eagle homecoming bonfire burned brightly Tuesday night and early this morning.

Fire Marshal Jack Brookshire said that someone set the woodpile on fire shortly before midnight Tuesday, and he made the decision to let it burn rather than put water on it and make a mess.

"When we got there it was already fully involved," he said. "There was no way to put it out. I made the decision not to put water on it."

Pecos High School students are cleaning up the site and said they will have a bonfire as planned Thursday if they have to work all night on it, Brookshire said.

"It was pretty good sized. It took about an hour to burn down," Brookshire said of the first woodpile.

With homecoming this weekend, students had planned the bonfire for 8 p.m. Thursday in a field near the rifle range.

Fair's cookoff on despite shortage of entries

By ROSIE FLORES
Staff Writer
PECOS, Sept. 29, 1999 -- Despite only 19 entries as of early this morning, the 27th Annual World's Championship Barbecue Beef Cookoff will be held as planned this weekend at the Reeves County Sheriff's Posse.

"After talking to all the ones that have already signed up, we've decided to go ahead and have the yearly event," said Pecos Chamber of Commerce Director Tom Rivera, who earlier said the event would need a minimum of 25 entries to break even.

Rivera said that everyone he had talked to had opted to go ahead with the event, even though it might mean less prize money.

"At this time, the amount of prize money to be given out will depend on the number of entries," said Rivera.

In order to give more people time to sign up, the deadline to enter has been moved back two days, to 5 p.m. Friday. "We always have some that come in at the last minute and we want to give them a chance to come register if they want to participate," said chamber office manager Rachel Orona.

Entry fee is $75 and plenty of space is still available. There were 40 entries in last year's cookoff.

"We also have some that come in from out-of-town, that haven't made it in yet," said Orona.

The cookoff is being held in conjunction with the Reeves County Fall Fair, at the Reeves County Civic Center, and the annual Fall Fair concert. The livestock show, along with art and culinary events, will be held at the Reeves County Civic Center on Friday and Saturday.

A pet show will also be held at the Civic Center, starting at 5 p.m. Saturday. The show is sponsored by Zavala Middle School with judging in big dog, medium dog and small dog divisions, along with exotic pets and cats. Prizes will be awarded. No pre-registration is necessary.

The concert is scheduled for Saturday at the Buck Jackson Rodeo Arena, with the doors opening at 6 p.m. Headlining the event will be Pete Astudillo, Los Jinetes del Bravo, Alianza, La Distancia and Expresiones. Tickets for the concert are $10 for adults, with free admission for children accompanied by parents.

Commissioners to consider on payroll issues


PECOS, Sept. 29, 1999 -- Reeves County Commissioners will hold an "emergency" meeting at 4 p.m., today, on the third floor of the Reeves County Courthouse.

Commissioners will discuss the Trans Pecos Drug Task Force payroll and expenses, along with payroll and expenses for the Reeves County Juvenile Detention Center.

Health Fair tests offered on Saturday

By ROSIE FLORES
Staff Writer

PECOS, Sept. 29, 1999 -- In what kind of health are you? The answer to your health questions can be answered this weekend at the American Home Health and Hospice Health Fair, scheduled for Saturday morning in downtown Pecos.

"We'll have numerous blood tests available at very reduced prices," said Director of Nurses Ava Gerke.

The event will be held from 7:30 a.m. until 11 a.m. at the American Home Health and Hospice building, 315 S. Oak.

"The reason we want to start so early is because some of the tests require that you fast," said Gerke.

SMAC tests, which tell cholesterol levels; CBS, complete blood count; Thyroid Profile, which screens for anemia, diabetes and thyroid problems, are just a few of the tests that will be available at a very low price.

"The Thyroid Profile will tell if you have an overactive or underactive thyroid, and imbalances in electrolytes," said Gerke.

The PSA Test, for men only, which screens for prostate cancer will be available. "This is an excellent tool for early detection of prostate cancer in men," said Gerke.

The Mobile Mammography Unit will be at the health fair. To schedule an appointment for mammograms call 1-800-222-8388.

"In addition, there will be information on several topics, such as diabetic diet, diets and social services available," said Gerke, and self-help rehab will be available. "This is good for individuals who have had a stroke or don't get around as well as they used to," she said.

Blood oxygen saturation tests will be held. "And this is painless, no needles involved," said Gerke. "It's an excellent test, without any pain," she said.

Trans Pecos Health Clinic Physician's Assistant Patricia Kane will be offering EKG's for anyone interested in having that exam done. Cholesterol screening, by Pecos Valley Rural Health Clinic Physician's Assistant Michele Cser, will also be offered.

Flu shots will be given for $5, or the fair organizers can bill Medicare. "This is the best time to get a flu shot, which is one of the reasons we scheduled the health fair for this weekend," said Gerke.

Pre-registration will be held Friday, but it is not mandatory to attend the event.

"It's not necessary to pre-register, but for people that would like to get ahead and don't want to wait long the following day," she said.

Transportation will be provided to those individuals that would like to attend the fair, but don't have a ride. "All they have to do is call our office," said Gerke. For a ride call 445-3330.

Gerke said that refreshments would be set up. "Everyone will be really hungry after fasting for some of these tests," she said.

Lotto

AUSTIN (AP) Results of the Cash 5 drawing Tuesday night: Winning numbers drawn: 11-17-26-29-39. Number matching five of five: 3. Prize per winner: $28,330. Winning tickets sold in: DeSoto, Friona, Joshua. Matching four of five: 259. Prize: $492.

***

AUSTIN (AP) The winning Pick 3 numbers drawn Tuesday by the Texas Lottery, in order: 1-6-3 (one, six, three)

Weather

PECOS, Sept. 29, 1999 -- High Tuesday 77; low last night 51. Tonight, partly cloudy. Lows in the mid 40s. Northeast to east wind 5-15 mph. Thursday, mostly sunny. High in the lower 80s. Southeast wind 5-15 mph. Extended forecast, Thursday night, partly cloudy. Low in the lower 50s. Friday through Sunday, sunny days and fair nights. Highs from the upper 80s to lower 90s.



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Pecos Enterprise
York M. "Smokey" Briggs, Publisher
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