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Today's Features

  • The Los Alamos Arts Council will present pianist Frances Meier, at the December Brown Bag concert. The concert will be at noon Dec. 5 at Fuller Lodge.
    Meier is a Los Alamos performer, composer and music teacher. She has played numerous times at Fuller Lodge and plays organ for the United Church.
    The Los Alamos Choral Society, the Black Mesa Brass Quintet and the Los Alamos High School choir, as well as other performing ensembles, have performed her compositions. She plays piano for private parties and public openings and teaches piano, organ and music theory.
    “I have chosen this music to provide a quiet time and a sense of serenity during a hectic time of year,” Meier said. “I think of it as music that evokes the feeling of late fall as it moves into early winter.”  
    Several pieces are by Windham Hill artists George Winston and Liz Story. Their music is pianistic, exploiting the resonant qualities of the piano.

  • Fill your holiday stockings with laughter as the citizens of Tuna, Texas, come to Dixon for Christmas. Join the Tuna characters as they attempt to cope with the traumas and dramas of the holidays.
    “A Tuna Christmas” by Jaston Williams, Joe Sears and Ed Howard, is a comedy set in the fictional town of Tuna, Texas. The plot centers on the town’s annual Christmas Yard Display Contest, won 14 times in a row by Vera Carp.
    A mysterious “Christmas Phantom,” known for vandalizing the yard displays, has the contestants on edge. Among the subplots are Stanley Bumiller’s attempts to end his probation and leave Tuna; Bertha Bumiller’s attempt to hold her family together at Christmas time; and Joe Bob Lipsey’s struggle to mount successfully his production of “A Christmas Carol,” despite the town controller of the electric company threatening to turn the lights off.
    The play is both a commentary and satire of small town, Texas life and attitudes. “A Tuna Christmas” is the second in a series of comedic plays set in the fictional town of Tuna, Texas (preceded by “Greater Tuna” and followed by “Red, White and Tuna” and “Tuna Does Vegas.”

  • Today
    The Los Alamos Community of Atheists will host a discussion 6:30-8 p.m. in Meeting Room 1 of the Mesa Public Library. This month’s discussion will focus on the New Age movement and its role in society. For more information, contact them at losalamoscommunityofatheists@gmail.com. All are welcome.
    Thursday
    Idea Factory: Contribute your ideas about the Pajarito Plateau. Join PEEC as they discuss key messages and stories about the Pajarito Plateau. Your ideas will help them create a plan to strengthen people’s connection with the natural world. 6:30 p.m. Free. For more information or to register, visit PajaritoEEC.org, call 662-0460 or email Programs@PajaritoEEC.org.

    In celebration of the New Mexico Centennial, the senior center has offered monthly cultural/ historical trips in the state. To bring all this history together, historian John Ramsay will give a talk  focusing on “Turmoil Involving New Mexico Boundaries 1719-1930s.” Ramsay brings a wealth of to his favorite subject of historical maps. His illustrated talk is free and open to the public. Welcoming coffee at 9:30 a.m. and the talk is at 10 a.m. at the BESC, in the classroom.  
    Friday

  • First, a big thank you to all the citizens of Los Alamos County who gave generously to the recent Letter Carrier-Boy Scout Fall Food Drive Nov. 17.
    An estimated 18,000 lbs. of food and supplies were collected with about 1,000 pounds sent to the San Martin de Porres Soup Kitchen in Española.
    The remainder was donated to LA Cares, for local monthly distribution to those in need within our community.  
    The Atomic City Letter Carriers (NALC-4112) and their volunteers worked long and hard, performing the triple duties of delivering flyers, picking-up food and all while performing their regular duties of delivering your mail.
    Many volunteers from LA Cares and other organizations and individuals worked hard preparing, sorting, transporting and storing all the donations.
    LA Cares distributes food boxes monthly throughout the year, so please call 661-8015 if you can help with these distributions or are in need of food assistance.
    In addition, every Los Alamos and White Rock BSA unit in the Northern New Mexico District participated for two- to three-hour shifts (some scouts worked much longer), including Cub Scout Packs 20, 22, 27, 222, 229, 326, 422; Boy Scout Troops 22, 71, 122, 129, 222, and 422; and co-ed Venture Scout Post 20.

  • The annual Community Asset Awards search is underway and the Los Alamos Juvenile Justice Advisory Board and Chamber of Commerce want to know who you think stands out for 2012.
    The Community Assets Awards strives to recognize the things people do — in and around Los Alamos — to make the community or the world a better place.
    “I love that the Community Asset Awards honor those unsung heroes, those people who are not looking for praise or attention, but just do good things for the community because they enjoy doing them,” said Katy Korkos, Los Alamos Chamber of Commerce Member Services Director. “ I love it that people who have a good idea and follow through with it are honored.”
    Each year, people of every age and background are nominated to receive recognition, with a youth and an adult recognized to receive the Director’s Choice Award and someone who will receive the Spirit of the West Award.
    The Spirit of the West Award was created to honor former Los Alamos County Councilor and Leadership Los Alamos alumni Jim West. Before his passing away, West knew the award was created, in his honor.

  • The Thrift Shop at the United Church moved to the lower level of Craig Hall and had a grand opening Nov. 14

  • Happy holidays!
    This week, we are still in the asset category of empowerment with a look at the asset of safety (#10).
    I will stretch on this area, but bear with me for a minute.
    This Saturday, the Trinity on the Hill will offer the best event of the season, the Children’s Bazaar.
    The event allows families, with children in kindergarten through sixth grade, an opportunity to shop for holiday gifts on their own.
    Children arrive at the church between 9 a.m. and noon, with a list of 10 names or less. Youth workers escort them to a special room, where they can purchase gifts to surprise family members on upcoming holidays.
    The items are varied and the prices are more than reasonable, but the increase in the asset category of empowerment is huge.
    It doesn’t matter what holiday you celebrate. Yes, I realize it is a Christian church, but think of all of the upcoming holidays, including birthdays, during which your children would love the opportunity to surprise the adults in their lives.
    While the pint-sized shoppers go on their merry way, parents and caregivers are treated to baked goods, newspapers and the excitement yet to come.
    Trinity on the Hill has thought of everything, as they even wrap the gifts and include gift cards for each item.

  • Today
    Ward L. Hawkins, LANL program manager for Nuclear Testing Limitations, will speak on “CTBT On-Site Inspection: The Final Verification Measure.” The talk will be given at an open meeting of the Los Alamos Committee on Arms Control and International Security at 7 p.m. in Room 311 in the Education Building at the United Church, 2525 Canyon Road.
    Wednesday
    The Los Alamos Community of Atheists will host a discussion 6:30-8 p.m. in Meeting Room 1 of the Mesa Public Library. This month’s discussion will focus on the New Age movement and its role in society. For more information, contact them at losalamoscommunityofatheists@gmail.com. All are welcome.
    Thursday
    Idea Factory: Contribute your ideas about the Pajarito Plateau. Join PEEC as they discuss key messages and stories about the Pajarito Plateau. Your ideas will help them create a plan to strengthen people’s connection with the natural world. 6:30 p.m. Free. For more information or to register, visit PajaritoEEC.org, call 662-0460 or email Programs@PajaritoEEC.org.

  • ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Willis Whitfield, an award-winning physicist known for inventing the modern-day cleanroom, has died. He was 92.

    Sandia National Laboratories, where Whitfield worked for three decades, announced Monday that Whitfield died in Albuquerque on Nov. 12.

    Lab President Paul Hommert says Whitfield's concept for a new kind of cleanroom came at the right time during the early 1960s to usher in a new era of electronics, health care and scientific research.

    Dubbed Mr. Clean, Whitfield was born in Rosedale, Okla. He was the son of a cotton farmer.

    Whitfield had his initial drawings for the new cleanroom by the end of 1960. His solution for dealing with the turbulent airflow and particles found in cleanrooms of the day was to constantly flush out the room with highly filtered air.

    Sandia says within a couple of years, $50 billion worth of cleanrooms had been built worldwide.

  • Cobalt, a relatively common mineral, may hold promise as an industrial catalyst with potential applications in such energy-related technologies as the production of biofuels and the reduction of carbon dioxide.

    That is, provided the cobalt is captured in a complex molecule so it mimics the precious metals that normally serve this industrial role.

    In work published Nov. 26 in the international edition of the chemistry journal Angewandte Chemie, Los Alamos National Laboratory scientists report the possibility of replacing the normally used noble metal catalysts with cobalt.

    Catalysts are the parallel of the Philosopher’s Stone for chemistry. They cannot change lead to gold, but they do transform one chemical substance into another while remaining unchanged themselves. Perhaps the most familiar example of catalysis comes from automobile exhaust systems that change toxic fumes into more benign gases, but catalysts are also integral to thousands of industrial, synthetic, and renewable energy processes where they accelerate or optimize a mind-boggling array of chemical reactions.

    It’s not an exaggeration to say that without catalysts, there would be no modern industry.