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Today's News

  • Aquatomics finish 2nd at Long Course Championships

    By DAVID VASQUEZ
    lasports@lamonitor.com

    The Los Alamos Aquatomics swim team competed in the New Mexico Long Course Championships last weekend at the Larry R. Walkup Aquatic Center.

    The Aquatomics finished second in the team standings, behind Charger Aquatics of Albuquerque and 1½ points ahead of Lobo Aquatic Club of Albuquerque.

    The following swimmers turned in top-three performances for the Aquatomics:

    The girls 11-14 800 freestyle relay finished third, while the boys 11-14 800 freestyle relay was second. The boys 11 & over 800 freestyle relay finished first.

    Sophia Pieck won the girls 11-12 400 freestyle, while Duncan Henderson won the boys 11-12 400 freestyle. Carson Hick was second in the boys 13-14 800 freestyle.

    Orion Henderson won the boys 15 & over 800 freestyle. The girls 12 & under 400 freestyle relay finished third, while the boys 12 & under 400 freestyle relay was second.

    The boys 400 freestyle relay was second. Owen McLaughlin finished third in the boys 10 & under 50 backstroke, while Pieck placed second in the girls 11-12 50 backstroke.

  • ‘Shaun of the Dead’ to play at PEEC

    Watch “Shaun of the Dead” on Thursday in the Los Alamos Nature Center’s planetarium for the Pajarito Environmental Education Center’s summer movie series “Suds & Shows.”

    Doors will open and beer and wine will be available from Pajarito Brewpub & Grill starting at 6 p.m. The movie will start at 7 p.m.

    Attendees are invited to bring a picnic dinner, buy drinks and enjoy spending time at the nature center before the movie.

    Movie tickets are $5 per person and drinks will be available. Credit cards and cash can be used at the cash bar.

    “Shaun of the Dead” is a horror comedy film that tells the story of a directionless Londoner who is caught in a zombie uprising. The film is rated R and is 1 hour and 40 minutes long. . Tickets may be reserved by visiting or calling the Los Alamos Nature Center at 662-0460.

  • Set positive tone for school year

    Wow, we only have one week to go. I hope you spend this week building excitement for the year ahead. Make sure you do some fun family things as you prepare for the new school year.

    One of the mottos a training used said, “Your attitude determines your altitude.” Parents should be reminded that their attitude is equally important to the success of the student.

    The posting of the class lists and meet the teacher are big days in the life of a child. You should be excited for them and if they didn’t get the friend or teacher they want or in the same class, lunch or team, find a positive. Every year, I know a parent that voices their dismay with everything and everything about school. Imagine if someone set the tone for you each year in a similar fashion?

    As you deliver your school supplies, learn the classroom, look for interesting things to point out later that evening. Is there a class pet, were there cool posters, games, stations or things to do in the room? Make sure you attend the meet the teacher or back to school night. I don’t care if this is your eighth child, it is a new year, a new class, a new teacher, and things change all of the time.

  • Car show Saturday at WR Senior Center

    The White Rock Senior Center will wrap up the celebration of their 24th birthday Saturday with a car show and fish fry from 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

    The car show is free and will be on display from 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

    The fish fry takes place from 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. with Chef Mike Mason at the helm.

    Tickets are $12 for adults and $6 for children, 12 and under. The tickets must be purchased in advance at the senior centers in Los Alamos or White Rock and are sold on a first-come, first-serve availability.

    The car show, first established last year by a volunteer, has plans of continuing annually, with hopes of increased participation. The volunteer came to love and enjoy what today are referred to as classic cars.

    Back in the day, the cars weren’t considered classics, just regular transportation. Now, they work on them, customize them and occasionally race them.

    On Saturday, you can see and marvel at them while enjoying the White Rock Senior Center.

  • LA Kiwanis members attend Arizona convention

    Last weekend, Los Alamos members of the Kiwanis family braved “Excessive Heat Warnings” to attend the Southwest District Kiwanis convention in Chandler, Arizona.

    Attendees included Kiwanis President-elect, Cheryl Pongratz, her husband and Key Club Advisor, Morrie Pongratz, and Builders Club Advisor, Don Casperson.  

    The Southwest District Key Club Board of Directors, including Los Alamos High School students Andrew Watson and Shena Han, joined them at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Chandler.  Shena is the Lieutenant Governor for Key Club’s the Sangre de Christo division.  

    Andrew is the K-Family Relations Chairperson on the Key Club board.

    Kiwanis attendees were updated on Kiwanis projects, attended educational sessions, and elected their leaders for the upcoming year.

    During the Saturday sessions Kiwanis recognized their many “Unsung Heroes” working to achieve the Kiwanis mission of “Serving the Children of the World.” Lynnette Kennard from the Santa Fe Kiwanis Club updated the members on progress in combatting Neo-Natal Maternal Tetanus and Iodine Deficiency Disorder.  Kiwanis International teams with UNICEF to address these challenges worldwide.

  • LAHS Athletic HOF announces 2019 class

    The Los Alamos High School Athletic Hall of Fame has announced its class of inductees for 2019.

    The 2019 class includes Bruce Cottrell, Kris Monaghan, Ann Cernicek, Molly Cernicek, Aubrey Jones-Woahn, Eddie Sanchez and Sec Sandoval.

    Cottrell spent 25 years as the Los Alamos’ girls tennis coach, leading the Lady Hilltoppers to several state titles. He retired at the end of 2017 season as the most-decorated girls tennis coach in Northern New Mexico history.

    Monaghan was a golf standout for the Hilltoppers and at UNM and spent 15 years on the LPGA Tour.

    Ann Cernicek is the current girls soccer coach for Los Alamos High School, was the boys soccer coach from 1995-2005 and was a former standout on the field for the Hilltoppers. Cernicek and her older sister Molly were both part of Los Alamos’ 1981 state championship team and Ann was also part of the Toppers’ 1983 state championship team. Molly Cernicek is also the founder and CEO of SportsXast, a mobile app that allows the sharing of information from sporting events.

    Jones-Woahn was a four-year letterwinner in volleyball and a three-year letterwinner in girls basketball for LAHS. She was also part of the 2002 state champion tennis team.

  • Hilltoppers return to field for fall practice

    By DAVID VASQUEZ
    lasports@lamonitor.com

    It was a day Los Alamos High School football coach Garett Williams had been looking forward to since the Hilltoppers closed out the 2018 season with a home loss to Del Norte in early November.

    The ‘Toppers returned to the artificial turf of Sullivan Field on Monday, the first day of fall practice for teams across the state.

    “We’ve been waiting on this since the end of last season,” Williams said. “This is what I live for. This is what I love. So it’s good to be back out here with the family.”

    The Hilltoppers are coming off a 5-5 season that started with promise with Los Alamos winning four of its first five games but ended with the ‘Toppers losing four of their last five.

    “Last season we thought went well at times,” Williams said. “We had some big letdowns at times too, some games that we really needed to win, especially toward the end of the season. We had opportunities to win.”

    Williams thinks there is a lot of room for improvement on this year’s team.

  • Rover Playlot closed until Friday

    Los Alamos County Parks Division has closed the Rover Playlot at 320 Rover Blvd. until Friday.

    The parks division is removing some wasps and do not want children there, according to a statement sent to media Wednesday.

  • Will anything be done after recent mass shootings?

    BY DOUGLAS AND DOROTHY REILLY
    Guest Opinion

    Much is said and printed in the Media of the incidents in Gilroy, El Paso, and Dayton; all three occurred within a week, and the last two within 24 hours. The big question is will anything be done?

    The basic problem is the absurd number of guns in the USA; our country has over 11 times as many guns per 100 citizens as the average of the rest of the world.

    There are about 88 gun deaths per day in the USA. Barely 2 percent of these are mass shootings, over 80 percent are suicides, and the rest domestic arguments, police shootings, and accidents. The availability of a gun makes a suicide or a domestic incident much more likely to result in death.

    After the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting, much was said, but nothing was done. My wife and I believe the same lack of action will occur here.

    We’re not protesting guns for hunting. In New Mexico, as other areas, hunting provides winter food for many families.

    When we lived in northern Italy, we learned licensed hunters had to keep their rifles or shotguns in the questura, police station, except during hunting season.

    The reaction of the students at the Parkland school and elsewhere may force some action. Disarming the public is not conceivable; however, some steps might be taken.

  • On the cusp of changes in public education

    BY TOM MCDONALD
    Gazette Media Services

    SANTA ROSA — Up until recently, it’s been pretty much a seamless takeover.

    Worn out by Susana Martinez’s can’t-do/won’t do policies as governor toward issues like clean energy, full marijuana legalization and public education, voters made their voices heard in New Mexico with the resounding election of Michelle Lujan Grisham last year. Since then she’s been pushing the state in a far more progressive direction — touting education reform as her top priority.

    Last month, however, Lujan Grisham took an unexpected turn when she fired her Public Education Department (PED) secretary, Karen Trujillo, after just six months on the job. The reasons given for her dismissal were general and vague: in a statement, Lujan Grisham said her expectations “were not met in a number of areas” and that she needs a “vibrant and ambitious new leader” for PED. In the interim, until she names a permanent secretary to the position, Deputy Secretary Kara Bobroff will head up the department as the state moves into the 2019-20 school year.