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Today's Features

  • Sangre de Cristo Chorale seeks college-bound 2014 high school graduates dedicated to vocal music. The mailing deadline is April 1 and seniors are encouraged to apply for a $500 scholarship awarded to students dedicated to singing.
    The Hastings Smith Memorial Vocal Scholarship is among the musical education opportunities offered by the Santa Fe-based Sangre de Cristo Chorale to enrich the lives of young people in the region.
    The chorale, now in its 36th year, awards the scholarship to two applicants per year who want to excel in singing. Strong candidates will demonstrate a strong past achievement and future interest in singing, although intent to major in vocal music is not necessary. The award is based on strength of application and is intended to encourage continuing pursuit of vocal music.
    To be considered, graduating seniors must submit a letter of application describing the following:
    • musical experience and accomplishments
    • goals in pursuing further study of vocal music
    • plans in using the award to assist in vocal music progress

  • Big Brothers Big Sisters of Los Alamos County currently serves children, with the support of Los Alamos Public Schools, at all five elementary schools and is in need of “Bigs” to serve as Lunch Buddies for the 2014-15 school year.
    The mission of Big Brothers Big Sisters is to help children reach their potential through professionally-supported, one-to-one mentoring relationships with measurable impact.
    To be a Big Brother or Big Sister in the Los Alamos school based program, “Bigs” are asked for a one-year commitment, and to meet with their “Little Brother/Little Sister” once a week during their lunch period. BBBS-NNM will complete a background check and take finger prints, as well as, train and nurture the relationships built with our youth. To become a Lunch Buddy contact Dawn Brown, Los Alamos/Rio Arriba regional director, dawn.brown@bbbs-nnm.org, or call 614-4231.
     

  • Time is running out on Early Bird registration for the 2014 Dog Jog in White Rock on Saturday, April 26. Register before April 6 and pay a reduced fee. There will be a new location for this year’s event. It will be in front of the White Rock United Methodist Church across from the entrance to Overlook Park.
    The Dog Jog is coordinated by the Los Alamos Dog Obedience Club, Mountain Canine Corps, and the Atomic City Roadrunners as a fundraising benefit for the Los Alamos Friends of the Shelter. The Friends of the Shelter is a local nonprofit organization that provides medical services and needed items for animals at the Los Alamos Animal Shelter and throughout northern New Mexico. The organization also sponsors a very active volunteer program that helps the animals by providing socialization, exercise and training.

  • Hedy Dunn has taken on many volunteer responsibilities. Since retiring from her position as director of the Historical Museum in 2011, which she held for 33 years, she has given her time to Pajarito Environmental Education Center (PEEC), the Santa Fe Opera, Bandelier National Monument, the Fuller Lodge Historic District Advisory Board and the Los Alamos Historical Society.
    She has volunteered at PEEC since 2011.
    “I volunteer because I believe in the organization and enjoy what goes on at PEEC,” Dunn said in a recent interview with the nature center. “I thought I could bring a certain degree of expertise to the table that could be valuable to PEEC.”
    Dunn serves on the PEEC Advisory Board.
    Her first job as a board member was treasurer. She is currently involved in the Certified Wildlife Habitat initiative and has been helping fund funding for new exhibits in the Nature Center that is scheduled to open in 2015.
    Dunn said she is amazed how the Historical Museum and PEEC have evolved since her early days of involvement. “I don’t think we had any inkling of what PEEC would become today. We wanted a place to get together to foster environmental education for people of all ages,” she said.

  • Today
    A chapter of The Compassionate Friends will meet on the fourth Tuesday of each month at 7 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on the northeast side of the new YMCA Annex, Central Park Square, suite 140. Co-led by Eric Ferm and Valerie Wood. The organization offers non-denominational grief support after the death of a child. Bereaved parents and grandparents are welcome regardless of age. For more information visit compassionatefriends.org.

    “Sisters in Art — Sisters at Heart,” shows daily in the Portal Gallery of Fuller Lodge Art Center. Daily through April 26.

    The 19th Annual Los Alamos Photographers Show. Daily through March 28 at the Mesa Public Library Upstairs Art Gallery.
    Wednesday
    The Republican Party of Los Alamos will have a fundraising dinner 6:30 p.m. at the Research Center, 4200 W. Jemez Road. Secretary of State Dianna Duran will be the keynote speaker. Price is $50 per person. Checks should be made payable to Republican Party of Los Alamos and mailed to P.O. Box 832, Los Alamos. For more information, contact Robert Gibson, 662-3159.

    Los Alamos Community of Atheists will have its monthly meeting from 6:30 to 8 p.m. upstairs at Mesa Public Library. This month there will be an open discussion — bring questions or thoughts to share. Email losalamoscommunityofatheists@gmail.com or on Facebook.

  • The last asset in the Positive Values category is No. 30, Restraint. That is when a young person believes it is important not to be sexually active, or to use alcohol or other drugs.
    So, I will start out with the data, because I’m sure it keeps some people reading the rest of the column. The survey for 2009 has the data at 47 percent. The 2013 data has the more recent number at 51 percent.
    I have two thoughts about these numbers. One that I have mentioned before, is that if your vehicle only worked half of the time, would that be OK? If you only got paid for 51 percent of your work week, would that be OK?
    So, only half of the time, youth are making the right choice, when it comes to drugs and alcohol.
    The other difference is that, I’ll bet if you spoke to almost anyone that works regularly with youth, they would say things are much more stressful now than they were five years ago.
    Do we know all of the reasons why we believe that to be true? No, but something needs to change and it needs to change soon.
    One way to get involved is to come to the showing of, “Race To Nowhere,” 6:30 p.m. Thursday at UNM-LA. The student-led production will include resources from several local programs available to families and ways even those without children can help.

  • Light diffraction, gravity and black holes might be typical subjects for a college lecture hall…or a second grade classroom at Barranca Elementary School.
    This semester students in Melanie Haagenstad’s and Kay Swadener’s classes have begun a six-lesson program introducing physics. This unit is made possible through a Los Alamos Public School Foundation Great Ideas Grant awarded to Haagenstad last fall. 
    The lessons are created and taught by Nicole Lloyd-Ronning, an astrophysicist affiliated with Los Alamos National Laboratory. With three young children of her own, Lloyd-Ronning has a gift for making high-level concepts accessible to early elementary students by breaking down the topics into simple concepts and by coupling instruction with a variety of hands-on experiments.

  •  The Los Alamos Animal Shelter, 226 East Road, 662-8179, has a great selection of adoptable pets just waiting for their forever home! Dogs and cats are great at chasing away the blues on cold nights, so come adopt a new friend today! Be sure to check out the Petfinder website for pictures of the adorable adoptable animals:

  • April is National Poetry month. The Mesa Public Library is celebrating a few days early as Quotes: The Authors Speak Series presents Veronica Golos and Andrea Watson, noted poets and publishers. The presentation is set for 7 p.m. March 27 at the upstairs rotunda.
    Golos is acquisitions editor and Watson is founding publisher and editor of 3: A Taos Press, a multicultural and ethically voiced publishing house, dedicated to fostering and honoring the work of writers of all cultures. The press places an emphasis on poetry manuscripts.
    Golos is an accomplished poet, teacher, editor, curator and activist. Her early writing was inspired by blues singers and the gospel and  protest songs of the 1960s.
    Her own poetry looks beneath the “accepted truths” to  investigate other possible perceptions. Golos’ first book, “A Bell Buried Deep,” (Story Line Press) was a co-winner of the 2004 Nicholas Roerich Poetry Prize. Her book, “No Ordinary Women,” was adapted for stage in New York’s Theatre Row, and at Claremont Theological Seminary in California. Her latest book, “Vocabulary of Silence” (Red Hen Press), won the 2011 New Mexico Book Award, for best single book of poetry.

  • The month of March found a new idea coming to life at Los Alamos High School, The Listening Post.
    As New Mexico SBA testing springs into action, The Listening Post will be open with a friendly ear as a place to stop by and pick up a snack on the way to or in between testing times.
    The times will vary and posters will be displayed around campus to let students know that The Listening Post is “open.”
    Listening Post volunteers have all been vetted by the district, fingerprinted for background checks and are available on a short term basis throughout the month.
    Listening Post volunteers will have resources including handouts on good nutrition, the additional need for sleep and benefits of a good old fashioned walk, when times are stressful.
    Parents and community members are welcome to donate healthy snack options to the prevention office to stock the proverbial shelves, when hunger pangs come to call.
    “I thought it would be fun to have a place to go if you need a granola bar, or to gripe,” said Bernadette Lauritzen, LAPS Prevention Specialist. “Sometimes you run out the door in the morning and didn’t remember to eat the most important meal of the day or you just need to vent about math, just kidding.”