Today's News

  • Tourism group discusses LA's future economic development

    About 25 newly appointed members of Los Alamos’ Tourism Work Group met for the first time Thursday, all of them eager to get started on ways to bolster tourism through economic development.

    “This is going to be a brainstorming environment, there are no bad ideas,” Tourism Work Group Chair Susan O’Leary said. O’Leary is also vice president of the Los Alamos County Council.

    The main goal of the project is to help with a master tourism and economic development plan that will be presented to Los Alamos County Council in eight to 10 months.

    The committee was created to take advantage of the recent tourism opportunities that have happened in Los Alamos over the past couple of years, mainly the federal government’s creation of the Manhattan Project Historical Park.

    “That project I think is what made Los Alamos realize that we have an opportunity to take that project and combine it with Bandelier (National Monument) the Valles Caldera, the Bradbury Museum and all of the other amenities that we have and really do something big here with tourism and economic development,” O’Leary said.

  • Janecky dedicates life to LA gymnastics

    For nearly four decades, Louise Janecky has dedicated herself to the gymnastics community of Los Alamos.

    Janecky, known as Loui, has been the director and head coach of the Los Alamos School of Gymnastics since 1981. All told, she has been involved as a gymnastics coach around the country since 1976.

    Recently, she has been re-elected to her position as the Region three chair of the USA Gymnastics Xcel National Committee, a position she has held since 2013.

    In this role, Janecky not only takes part in the rule-making process for USA Gymnastics, but also assists in the education of coaches and judges both regionally and nationally.

    Janecky also plays a leadership role in state and regional competitions, traveling to conventions to educate gymnastics professionals both in lectures and in hands-on coaching clinics.

    All of this in addition to her hands-on role as the head coach of the Los Alamos School of Gymnastics, a role in which she completely immerses herself.

    “She cares deeply about these kids,” Los Alamos School of Gymnastics board member and parent Ann Gardner said.

    “She makes sure they work hard and holds them responsible, and she loves them to death.”

  • Top athletes recognized for performance and character

    In addition to the Athlete of the Year awards, other athletic awards were handed out during the Honors Convocation.

    Along with earning Athlete of the Year recognition from the Los Alamos Sports Association, Sienna Ahlers was also presented with the Iron Athlete Award, which was given to her by Los Alamos High School girl’s soccer coach, and her father, Gary Ahlers.

    His oldest daughter Madison, a 2011 alumna of LAHS, created the award.

    She wanted to honor a student athlete who valued hard work and commitment, both in the classroom and on the playing field.

    In addition to those two awards, Ahlers was also presented with the three-sport athlete award, along with Kaitlin Bennett, Kenidee Hatler and Elizabeth Lockhart.

    Lockhart was also the recipient of a Los Alamos Golf Association Scholarship, along with Faith Koh.

    Mike Lippiatt, who presented the award, explained that the association normally only gives out one scholarship, but that they felt that both of these girls were worthy based on what they had accomplished throughout their high school careers.

  • LAHS Athletes of the Year named

    Sienna Ahlers and Nicholas Quartieri were honored as the Los Alamos High School Athletes of the Year at this week’s Honors Convocation.

    Gene Mortensen and Mike Maez-Cote, members of the Los Alamos Sports Association, gave the awards to Ahlers and Quartieri.

    The Association is made up of members of the local Los Alamos sports media, including representatives from KRSN, The Los Alamos Daily Post and the Los Alamos Monitor.

    Each year, the group gives these awards to a male and female athlete who displays excellence on the playing field, going above and beyond to perform at the highest level.

    “We’ve had a pretty good look at all the athletes throughout the year,” Mortensen said at the ceremony. “So we feel qualified to pick a senior boy athlete and a senior girl athlete and name them the athlete of the year.”

    Ahlers was a standout at Los Alamos High School in soccer, and also participated in basketball and track and field in her high school career.

    According to Mortensen, she scored 58 goals throughout her varsity soccer career, and collected 39 assists. She was also first-team all-state and first-team all-district in soccer.

    She will be heading to Wingate University in North Carolina on a soccer scholarship next school year.

  • Free swimming this weekend at Piñon Park

    Piñon Park Pool will hold the first of its open-to-the-public free swim days this Sunday and Monday in White Rock.

    “It’s an opportunity for the community to try out the pool for free with no guest passes or membership required.” said Leilani Christensen, president of Piñon Park Pool Association’s Board of Directors.

    Anyone can visit the pool this weekend and enjoy the crystal-clear water, diving board, slides, kiddie pool, outdoor play area, snack bar and lounging and picnic facilities from 1-6 p.m. on Sunday and 10:30 a.m.–8 p.m. on Monday.

    Children under 18 attending this event must be accompanied by a parent.

    Christensen hopes the free swim days will lead to some participants purchasing 2017 memberships, but there is no obligation.

    This year, fees for Piñon Park Pool have been reduced from last year’s prices. With four options based on number of family members (one to four or more) on the membership, the cost to swim for the summer ranges from only $300 for an individual to $450 for a family of four or more.

    The pool opened for the 2017 swim season on May 27 and is proving to be a popular place for families to spend time together and cool off as the weather heats up.

  • Man caught for check forgery in White Rock

    Eric Sanchez, 29, was arrested May 15 while attempting to cash a stolen check at the drive thru of Los Alamos National Bank in White Rock.

    A criminal complaint was filed against Sanchez, of Albuquerque, for forgery, possession of a controlled substance, larceny, open container and two counts of delivery or manufacture of drug paraphernalia.

    The arresting Los Alamos police officer, Gabriel Nieto, explained the situation in his report. Around 5:03 p.m., Nieto was dispatched to LANB in White Rock because an employee reported that there was an individual trying to cash a stolen check. Sanchez was in the drive-thru with two other passengers. Nieto said, “I asked where he got the check and he stated he sold a lady a piano over the weekend.”

    Nieto asked all parties to step out of the vehicle and when conducting a pat down on one of the passengers, Nieto found a pen with tape and a socket at the end of it. “I observed a burn residue in the socket as if it was used to smoke something from it,” said Nieto.

    While the officers and subjects in question were waiting for a secondary officer to arrive, an elderly woman approached

    Nieto and claimed the check Sanchez was trying to cash was hers. Nieto then spoke with the elderly woman and the bank employee who had reported the incident.

  • Crews chase 30 unattended campfires in the Jemez Mountains over Memorial Day

    Crews from the Santa Fe National Forest extinguished 41 abandoned campfires last Memorial Day weekend – 30 of those were in the 240,000-acre Jemez Ranger District.

    Forest officials estimate the district may have had about 2,000 visitors this Memorial Day weekend, many of them using the district’s five campgrounds.

    Forest service officials were able to extinguish them through routine patrols and keeping a special focus on the area.

    “In addition to the district’s fire protection officer, there was another office assigned to him, and we had additional forest law enforcement officials assigned to the Jemez and a crew from Arizona,” said Acting Santa Fe National Forest Public Affairs Officer Julie Overton.

    The crew patrolled NM 4 with a water truck and whenever they would see smoke or a fire, they’d put it out. Memorial Day weekend is often the biggest weekend, since it’s the weekend that marks in many people’s minds the official end of winter.

    “People are ready after the winter to get back into the woods,” Overton said.

    Other big weekends include Mother’s Day weekend July 4 and Labor Day.

    The crews were also armed with brochures on fire prevention tips.

  • Star seniors presented with scholarships

    The Duane Smith Auditorium was humming with students and parents Tuesday evening as Los Alamos High School seniors on the cusp of graduation were presented with their hard-earned scholarships.

    Morrie Pongratz was master of ceremonies for the convocation and welcomed the crowd. Pongratz introduced the LAHS administrative team, who were in attendance to shake each students hand.

    School board members and superintendent Kurt Steinhaus were also present. After looking over the convocation program, Steinhaus said, “I saw a couple things that were missing. A ‘thank you’ to the proud moms and dads.”

    He then asked the students to stand and give a round of applause to the parents.

    LAHS Principal Brad Parker received a warm welcome from the crowd and he responded, “All I can say is when you work with great people, it makes it easier to do your job well. I’ve gotten probably a lot more than I’ve given here. Thank you for letting me be here.”

    Pongratz recognized the educators in attendance and people working behind the scenes of the program.

  • Nuclear waste transport contract awarded to Colorado company

    CARLSBAD (AP) — The U.S. Energy Department has awarded a contract worth up to $112 million to a Colorado company for transportation services at the nation's only underground nuclear waste repository.
    The agency announced the contract with CAST Specialty Transportation, Inc. on Thursday. CAST already maintains a terminal in southern New Mexico to support transport operations for the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant.
    Under the new contract, CAST also will be responsible the shipment of waste to the repository from federal facilities across the nation as part of the Energy Department's multibillion-dollar cleanup program.
    The waste includes gloves, tools, clothing and other materials from decades of bomb-making and research.
    The repository recently began accepting shipments following a nearly three-year closure that resulted from a radiation release in one of the underground disposal rooms.

  • Today in history 6-1-17