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Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Friday, October 6, 2006

Glass, metalwork exhibitions at depot

The weather is cooling down with the arrival of fall, but Dale Battle’s workplace is heating up the old Pecos railroad depot.

The future site of the Texas Rodeo Hall of Fame is serving as the temporary site for glass blowing demonstrations by Battle and three other artists on Friday and Saturday, while other metal work and metal casting will also be demonstrated inside the depot at First and Oak streets.

The glass and metalwork exhibitions are part of a group of downtown art events being held this weekend in conjunction with the Reeves County Fall Fair. The West of the Pecos Museum is hosting the Off the Wall Art Exhibit of Texas high school art, which opened on Tuesday and runs through the weekend, while local students are invited to participate in the Chalk One Up for Art event at Windmill Square.

Pecos High School art teacher Walter Holland said that while the glass blowers that will be performing the demonstrations are from out of town, the equipment belongs to the school, and was set up inside the depot on Wednesday.

“Today they’re just getting used to the equipment. Tomorrow it will be open to the public,” Holland said.

Battle was busy working on a glass hummingbird feeder Thursday morning, while PHS teacher Cary Hannsz was busy setting up his metal work equipment. Holland said the others who’ll be working on the glass exhibition re Vickie Bunting and Angie Heath out of the Lubbock area, and Carole D’assandro from San Antonio. Lloyd Collins of Pyote will be conducting the casting demonstrations.

Battle is from Houston, but said he has taught glassblowing workshops at Texas Tech, along with other locations closer to home. “I work a little at home at my studio, when my wife lets me,” he said, while heating up the base of the hummingbird feeder to widen the opening for the feeder tray.

For this weekend’s demonstrations, Battle said he has a number of possible options for projects. “Bird feeders, bowls, vases, oil lamps, sculptures, just about anything,” he said. The equipment he and the others will be using includes a glass furnace, where the glass is heated and molded, along with a lehr, a heated box where the glass is placed after its blown and molded into its final shape.

“If you leave the glass out it will be like (glass) at the end of the pipe. It will shatter,” he said. “If you put it in here and leave it for the rest of the day, it cools down slowly and doesn’t break.”

The other piece of equipment, which Battle wasn’t using on Wednesday, is called a glory hole, which is used for reheating the pipes and poles used in the process. “I didn’t have it turned on today, but normally the only time you put them in the glass furnace is to reheat the glass,” Battle said.

He said that there’s a difference between doing demonstrations like the ones this weekend in Pecos, and conducting workshops for beginning students, both in the time involved and in the number of people needed to carry out the process without breaking the glass.

“I work by myself at home and don’t have a problem with the equipment, but when I don’t work for a while then my timing is off, and I just have to sweep it up and start over again,” he said. “With students, I can sit down and do something in 15 minutes that they’ll fight for an hour and a half. Hopefully, the better they get the less time is involved, and with students, when it’s a group project it moves quicker if you’ve got a team helping you.”

The glass and metal exhibitions will be from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. on Friday and Saturday at the Missouri Pacific Railroad Depot, while the Off the Wall Art Exhibit will be open during regular hours at the museum, and the Chalk One Up for Art event will be from 1 to 4 p.m. on Saturday at Windmill Square.

Holland said PHS teacher Diana Lucas would be in charge of Saturday’s event, while art teachers from around the region would be in Pecos to view the displays, as part of a meeting of the Texas Art Education Association. Holland was named Art Teacher of the Year by the association, and former PHS student Javier Orona was one of the 100 students in Texas to have a piece of artwork selected for the Off the Wall Art Exhibit.

The arts events are sponsored by Pecos Main Street, the Texas Commission on Art, the Texas Art Association, Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD and the West of the Pecos Museum.

Fall Fair’s official opening set for Friday

Judging already has taken place in several categories for the Reeves County Fall Fair, though the official opening of the 62nd annual event won’t be until 1 p.m. on Friday.

Entries were accepted and judged earlier this week in several arts and crafts divisions. Food entries will be taken Friday morning, from 7:30 to 10 a.m. with judging in the Home Economics and Art Exhibits set for 10 a.m. Entries will be taken until 7 p.m. for the Reeves County Fall Fair Livestock Show, and until 5 p.m. for the Fall Fair Barbeque Cook-off. Opening ceremonies are set for 1 p.m., with the Veteran’s color guard and flag raising ceremony.

From 4:30 p.m. until 7:30 p.m., the weigh-in will take place for livestock show at the Civic Center, and from 4-10 p.m., the Pecos Eagle Band Boosters will sponsor their Enchilada Plate Sale.

At 6 p.m., the Reeves County Sheriff’s Posse Championship Barbecue Cook-off gets underway, at the Reeves County Sheriff’s Posse Arena. Entries are being taken until 5 p.m. on Friday at the KIUN/KPTX studios at 316 S. Cedar Street. As of Thursday, this year’s event already had about 20 more entries than last year’s cook-off.

From 6-9 p.m., the Kids Craft Corner will be on display and the fall fair will officially close for the day at 10 p.m., though access to the cook-off campsites at the Posse Arena will remain open all night.

On Saturday the Pecos Rotary Club will host a pancake breakfast from 7-10 a.m. and the fair will officially open at 8 a.m.

At 9 a.m., the Livestock Show Judging will begin at the Reeves County Civic Center and the barbecue brisket /spareribs cook-off judging begins at 11 a.m. at the sheriff’s posse arena. From noon until 8 p.m., the Kids Craft Corner will be on display and open to the children in the community; at 3:30 p.m., the pet show will take place at the civic center; at 4:30 the bicycle show will begin and from 1-10 p.m., the Band Boosters will hold their enchilada plate sale once again.

From 5-6 p.m., the Stick Horse Rodeo will start at the civic center and the fall fair will officially conclude at 10 p.m.

All entries will need to be picked up at the civic center on Sunday, during clean-up at the Civic Center. Items not picked up will be taken to the Pecos Area Chamber of Commerce Office, 111 S. Cedar, or for information call 445-2406.

Leads still sought in disappearance of Carrasco

Three years after the disappearance of a young lady from a residence in Balmorhea, her family continues to search for her, while local law enforcement officials say they also are continuing to investigate the case.

Monica Carrasco has been missing since October 1, 2003, but her mother, Kathy Carrasco is still hopeful that she will get her daughter back someday.

The 16-year-old disappeared from her uncle’s home in Balmorhea sometime between the late evening of Oct. 1 and the early morning of Oct. 2. Searches were conducted without success in the days and weeks following her disappearance in and around the Balmorhea area.

The last major search was conducted in 2004 with volunteers, search parties and a helicopter.

The search was conducted after Carrasco’s mother, Kathy Carrasco, contacted The Laura Recovery Center for missing children out of Friendswood, to coordinate a volunteer search for her daughter.

At that time, the group also brought in four cadaver dogs, a cadaver horse and mule. Carrasco said that her daughter is a bright, warm and loving person, but that she is easily impressed and can be easily manipulated.

“We have put out the information nationwide and every time we get a lead, we follow up on it,” said Reeves County Sheriff Andy Gomez.

Gomez said that they sometimes receive calls from individuals who claim that they have spotted her. “We always follow up on these calls, but we still don’t know where she is, because these tips haven’t panned out,” he said.

“We follow all the leads and continue to talk to different people in different places,” said Gomez.

According to a report from the TV show “America’s Most Wanted,” Monica Carrasco had trouble coping with the loss of her father, who died of a heart attack in the midst of suffering from bone cancer. She went to live with her aunt and uncle in Balmorhea, Velma and Bela Baeza.

On Oct. 1, 2003, Monica and the Baezas went to bed around the same time. When the couple awoke the next morning the teen was gone. The family immediately contacted local law enforcement agencies.

Shortly before her disappearance, Carrasco was in the hospital for bouts of anorexia and depression. She had trouble coping with depression and anorexia after her father passed away.

A county-wide search was called to try to find Monica. Reeves County Sheriff’s Department and U.S. Border Patrol agents searched on foot, from helicopters and with canine rescue units. More than 600 local residents participated.

Carrasco was last seen wearing a beige nightgown and walking barefoot holding a Bible. In 2003, she was 5’5” and weighed 110 pounds, black hair with red streaks, brown eyes and 5-foot-5 in height. She has a small mole on her cheek and a chicken pox scar near her hairline on her forehead.

She would be turning 20 in December 2006.

Carrasco’ mother said she thinks her daughter is still out there. “I think it will be related to religion, because she was searching for religion, for something,” said Kathy Carrasco. Individuals can call the Reeves County Sheriff’s Office at 432-445-4901 or the local Crime Stoppers, 432-445-9898, Midland Crime Stoppers at 432-694-TIPS or 1-800-7-LOCKUP or any local law enforcement agency with any information that might be beneficial to the investigation.

Crime Stoppers would like to stress that callers will remain anonymous and that no caller ID is ever used on a call.

Weather radio station for area starts broadcast

Residents in the area will now be able to receive more information on the weather, thanks to a new system that was installed and is up and ready.

As of Tuesday Reeves County and the surrounding areas now have NOAA Weather Radio service forecasting from the Midland, Texas Weather Office. Broadcast audio will originate from WFO, the NOAA radio station in Midland.

“As of today, residents in Reeves County and surrounding areas can monitor weather condition 24/7 in the Reeves County area,” said Reeves County Emergency Coordinator Ricky Herrera.

Herrera said that he had talked to the weather service maintenance people, who said that they would be in Reeves County in a couple of weeks to do a final check.

“They will do another survey at that time and it will give us the range,” said Herrera. “We want to encourage everyone to purchase a NOAA radio.”

Weather radios can be purchased in most electronic stores and also local retailers have been advised of the need to stock weather radios. Businesses in the Reeves County area will need to stock weather radios. Weather Radios for Reeves County area will need to be programmed to frequency 162.450 MHz. Emergency radio scanners when programmed to that frequency can also pick up the station.

NOAA Weather Radio also serves as an early warning system for Reeves County residents and surrounding areas, when severe weather strikes.

Reeves County is now part of a NOAA Weather Network that covers most of our nation. NWR is also an all hazards public warning system on non-weather related emergencies in our area.

Herrera said weather radios should be standard equipment in every home, and should also keep in all public places to include hospital, schools, places of worship, nursing home, restaurants, grocery stores, recreation centers, office buildings, sports facilities, theaters, retail stores, bus and train stations, airports, marinas and other public-gathering places.

The tower is located 15 miles south of Pecos, a mile west of U.S. 285, on Farm Road 2007. Herrera said that before this service, weather updates would come in through law enforcement and also through the local radio station, which would then broadcast it to the public.

“And now you can get that information instantly,” he said.

Herrera said that this service was not just for weather only, but also for train derailments, terrorists alerts, hazards, oil spills and other casualties.

“This will not only cover Reeves County, but Loving, Wink, and Ward counties as well,” said Herrera. He added the signal should also reach Fort Stockton, 35 miles southeast of the tower.

Herrera was instrumental in utilizing a USDA - Rural Utilities Service Grant to fund the new site. NWS said that they sincerely appreciate Herrera’s fortitude, the assistance of RMS and Project Manager Phil Shideler, Cecil Tevis for his remedy of a difficult telecom installation, and Real Property Specialist Sylvia Budinich for her assistance in promptly securing a government lease.

“We’ve never had this service here before and now that we do, we want to encourage everyone to have a NOAA radio at any public place,” said Herrera. “You can even have it in your car and receive updates while traveling.”

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Pecos Enterprise
York M. "Smokey" Briggs, Publisher
324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
Phone 432-445-5475, FAX 432-445-4321

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