Today's News

  • Butterfly count set for Saturday

    Do you want to learn more about butterflies? Are you already a butterfly expert, but want to help with the annual count?

    The annual butterfly event is for beginners, experts and everyone in between. Participants will honor the memory of

    Dorothy Hoard by fluttering to three places around the Pajarito Plateau: atop a mesa, at a high altitude and along a stream Saturday.

    New Mexico butterfly expert Steve Cary will be at the event to help identify butterflies and discuss their life histories.

    The first count will start between 9-10:45 a.m. Saturday at the Burnt Mesa Trailhead in Bandelier, located off of State Highway 4.

    The group will then move to Camp May from 11:15 a.m.-12:45 p.m., where participants will stop to eat lunch.

    The final stop will be Cañon de Valle along State Road 501 from 1:45-3:15 p.m.

    Butterfly counters are welcome to stay for the whole day or opt to only count at some locations.

  • Mountains, monasteries in the ‘Land of the Thunder Dragon’

    By Debbie Stone

    A revered lama and leading astrologist, Master Wengdi of the Paga Monastery in Bhutan, told me that I’m a fire monkey, born under a metal sign that imbues me with confidence and energy.

    Driven to success, I often gravitate towards leadership roles where I can exercise control and call upon my ability to draw people to me. But, I can be competitive and stubborn (true), allowing my strong will and needs to overwhelm me, sometimes making decisions based on emotion and not logic (also true). To help balance the forces within me, Master

    Wengdi recommended that I practice patience and focus on doing more acts of compassion in my life. He ended my astrological session by telling me that 2017 is a lucky year for fire monkeys, but that I should take precautions to avoid being near construction sites in the coming months. And, oh, I should also wear brighter-colored clothing.

  • New play examines marriage in tart, humorous bites


    Special to the Monitor

    Since June is a traditional time for weddings, July may be a good time to examine marriage. Hindsight should at least be entertaining.

    To that end, a theater company new to northern New Mexico offers three, one-act plays examining matrimony in tart, humorous bites from master playwrights George Bernard Shaw, Anton Chekhov and Moliere.

    The production called “Marriage by the Masters” began July 13 at the Adobe Rose Theatre in Santa Fe and is scheduled to continue until July 30, showing Thursday through Saturday at 7:30 p.m. and Sundays at 3 p.m.

    “It’s shedding new light on old perceptions. And while they’re in a different period, I think the audience will recognize people. We don’t really say what we mean,” said Brenda Lynn Bynum of the Oasis Theatre Company, which is presenting the production.

    Native New Mexican Bynum and James Jenner make up the company. They moved their 10-year-old company to Santa Fe earlier this summer.

    In an interview before the move was complete, Bynum and Jenner, who married in Santa Fe and own property there, said they see a growing interest in theater in New Mexico, while interest in New York’s small theater companies has stagnated somewhat. They visited New Mexico frequently.

  • Facebook has plans to expand New Mexico data center

    ALBUQUERQUE — Facebook’s plans for New Mexico now call for a half-billion-dollar investment and a data center that will span an area equal to 17 football fields.

    Gov. Susana Martinez’s office announced early Tuesday that the social media giant will be doubling its investment in the state with the planned expansion of its data center currently under construction near Los Lunas, a rural area just outside of Albuquerque, New Mexico’s largest metropolitan area.

    The governor praised the announcement, saying Facebook is among the state’s key partners as it works to diversify its economy.

    “New Mexico’s powerful incentives are bringing more opportunities to our state — once again ahead of schedule with more jobs and investment than initially anticipated,” the governor said in a statement.

    The news comes as New Mexico looks to turn the corner after a crippling budget crisis that stemmed from a downturn in the oil and natural gas sectors and an overall weak economy. The state also has struggled with high unemployment numbers, only recently ending its stretch at the top of the nation’s jobless rankings.

  • Isotope star earns Player of the Week

    For the fourth time in five weeks, an Albuquerque Isotope has been honored by the Pacific Coast League Office, announcing Monday that Jordan Patterson has been named Player of the Week. The award comes for the period of July 10-16.

    Patterson, 25, batted .471 (8-for-17) in an abbreviated four-game week while compiling four home runs, nine RBI, a .526 on-base percentage and slugging 1.176. The first baseman’s OPS for the week was a staggering 1.703.

    Patterson’s accolade is his second of the season, winning the same award from the period of June 19-25 when he batted .423 (11-for-26) in six games.

    Isotopes teammate Ryan McMahon also took home the honor for the week of June 12-18 while lefty Ryan Carpenter was awarded Pitcher of the Week for June 26-July 2.

    The Mobile, Alabama, native is in his fifth professional season after being drafted by the Rockies in the fourth round of the 2013 First-Year Player Draft.

    Patterson is just the fourth Isotope to ever win multiple Player of the Week awards in the same season.

    The Isotopes are in the middle of a home series with the Tacoma Rainiers.

    Albuquerque and Tacoma will play five games in four days.

    Tickets are available at abqisotopes.com or by visiting the Isotopes Park Box Office.

  • Domino’s aids LA woman

    The online version of this story has been updated.

    Domino’s will host a fundraiser called “Have a Heart Day” at its Los Alamos location to raise funds for a local woman whose home was lost most of her home to a fire.

    The pizza franchise was touched by her plight and will donate 100 percent of profits from sales in the Los Alamos store on Thursday to help her regain her home.

    On June 24, Bonita Rogozinsky, who works bike patrol at the local ski hill, was in the process of moving into her brand new home when the house went up in flames.

    Rogozinsky and her beloved pets escaped without injury, but the fire destroyed about 75 percent of her home and insurance will not cover the full cost of the loss.

    General Manager Celesta Lasater explained that Rogozinsky had ordered a pizza that day, but called to cancel 15 minutes later.

    According to Lasater, Bonita had said, “Sorry, I can’t get my pizza because my house is on fire,” and then she hung up.
    The call surprised the staff, to say the least.

  • LA crime stats show downward trend in 2nd quarter

    The Los Alamos Police Department Chief of Police Dino Sgambellone released the crime statistics this week for the second quarter of 2017, which show an overall decrease by 10 percent.

    “Crime continues to drop and that’s great,” Sgambellone said.

    The main purpose of distributing these quarterly crime statistics, which were compiled by the LAPD Records Department, is to let people know what is happening in their community.

    Offenses reported as crime statistics are determined by the FBI Uniform Crime Report Program and are classified as crimes against persons (violent crime) and crimes against property.

    The offenses of murder, rape, robbery and aggravated assault make up the violent crime category.

    The property crime category includes the offenses of arson, burglary, larceny and auto theft. Both of these categories combined are referred to as Part I Offenses.

    Property crime dropped from 37 in 2016 to 30 in 2017, which is a decrease of 19 percent.

    Violent crime increased 100 percent from three offenses in 2016 to six in 2017.

  • Los Alamos prepares for annual triathlon

    The Los Alamos County Triathlon is set to make its return for the 43rd time later this month, making it one of the oldest continuously running sprint triathlons in the country.

    On July 29, Los Alamos County will host three separate triathlons: the official triathlon, the Kids Triathlon and a new event, the Junior Triathlon.

    The Los Alamos County Triathlon is unique, as it has a format of bike-swim-run, as opposed to the normal format of swim-bike-run. The County’s Recreation Programs Manager Dianne Marquez said a variety of factors have led to that format.

    “The big reason is that we impede two of the major intersections in town at Trinity and Diamond, and Canyon and Diamond, so we want to get cyclists on and off the road as quickly as possible.”

    By having the cycling leg first, organizers can make sure the road is blocked off for as little time as possible, making it more convenient for participants and the public.

    Marquez added that she has asked participants if they would like to see the format become more traditional, and has learned that they seem to prefer the current format.

    The sprint triathlon consists of a 12-mile bike course, followed by a 400-meter swim and a three-mile run.

    It will be a chip-timed event with awards given out to top finishers.

  • LANL partners speak out on draft RFP

    Local non-profits, business organizations and representatives of Los Alamos County expressed concern this week about the National Nuclear Security Administration’s initial draft management and operations contract for the Los Alamos National Laboratory.

    To those that have seen it, the contract seemed to provide little support to the region or the county, a sharp contrast to the contract held by Los Alamos National Security since 2006.

    The RFP was posted on the NNSA website July 13. Those interested in making suggestions to modify the draft RFP have until July 26 to respond to NNSA.

    Los Alamos County Manager Harry Burgess said he was concerned that the 50-page draft RFP only mentions the county twice.
    With the extensive partnerships the county has enjoyed with the lab through the years,  he said he would have liked to seen more.

    “We feel that given our formal relationship with the operator through fire, utilities, transit and dispatch, it warrants fleshing that out a little bit,” Burgess said.

    The Department of Energy announced in 2015 it was putting LANS’ contract out to bid after LANS failed to meet certain performance criteria. A new contractor is expected to be in control of LANL by 2018. The NNSA oversees LANL.  

  • Ledoux at Mesa Public Library Thursday

    The Authors Speak series of lectures continues Thursday at 7 p.m. in the Upstairs Rotunda at Mesa Public Library with author Stephen F. Ledoux, who will talk about his book “Beautiful Sights and Sensations.”

    With this book, Ledoux shares his passion for beautiful objects. Ledoux, who is also an expert in the emerging natural science of behaviorology, has travelled and taught extensively. He has held positions in Australia and in China, as well as at the State University of New York at Canton.

    He and his wife Nelly Case, also an author, now make their home in Los Alamos. Throughout his travels Ledoux has sought out and enjoyed beautiful objects, often made by natives of whichever region he is visiting. He writes about the sensations that drew him to collect, and also the sights that have inspired him.

    “Beyond my own photographic art, these (collections) have focused on some Native American arts, particularly from the Southwest, along with Japanese woodblock prints, Chinese paintings, custom knives and other edged art,” Ledoux writes in his backstory at the start of the book.