Today's News

  • Smith's begins UNM Hospital fundraiser

    Smith’s Food and Drug Stores has kicked off its annual campaign to raise funds for University of New Mexico Children’s Hospital. The funds are specifically being raised to support children experiencing a traumatic illness or injury or whose family needs assistance with their medical bill obligations.
    Smith’s invites customers from store communities throughout New Mexico to join in fundraising activities with store associates whose goal is to raise $200,000 by April 20.
    In 2012, Smith’s presented the University of New Mexico Children’s Hospital with a check for $200,000 in support of children’s charity care (in 2011 Smith’s donated $130,000). These contributions helped to assist families who were struggling to pay their child’s medical costs after trauma or serious illness. Nearly 60,000 children from every county in New Mexico receive services each year from UNM Children’s Hospital.
    “UNM Children’s Hospital is a caring resource for our associates’ and customers’ families,” said Marsha Gilford, Smith’s vice president public affairs. “One hundred percent of the funds we raise will be used to help local families who need assistance.”

  • Update 03-22-13

    Fish fry

    It is Fish Fry time again at Immaculate Heart of Mary Parish Hall from 5-7 p.m. Friday. Adult plates are $10 and have two pieces of cod, with coleslaw and rice or French fries, plus a drink and dessert. Children may have one piece of fish or a grilled cheese sandwich with all the rest for $7 a plate.

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    Sock Hop

    The Los Alamos Family Council will hold its Fabulous Fifties Family Sock Hop. The Hop is scheduled for 6-10 p.m. Saturday at the Immaculate Heart of Mary Parish Hall on Canyon Road. Tickets are $10 per person or $25 for a family. Call 662-4160 for information.

    CRC meeting

    The Department of Public Utilities Charter Review Committee will hold its first meeting from 5:30-6:30 p.m. March 27, in the Community Building’s Training Room. This will primarily be an organizational meeting to appoint a chair and vice-chair and review the scope of work. The public is welcome to attend.

  • NMDOT preps for pilgrimage

    The highways and roads that lead to the village of Chimayó will be crowded next week as thousands of people begin their pilgrimage to El Santuario de Chimayó.
    The largest crowds will be seen on Good Friday, March 29, but road congestion and minor delays can be expected any time in this area during Holy Week, the week before Easter Sunday.
    NMDOT District Five maintenance crews have begun sweeping operations and are preparing safe walking areas along U.S. Highway 84/285, N.M. 502, N.M. 503 and N.M. 76. Electronic message boards and other traffic signs will be placed along these routes to alert motorists to the expected large number of pedestrians on the road.
    NMDOT maintenance crews will place trash receptacles along the roads and portable lighting structures will be stationed at strategic locations to aid nighttime walkers.
    The regulation against roadside vending on the highway right-of-way will be strictly enforced to protect the safety of pilgrims and motorists. Parking on Juan Medina Road in Chimayo will not be allowed. No open burning is permitted due to extreme wildfire danger.

  • Local artists find a home

    Art and culture are woven into the fabric of the Los Alamos community and up until a few years ago, the town did not have a fine art gallery to call its own.

    In 2008, local artist Karen Wray set out to fill that void by opening her gallery, Karen Wray’s Fine Art, in its original location off Trinity Drive. She filled the studio with her own artwork and began to offer painting classes to anyone who might be interested — encouraging even amateurs to delve into the expressive world of art.

    Wray has been painting since her retirement from Los Alamos National Laboratory in 1995. Just a few years after she discovered her new passion, she joined the Los Alamos Artists Studio Tour and was a part of the Holiday Art Show at Melissa Bartlett’s studio for nine years.

    She spent years displaying her works in local venues such as DeColores and Katherine’s Restaurant; but quickly recognized the need for a professional gallery where local artists could exhibit their works year-round.

    Wray recently moved her gallery to its new location, just across the street from the Bradbury Science Museum, to further her efforts to provide a place where local artists could thrive. Once only displaying her own pieces, she now features more than 18 local artists in her gallery, with plans to add more in the future.

  • Council to examine graffiti law

    In a step that may herald a more activist posture to enhance the town’s appearance, the Los Alamos County Council is set to mull enacting a new law aimed at curbing graffiti.

    An amendment to Los Alamos County Code Ordinance No. 02-230 that would prohibit graffiti vandalism and promote its eradication within the county is on the council’s Tuesday meeting agenda.

    Council asked County Attorney Rebecca Ehler to draft the ordinance after a citizen drew council’s attention to the growing perception that graffiti vandalism is increasing within the county and that the current county code does not specifically address the issue.

    Assistant County Attorney Kathryn Thwaits, who drafted the proposed amendment, said that graffiti ordinances are common both in New Mexico and throughout the United States. Thwaits drafted the proposed amendment to be consistent with both New Mexico State statutes and ordinances in other New Mexico municipalities.

    After defining the offense, the amendment reads:

  • ACLU files same-sex marriage challenge

    The American Civil Liberties Union of New Mexico filed a lawsuit Thursday aimed at forcing state officials to recognize same-sex marriage under current New Mexico law.

    The legal action marked yet another effort by advocacy groups that was touched off earlier this week when Santa Fe officials tried to persuade county clerks to issue same-sex marriage licenses across the state.
    The lawsuit was filed in state district court on behalf of two lesbian couples who sought marriage licenses in Bernalillo County.

    It claims the current ban on same-sex marriage violates the New Mexico Constitution. The ACLU-NM said it wants to eventually get the New Mexico Supreme Court to decide the dispute.

    “They filed this lawsuit today in the hopes that someday soon no committed, loving same-sex couple will be turned away and excluded from marriage because of the one they love,” said Peter Simonson, executive director of ACLU-NM.

    The lawsuit was filed on behalf of Albuquerque couple Miriam Rand, 63, and Ona Porter, 66, and Santa Fe couple Rose Griego, 47, and Kim Kiel, 44.

    The lawsuit came as local and state officials argue whether current New Mexico law allows county clerks to issue same-sex marriage licenses.

  • Aspen classrooms to shrink under new plan

    The redesign plans of Aspen Elementary were changed recently and those design modifications were revealed in a school board meeting. The school’s trademark 1,000 square-foot classes will need to be smaller.

    According to Ray Vigil, the lead architect from the firm Vigil and Associates, they were told in a recent meeting with the Public Schools Facilities Authority that they would have to reduce the size of each classroom to 850-square-feet.

    Vigil told the school board the reduction would accomplish two things, bring the project back into line with the original budget, and comply with the PSFA’s standards for class size.

    “By reducing a little bit of over two feet from each classroom we were able to shave off 6,000 square feet,” Vigil said. “So that little piece of everyone reducing their area gave us a large bang for our money, which helps bring us into our guaranteed maximum price as well as in compliance with the request from the Public School Facilities Authority.”

    Vigil estimated the reduction will ultimately take about $600,000 to $800,000 off the cost of the project. The total price tag for the makeover project is estimated to be around $12 million.

  • Church Listings 03-22-13

    Baha’i Faith
    For information, e-mail losalamosla@gmail.com. For general information, call the Baha’i Faith phone at 1-800-228-6483.

    Bethlehem Lutheran
    Bethlehem Evangelical Lutheran Church, a member of the ELCA is at 2390 North Road. 662-5151, bethluth.com. Worship services are at 8:15 and 10:45 a.m., with coffee and doughnuts served between services during our Education Hour of classes for all ages. The preaching is biblical by our Pastors Bruce Kuenzel and Nicolé Ferry, the music is lively, children are welcome and abundant and a well-staffed nursery is provided. All are welcome. Come Join the Family.

    Bryce Ave. Presbyterian
    The church is located at 3333 Bryce Ave. The Rev. Henry Fernandez preaches, bapca.org, info@bapca.org. For information, call 672-3364.

    Kannon Zendo, 35 Barranca Road. kannonzendo.org. Henry Chigen Finney, 661-6874. Meditation in the Zen tradition will be offered Wednesday evenings at the Kannon Zendo in Los Alamos.

    Calvary Chapel
    Sunday school classes for all ages at 9:15 a.m. Join us at 10:30 a.m. for worship and a study of the Biblical Jesus as He relates to people in our look at the Gospel of Exodus.

  • Women's mini-conference Saturday

    “Wrapped in God’s Love” is the theme for a countywide mini-conference, “Women-to-Women Brunch and More.” The mini-conference, which seeks to connect Los Alamos women with each other and with God, will be from 9 a.m.-noon, Saturday at the Los Alamos Church of Christ building, 2323 Diamond Dr.
    The morning of Christian fellowship, encouragement and strengthening, is open to all women of the community. There is no charge for the conference. Brunch will be served and complimentary babysitting will be available.
    Featured speakers for the morning are Dr. Zandree Stidham, chair of the Department of Communications at the University of New Mexico Los Alamos and Shirley Raye Redmond, award-winning author of 27 books for children and adults.
    The speakers will focus on how Christian women can effectively interact with each other and reach out to others.
    Zandree Stidham, Ph.D. is an assistant professor of communications. Wife of the Los Alamos Church of Christ youth minister Tony Stidham, she is the mother of four children. She is also a native of Los Alamos and a graduate of Los Alamos High School.
    Stidham works as an adoptive family contact for the New Mexico Fiesta Project, offering support and training for adoptive families.

  • Looking at the disasters that U.S. intervention created

    Americans have forgotten about the Iraq war, which began 10 years ago this week, and the Afghan war, the longest in American history, but the U.S. government is still throwing its weight around in both countries.
     The Iraq war, the pretext for which was nonexistent weapons of mass destruction, officially ended in 2011 with the withdrawal of virtually all of America’s combat troops. But the havoc wreaked by the U.S. invasion and regime change goes on. Over a hundred thousand Iraqis were killed in the war itself, but many more died in the aftermath from sectarian violence and the obliterated infrastructure. (Iraq had never recovered from the destruction inflicted by the U.S. government in the 1991 Gulf War and in the decade of sanctions related to it.) Millions fled their homes.
     The U.S. occupation unleashed bitter sectarian violence, complete with U.S.-trained death squads, leading the numerically dominant Shiite Muslims (who are friendly to Iran) to cleanse the Sunnis from Baghdad. A Sunni insurgency against the occupation inflicted heavy casualties until American money managed to have the guns turned on the al-Qaeda affiliate, which was not in Iraq before the U.S. invasion.