Local News

  • Today in History for April 22nd
  • Bandelier’s Alcove House Restoration Presents Challenge

     The kiva at Alcove House has been an iconic feature of Bandelier National Monument since its creation in 1916.
    “I would identify Alcove House as one of the signature experiences for Bandelier National Monument. It’s very unique. It’s not an experience you’ll find at other parks,” Bandelier Superintendent Jason Lott said. “It’s been one of the core experiences since the park was established.”
    Now concerns about the structural stability of the kiva has prompted park staff to close the feature to insure visitor safety.
    Restoring the kiva has been on staff’s radar for some time. Bandelier’s Vanishing Treasures division conducted an in-house condition assessment in 2010. An architectural firm and engineer were hired in the fall of 2011 to develop a design for the stabilization work and the project funding was obtained before sequestration set in.
    The project took on a level of urgency on April 10, when Vanishing Treasures staff was conducting an assessment for the stabilization work and discovered that a significant chunk of masonry had come loose and that the structure was being undercut. The kiva is perched on the edge of a 140-foot cliff, reached by climbing four sets of ladders, so the threat is significant.

  • LA couple captures dream wedding

    A Los Alamos couple, Jeanette Trujillo and Chris Rondeau entered a contest called the $50,000 New Mexico Dream Wedding Giveaway a few months ago.

    In order to win, they had to gain the favor of the 20 sponsors that will be organizing and supplying the wedding, and they also had to raise more money than the other four couples entered in the contest, money that will go to directly support the University of New Mexico Children’s Hospital.

    Well, they won it, which is remarkable in itself, but it’s even more remarkable that not only were they the first Los Alamos couple to enter the contest since it began in 2008, but they raised the most money than any other couple in the history of the contest — more than $8,000.

    Trujillo and Rondeau said it was all in a day’s work — and that they really had the community to thank for their success.

    They also said teamwork and preparation played a part, too.

    “When we became one of the 15 semifinalists, we knew we were going to really have to work hard,” Trujillo said.
    Even before they knew they were in the top five, they discussed what their plan would be before they got there, added Trujillo. That included writing a proposal letter to take around to the businesses in Los Alamos that explained what they were doing and why.

  • Update 04-20-13

    School board

    The Board has scheduled a Special School Board Meeting for 5:30 p.m. Thursday at Pinon Elementary School. A work session will follow at 6 p.m.

    Have a news tip?

    Send press releases, photos and videos to laeditor@lamonitor.com or contact the newsroom at 662-4185.

    Hoop house

    From 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Monday: Help complete the Co-op Hoop House on Earth Day.

    Park Week

    Celebrate America’s national treasures by visiting your national parks. A variety of activities and events will be offered throughout the week. Visit Bandelier between April 22-26 for fee free days. 

  • Today in History for April 20
  • The story of two brothers in Boston


    BOSTON (AP) — Tamerlan Tsarnaev was an amateur boxer with muscular arms and enough brio to arrive at a sparring session without protective gear. His younger brother Dzhokhar was popular in high school, won a city scholarship for college and liked to hang out with Russian friends off-campus.

    Details of two lives, suddenly infamous, came to light Friday. Overnight, two men previously seen only in grainy camera images were revealed to be ethnic Chechen brothers suspected in a horrific act of terrorism. Tamerlan was dead; his 19-year-old brother would be captured after a furious manhunt that shut down much of Boston.

  • Teacher files suit against Los Alamos School District


    Zeynep Unal, a Turkish-born special education teacher who has been employed by the Los Alamos Public Schools since 2005, is suing the district for violations of the New Mexico Human Rights Act, defamation and breach of contract.

    The suit claims that Unal continues to suffer from loss of income, severe emotional distress, anxiety, humiliation, embarrassment and the violation of her federal and state statutory rights.

    Los Alamos Public Schools, the Los Alamos Public Schools School Board, Aspen Elementary School principal Kathryn Vandenkieboom and superintendent Gene Schmidt are named as defendants in the case.

    “I can’t comment on its merits,” said school board president Jim Hall. “It’s inappropriate to comment on a legal matter especially involving personnel. We have to wait and see what happens and let the court process play out.”

    “Until our attorneys look at this and study this, I can not comment,” Schmidt said.

    Unal’s attorney, Kate Ferlic of Santa Fe, filed the suit in district court Friday.

    Schmidt said Saturday morning the school district had not been served yet but confirmed the case was filed in district court.

  • Heinrich presses DOE on cleanup funding -- Video extra


  • Kirk to throw out first pitch in LA, White Rock

    Los Alamos’ Alex Kirk, the center for the New Mexico Lobos, will be the center of attention on Saturday.

    Kirk will throw out the first pitch on two different occasions.

    Kirk will be at the opening ceremonies for the Los Alamos Little League at 10:30 a.m. Saturday. Then at 1:30 p.m., Kirk will throw out the first pitch at Overlook Park as the White Rock Little League baseball and softball teams host its opening ceremonies.

    This week, Kirk recently shared team most valuable player honors with Kendall Williams after leading the Lobos to the Mountain West regular season and tournament titles.

    Kirk took home three awards at this year’s banquet, including

  • Cookies and conversation

    Peggy Pendergast bakes up a batch of love for Cookies & Conversation last month. The program takes place Monday during lunch at the LAHS Speech Theater offering an intergenerational opportunity for students with free lunch and cookies. The program is sponsored by Assets In Action and the JJAB. Call 661-4846 for information.